Yes, it’s another one of those times where I’m posting a little more than usual. I have a good reason though.
A few days ago, I read an article by Duskgate Chronicles author, Breeana Puttroff, that I agreed with 100%. However, having not seen the referenced post, I didn’t give it another thought. Now that I have, I feel like I have to add my two cents.
I write because…I’m a writer. I love to write. I’ve been doing it since I was fifteen. It’s what I do. In fact, I’ll go a step further and say I think it’s what I was born to do.
Sure, I’d love to get rich at it. But if I never made a dime, I’d still write…I have to write. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be nearly as happy as I am. It’s just too big a part of my life to ignore.
That’s why I’ve jumped ship and gone to the .99 cent side of the ‘what to charge’ fence. It’s more important to me that people are actually reading my stories, than it is for me to make a profit I feel is worthy of me and the work I put into them. (And how does one determine that price anyway?)
Taking the time to write, then deciding what I’ll charge for the books…they’re choices I make. I choose to take time to sit at my computer, rather than in front of the television. I choose to take a lower profit. No one twisted my arm and forced me do either one of these things.
So what am I getting at?
Reviews and star ratings, in my opinion, are like tips for hourly employees. Really nice when you get them…but they’re not owed to me. Yes, I ask for them at the end of each of my books. Something to the effect of, ‘If you’ve enjoyed (title of book), and even if you didn’t, please take a moment to leave a short review at Amazon.com.’ That’s it. The only time I’ll ever mention it.
I know most people won’t do it. And I’m okay with that. They’re busy, and I’m just honored that they chose to spend some of their valuable time, and hard-earned money, to read one of my books. So I will never try to guilt them into doing more. Not ever.
Know one knows better than I do that writing can be mentally exhausting. Sometimes I’ll feel like I’ve gone ten rounds with Rocky Balboa by the time I’ve finished some scenes. But it’s like a job made in heaven when compared to other things I could be doing.
I’d much rather be parked in my comfortable desk chair, in my climate controlled office, than delivering mail in 90+…or -0…weather. Or building a house, cleaning motel rooms, or playing cook at a busy restaurant.
Those people get paid to do their jobs…and so do we. Maybe not as much as we like, but when a person lays down $X.XX for our books, it’s no different than us paying for a Betty Crocker Cake mix, or a Quarter Pounder at McDonald’s. A lot of effort was put into creating both products…but Betty and Ronald don’t expect us to hit their websites and rave about how much we love them.
What makes us think we deserve more?
Because we spent months (or even years) writing our masterpieces? So what. It was our choice. We chose to do it. And the reader paid for the fruits of our labor.
End of story.
Anything else is just gravy. We should be grateful for the reviews and star ratings…but they’re not owed to us.
Sorry if I stepped on any toes, but that’s my opinion. You don’t have to agree with me, but I think readers would appreciate it if you did. I mean really…who likes having a guilt trip laid on their shoulders? Not me.