You may have already heard this from me before – if so, I apologise – but in case you haven’t, you may not be aware that I’m not a full-time writer, much though I would love to be. Bills have to be paid, and since I’m a relative newbie at writing, I also have to work to support my books. They need editing and they need cover art, and if you want those things done to a high standard, you have to pay the going rate.
So, I have a day job. When I first told my colleagues that I was having a book published (it was a US publisher, and I had a different pen name back then – long story), they assumed that I was going to be propelled into the income bracket of J K Rowling – or rather, given the genre I write, E L James. Nothing could be further from the truth, at least at this point in my writing career.
Tonight I read a fascinating article – The Ugly Truth of Publishing & How BEST to Support Writers – by Kristen Lamb. In it, she explains the situation far more eloquently than I could. If you have the time and the inclination, please take a look at it – it’s more than worth reading, and it will tell you how and why your reviews mean so much to writers. Kristen’s personal policy on reviews is also mine – in fact, it’s one of my New Year’s resolutions – and that’s to leave a rating and/or review for the books I read, but only if I can leave a good rating/review.
Do you know why I’ve chosen to do that? There are any number of reasons why I might not like a book – it doesn’t mean it’s a bad book, it might simply mean that the story wasn’t to my taste. What I do know is that the author who wrote that book put their heart and soul into it…they sweated over every word, struggled with every sentence, and that means something. They did their best, and even if it wasn’t to my taste, I respect that.