It's easy for people to be mean on the internet. On forums, review sites, chat rooms, and blogs, people may not have absolute anonymity, but they have the advantage of not having to look a person in the eye as they say hurtful things.
Every book gets bad reviews. There's nothing wrong with this. What one person loves, another person might not. (I can think of several very popular, very well-known books that I had to force myself through because I couldn't get into them.) As a personal preference, I only review books I enjoyed. The whole purpose of me writing reviews at all is to spread the word about something I really liked, not to bash on an author for writing something I hated. I don't write reviews for books I couldn't stand, and I won't even give a rating to any book I didn't finish.
Again—every book has bad reviews. These are reviews that might try to point out something good, no matter how small, but ultimately will list the things the reader didn't like. Maybe the story dragged or the characters felt one-dimensional. This is constructive criticism and shouldn't feel mean-spirited, snide, or cruel.
Book bashing is different. Bashers will spend way too much time thinking of every mean thing they can say about a book—and sometimes its author! "Useless drivel that isn't worth the paper it's printed on... They'll publish anything these days." (I've seen similar to this on a lot of reviews!) These are comments that are flat out meant to be hurtful and don't offer us authors a lick of critique to work with.
These are reviews that are unnecessary and damage the self-esteem of a lot of writers. And it's hard, isn't it? Because we're already faced with so much rejection in this industry. From agents, editors, readers... Sometimes, it's hard to ignore those scathing reviews. It's hard to not wonder, "Are they right?"
My answer: probably not, and who the hell cares?
Bashers spend all this time writing these long, drawn-out and mean reviews, and we spend even more time stressing and agonizing over them despite that we'll never make these people happy and it's not our job to! There are people out there who do and will love your book. Focus on them. Focus on the people who give that 3 or 4-star rating because they loved it, but maybe had some things that weren't working for them. Once your book is out there, you can't change it, so focus on that solid, constructive criticism to help you learn and grow to produce a better story next time.
We don't write for the negative people. We write for ourselves, for our fans. We write because we don't know how not to. Keep that in mind, and stop stressing.
'Kelley York delivers in this impressive debut. I was at the edge of my
seat waiting to see what would happen next! Bottom line, this was
unputdownable!!!' --- YA Fantasy Guide ---
Kelley was born and raised in central California, where she still resides
with her lovely wife, daughter, and an abundance of pets. (Although she
does fantasize about moving across the globe to Ireland.) She has a
fascination with bells, adores all things furry - be them squeaky, barky
or meow-y - is a lover of video games, manga and anime, and likes to
pretend she's a decent photographer. Her life goal is to find a real
unicorn. Or maybe a mermaid.
Within young adult, she enjoys writing and reading a variety of genres
from contemporary with a unique twist, psychological thrillers,
paranormal/urban fantasy and horror. She loves stories where character
development takes center stage.
Kelley's website: http://www.kelley-york.com/blog
Hushed - Synopsis:
He's saved her. He's loved her. He's killed for her.
Eighteen-year-old Archer couldn't protect his best friend, Vivian, from
what happened when they were kids, so he's never stopped trying to protect
her from everything else. It doesn't matter that Vivian only uses him when
hopping from one toxic relationship to another - Archer is always there,
waiting to be noticed.
Then along comes Evan, the only person who's ever cared about Archer
without a single string attached. The harder he falls for Evan, the more
Archer sees Vivian for the manipulative hot-mess she really is.
But Viv has her hooks in deep, and when she finds out about the murders
Archer's committed and his relationship with Evan, she threatens to turn
him in if she doesn't get what she wants...And what she wants is Evan's
death, and for Archer to forfeit his last chance at redemption.
Barnes & Noble:
Check out Entangled Romance for more information on Kelly York and HUSHED blog tour:
Also, check out Wanda's review of HUSHED: