I’m a fortunate author. I get emails and FB messages, cards in the mail saying how much readers loved Seeking Carolina. It thrills me, every time, and is typically followed by the thought, “if only they’d put this up on Amazon, or Goodreads, that’d be really awesome.” Then I feel bad, because how greedy is that? Isn’t it extraordinary that friends, family, long-lost acquaintances, strangers would take the time to send me a personal note about how much they loved my book? Yes it is.
It bothers the crap out of me that I have to worry about such praise going up in a public venue just so the machines powering the industry can rank me, promise me visibility. It feels really wrong, and yet, without it, my future work is in jeopardy, because–as we’ve all found out somewhere along the line or the other–it’s about numbers, first and foremost.
The general population doesn’t know (and shouldn’t) much about the publishing world. I’m a “little” author. I’m not in bookstores, on talk shows, in magazines. My work is fairly invisible to the reading world at large. I blog. My publisher promotes my book on sites trafficked by romance readers. But my reach is limited. Nora Roberts doesn’t need reader reviews. I, and other small authors like me, do.
In a world where any potential publisher, agent, reader can look you up and make a judgement based on the numbers they find, the slope gets really slippery. On the one hand, I want no part of it. On the other, I have no choice but to drink the Kool-Aid. So I’m going to go out on a limb here, and ask–If you’ve read Seeking Carolina, consider putting up a review on Amazon, Goodreads, Barnes & Noble. It matters. Thanks.
Hmmm…cherry Kool-Aid isn’t so bad. Leaves my tongue red though.