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Sunday, 22 September 2013

Goodreads Review Guidelines Update: What Do You Think???

Someone posted this( ) on my Facebook page and it seems to be getting people hot under the collar.

So I was wondering what you thought of it???

As an author I can't help feeling a tiny bit relieved: you hear such horrible stories of bullying. 

But on the other hand, I can't help feeling that some Indies really do ask for the trouble they receive, by being very rude and thinking that they have a right to spam and demand good reviews just because they've written a book. 

No one likes to hear that their 'baby' is ugly, but when you put yourself out there, you should be ready for people to not like you're work. It's their prerogative, and I always like to say that if something as universally yummy as chocolate can have it's haters, the rest of us haven't a hope!!! ;-P

I guess what I'm saying is that if you want to be treated like a professional writer, then you must behave in a professional way. As authors we have a duty to treat the public with respect, after all: without readers, where would we be???

It's that old saying, isn't it: the customer is ALWAYS right?

I don't understand the nastiness, and I don't think I ever will.

You didn't like the book?

I can understand that, I've read a lot of books that I didn't like and you have my full sympathy. There's nothing more irritating than wasting your time on a book you end up hating!

You give it a bad review?

That's fine by me, I've written bad reviews myself! Yes, as an author it's depressing to receive a bad review, but hey, as the song goes: you were never promised a rose garden. 

Along with the good reviews that bring sunshine to your day, there's going to be a little rain sometime. You just have to learn to deal with that.

But attacking someone whose behaviour you deem unacceptable?

This is where I stop being on your side. 

The very thing you are accusing them of, and are disgusted with them for? You've just done exactly the same thing.

Don't get me wrong: I've had authors be horrible to me too. Sometimes it was because I didn't like their book, but more often because they didn't think that I was important enough to be nice to.

I've met those people, I've been on the receiving end of the nastiness, so please don't think that I don't know that there are some authors out there who don't know how to behave.

But I have my revenge: I never buy another thing from them. I don't 'like' their activity on goodreads/facebook/amazon/etc. I gain satisfaction from knowing that they will never see another penny from me, not ever again!

And for me, that's enough.

As an author, I've never replied to a bad review. It doesn't help the situation and in my opinion this is where the problem starts. By putting your book out there for others to read, you are ASKING for their opinion. You're asking them to part with their hard earned cash, shouldn't that entitle them to decide whether your story was worth it or not?
Even if you gave it to them for free, they still spent their time on it, probably their precious leisure time! They should be able to say if it was time badly spent!

On the other hand, I've met a lot of fellow Indies who are very nice! They've helped me with proofreading, and in return I've helped them when they need an extra pair of eyes. I've even criticized their work and had them thank me for my opinion!!! Sometimes they ignore what I say, and sometimes they take it on board. Either way, I'm happy. I want people to know that I'm telling them the truth, that when I tell them I loved a book they KNOW that I mean it, and that when I say that a book wasn't for me, they know I've actually READ the book and I'm not just paying someone back for not liking my stories, or for saying something that I've took offence to.

I guess what I'm taking so long to say is: 


please don't give up on us Indies. Not all of us are crazies that will stalk you and be unpleasant to you just because you didn't like our book!


someone posted a bad review of your book that you think was unfair, or targeted you personally? That sucks, but it's also life. Engaging in ANY kind of interaction with them will only make things worse. Not for them, you understand, but ALWAYS for you. 

Think that's unfair? Well, maybe it is. That snarky comment you post, the down votes you hand out in retribution, or the friends that you rally in your defence, isn't going to make it any fairer. You'll just prove them right, because all of those things you do in revenge DO make you a jerk. 

That might not be the most pleasant truth to handle, but it's still the truth.

This is just my opinion of course, feel free to disagree without fear of retribution!

D.D. Chant


  1. I know what has some authors upset, at least on Amazon, is that it is other authors using fake names, and they go around giving 1 star reviews and just basically bashing the authors.
    How this helps them get more readers, I haven't a clue. Not that it's right for the authors to stalk or bash, but it may explain why some are on edge.

    1. I don't understand it either, Judy. :-(