Guest Posts·Self Publishing·Writing

How (Not) to Respond to a Bad Book Review

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How Not to Respond to a Bad Book Review on The Write LifeI’m writing at TheWriteLife.com today on how not to respond to a bad book review.

I look at the plight of one Stephan J. Harper, an author whose defensive and self-justifying rants on a bad book review of his own work made him a minor Internet celebrity. I feel for the guy, because no one likes a bad review. But there are certain, shall we say, unwritten rules of etiquette when it comes to author/reviewer interactions, and Mr. Harper breaks every last one of them.

I share my own poor reviews as well. Fortunately, rather than causing me to question my existence, these reviews make me laugh today. Every writer, no matter their fame or ability, will garner a bad review.

How to Turn a Bad Book Review into Positive Action

In The War of Art, Steven Pressfield gets to the heart of the matter and shares a lesson that all writers would do well to learn as early on as they can: “The artist committing himself to his calling has volunteered for hell, whether he knows it or not. He will be dining for the duration on a diet of isolation, rejection, self-doubt, despair, ridicule, contempt, and humiliation.”

So with this kind of dinner presented before us on a consistent basis, how can we effectively handle the inevitable? I close the post by offering “7 Non-Career-Destroying Ways to Deal with Bad Book Reviews,” all of which I’ve tried and all of which I’m sure I’ll be trying again with each new book.

I hope you’ll take some time and read the post, then leave your comment on that post about how you handle bad reviews.

Read “About to Respond to a Negative Review of Your Book? Read This First” at TheWriteLife.com.

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