I’m not really a blogger and if I’m honest I’d rather read than write them. But there’s a monkey sitting on my back which I have to shake off so I can step into the New Year with a lighter load. It’s for that reason I have decided to share what happened to me earlier this year when I upset someone I had met on a social media site; someone I looked upon as a friend.
A negative book review is a healthy thing, so I’m told.
Hey, there isn't any accounting for taste so why should any of us beat ourselves up if someone doesn’t like what we write or the way we write it?
On the other hand, what if the review has nothing to do with your book and is written out of pure spite? Of course the natural reaction is to look the other way and ignore them but that’s not always possible.
I have been both mainstream and self-published and have met quite a few writers on the social media sites such as Myspace, Facebook and (a newbie) on Twitter. Earlier this year, a friend (not herself a writer) kept harping on my Facebook page about how she will never buy from Amazon and how unhappy she was that writers are selling their wares through Amazon when Amazon is? Selling child pornography. I felt that she was making people feel uncomfortable so I deleted her.
What did she then go and do?
She went straight to her Amazon.com book review of I Love
Charlotte Bronté and changed it from this:
I love Charlotte Bronte (Paperback):
"I’m not much of a reader of fiction, but I couldn’t put this book down. It’s not just a story, it’s a journey. This particular author has the magnificent gift of taking us out of our dull worlds, and putting us right there with her, and the lush world and characters she creates. If you have a passion for Ireland, you will be especially delighted at the way she makes life in a small Irish village seem so real, and so downright charming.
Believe me I am a tough sell when it comes to fiction, but this book is not only well written it’s intriguing. Check the “story within a story” she included which takes this from being a great book, to something that pulls you in and never lets you go. I truly LOVED this book."
"Wrote a good review originally because the author asked me to. I guess if your writing is that bad, you are reduced to begging like that, lol. Save your money. This book is the ramblings of a mad woman who also defends child pornography. Look elsewhere for ways to spend your time and money."
Should someone be able to accuse me of supporting Child Pornography because I sell my books on Amazon? I think not.
I reported her review of I Love Charlotte Bronté, as abusive, as did many of my loyal Facebook friends. I also sent in a complaint to Amazon.
They removed the review within 24 hours and I breathed a sigh of relief.
But wait, the following morning a friend emailed me saying, ‘She’s back!’
I went to Amazon.com and could not believe she had been allowed to re-post.
I Love Charlotte Bronte (Paperback)
‘This book was written in the tone of a sappy 14 yr old girl who has read too many Bronte books. It’s cliched, lacks imagination, the story is slow, scattered and culminates in a predictable ending. You're better off spending your time and money on a REAL Bronte novel, rather than this uninspired wannabe.'
This review is from Marie's Voice (Now rewritten and entitled, With a Little Help From my Friends)
‘Interesting and good read at first. But this was supposed to be a story of a teenager who fights for the well-being of a mentally handicapped child she wants to adopt. Great story til you get to the end and find out after all the fighting, she winds up putting the now-grown child back into an institution, defeating the whole purpose of the "battle". Disappointing to say the least. Reader beware.’
Reader beware of what?
I say authors beware - beware of personal attacks and slanderous remarks, and beware of having no redress when someone sets out to deliberately sabotage your book sales.