Nothing like the adrenaline shock of stumbling over your first review by accident . . . from Publisher’s Weekly no less!
I was doing a Google search for pirates illegally downloading copies of previous titles (and found them . . . arggh! Hang ‘em from the yardarms!) when SEEKER OF SHADOWS fiction review caught my eye with PW attached to it. I hadn’t heard anything from my publisher so my immediate first thought was, ‘Oh, no. I’ve been trashed and they didn’t want me to know!’ Cautiously, I followed the link and there was my cover under the bold red and white PW banner. Gulp! Then the first line . . .
“Gideon delivers a rich and complex romantic urban fantasy romance.”
Okay, it’s not urban fantasy, it’s straight paranormal, but the preceding words blur that small inaccuracy. I read on hopefully. Nice synopsis of the plot then . . .
“Series fans are rewarded with critical developments layered on previous books, while enticing new dimensions to the Shifter world keep things fresh.” Yahoo! Rewarded . . . Enticing . . . Great words for future pull quotes. Then . . .
“Susanna is slow to develop as sympathetic, and earlier series characters are thinly sketched, but . . .
What is it about authors that makes us instantly feel the need to defend our prose as vigorously as we do our children’s faults, our female rights, and our decision to have that second Cadbury egg? This wasn’t a slap or a dig or even an inaccuracy, but I start in with a mental dialogue arguing against the perceived slight. “Well, she’s supposed to be distant and unsympathetic until the reader gets an insight into her background where all emotion is suppressed under tremendous threat. And how much development does an earlier secondary character need if their purpose is well defined and they’re there to support an earlier plot line?” Huff and puff. Then self-righteous indignation becomes insecurity. “What could I change? What should I have done different? What can I do differently in the next book so it will suck less?” Previous praise is forgotten. It becomes, “Why did they hate my book? Now no one’s going to want to read it!” But . . .
. . . newcomers can still enjoy the well-crafted prose and page-turning tension.”
Well-crafted prose. Page-turning tension. Okay, my feathers are stroked, my first impression disabused, and I start seeing the big picture. Great pull quotes for my next cover! I’m in Publisher’s freaking Weekly and they said nice things!
Authors . . . We’re so dramatic!
Maybe someone needs to invent a 12 Step program for us to follow when reading our own reviews.
Enjoy the full review. I did . . . over and over again! In fact, it’s sitting beside me at my desk . . . my cover under the bold red and white PW!
Do reviews influence whether or not you buy a book? How do you authors deal with the good, bad and ugly when it’s out there for the world to see?