some markets, like DE, seem full of nasty vicious one star vagrant vandals, posting their ego filled, blowhard, fathead mean reviews--they have migrated to Italy and Spain, unfortunately
I suppose I should blame my translations, but as one nice Italian woman said, after she'd seen the English version, it's the book, not the translation, kind of like, don't shoot the messenger
jokes perhaps don't translate well, yet some of my favorite authors, like Voltaire, Ionesco, Jarry, Camus, I have only read in translation, and they are often really funny
so, I have deleted some books, despite sales, because of the one star graffiti, which I fear is bad publicity, and sometimes I think Sales Rank matters, but, I'm not sure if anything other than USA sales are counted
Sales rank is an indirect indicator to you and other people how your book is selling. It is separate for each market. It matters only to the extent that it impacts how discoverable your book is in search etc.
You enjoy those books in translation because the translators are the best in the business, and they are paid fairly well by publishing standards. As Vladimir Nabokov once told his students, a translator must be excellent in the "into" language and very good in the "from" language. Notably, Nabokov never tried to translate his own Russian-language books -- he left that to his son.
A machine translation is never going to deserve anything more than a one-star review. A human translation by someone doing it for a share of the profits ("But Mr Fennyman, there never are any profits!" "Precisely.") might well deserve two or three stars. (And these are almost certainly not fatheads and blowheads; they are honest people giving honest opinions that happen to annoy you.)
A good translation will cost thousands of dollars. And how in the world can you judge whether the translation is good or not? It sounds as though yours weren't.
(Don't trust KDP to publish a print edition. Don't trust CreateSpace to publish an ebook.)
thanks for your note
where would I find one of these translators who would work for a share of the profits?
personally, I am interested in machine learning, and have no problem with machine translation--granted, there are many dialects
I had a guy do a translation for me, but it was not successful--this was a translation of one of my most popular books
these one star guys are hackers, I have found--and worse--hackers and stalkers
so, if anyone knows a translator as noted, let me know
The reviewers are responding as many English-speakers have responded to barely literate machine translations from Indian writers. And, yes, some people do serially torment writers who offer substandard work, just as predators go after limping bunnies...it's human nature. Try BabelCube.
No machine can translate the delicacies of a language. Take one obvious example. French, Italian and German (among many other languages) have different words for "you." Which one you use depends on the context, the relationships, status, age etc. Here in Germany, I know 2 old ladies who have known each other for many years and, despite being very close, they still use the polite "Sie" form of the English "you." English has other ways of doing this. For example (at the dinner table):
Give me the salt.
Pass me the salt please.
Would you mind passing the salt please?
I hope you don't mind me asking, but I was wondering if it might be at all possible for you to pass me the salt please.
We (in both the US and UK) can often use an inappropriate form in order to express displeasure, sarcasm and so on.
My point is: how can a machine translator take these nuances into account? It can't, can it?
Mr. Leuchtag: Mareichtag and I are speaking nothing but English now.
Mrs. Leuchtag: So we should feel at home when we get to America.
Carl: Very nice idea, mm-hmm.
Mr. Leuchtag: (toasting) To America!
Mrs. Leuchtag: To America!
Carl: To America!
Mr. Leuchtag: Liebchen - sweetness heart, what watch?
Mrs. Leuchtag: Ten watch.
Mr. Leuchtag: Such much?
Carl: Hm. You will get along beautiful in America, mm-hmm
I don't think that the public has access to our individual author's ranking, in which case such ranking has no effect whatsoever on sales. The author's ranking is solely for our own benefit in gauging how we're doing against competing authors on Amazon. The sales rank of an individual book might have a small bearing on sales since some prospective purchasers might glance at that ranking before deciding whether to purchase the book. In my opinion one-star reviews and ratings definitely hurt sales.