Weekly Ramble #116

Since 2018 I have read and reviewed 120 independently published books. The pillar that holds my authoring and blogging brand together is reviewing other authors books and to begin with it drew some very favourable results – blog follows, new readers, author friends and even sales for my own works. Those things drove me initially because they are good things for me but then I realised slowly that I wasn’t just doing this for me.

While I would never ever consider myself some kind of hero for reviewing books, I now do it for greater reasons than just personal gain because in all walks of writing it’s the ‘everything else’ after that makes this whole thing worthwhile. Some of these things can come unexpectedly and that might be the true power of writing. Over those years and books reviewed I’ve forged a level of trust from you and from a wider social media following all driven by a desire to make authoring and writing better. As independents in this social media age we are representing future generations of wordsmiths who will enter this arena someday, an arena where gatekeeping is slowing diminishing, it will probably never go away fully but we can at least improve things. Amazon have given anyone a platform to publish, but it is our responsibility to make sure it is represented well. These days you don’t have to be ‘someone’ to get any type of acclaim in writing. While agents and big publishers look to hold on to how things were, times are changing for the better. Anyone who has written something can now be successful instead of someone else deciding that.

Authors reviewing fellow authors books makes the indie scene better for everyone. I have said time and time again that reviewing others’ works will also help you but don’t expect a direct return, don’t feel entitled because you reviewed a book and want something back because ultimately what you’ve done will benefit us all – you’ve made this journey better for everyone.

8 thoughts on “Weekly Ramble #116

  1. Great point about reading and reviewing books as making the journey better for all of us indie writers. When I’ve read/reviewed other books, I feel more a part of the community. And that’s a good feeling to connect beyond sitting alone in a room and crafting stories.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Agree, but have been very taken aback since joining Twitter to see the tidal wave of demands tht the reviews be ‘positive’. No reviews with less than 4 stars, chalk up any dislikes to just having different taste, and above all, put ‘being nice’ above being honest.
    It’s really curtailed my love of reviewing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You make a valid and very important point because that demand for a positive review is a minefield sometimes. I tend to select my reads carefully but even then I can be surprised and end up not really enjoying a book so I try to be as honest or at least supportive in my review so it will try to help an author. How they receive my review is entirely up to them but an author with experience will appreciate the review no matter what, that’s how I would feel.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes! Even if I madly dislike a book and leave 1 or 2 stars, I leave a review that I hope will be helpful and encouraging. But even that’s not enough for a lot of folks.
    Fortunately there are also those like you.
    As an author, I welcome ALL reviews. Even the blatantly assholey ones (although I don’t enjoy them.)

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is absolutely spot on suzmuse! It’s sometimes hard to get a one or two star review but as an indie writer too, I’d always find it useful if I knew why? If criticism is constructive then it will help you to hone your work. I think we all, deep down, appreciate constructive suggestions even if they are hard to take sometimes.

      Liked by 2 people

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