This week’s question was asked by Beth Gillihan. (We assume she is one of the women in this photo! LOL!) She won a copy of Davis Bunn’s book, RARE EARTH! Beth asks:
“I was wondering what keeps you motivated to keep writing? Do you read reviews of your books?”
I don't usually read reviews. What keeps me motivated? Legally binding contracts! Ha! Kidding. Well actually there's some truth in it. Writing professionally means you're basically running your own small business so there has to be constant forward momentum or your business will not grow. Fortunately, that's easy to maintain when you love to write and spend as much time as possible lost in imagination land!
Yes, I read reviews from time to time, but they don’t motivate me-- ten good ones and a single one-star review and guess which one puts me down in the dumps for a week. Probably the thing that gives me most motivation to go back to the keyboard—especially when I’m ready to chuck it all—is an email or other communication from a reader who has been blessed by something I’ve written.
Dr. Richard Mabry
My motivation has always been the love of the story. But recently, I've received several Facebook messages and emails excited about my books and wanting more. That's like a B-12 shot! I'm still motivated by the story, but the encouragement I've received is keeping me going between stories and has become invaluable.
I rarely read reviews, but I will skim them once every month or so. Every sale I make keeps me writing. That's one more person holding my book in their hands or on their kindle. What is even better than that, is when I have contact from a reader who LOVES them and wants to know when the next one is being released
Cynthia Hickey (Melton)
I used to read reviews but even though I might have mostly great reviews, it's that one bad one that can leave me aggravated for too long. So recently I decided to stop reading the reviews. I might skim them once a month. What keeps me motivated to write is that I usually have contracts with a book due every three months. I don't have time to wonder if I want to write or not!
Well, my publishers get upset if I don’t make my deadlines. LOL! Actually, writing is part of who I am. I don’t have to force myself to write. I write because I want to. I’m driven to write.
I stopped reading reviews once I realized how subjective they are. One person will go on and on about how well developed my characters are – and the review right after that will include a comment about one dimensional characters. LOL! Most reviews don’t mean anything. They’re just people and their opinions. To be honest, most writers know their strengths and weaknesses. I know mine. If a review knocks something I’m good at, I just ignore it.
Now – there are some reviews I do read. These are reviews written by people who love my books and want me to know it. They usually contact me to ask if I’ve read their review. I will immediately look it up because I know it’s important to them, and I truly appreciate their time and their expression of appreciation. They are my readers, and what they think is important to me.
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