I read reviews. Not just on my book, but on books I purchase. Sometimes they sway me into buying or not buying, but I usually read them because I like to know what people think.
On a few occasions I have seen an author being very naughty.
As an author I know what it’s like to want to reply to a review. I’ve resisted the urge to say “WTF, man!” Some do not hold their tongue. Some confront reviewers and are rather unprofessional.
If you are an author PLEASE! For all that is good and holy DO NOT REPLY TO REVIEWS! As much as you may want to say thanks, f*ck you, I don’t care or whatever….don’t. Just don’t. It makes you look like a confrontational asshole who can’t take criticism.
As someone who bares your soul for all (which is what it feels like. It feels like I’m exposing my self down to my skivvies for all to see) it’s part of our “job” to take that criticism as much as it sucks and may hurt. We all have to remember that no not everyone is going to like our style of writing. Not everyone is going to like our stories. Not everyone is going to like us. It happens. There are books I’ve read that I have absolutely detested, and have said so. If the author had confronted me as some of the ones I’ve seen done, I wouldn’t have read more of their books.
Also, from seeing how these people have reacted, I can assure you I will not be purchasing any of their books in the future. So it doesn’t just affect that person they are attacking, it affects the ones who see said attack. I don’t like confrontation. Especially when it comes to my opinion on something. Why would I want to read and subsequently leave a review on a book if there is a possibility the author is going to go bat shit crazy?
So fellow authors…take those scathing reviews with a grain of salt. Resist the urge to say anything to anyone. Be anonymous when you read. Take yourself out of the equation and remember that not everybody is going to love your works. I get through knowing that even if 90% of the world HATES my book…there is 10% who LOVES it.