I had all kinds of anxieties and butterflies, as does everyone else releasing their work into the world. No one likes to be told their work sucks because they take it personally. Sometimes we need negative reviews if they highlight where our short comings are. "This author doesn't know how to use a comma!" ~ If that's what they say to you, focus on learning where to put them. Sometimes negative reviews can be a blessing in disguise. Another negative can be false positives. You know, when your friends and family post nothing but rainbows and unicorns reviews about your book, saying you're the next Harry Potter writer.
You maybe, but these reviews also set the reader up for a certain level of expectation. If you don't meet it, they might turn around and rant about how they feel betrayed. When you ask for reviews, ask for honest reviews. It's okay to have someone say your book is "okay" and not "OMG You gotta read this." Because when you're at okay, you know that with more work and focus, you can work towards getting those kind of reviews that people are not kidding when they say your book is a must read.
If you're a reader, do your favorite author a favor and leave them an honest review, even if they have a whole bunch of them. Add your two cents. Keep in mind though that this is a living for some authors and words are very powerful. If you slam an author, that can hurt them financially in the long run. If they suck, then tell them where they can improve so they can learn from that and do better. (If they don't know they're doing wrong, how can they fix it?)
If you like their work, tell your friends, tell your family. Better yet, loan the book you just bought to your friends. (Authors make more money when you loan books!) And leave a review of why you liked what they wrote. "I loved how you kept me on the edge of my seat until the last page!" These really help.
I must lurk back into the shadows of writing and next time I pop back out, I hope to have some good news and content for you guys to enjoy. Don't forget, with Halloween coming up, there's two great books that talk about real paranormal events that I investigated. Things DO go bump in the night and these books are a collection of the cases we went on!
Until next time,
Author Steven Wolff