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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
That's me sounding like a grizzly bear.

Another one star review and another wave of my writerly hubris.

"They just don't get it," I tell myself. "They just don't get what I'm doing... they don't understand the modern narrative form... they've never encountered Canadian Literature..."

Or maybe I don't get it? Maybe I've been so busy avoiding things like Infodumps, Marty Stus, and Polemics-as-Plot that I didn't realize I was navigating around the very things people seem to want.

I'm just ranting. I don't expect a solution for any of this. I just wish every good review didn't automatically get countered with a bad one. It makes me wonder how many of the people who bought my book are enjoying it. It makes me wonder how I could avoid this next time... if that's even possible.

Can I write something I'd hate to read? Can I strip the filthy CanLit out of my writing? Should I even want to?
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_literature)

Bah.
 

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Listen. You should write whatever it is you want to read. If you love it, then that means someone else will probably love it, too. You are a unique individual, but your interests, kinks, aesthetics, and tastes are not original nor unique to you. Therefore, make it as polished and interesting as you can, and someone else will 'get it.' Be aware though, that you might have a niche audience. This is not a bad thing as a writer. However, if you are trying to make a whole lot of money, perhaps you should try to write something in a popular genre/trope. Just do the best you can on each project.
 

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+1 on writing whatever you feel is your best work.

You are in the same genera as I, and there are certain expectations in our market. You've went out on a limb and defied those expectations.

To the reader who likes Rawles, Tate, Grit or even Joe Nobody, your work is outside the norm. Some folks just simply aren't going to get it.

On the other hand, you may attract a broader base of readers who are tired of our books and the same basic pattern being repeated over and over again.

Keep your chin up...give it some time.
 

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A one star review but you've sold 1400 copies so far this year. Keep doing what you're doing, it seems to be working.
 

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Your book has some very fine reviews and a good sales ranking.  The low star reviews are what they are and we all know the reality of not being able to please everyone.  You may have a niche market, it is true, but I think the sales ranking shows that there are readers who want something different in the post-apocalyptic genre...no zombies and perhaps something with a more realistic feel.  

On a side note, I think the response under the comments on Mike Friesen's review by Mr. Friesen are worth noting.  People forget that some reviewers may have just started reviewing books, just received a kindle, just had a notion to review a particular book and/or any number of legitimate reasons.  

 

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Chin up!  No matter what those reviewers say, you've still got claim to Nathan Fillion, maple syrup, and sexier mounted patrols!  ;)

Seriously, hang in there.  Nothing sucks so bad as a bad review.  Go out and be so awesome they have to eat their words!
 

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When I read reviews, I'm probably like everyone else, I gravitate toward the 5 stars and the 1 stars and work toward the middle.  When I read a 1 star review that says something like 'this book is too Canadian', I think- wow this reviewer is an idiot.  I then treat that 1 star review as a 5 star for my decision to read the book.
 

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I was a little bummed out today by a two-star I received for Only Human.

So I went back and looked through the others. I am truly struck by how so many people will point out what they really liked about the book and then find that others dislike precisely the same things.
I.e. I've had people love my characters for being engaging and then other people say they're flat. Some people love the amount of sci-fi while others find it lacking.

Sometimes I ask myself if they've actually read the same book!
I comfort myself with the fact that the positive reviews by far outnumber the negatives.

Like others have said here, it comes down to expectations.

Also, freebie promos can really throw a stick at things. I think people are less likely to consider blurb and covers when they grab free stuff and then are surprised if it's not to their liking. I can't ever figure out how people get "hard" sci-fi from my covers.  :D
 

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This 1 star for your Coyote made me giggle
"worst book I've read in years.. it was so Canadian.."

So "Canadian" eh?

Seriously, I wouldn't take reviews like that too seriously. To be honest, post-apocalyptic readers tend to be harsher-than-average reviewers from what I have found, especially if they don't like your writing style, imagery and ideas expressed in the book. They seem to either love it or hate it. I read a great deal of post-apocalyptic, and having a mix of 1 stars with 5 stars is quite common.

Write how you are comfortable writing. Write what you would enjoy reading. You'll find your audience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks, everyone. I do feel better having ranted and having then read your supportive replies.

In truth, I feel like a complete whiner now... so that's good. :)
 
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