It's no secret that I like getting reviews. Good reviews, meh reviews, even the negative ones count for something, right? I do not want anyone to review my books until they have read them so they can give their honest opinion. I get really excited when I see another review has been added to the grand total of reviews. I know I've mentioned before about reading reviews, but I feel I am able to read them objectively and honestly, I'm just curious as to what people think.
So, I only want real reviews on my books. It would be so disappointing to have fake ones. I'd feel let down, honestly. A friend recently read my book and told me something along the lines of saying that she honestly bought the book to be nice and started reading it just to see what it was about. Halfway through the book, she was hooked. When she finished it, she told me how much she enjoyed the book. To me, that is a HUGE compliment. And I really appreciated her honesty of admitting to initially getting the book just to be a nice friend and then being surprised when she loved the book. That, I feel, is a case where an author's friend can write a legit review and not be scrutinized for it lol. Anyway...to my point.
There are a TON of amazing Indie authors and fans of Indies out there. Many are willing to help each other out, like read and review each other's books. An author asked me if I'd be interested in doing a 'review swap' where we'd read each other's books and then review. I assumed when s/he contacted me that a 'review swap' meant actually reading the book and writing an honest review. I was nervous to agree b/c I didn't want to post a negative review in case I didn't like the book.
But the book sounded like something I'd read and enjoy so I reluctantly agreed. I asked said author if they would like a copy of my book emailed to them, they told me 'no, I write my review based off of the blurb and the cover art'.
Umm...hell no. I politely declined and said that I don't want a fake review of my book, even if it's a glowing, 5 starer. That's just wrong. It makes me mad that people do that. It gives Indie authors a bad name and can make people hold assumptions. And I guess I'm mad at myself for being naive enough to think that everyone else would play fair.
As far as I know, my books do not have any fake reviews. I have not asked anyone to make up a fake review (nor will I ever). It's a huge let down and an insult to give books fake 4 or 5 star ratings when there are other authors out there (like myself) who patiently wait for the real deal.
Marketing is tough as an Indie. I really have no means to mass market other than FB. Maybe my desire to not 'fake it and make it' will hold me back, but I'd rather be honest. And maybe it's super lame that when I lay down at night, I don't want to have anything to regret or feel guilty about. And the best way to avoid that? Don't do anything wrong or dishonest!
Ok...stepping off my soapbox to go to bed.