It’s so disheartening, to someone who takes pride in the material that she presents to her readers, to see my work ripped apart in a haphazard manner. When I read reviews, I always look to see if there’s anything constructive, anything that I can learn from. If I do find something constructive, I take a look at how I can do things differently in the future to make for a more pleasurable reading experience, but when reviews are just nasty comments seemingly thrown out on a whim, there’s nothing to learn, except for maybe the fact that some folks are just mean-spirited. I also find it strange that, after months of nothing but four and five star reviews, suddenly there seems to be an increasing trickle of one, two and three stars that don’t really say anything useful at all. It’s almost as if they were posted simply to lash out.
I will say that the reviewer who gave Patti Benning’s latest book a bad review at least had a point – there were an unacceptable amount of errors due to a glitch in the editing process for that week, that has since been resolved, but the others, for my books and Patti’s, don’t seem to have any basis in reality. It’s frustrating. Both of us are making our living as authors, and take our work very seriously. To have someone make an offhand review affects our status in the rankings with Amazon, but more importantly, may scare away potential readers who would really enjoy our work.