As a newbie romance author, there is one thing that has been on my mind, twisting my guts with fear and anxiety...
The Bad Review.
Sure, some authors smile and pretend it doesn't bother them when that first person doesn't find the story they poured over for months amazing, but there are also those of us that hide under the covers with a pint of Ben and Jerrys, pretending Goodreads and Amazon don't exist. (Ehem)
While at the RWA conference, when I asked about this terrifying moment that is sure to come my way (cause let's face it, not everyone is going to like my style, my story, or my voice), my amazing editor told me not to freak out(And a lot of other ego fluffing that made me feel all warm and fuzzy.) Good advice right?
You see, I was lucky. I started off my career with a couple of other newbs so when our first book, Kiss Me: An Avon Valentines Day Anthology, came out, we had each other. Once you hit the solo train though, it is all on YOU to deliver literary awesomeness and when that first review comes in, you're holding your breath, you're biting your lip, you're picking your nails...
Which brings me to RWA. I have to admit, the minute someone introduced themselves as a reviewer, or a blogger, my heart started pounding and my palms began to sweat. I would babble, try to be funny, and probably talked a bit like the squirrel from Hoodwinked. After a while though, I relaxed and really started having a conversation with them. All the ones I met were nice and geniunely loved the world of romance. We talked about our favorite authors, my crazy fangirl moments, and their blogs. Getting to know them helped me repress my normally spaztastic nature and now that the reviews are coming in, I find myself breathing a little more normally and looking for people I recognize from RWA on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads. I do love a good blog and am still learning the ropes, but luckily, the bloggers I've worked with so far don't mind my quirks. :-)
So it all comes down to this...Not everyone is going to like your book...but if you LOVE it, that's all that matters. Take the good and the bad from a review and use it to improve yourself. Because they aren't sharing their opinion to be MEAN. They are sharing because they read your book...repeat after me...THEY READ YOUR BOOK! They were excited enough about it to ask for a ARC or maybe they entered a contest or just ran out and bought it on release day! Whatever or however they got a copy, to me, that is amazing! Whether they loved it, liked it, or thought it was a steamy pile of dog poo, they read your book and took the time to give you their opinion. So, thank you reviewers, bloggers, librarians, and every romance addict out there, for taking the time...you are appreciated. :-)
*P.S. This is not a suck up piece-this is my own personal therapy cause ya'll still terrify me! ;-)
Avid writer of small towns, true love, and laugh out loud moments. Romance novel entusiast. Addictions include Coffee, Twitter, and TV Shows.