Authors on Reviews Blog Hop

To Be or Not To Be? Not exactly.

This is a book blog and this is a blog hop asking the question, “should authors comment on reviews?”

So perhaps better is “To Comment or Not to Comment?”

The blog hop was inspired by the recent 3 Star Ratings Event. Nat @ Reading Romances decided to create today’s event as an opportunity for us book bloggers and reviewers to say what we expect from authors when we post reviews of their books.

So it’s up to each blogger to answer that age-old question, “Should Authors Comment on Reviews?”

On the one hand, I want the author to know I’ve reviewed their book. I want the publisher to know about it too. I want it so bad that I tweet my review to both of them. Some authors reply to the tweet. Some re-tweet, especially if the review is good. Sometimes the publishers will re-tweet.

But yes, I expect the tweet to get some traffic. That’s the point. I agonize over those 140 characters, hoping to maximize their impact. I tweet my reviews because I want somebody to pay attention.

The author, and the publisher, are likely to be the two parties most interested in whatever I said about the book. It’s logical.

And the economy has changed. I don’t mean the money economy, although, let’s face it, that too. I mean the information/attention economy. It used to be that information was expensive and attention was cheap. Now it’s the other way, information is easy to get, it’s attention that hard to grab.

Reviews are attention, especially for small press/ebook-only/self-published books.

So yes, I think it’s terrific when an author comments, even when it’s just to say “thank you”. Particularly when they thank the other commenters who are saying they might read the book.

When I start with “on the one hand” I generally have another hand hidden behind my back. In this case, that other hand is Ebook Review Central.

Every week, the Monday Ebook Review Central wrap-up highlights the three most and best reviewed titles from one (or more) of the ebook publishers for the month. The featured titles are always going to be the big hits, because that’s the point. I comb through all the reviews to tally which three books got the most recognition from reviewers.

It’s totally recognition of who did well, and why. Also a recommendation that these are the books that people loved, so, if you (person reading the post) like the type of story represented, and haven’t yet read this, you might want to check out all these reviews conveniently linked here, and see if you want to read it too.

Since the ERC post emphasizes the positives (the books that don’t get reviewed a lot are in the database, I just don’t talk about them much), I would love, love, love to get more authors (and readers) commenting on the Ebook Review Central posts.

But we’ve all heard that some people feel “intimidated” if the author might comment on the review or in the comments to a post.

Please comment here! How do you feel? Do you like seeing authors comment on their reviews? Do you like seeing authors participate in book blog commentary in general?

If you want to read what others are saying on this topic, here are the links to all the participating blog hops:


11 thoughts on “Authors on Reviews Blog Hop

  1. Hi!

    Stopped by from Reading Romances — I enjoyed reading your thoughts on this and I agree with you when you said: “Reviews are attention, especially for small press/ebook-only/self-published books.” —

    I’m not familiar with ERC — will go check it out. ^_^

  2. I know some people tweet their reviews to publishers and authors, it’s interesting that you’re one of them. While I’d love a comment and discussion I’ve never had the confidence to tweet my review to an author or writer unless they specifically asked me to. I mean yeah my reviews post to twitter and facebook but it’s sort of an automatic thing since I don’t actually make it to Twitter and Facebook all that often. With a comment they found me and I really would love a discussion but I can’t bring myself to tweet it at them because I think these are really busy people and I’m just an amateur offering my opinion so to tweet my review to them I feel like I’m bothering them somehow. I love that you have the confidence to do that even though I don’t think I could.

    I really enjoyed reading about your opinion and your methods. It was a well written and interesting post. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I know I have google alerts set up, so I’ve found reviews that way, but would love to have a review tweeted to me. Look at this way. We write out books, but they aren’t complete until read. Books are meant to be read. Reviewers are reading. Authors love that. A tweet is not a demand for attention and if people are on twitter, it is to connect with readers. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Now to commenting, at first I didn’t because didn’t want to look like stalker. LOL! But now I try to go in and say thank you if I hear about the review. (google alerts is not perfect. I’ve found reviews years later. LOL!)

    Anyway, thank you to all the wonderful reviewers who take the time to share their thoughts about the books they read. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. “information is easy to get, itโ€™s attention that hard to grab.”

    So true! Nowadays there are so many things available to us with such easy access to, that to grab the readers attention is hard to get. And commenting? About only 10% do that! =(

    Thanks for participating =D

  5. I tweet reviews to authors I know follow me. I always limit my contact with authors. I don’t want to aggravate the writer, they are busy working on something awesome. I am for them commenting too.

  6. I didn’t start out tweeting to authors, it kind of evolved. One of my early reviews was of Diane Duane’s Omnitopia Dawn, and she commented on my blog and on her blog. I was over the moon!
    If it mattered to someone like her that I reviewed her book, I started to think, why not contact the author more directly?
    There are a few times I’ve hesitated with big name authors. All I’m really hoping for there is a thank you or a re-tweet to their followers. Sometimes I get lucky. What have I got to lose?

  7. This is such a interesting post. My fellow author and I, Erin Kellison, were just discussing this. Is it ok to comment on a review post? Do readers feel intimidated? After reading this post and the comments I think it all sounds foolish to me. There is never a time when a nice “thank-you” and good old-fashioned manners would be a bad thing.

    After reading this I think I am going to go comment on a blog that featured my anthology.

    Also, I don’t think there is an author out there who wouldn’t love to hear from a reader. A previous person made a good point, authors are on twitter and facebook to connect with readers. If they are there then they are open to connecting with people.

    Just my two cents. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. I am SO GLAD this is being discussed from this side! After the blowups that have occurred recently, authors are told to be very cautious about commenting and making their presence known to reviewers and people discussing their books. Certain reviewers/bloggers REALLY don’t want authors to comment because they say it “stifles” conversation. So it’s really interesting to hear the POV from all of you. I’ll check out the other posts!

    For all of those who said they are hesitant about the opposite, about letting an author know about their reviews, oh, PLEASE PLEASE do so! LOL It makes me incredibly happy to have a reviewer or reader reach out to me. No matter how much negative there is in a review, I appreciate the time and effort taken. Most of us want to connect with our readers, because as the other commenters said, you’re the reason we get our work published! ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. I tend to comment on the reviews of anyone who reviews on of our published books – everyone likes to think their work is appreciated, especially when that work is unpaid, so saying ‘thanks’ to a reviewer just seems polite. And a good relationship with reviewers who read the genres you produce is always a good thing!

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