#Review begging

As an independent author, there are some things that I’m good at, or at least I think I’m getting good at.  There are some other things that I’m not as good at, and that I need to figure out.

One of those is getting reviews for my books.  As of this exact moment, since The Benevolence Archives, Vol. 1 came out in May of 2014, at least 2810 copies of my four books have been downloaded or purchased by someone.  That is, to me, a hell of a nice-looking number.  I’m perfectly aware that lots of people have done lots better.  For me, right now, I’m happy with that number.

Those 2810 downloads or purchases have resulted in 42 reviews on Amazon.   That’s 1.4% of my downloads leading to a review.  That number, I’m somewhat less than completely happy with.  There have been some more on Goodreads and some folks have done nice reviews on their own sites.  Some of them have UK or B&N reviews.  But I want to see them on Amazon US, which is where the huge majority of my readers are.

(Incidentally, on reviewing books on your site: I get this, especially from authors, and I do it myself– I’d rather review someone’s book on my site than on Amazon because Amazon occasionally decides people know each other for no clear reason and deletes reviews.)  Similarly, I know a handful of reviews for The Benevolence Archives have been deleted from the site.  One of them was a troll review and should have been, the rest not so much.

But I’d kinda like to see The Sanctum of the Sphere with more than four reviews, seeing as how it came out in April and has three fewer reviews than Searching for Malumba, which has seven and hasn’t been out for two months yet.  Skylights, out since September 2014, has thirteen.

(Possible: my books all suck, and my reviewers are the minority of people with terrible taste AND a desire to spread it around.  I don’t think that’s what’s happening, mind you.  But if I suck, I need to know so I can work harder at getting better!)

I’ve gone so far a couple of times as to offer people a free book of their choice if they just review it, no strings attached.  The giveaways happen but so far the reviews don’t seem to be materializing.

I’m going to try a slightly different tack now, and just blatantly beg.  If you’ve read any of these books, and you haven’t reviewed them, and especially if you liked them, could I please beg you for just a couple of sentences on Amazon?  Pretty please?  I’m not asking for a dissertation or anything.  Just a few sentences.  Here, have the links again:

Thanks, folks.  I really do genuinely appreciate it.

(NOTE: If you actually do know me IRL, and especially if you live in the same town as me, thanks, but don’t bother.  I’m pretty sure Amazon automatically removes any reviews coming from the same town as the author.)

15 thoughts on “#Review begging

  1. Rose F

    I…am a terrible person to ask for positive reviews. I haven’t done them for you because I can’t think of anything to say besides fangirling and I hate reading a review that sounds like it’s written by a nitwit. Most of my actual book reviews are for books I don’t like or that need critical examination.


    1. BENEVOLENCE ARCHIVES is both the cheapest and the easiest way to get to know my “voice,” especially the last couple of stories. That said, I think SKYLIGHTS is my favorite of my novels. MALUMBA is nonfiction and is sort of its own thing. (And thanks for considering it!)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I never realized how important reviews were until I started meeting authors. There are just huge swaths of the industry (marketing especially) not available to a book with too few reviews. I’ll be picking up Benevolence Archives and will be sure to review when done. It might be a little bit before it gets read though.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m in your club of longing for reviews! I’d love to know somehow how many of my books have been sold either as digital or print versions. How did you find out? My sort of thing is clearly not like yours, but I’ll return a favor if you will?


  4. Thom

    You may not know the answer, but then again, as a Goodreads author, you may have more insight. Goodreads was bought by Amazon back in 2013; don’t my reviews there automagically show up on Amazon?

    Also, I haven’t read any of your work yet, but plan to check out Benevolence Archives in the new year.


    1. They don’t– Amazon, so far, has kept a very light touch on Goodreads, and you don’t see the attention paid to reviews over there that you do on Amazon. For example, it seems to be a custom over there for authors to review their own books, which Amazon flat won’t allow.

      Thanks for checking out BA, by the way. 🙂


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