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Sunday, October 9, 2022

Online trolls really do exist . . .

 cj Sez: Because it’s beautiful . . .

"The Yellow Wood"

  A fellow writer was grieving and questioning what to do about a one-star review on Amazon that complained about something that wasn’t even in her novel. Obviously, the reviewer hadn’t read the book.

  One- and two-star reviews can be devastating, both for
future sales and on the author. Wherever there’s an opportunity to post a review, there will be trolls with low ratings—whether they’re warranted or not. I’ve seen reviews by people who purchased an item online then rated the product one star because they thought delivery took too long. Had nothing to do with the quality of the product.

  So where am I going with all that? It’s to reinforce why authors need to put comments and reviews in perspective. I go back to the bell curve example (the one I usually use for my critique group comments). Don’t let peak ravers persuade you that you've written a best seller, and don't let the bottom naysayers persuade you that your work isn’t good. Hiding within the electronic wafers of the Internet are nameless, faceless, and wretched on-line trolls. (Whew! I feel better now.)

  We can’t realistically expect all reviews to be five-stars (okay, we do, anyway). I admit to having desperate pangs when someone dings a story. Yes, it skews the “average,” but then I re-read the good reviews that I have gotten (some posted, some not) and calm down a bit. I remind myself that I cannot please every reader out there. Duh. That’s the reason there are a gazillion different stories in multiple genres for a gazillion different readers.

  If an author receives a poor review from an on-line troll, I suggest s/he consider the source, and please do not respond to the reviewer. That might dig a deeper, darker hole than you want to dive into. For a review like that mentioned in my first paragraph, perhaps a conversation with Amazon (if that’s where it was made) might get the unfair/unjustified review removed. Might.

  In the meantime, if you’re like me, you’ll console yourself with a treat.

  Speaking of reviews . . . have you taken the time to give an on-line review for the latest book you read? You might be able to refute some troll.


For readers and writers (In case you didn’t know)

√  Artistic personalities (and that includes writers) often need and have multiple outlets for their creative energy. Here is a column about three successful authors who have side hustles . . .

√  Staples (the office supply company) recycles a lot of tech equipment besides ink and toner cartridges. If there’s a Staples store near you, do some research and find out if that particular store participates in the program and what they recycle. The store not too far from me recycles a great variety of obsolete, broken, and just plain unwanted tech—items such as old adapters and cables, calculators, CD/DVD/Blue-ray players (I’ve been wondering what to do with a 20-year-old portable CD player), keyboards and mice, modems, and a slew of other stuff. Find out more here:

√  Community. Courage. Compassion. The Hometown Heroes anthology brings you five romances that celebrate everyday heroes. The anthology has a Christmas theme, yet the stories are timeless. From paranormal to contemporary to historical, there's something here for everyone.

  A portion of the proceeds from the sale of th
Hometown Heroes anthology will be donated to Cajun Navy Relief, an organization dedicated to helping neighbors in distress. As I type this, the Cajun Navy Relief organization is helping out in Florida after Hurricane Ian tore through the state, so your purchase of this anthology is a two-fer. You get delightful, short stories to read while you contribute to a wonderful charity at the same time.

The ebook of five stories is available for 99 cents at the time of this post …. Buy Hometown Heroes now


  That’s it for today’s post. You-all guys keep on keeping on, and I’ll try to do the same. Raising prayers for your health and safety.


  You-all guys know that we’re into the autumn/pumpkin/ Halloween season, right? Well, I want to tell you that the Mobile Writers Guild's Halloween Pieces anthology(18 stories by 17 authors) is still available. And, and . . .  the ebook is on sale as of the time of this post. Hurry on over to the Big A and grab some hauntingly good reading. Buy Halloween Pieces Now

  No inflation here: THE DAWGSTAR and DEATH ON THE YAMPA, my fast-paced, exciting suspense/thriller ebooks, are now low-, low-priced at $2.99.

P.S.  The Haunted Book Shop has signed paperback copies of my books in stock. TO ORDER, contact The Haunted Bookshop here:  

Happy reading!

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