Don’t get me wrong. It is absolutely lovely to get a positive email from a reader. Writing is a solitary and sometimes lonely enterprise, and authors are periodically swamped by self-doubt. Messages that affirm that your stories are being read and appreciated are priceless.
But...about those reviews...
If you’ve sold thousands of books and your name is universally recognized, maybe reader reviews don’t matter. But if you’re a relatively new author and you’re working hard to promote your books, positive reader reviews are invaluable.
Think about how it works: A reader is ready for a new book, and doesn’t already have one in mind, so he starts looking around on the Amazon website. And good luck for you, as the reader searches, information about your book pops up on his screen. “Sounds interesting,” our reader thinks. But he’s never heard of you before, so he’s not about to buy your book without more information. Maybe he’ll read the excerpt, if there is one. But one thing he will almost always do: He will look at the number of reader reviews, and how the ratings stack up.
Some readers may not write reviews because it seems burdensome. Amazon makes it easy. You just write one or two lines about your impression of the book, and you rate the book by awarding it one to five stars. Simple. And a positive review is the best gift you can give to an author whose book you enjoyed.
So please, consider making an author happy today. Take a few minutes and post that review!