Amazon Reviews and why they are important
Amazon, like it or not, is the leading retail channel for new authors, and the marketplace. It’s not perfect but is vital if you’re trying to get people to read your books. All the Facebook/Twitter/word of mouth/Blog posts and anything else in the world doesn’t amount to anything in comparison to just getting reviews on Amazon.
Unfortunately, this is the reason there are so many ‘paid’ reviewers out there offering to review books for a price. Which is not a route I ever wish to take. I want people to read my books, enjoy them (hopefully), and leave honest reviews. Not everyone who has read my novel/ or any other authors novel, has written a review, however.
Which is fair enough, I am not about to hold a gun to peoples head after all. That they enjoy the read is far more important to me than getting a review on a personal level, but like any author, I want to reach as many people as possible.
Cider Lane is not the world’s longest book, it’s not war and peace, and it’s not a great opus, it’s hardly 1984. But while it’s just a book, to me personally it is the culmination of about three years work. The 84,348 words of the final proofed copy of Cider Lane, came about by closer to half a million words been written by myself. I would not like to think of the hours, days, months of actual work that I poured into the novel.
It may well be just an odd little book, but for me, it represents a labour of Love, Dreams, Heart and Soul, almost as important to me, in some ways, as one of my children. It simply became a hugely important part of my life, and still is.
Passing Place is much the same, written either side of Cider Lane I had bene working on it for five years by the time I published it, at a much larger 124,498 words. Some of which I am ridiculously proud of.
I put them out into the world as much in hope as expectation. The hope they will be read, liked, many be even loved by its readers. But finding readers isn’t easy, for me, or for other writers.
Compared to all the work that goes into a novel, and all those long hours spent writing them, it takes about 3 minutes to write an Amazon review when you have read it.
Six words minimum, more if you wish, It doesn’t have to be long and glowing, just ‘This is a good read, i liked it‘ will do. Sure you can wax lyrical if you desire and no one is going to be critical if you do. You can even point out a few flaws, I assure you no writer would mind as long as its an honest review.
Add a few stars. Just however many you think it’s worth.
Then hit send.
After 20-25 reviews a book will occasionally be included in the ‘also bought’ and the ‘you might like’ lists, increasing a novels visibility on the Amazon site. After 50-70 reviews, Amazon highlights the book for spotlight positions, its newsletter, and will push it, just a little.
So those three minutes a happy reader takes out of their life to do me a short review are incredibly important to my dreams of finding a wider audience and perhaps finding a few more people who will enjoy my novel.
The same applies to any writer slaving away at the word processor.
So please review, if not my novels (which you may not have read or want to read) do it for the novels of another writer you stumble over. Writing is the only thing more selfish than a good read. They are both things you do on your own, for yourself. ( any writer who does not firstly write for themselves is in the wrong business.) Reading is a pleasure spent in those golden moments of self, escaping the self. Ironic I know.
But sharing what you read, and the joy you find it in via a review is the least selfish of actions.
So bring a little joy into the world, and help the writers of the books you love out. If you would be so kind.
If you can.
If you would be so kind.