Let me tell you how many people, like my mother for instance, don’t know me.
I am SO devoted to the craftsmanship of telling a good story, I accept any and all reviews from one star to five stars as a means to educate myself in telling a better story. No review goes without a fine-tooth comb to break down what the reader liked, didn’t like and especially what they felt when reading it.
I’ve been told on a few occasions that I can’t take criticism but I’ve constantly said for YEARS … god, since I was five years old practically, I WANT critique on my writing. Good, bad or indifferent. I need it. I relish it. I thrive off it. Especially the bad reviews, which I’ve become desensitized from since the early years of my writing. These days, I haven’t received any one-star reviews and take anything less than five-star as a cause to change adapt and learn from. That’s just standard operating procedure for me these days.
What I DO have a problem with is critique over my appearance, size and some artwork. Those areas I need some work on (lol). Maybe even therapy. Who knows. LOL.
But with writing and storytelling, I’m on this ‘need for perfection’ trip that often prevents me from writing just anything. There are countless stories I could be pumping out and half stories incomplete but aren’t being released because I have a standard I’ve made for myself. The story needs to conclude a certain way, start a certain way, etc, etc. Must wrap up and feel like it can’t be told anymore. Only when it’s done will I release it.
Not to say all stories work. Emotionally Compromising and Gravity Gone are the worst selling stories I have. No reviews at all which I would have even appreciated a review on those, but I think it’s really about the format than subject matter. Which brings me to the reason for this journal entry.
I recently received a GREAT three-star review on Amazon for Scratch Here it is …
I am not too big on short reads and I guess it’s my fault for just loading the kindle with any book I see suggested and start reading. I had no idea it was going to end soon and I was actually getting into it. I was not expecting the animal to rip the parents apart but I was waiting for some hit man to come threaten their lives or something. Def a unexpected twist and a good read if you are looking for a quick read that you can read from start to finish in one sitting.
This is consistent with a few other comments in the past about the length of the story. When I started writing this year full time, it was expected that I would try a bunch of things that would work and things that wouldn’t. To test what sells and what doesn’t, still using the same principals of storytelling I’m use to and branching out to see how it can be delivered differently.
It’s conclusive that, free or otherwise, at least for me, short stories aren’t as popular. People tend to get into the story as I plan them to be, and then it ends. I sense the larger cause of the story is they want more.
My only argument is my old dictum: leave them wanting more.
So, on one end: I’m pissing off my readers. LOL.
On the other, I’m setting people up for the sequel which would be novel length and designed to keep you in the book.
The results of that forthcoming novel will be an excellent thing to see.