Opening With Good News
First things first, naturally. How can it be any other way, after all? That phrase has always puzzled me. Anyway, that’s a sidetrack I don’t intend to pursue right now. The good news mentioned is my very first five star review for one of my books! Yes, I like getting any feedback, but I confess to getting a touch excited when I discovered this one. I found it on Goodreads, though it’s also on Amazon, and I repeat it below:
Christoph Fischer’s review May 31, 2013
“Shade of Evil” by Steve K Smy is a fairly short novel / novella about a simple man whose underprivileged existence seems to gnaw away at him. Living in a tiny flat with lots of other people in the same building across a former chemical plant, getting depressed and finally collapsing he is more than a little recipient for some shade of evil that approaches his soul and humanity.
After a breakdown he is helped by a generous benefactor but nightmares warn of a coming evil for which he will need professional help.In parts a psychologically intriguing fable on modern life, in others a great paranormal action story this book combines depth with gripping entertainment. I loved the way the author slowly shows us the terrible living conditions of Harry and the misery of his existence, then contrasts this with the great place of his recovery with Dr. Pattinson, yet, before it gets too dreary we get thrown into the action side of the book that brings the situation to a climax and a swift solution.
Steve Smy is a promising writer whose future work I will be watching out for.
Lack of Notifications
The above story leads to this one. Of all the sites that my books can be obtained from, only one sends notifications of sales: Smashwords. That’s disappointing enough. For reviews, however, it is distinctly frustrating! Again, only Smashwords sends notifications for reviews received. Why don’t the other sites if they allow customers to review purchases/downloads? I can live with nobody notifying of new ratings, but surely reviews are rather significant? It doesn’t take a huge effort to include it on the selectable settings for an author’s account, like any other optional email notification setting. It is a lengthy process trawling through all the sites, checking for reviews, especially when you then have to visit each individual book’s page if it’s not clear on a ‘list’ screen! Of all the reviews I’ve received on bookstore sites (and I include Goodreads here, for convenience), I have only discovered that I even have reviews by accident, followed by a check of all sites as a consequence of such a prompt.
What do you think?
Perhaps authors should campaign for the option to be offered? I’d really like to know what you think! Are you as frustrated by the situation as I am? Do you have some trick I’m not aware of that allows you to track review activity easily – preferably by getting emails for them? Am I simply a victim of my ego? Does the problem extend to other sites, like book review blogs and such? Have you ever been surprised to find that somebody has written a lengthy review of one of your books without your knowledge on one of these non-store sites?