Nathan Bransford, Author


Friday, May 22, 2015

The best way to thank a writer: write a review


Read a book you love and want to let the author know how much you enjoyed their work?

Do it publicly. Write a review.

It's hard out there for a writer. There is a vast ocean of books, and making yours stand out is a daunting challenge. So when writers hear directly from readers via email -- yes, absolutely, those notes are deeply appreciated, but I've heard more than one writer say they are tempted to shout from the mountaintops, "PLEASE SAY THAT ON AMAZON."

Or Barnes & Noble. Or Powells. Or Goodreads. Or Twitter. Or a blog. Or all of the above. Something, anything public.

Reviews matter. They make it more likely that other people will buy the book, and sales are what will keep the author's writing career afloat. If you love a book and write a great review you can help cancel out those negative reviews and help the author where it really counts.

Sure, don't hesitate to reach out directly to an author to tell them how much you appreciated their book. They'll love it even more if you include a link to a great review.

Art: The Two Sisters by Auguste Renoir






19 comments:

Jeremy Myers said...

Absolutely true!

I love getting emails and comments from my readers about my books, but I often wish they would simply copy-paste their email to me over into an Amazon review.

Pimion said...

Yeah, I couldn't agree with you more. But readers think that author will be more delighted to receive a personal message instead of reading brief, or not so, review on the public site.

Karen M. Peterson said...

I've had a couple of writers reach out to ME when I've written reviews of their books on my blog. That's way more exciting than getting a thank you back from an email I sent them.

Mark Jones said...

Absolutely! Those of us trying to break out from the sludge pit dearly love reviews.

Jason Bougger said...

Very good point. I used to do a quick review of books on my website when I finished them, but it's much more helpful to the author to do it somewhere where people will actually read it.

A.J. Cattapan said...

My debut YA novel just came out, and I'm realizing how very true this is! Getting private Facebook messages and emails is nice, but I know it's going to take a grass roots sort of effort to get my book noticed.

Also, I think I owe Nathan a book review! :)

Bruce Bonafede said...

I've had that experience, where somebody loves your book & they tell you personally and only personally. And I've had varying success with getting them to record that somewhere in a review. I find that a lot of people are hesitant to post reviews. Not sure why. Maybe they're just not used to doing it. Or they're afraid someone will disagree with them. Don't know, it's a puzzlement.

Carolyn McBride said...

As a writer, I couldn't agree more! I make it a habit to leave positive and honest reviews of other writers work I've enjoyed. Did that on Kobo recently, went to copy/paste my review to the author, only to find the review was gone from Kobo. Irritation like a bug bite on my...
Anyway, Nathan, great blog. It's been educational and enlightening, and I've read back quite a ways. Keep up the fine work!

Mirka Breen said...

I second and third this, Nathan.

Kimberly G. Giarratano said...

Amen!

Sharon Reamer said...

Even if you don't like a book, posting a thoughtful review of why you didn't like it may even encourage others to buy the book. It's not easy to do, but it's almost always possible to find something good to say about a book, even if you don't like it and that's also important.

There's nothing worse than getting a bad review without knowing why the reader didn't like it.

Joanna said...

So true. I know that my book has been bought (and later passed on) to 1000s of readers.

How do I know this? I know because they e-mail me, they approach me in restauants, supermarkets and anywhere else I go...

How many reviews do I have on Amazon? I have 30. That's it.

I have often wanted to say, "I am so flattered, please go to Amazon as soon as you get home and write down what you just told me."

Your post today validates my feelings of frustration. Thank you Nathan.

K.L. Romo said...

Thanks for the reminder Nathan.

Joanna said...

PS: I reprinted your text and linked to your blog in my post today.
Joanna

http://writingfrommerida.com/2015/05/24/where-is-joanna/

Terin Miller said...

Absolutely!

Best,
Terin

Evo said...

I would be happy to just receive a comment whether a reader enjoyed my book or not.

Anonymous said...

It's so CRAY-CRAY the way this works. Check this out:



The reader who supposedly LOVES your work will rarely review it online or anywhere else. They can't be so bothered. You need be satisfied with the wispy air-kiss of a comment like,"Your book was really good. Who was the main character, again?"



The reader who DOESN'T favor your writing however, will take explicit, unpaid moments out of their precious day to let everyone -- on every social account they can login to -- know not only that your book sucks, but how much YOU suck, as well. It's as if they want to make sure no living being reads the life-sucking Ebola that is your composition. they also wish to see to it that you NEVER EVER EVER have the ability to pay your living expenses based upon any literary creations you may render now, or in the foreseeable future.

Author Cynthia Vespia said...

Absolutely! Reviews are so important for readers when they are deciding on a new book and for us writers to get noticed in the endless sea of books out there. It is tough these days. I've taken to leaving a little nudge inside my books for them to drop a review on Amazon and Goodreads.

Elizabeth Cooper said...

Yes Yes and Yes. Before I was a writer I hardly though about writing reviews, I thought it was something useless not necessary. Now that I am a writer I make sure to review everything I use.Reviews are so important for other readers.

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