First review is in for In the Land of God and it’s five stars! (no, it wasn’t my mom) and two upcoming radio interviews on Whale Radio (Whale Radio! on Wed. @ 7 p.m. (EST) then Thurs. @ 10 a.m.(EST))
Feedback of any kind is a great confidence booster. Even if it’s negative it means somebody read your book and it made them want to leave a review. Of course, a positive review is always a better confidence boost.
A good review isn’t just good for your ego, it’s also an affirmation for two groups of people: potential readers and customers that have a copy, but haven’t read it yet. Reviews aren’t the be-all-end-all, but aside from the cover it’s the first thing a potential reader will see on Amazon and other online stores.
Even if you’re afraid of the negative review, it’s never a bad idea to encourage people to leave any feedback they have about your work. This goes for anything you create. Welcome the constructive criticism, and take note if it’s a recurring complaint. Also, it’s been said before, and I’ll say it again: DO NOT ENGAGE WITH REVIEWS.
If somebody leaves feedback on a social media platform, then you can (and generally should) respectfully respond, even if it’s a basic response like, “Thanks for sharing!” It might be something you can’t change, or won’t change, but the small act of engaging with a reader is usually not a bad move. Obviously if they’re being antagonistic and rude then don’t bother, but if it’s a genuine criticism then hear them out. I had one guy tell me he didn’t like the cover. I asked him for feedback, he gave it, and I thanked him for his feedback without grovelling and panicking that one person didn’t like the cover.
All reviews are helpful.
I know we all have short memories now thanks to the internet, but you might have seen me post about an interview I had at Grand Valley’s radio station, “The Whale.” Well, tomorrow night I’m going to be sitting down with Stephen Borowy to talk about In the Land of God, then on Thursday morning I’ll be talking with Jason Blanks for another discussion. Both of them have interviewed me before, they’ve done a phenomenal job, and I’m excited to talk with them again.
Like you probably read up top, you can listen online, free, at Whale Radio!
Interview with Stephen will be Wednesday night 7 p.m. (EST)
Interview with Jason will be Thursday morning 10 a.m. (EST)
In case you miss the live broadcasts, I will be posting the interviews in separate blog posts on here on Wednesday and Thursday (crosses fingers, knocks on wood).
The book is written, it’s published, and now I can sit back and wait for the money to roll in.
Through December and into January I will continue promotion for In the Land of God and I plan on starting a Kickstarter for a hard launch in mid/late January (probably in the ballpark of $300 to cover 100 copies and the shipping costs). I will also set up speaking/reading events in the greater Grand Rapids area, and I want to coordinate advertisement and sales with local coffee shops, bars, libraries, and independent bookstores.
As far as writing goes, I will continue to work on stories that will probably wind up in a weird fiction/horror anthology that I’m working on with my cover designer, Micah Chapin. If you want to read one of the stories you can check out “The Watchers” I have no release date for that project, but I can tell you I’m excited to work on it.
I also plan on starting work on another novel. Writing is an addiction, it’s like a lesion on the brain that needs to be drained with regularity, and the only way to do it is at a keyboard or with a pen and paper. I won’t give too many details, but it’s an idea I’ve had since high school dealing with multiple plot points and nuclear holocaust. As you can see I’m not much of one for happy stories, but I want to write honest stories, and happy stories aren’t happy stories. Our life stories don’t have particularly happy endings, so why shouldn’t stories reflect life?
Feel free to leave a comment on here or on Twitter (@ahahnjones).
Thanks for reading, and I hope you stick around.
A luta continua.