A great post at Ramblings of a Wannabe Scribe talks about supporting other authors and got me thinking (always a dangerous thing).
Lately, I’ve made an effort to retweet reviews and such for authors that I know and love and want to succeed. It’s not enough to simply write a good book, people need to know about it, so I’m all on board with spreading the word. This is part of Ink Spells mission, as well, at least for middle grade novels.
One of the things everyone can do to help their favorite authors succeed (and Shannon mentions in her post) is posting Amazon reviews. I cannot believe this never occurred to me! I know Amazon reviews are important in propelling a book on an upward spiral that will get it noticed. I know that a positive review makes a huge difference to an author, personally as well as in terms of book sales. But I’ve never written a single review for all the books I have read and purchased.
That needs to change!
So I went to Amazon and got busy.
The first book, How to Talk to Girls, had 31 reviews. Thirty-one! That means my lowly review was one-thirtysecond of the total reviews for this lovely little tome. Oh, the power! Also, I was surprised to see the negative reviews – a lot of people had a very different experience of this book than I did. It was nice to add some balance to the mix for this young author.
My second review, Leviathan, had only 92 reviews. I was shocked! I figured a huge author like Westerfeld would have hundreds, if not thousands, of reviews. Being wildly enamored of this book, I was pleased to see many more positive reviews. I still added mine to the pile. Considering I had already written a review, it was pretty easy to do.
In perusing the books I’ve already reviewed for Ink Spells, I realized two things: not many were for debut novels (and thus new writers that I could support with my Amazon review), and most had already hit the best-seller list.
As I work on transfering my reviews to Amazon, I will also critically examine my TBR pile for authors that have NEW books, recently published, that could be gems for advanced readers, ages 8-12. Finding good books for kids AND helping new authors? Gives me all kinds of warm fuzzies.
UPDATE: Thanks to Vicki below for reminding me that Amazon is not the only review outlet in the world. B&N also sells books online (duh!). Goodreads is also an excellent way to spread the word about books you read, even if it doesn’t directly tie into boosting sales for said author.