Recently, I read a post from an author on one of the self publishing sites that I frequent. She was really upset about a bad review. Although she had two good reviews, the bad one weighed on her mind the most. Other authors including myself tried to calm her down, but the review was quite harsh. We need to hear the truth about our work. As reviewers it’s important to understand that you are dealing with people and their emotions. So, be sure you give corrective criticism. Don’t be malicious or callous when it comes to someone’s feelings.
If you find yourself wearing the reviewer gloves don’t judge self publishing authors any differently than you would judge traditionally published authors. I have found many mistakes in traditionally published books, and I haven’t known any of them to get harsh reviews for the mistakes. It would seem only fitting that you would give the self published author the same respect.
For us authors if you find that you are the target of the bad review. After you have finished off your half gallon of chocolate ice cream, chocolate chip cookies , and I hate my life two liter of soda…return to your book and re-read it. You can always fix things, but don’t give up. Bad reviews are harmful , but they aren’t the end of the world. It gives you a starting point…sometimes it helps to get kicked in the butt. If this is your calling; don’t give up because of a bad review. Keep working, and know that we are all in this together.