I asked this question in my mind many times over the years until one day when I happened to check the listing for my nonfiction book “A Day of Horror: The March 11, 2011, Japan Earthquake-A Foreigner’s Perspective” and noticed that someone had finally answered that question. I had my first review of my work! The review was posted on March 8 of this year. It took almost a decade to happen, but it did actually happen. Four months later I am still shocked that I finally joined the ranks of those fortunate, self-published souls who can proudly say that their work has been officially reviewed. I am delighted and humbled for such an honor and wish to thank the kind person who took the time to purchase and read my book, then write and post the review. They rated my book three out of five stars, and I am honored.
The review was posted on Amazon. Not long after I first published my nonfiction book, I received a rating on Goodreads of two out of five stars from a reader. Big thanks to the person who rated the book then. No review was written, only a rating was given at the time. I was brand new to the self-publishing world. Since then, my book has been updated and revised, and I think (hope) it makes for a better reading experience now. Perhaps the three-star rating this time reflects that.
It’s no mystery that reviews sell books, especially positive reviews. If you’re a self-published author like me but you haven’t received your first review yet, all I can say is be patient and hang in there. It could happen when you least expect it, but don’t expect it. Reviews of your work should be considered a bonus, not an expectation. Think of it as a privilege and not a right. Legitimate reviews can be very difficult to get. They are not easy to come by for many of us. It may not even be a flattering review that you receive, but at least it will have provoked a strong reaction in the reader, and that is something to feel good about. Isn’t that one of the reasons why many of us write?
Again, I wish to thank the kind person who reviewed “A Day of Horror: The March 11, 2011, Japan Earthquake.” Now if only I could get a review for my short story “The DiVacci Curse” and my novel “To Sleep in the Ground!”
A side note:
I am still preparing the paperback version of my nonfiction book. After that, I plan to revise and reformat my short story and novel (e-book and paperback). Then I hope to begin advertising my books in earnest. I don’t think I have enough to do.
Have a safe and healthy summer!