Should I Respond to an Amazon Review on my Book?

You’ve written a book (celebrate!)

You’ve published your book (MORE celebration!)

And now you’re getting reviews. This is awesome – people are reading your book and taking the time to comment on it. This is where you can break out the bottle of bubbly and enjoy that You. Have. Arrived.

012616-CommentButtonBut then… you notice that in addition to leaving reviews, you can actually RESPOND to them! When a reader leaves a review on Amazon, good or bad, there’s a little spot where other people can leave a comment.

Don’t Do It!

As the author, whatever you do, don’t respond to a review. If you respond to a 1- or 2-star review you are seen as whiny and can’t take constructive criticism. If you respond to a 4- or 5-star review, congratulations, you have officially entered into creepy stalker territory.

I know it’s hard not to defend your work from people who didn’t “get” it, don’t like it, or didn’t read the full description before buying. But there is NOTHING in any way, shape, or form that you can say that allows you to stay classy.

Or in the case of one conversation I had with an author – the reviewer was commenting on her self-care choices she outlined in the book – and not on the book itself. Yuck!

012616-CreepyAuthorAnd as much as you’d love to thank a reviewer for a positive review, don’t do that either.

Amazon’s reviewing system isn’t Facebook; the reader isn’t looking to start a conversation with you – you are AUTHOR, not a real person.

Deal with it.

If you want to engage directly with readers, be available through links in your book to your website, email, and social media accounts. Then, if a reader reaches out to you directly, feel free to thank them for their opinion, start a dialog, and exchange knitting patterns. And if a reader sends you an email saying how much they loved the book, it’s okay to ask them to post the review on Amazon!

But remember the golden rule:

NOTHING you can say in response to a review makes you seem classy. You’re either whiny or creepy – and neither is good!

Kim Galloway
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