When Criticism Becomes Bullying
So here’s the thing: As a writer, I welcome feedback. I need feedback if I’m going to grow and develop my talents. And book reviews are a great way to get that feedback.
If done well, reviews serve a dual purpose: they not only let potential readers know about the quality of a work, but they can also provide a red flag to observant authors.
But that only works if the feedback is CONSTRUCTIVE. Unfortunately, there’s a line where book reviews can become outright bullying.
Unfortunately, I witnessed this behavior lately. After posting a story to Amazon, I received a scathing review that at first devastated me as a budding writer. Was I really as bad as this person claimed?
It was only after doing some research that I realized it wasn’t personal. This woman wrote a lot of reviews, and I couldn’t find a single one that was positive.
In fact, most of the reviews I found weren’t even about books. They were about hair dye. And candy bars.
I got over my pain really quickly.
Plus, thankfully, I have received more balanced criticism of my work. I have gotten reviews that told me specifically what worked, what didn’t, and where I could improve my work. It didn’t tear me down without any effort to try to build me back up.
Because ain’t nobody got time for that.