Oh my I empathize with you truly. You can bet your last dollar if I knew the pen name or author real name of the person that wrote my bad review I would definitely post it but that's just it. These guys have been around far too long and they post in these forums under other names, they write those messed up reviews under other accounts or get others to do them for them so there is no paper trail.
Very slick they are and the ones bold enough to say in here what they have said about your book you best believe they don't have their book titles anywhere on these threads for us to find, maybe they do but we don't know its them.
Yes LovelyLace. Thanks for the reply. I know for the most part, these people will not be identified. But I figured I'd open a thread for those that are trying to pay the bills that have been jilted by jealous authors who are so selfish in life, that they don't want others to succeed.
I mean, what kind of person wants another to fail? To me it is criminal and sickening and shows a lack of intelligence.
My trilogy has had a couple of one/two star reviews that I suspect, but cannot prove, have come from competing authors.
One isn't a verified purchase.
Another is from a serial one-star reviewer.
Yet another hasn't posted a single review since their review on my book back in March, and posted under a name especially designed to target my book.
But what can you do? You cannot prove they are competing authors, you suspect, but the paper trail back to their author names simply does not exist. All you can do is grow a thick skin, and each time improve the quality of the book files you upload to Amazon.
Still it's a poor show - and not a fair go at all.
I feel you on this. Most of us have had that experience of the 1 star review.that almost sinks our book or story or article. However the best way to rise above it is to find ways around it. As authors and self publishers we have to be as professional as let's say as Penguin or McMillan and the other numerous big name publishers. Readers are not going to come to this forum and see if a reviewer is on a list of Rogue Authors or Rogue Reviewers. So it is a waste of time to compile such a list. What one can do is try and neutralize a bad review by perhaps going back to your product description or blurb and say something like,[b] "As you can see this book is not suited for all readers. It is intended for intelligent readers who..."[/b] Can you see where I'm going with this? The other thing is to ask a friend or someone to give you a balanced review to help neutralize the bad review.
Instead of compiling any list, use the time and energy to reach new audiences. Time is the key word here. Over time, more reviews will come in to help move books.
One rare occasions an ugly review might have a tiny bit of truth, so it pays to go back and look at your books and say, "maybe i need to change blah blah blah." As a businessman, you have to have a thick skin when dealing with the public. People say ugly things about the most successful people all of the time.
"While 75% of this story showed decent development, the last 25% seemed to be a race to the end - leaving me in the dust, trying to figure out what was going on.
The transition between "scenes" is not smooth, and more than once I had to backtrack to see if I had missed something.
Even with good editing, I'm not certain that anything short of a re-write will help this story."
I honestly believe the person who wrote this review is either working for a publishing company, or he is an author. Just the fact that he brings up transition between scenes...proves that he is from the writing world. Most readers don't say things like that. When you say that someone needs to re-write their book...you are saying that the whole book is messed up. If you are claiming that 75% of the story seems fine...why try to make the case for a re-write? 2 star
This next review is the reason my rating is so low in the US. I can't believe that someone gave me a 1 star because he thinks my book was too short, and because he thinks I need to figure out what genre I want to write. My book is 23000 words or more. It is a Young Adult book.
I just don't understand why some people leave these types of reviews.
I write Jane Austen sequels and variations, and I can tell you this is wide spread within our little group. Other authors will have fake accounts and go around to their competition and trash their books in long drawn out details faulting the person they are trashing for their literary technique--techniques of POV, foreshadowing, telling verses showing, and on it goes. These are not things a reader thinks about when reading. The average reader just wants a good story. So those kinds of reviews are a dead give away as to what kind of person wrote them, and the reviews are designed to kill your sales dead in the water. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.
It really ticks me off because their wording gives them away...They honestly think we don't know who they are.
[b]Well, all I can tell you is that kharma will catch up to them. Life will NOT be kind to them[/b]
[i]"This next review is the reason my rating is so low in the US. I can't believe that someone gave me a 1 star because he thinks my book was too short, and because he thinks I need to figure out what genre I want to write."[/i]
Don't feel too bad. Someone gave me a 1-star on my "Memoirs" book because it was too much about me.
Well, I have two 1-stars and one 2-star that fit your criteria completely, except that I do not believe any were written by other authors. Thus far I have only seen bad reviews from other authors in the romance, vampire, and children's books genres. I only publish nonfiction. What genre do you write in?
It's sad when someone does such evil with the main purpose of financially harming another, but really, when you get down to the nitty-gritty, there is nothing that can be done about it. Amazon allows customers to write opinions, whether good, bad, or ugly. If you can prove that another author writing in your same genre (i.e. a competitor) wrote a negative review of your book, they'll remove it. As Lovely says, it is rarely provable.
"While 75% of this story showed decent development,
the last 25% seemed to be a race to the end - leaving
me in the dust, trying to figure out what was going
The transition between "scenes" is not smooth, and
more than once I had to backtrack to see if I had
Even with good editing, I'm not certain that anything
short of a re-write will help this story."
I honestly believe the person who wrote this review
is either working for a publishing company, or he is
an author. Just the fact that he brings up transition
between scenes...proves that he is from the writing
world. Most readers don't say things like that. When
you say that someone needs to re-write their
book...you are saying that the whole book is messed
up. If you are claiming that 75% of the story seems
fine...why try to make the case for a re-write? 2
This next review is the reason my rating is so low in
the US. I can't believe that someone gave me a 1 star
because he thinks my book was too short, and because
he thinks I need to figure out what genre I want to
write. My book is 23000 words or more. It is a Young
I just don't understand why some people leave these
types of reviews.
As far as I know, I do not know, personally, nor do I know the "real identities" of, any of the people on this thread. To the best of my knowledge, I've never written a review for anyone in this thread, and for some of you, it seems, not even in your genre.
Because of my profession, and the rules in my shop, I rarely write reviews any longer (as I set up a rule that no one in my shop may review for any of our clients or any publisher or author for whom we've done work--obvious conflict of interest); but when I do, I'm honest.
I've written reviews worded very much like the one you've cited, that you say is "clearly" the work of an author or a publishing company. I've stated that scene transitions are bad; that bad timelines have existed, that impossible poisons have been used, that an author "rushed" the end, and yes, I've said that nothing short of a rewrite will help the book. I'm sure the author didn't like it--but here's the bottom line, which none of you may like: we, as readers, are entitled to our opinions. We're also entitled--and, in fact, in my opinion, [i]obligated[/i]--to tell other readers, who may be considering plunking down their hard-earned dollars--that we didn't like it, and why. In a day and age in which most people seem to suffer from an utter lack of guts, and worry more about not making waves and being "liked" than being honest, it's harder and harder, to my mind, to find competent reviews that aren't simply fluff or Klausners.
If someone writes a venomous review (this author is a horrible person! This author sucks!), that's one thing--but an honest critique of a book, whether you, the author, agree with it or not--that's the prerogative of the person who paid for it. When I read something dreadful, I feel obligated to WARN other people about it. I did so for a book that was self-pubbed in print some years ago--before I ever got into this line of work--and was ROUNDLY castigated for "hurting the author's feelings" because "they'd worked so hard," and informed me (this in a series of comments posted to my review, mind you) that I "should have coached them on how X could have been better crafted, or Y been better written." I responded to this drivel by telling the Book Defender that I wasn't giving a creative writing class; I was critiquing a book for which I'd paid something like $17.00. And it was LOUSY. It was practically a Patricia Cornwell ripoff, coupled with a horrible Lifetime Movie Of the Week Heroine in Jeopardy Trope, and you could see the plotline coming from page 11.
Publishing, whether you are doing it yourself or it's being done for you, is a [i]contact sport.[/i] It's a [u]blood sport[/u]. It's [b]BUSINESS[/b]. If you are selling a product for money, people are entitled to complain about it. it's no longer "art;" it's no longer your "baby;" it's simply an entrepreneurial product, and you need to accept that you will have complaints.
If you genuinely believe that your book is being nefariously attacked by your fellow authors, then write to Amazon, which WILL investigate. If you have suspicions or ANY kind of proof, they'll investigate. If it's true, they'll remove the review. If it is NOT true that it's a malicious competitor, well, then, you're stuck with it...but my point was, don't assume that clearly-worded negative reviews are the work of your competitors, simply because of their clarity. Authors aren't remotely the only people in the world who know what a "scene transition" is--and certainly not the only people who can recognize well- or badly-told stories.
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And here's something else ya'll probably don't want to hear, you should be taking those 1, 2, and 3 star reviews, pushing past the pain of having had your 'baby' slammed, and take a hard look at the criticism being made. This review: "While 75% of this story showed decent development, > the last 25% seemed to be a race to the end -" etc, etc, seems genuine enough to me that, if this were my book, I'd be hitting the editing board again.
Not all negative reviews are people out to get you. Some may honestly be telling you that your book still needs work. If you want to stop the bad reviews (something that will be darn near impossible because NO book is capable of pleasing and being loved by everybody who'll ever read it), then double check to see if there is a problem and fix the ones you find.