Writers are often asked why they write. The reasons are many. Some write because they love words, the sound of language itself. Some have stories playing out in their heads and they have to get them down on paper. Whatever their reason, most love to get feedback from their readers–meaning, reviews. I certainly love getting reviews, at least most of the time.

Reviews are hard to get, and sometimes they aren’t what we hoped for.

Some writers I know have stopped reading their reviews, because they aren’t helpful. For example, I saw a 1-star review of someone’s book on Amazon that said: ‘I’d like to read this book but it won’t open on Kindle.’ I’ve seen similar reviews that weren’t about the actual writing, the story, or the characters.

Usually, though, the reviews do give real feedback. But even that isn’t always helpful. You can look up almost any book on Amazon and find good and bad reviews, no matter how famous or popular the author is. Reviews quite often range from 1-star hate-filled commentary to 5-star love-filled commentary for the same book.

For the longest time I couldn’t understand how differently people could react to the same book, the same CD, the same movie, the same TV show, etc.

Then I started seeing people arguing on Facebook about politics, about the handling of the pandemic, about whether or not to reopen schools, etc. and I realized that people are just plain different. They have entirely different views, opinions, values, education, and personality types. Their book reviews might not be particularly helpful, but its good to listen and to appreciate them all.