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Warriors, come out and play…or maybe not

You’ve spent weeks, months even years honing your craft. Plotting your story, developing your characters and it all takes is one review, one star instead of five, one comment by someone hiding behind a user name to quite frankly piss you off.

So you sit and read this one star review over and over again and you say the following out loud:

“You’re completely missing the point of the story”
“Did you actually read it?”
“Oh my God. They’re right. It’s rubbish.”
“What the hell are you talking about?”
“Bastard”
But after the ranting and feelings of anger, insult and disappointment have subsided, from the quiet of the storm, arises the question. “Should I respond? Do I dare to try and appease the keyboard warrior?”

(Just to be clear, keyboard warriors is the name that my brother calls the people who hide behind a username, tapping vigorously away on their keyboards as they write their damning reviews of your work.)

So do you respond? My answer is no. Stay away from the comment box. Close down the page of the amazon reviews and log on to YouTube, go on twitter, pick up a book, watch back to back episodes of The Walking Dead. Do anything but respond to the keyboard warrior.

The last thing that you want to do is get into a conversation with the Keyboard warrior because in the keyboard warrior’s head, they are King. They are Batman to your Joker. The Moriarty to your Sherlock. The Magneto to your Professor X and it will not end well. By responding to a one star review of your masterpiece, and as far as your mum is concerned the finest piece of literature since Melville wrote Moby Dick, you are achieving absolutely nothing.

If I’m honest, I’m more likely to buy a book that has a variety of reviews than a book that has hundreds of five star reviews. I have a conspiracy minded brain and I will automatically conclude that there’s something dodgy going on. That maybe these aren’t genuine reviews.

Sometimes you can read a one star review and see it for what it is. The ramblings of a keyboard warrior who likes to upset the applecart or the fact that someone just didn’t like it. It doesn’t mean writing your book has been a complete waste of time. It doesn’t mean that you can’t write. It’s just someone’s opinion.

Anyway, let’s be honest, the only reason why you’re even replying is because you’re hoping that you will be able to change the keyboard warrior’s mind. Convince them that they’ve made a mistake. Just leave the keyboard warrior alone. There’s nothing wrong with a couple of one star, two star or no star reviews. Think of it this way. Have you liked every single book that you have ever read?
No, I didn’t think so.

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