About B.C. Brown:B.C. Brown was born with six fingers on each hand endowing her with super powers, thus enabling her to fight crime. When a freak Cuisinart accident severed the additional digits and her powers, B.C. was forced to fall back on her secondary talent -writing. Now she lives between the pages of a book - whether she has written it or not. Since she has not found the surgeon to restore her fingers and powers, she has published three novels to date and contributed to one anthology. She enjoys writing mystery, paranormal romance, science fiction and fantasy but is always in the mood for a challenge to branch out. You can follow her crime fighting or writing at twitter or facebookor Goodreads. Her blog is www.bcbrownbooks.blogspot.com.
Many of my friends are authors. As writers, they (mostly) are voracious readers. And each of their tastes is as different from one another as fingerprints are on a person. One of my best friends delights in suggesting books I should read. Why should I read them? Because he liked them. Do we have anything in common when it comes to book preferences? Uh, not really. Why does he proceed to suggest books to me, even though we don't share the same tastes? Not a clue.
My question is, how do you pick what you read?
A recent debate of the value of reviews has popped up on some of my writing forums/groups. Several authors are beginning to question if having reviews for their books helps in the overall purchase factor of a book for readers? They wonder, does having a fellow author read and review their work really benefit them? Or does the average reader think we're all merely patting each other on the back to pad sales?
One way or another, I can't definitively say. What I can state with certainty, however, is that (of the titles I have published) those with more reviews have sold more copies than those with fewer reviews. Were the reviews better on the titles with more? In my case, yes. But I'm not so sure that would be the case for everyone's book. In this particular title's mitigating circumstances, it has been published longer and, therefore, had more time to accumulate sales than the other titles with fewer reviews.
The question is, does the average reader use reviews as a means for deciding what to buy and what goes on the "wish list"? As an author, I know I do. I look for works with multiple reviews, read through most of them diligently, and then decide (after reading the book blurb and, if available, the "Look Inside" program) if it's worth my hard-earned dollars. I am, after all, a starving artist. I need to watch every dime I have. And a book with bad reviews that turns out to be as awful as the reviews said is a waste of my money, my time, and my energy.
My aforementioned friend has excellent taste in literature. And he is an excellent writer. Do I read the things he suggests? 2 out of 10 - maybe.
But word of mouth advertising is the best advertising a writer can get right?
Look at the success of Fifty Shades of Grey. This is an instance where word of mouth advertising certainly seems to have worked well for the author. Indeed, she's rich off of the right person telling the right book club at the right time. But the question remains, how much of this success was word of mouth? How much was reviews? And how much was advertising/promotion?
Any of your own stories about reviewed vs. non-reviewed you'd like to share? Tell us a little about what makes you decide to spend your money on a book.
Recent purchases I've made off studying book blurbs and reviews?
• Imperial Bedrooms, Bret Easton-Ellis
• Irish Moon, Amber Scott
• Mama Does Time, Deborah Sharp
• The Werewolf's Wife, Michele Hauf
• Tails of Love, (anthology) Lori Foster/editor
• Hello Kitty Must Die, Angela Choi
Recent purchases I've made based on recommendation alone?
• Not Quite Wicked, (anthology) Bronwyn Green/Mia Watts/Dakota Rebel/Brynn Paulin
• Strange Neighbors, Ashlyn Chase
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