We all hate those women that "Ooooh" and "Ahhh" over anything and everything.
Well, this morning, I turned into one of them.
I woke up to a very sweet message from a book blogger, and she shared her review of Knots with me. I read it directly after waking, and even though my eyes were blurring, I could not mistake the big flashing black and white sign with neon trim that said the story was brilliant.
Check it out--I'm not lying: http://readingmyescape.wordpress.com/2013/10/08/arc-review-knots-by-chanse-lowell/
I actually said, "Awww, that's always nice," like a big ol' dork. I couldn't help myself. My brain wasn't quite pumping blood in it yet.
I love hearing that someone enjoyed a story I wrote, and even more than that, I like knowing it touched them in some way. She sent me a nice private message, and that made my morning even better.
I'm not sharing this to brag (well, maybe just a little because these types of morning are few and far between) but to say that I'm honestly amazed at the generosity and caring of people I come across as a writer that love to read. All too often we hear about the people that write up nasty reviews with pictures of dancing monkeys flinging their pooh at the writer's head or worse, pictures of some hot dude making a crazy face, tearing the book to shreds. I'm all for honesty, but it's so refreshing to have some honest, positive feedback.
It's because of the nasty ones that a lot of authors don't read their reviews. I admit, those can be pretty deflating, so I try to avoid them as well, but another reason I don't read my reviews is because they aren't meant for me. They're meant for other readers. I never want a reviewer to feel like I'm watching over their shoulder. I've actually seen on book bloggers websites where they explain what to do to submit a request for a book review, and they have to tell the authors they will not accept money to change their review to something glowing and full of lies.
Who does that? Who has the cash to do that type of thing, and why would they want to? I never want family or friends to review my works (not that they would, since they don't know I write erotica, but if they did...) because they'd feel obligated to coddle me and write up something fake just to make me feel good. I don't want that first grader pat on the head for what they might consider a hideous piece of art they feel obligated to hang on the fridge for a month, when in reality, they wish they could burn it.
So, this is why book bloggers are so vital, even though it's scary to approach them at times. They represent the impartial reader. They represent many of the nameless readers I will never meet. They are the voice that carries a book out to the masses. They do this for free. Wow. That amazes me that they love reading so much, they're willing to open their mouth, when I as a writer, am often petrified to do just that. Oh sure, I don't mind pimping out a book I've read that I adore, but to do that with my own work can be downright crippling at times.
I know how much time and energy I put into my work, and what it means to me. They have no idea if I threw it together carelessly or if I meticulously went through my story multiple times, relentless in my pursuit to clean it up and make it nice for their reading enjoyment. Which means they take a risk on an unknown author like me. Have I mentioned how much that means to me? How I'm in awe of them?
Daisy G had never met me before. She had no idea if I even know what an ellipses is and how to use it. But she was willing to give me a chance.
And so to her and all the book bloggers out there that work so tirelessly, this is my tribute to you. Without you, a lot of us indie authors would never get noticed at all.
Without you working your butt off to promote us and take the chance on us, we might never be heard.
And that's worth more than any money can buy.
Unfortunately, all I can do is say thanks, feel good I gave you my story for free, and share these little pics, because, honestly, who doesn't want to see this?
And, uh, I'm pretending this is the type of man the Desert Southwest breeds. I've got 10 more like him outside in my backyard, just hanging out next to my pet saguaro--he's such a good little pet. Better than my inanimate cactus, and more succulent, too. :D
Enjoy book bloggers. This is about the best I can do to show my gratitude. Wish I could buy you a steak dinner, and have Garrett Neff be your date. Maybe someday I'll decide I'm sick of looking at him, and then I'll send him your way...