Once upon a time many moons ago I scribbled all sorts of things for a living. I wrote for radio and television, magazines, my newspaper column, brochures, leaflets, mayoral speeches, company reports, promotions, advertisements etc. etc. etc. you get the picture?
One learned to be flexible earning enough to feed, house and clothe two children, a husband, a St Bernard and the family who lived out the back and took care of the house and garden.
Of course I read books too. I would rush to the local library at least once a week and emerge balancing a tower of books which I devoured at every spare moment – in the usual places – the bathroom, in bed, waiting for a parking place, during meal times. Then I returned the books and collected the next small truckload and so it went on.
Did I review them?
Did I what? What are you talking about?
Now, I write books and I know that every review, even a one star, is like gold dust. I have reviewed every book I’ve read, even those by really famous, well-known authors who really don’t need my extra offering among all the thousands they already have. In total I rose to the dizzy ranks of #7,000+ in the reviewer status, until the Big A got twitchy.
So I did this massive survey and asked DH (Dear Husband) if he left reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. He’s a voracious reader.
“Do you write reviews and post them on Amazon?”
“Only if the book is really bad and I want to let them know exactly what I thought of it. And what’s Goodreads?”
“I’ll explain later. So, you only write bad reviews?”
“Well isn’t that a bit mean? If you really enjoyed a book isn’t it nice to say so?”
“I tried to give you a review as your books aren’t bad (that’s high praise from DH), but Amazon wouldn’t let me.”
“Yes I know all about that, we’re too closely related.”
“We might just as well be on different planets when you’re writing. It’s like living on my own.”
(Hastily) “Let’s not go into that right now. Maybe you could start writing nice reviews, especially those books I’ve recommended?”
“I don’t have time.”
“Nonsense! We’re retired, at least you are. I’m still working just as many hours. So why don’t you have time?”
“I’ve more books to read. Now shush I’ve got to an exciting bit.”
I gave up. A few other people I asked said they didn’t know what to say in a book review, and they didn’t bother to look at reviews anyway before buying a book – they only consulted for hotels and tour companies.
I tried, honestly I tried, but I’ve got the picture that only those avid readers who chat with authors on Facebook and Twitter bother to leave reviews and they are the ones targeted by ‘you know who’ who are then accused of violating the terms and conditions and have their reviews taken down. They even refused to let me review an author who has been dead for over 20 years! I promise you we are not in daily contact, nor did I meet her or write to her when she was alive. But who am I to question one of the biggest corporations in the world?
I’ve rambled on a bit, so we’re back up the tower in KL next week and I’ll pick on the nonsense history. But the breaking news is that soon, Amie African Adventure should be available in audio, and all three Amie books have been translated into Spanish and should be on sale too. Amie African Adventure in English is still at the introductory price of only $/£0.99 so you can get to meet her for almost nothing! myBook.to/Amie1
I’ve also completed draft one of Amie 4, but I have no title for it yet. Hopefully it will be out in July.
You can find them all at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lucinda-E-Clarke/e/B00FDWB914/
A reminder about my monthly newsletter here is the sign up link http://eepurl.com/cBu4Sf
This month meet authors Vered Ehsani, Christoph Fischer, Max Power with Rod Craig in the Reader’s Corner.
The free Amie back story follows Sam and Gerry, still at the airport 24 hours after their plane took off and Ben is about to undergo his initiation into manhood. I continue the saga of the court case, possibly the first time in history where a character has sued her author for cruelty and hardship, in Amie v Lucinda E Clarke. There are also competitions and bundles of free books to win every now and again.
Have a great week and take care.