5 Tips to Handle Negative Book Reviews

You’ve just launched your book! Whether it’s been years of experience compiled into chapters, or a journey into a private part of your soul, your writing has become a huge part of your life. While you’ve been able to retain control over this project, from the original idea to the finished and polished manuscript, now your book has been released to the world.

This means that you will have very little control over how others will respond to your book. While everyone wants to receive 4 and 5-star reviews in an effort to reach a large audience, an author is bound to receive a few bad reviews along the way. These negative reviews are rarely a personal attack, but they may bruise your ego. Knowing that you have an emotional investment in your work, our book marketing experts do our best to soften the blow when sharing a negative review by reminding clients that a few bad reviews are to be expected and you cannot let these affect how you approach your craft.

Along with this advice, when necessary, we also recommend the following:

1.Do not contact the reviewer.

It’s best to leave a bad review alone, especially if it’s a rant. We don’t recommend responding to bad reviews, either directly to the reviewer or indirectly via social media. If you feel compelled to respond, do so tactfully. For example, you could thank the reviewer for constructive criticism. We highly recommend leaving the rants alone. Try to develop a thick skin and let the positive reviews speak for you.

2. Learn from the review.

Try and look at each review as feedback. Yes, you may receive some negative reviews that are completely unfounded, but others, especially those from reputable sources, will contain valuable information that can help you grow as an author. Remember, negative reviews that are constructive can even be used to help you refine your craft.

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3. Keep it in perspective.

Every author receives bad reviews – it’s all part of the profession. When an author contacts us for our Book Review Service, they’re looking to get reviews for their book. Even if a few of the reviews are negative, it means that people are reading your book and that you are being exposed to a new audience.

4. Focus on the positive.

To soften the blow of a negative review, re-read a few of your best reviews to bring your confidence back up. For example, if you received 9 good reviews and 1 bad review, remember the consensus is still a thumbs up.

5. You can’t please everyone.

When all else fails, just remember that you can’t please everyone! We all have different interests and tastes, and as an author, you cannot appeal to them all.

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