Oh, Cheryl! Thank you for that graphic! Those are such powerful words, and I’m so happy that you shared that here! We all need to be reminded of our amazing talents! Thank you!!!
About reviews, yikes, yes! Everyone is different, and I know a lot of authors who can read their reviews and not get too caught up in them. For me, I get caught up in them, so I avoid them. When I first was published, I read a great article from the blogger who writes the blog “Smart Bitches, Trashy Books” about how once a book is released, it’s no longer the author’s. (I can’t find it now; otherwise, I’d give you the link to it. Sorry!) Anyway, the point is that an author has to let the book go once it’s published, which I know you know. But it’s just hard because we’re the people who create novels, our babies, and if you’re like me, it’s hard, no matter how sensible, to let go. The way I feel about reading reviews is if you can read them and not have an emotional reaction, then go to it. For me, I have reactions while reading them. I mean, sometimes I laugh. I have a one star review for “tying up all the loose ends by the end.” I laughed at that one because, silly me, I thought that was one of my jobs as a novelist. But some reviews are hard to read, and I don’t actually gain any insight into how to be better novelist when reading them. Reviewers are talking about their subjective experience while reading our work, usually, and the only way I keep improving my craft is by working with critique buddies and editors who know craft and can objectively point to what’s not working. For me, it just boils down to what is helping me improve my craft, and for me, reading reviews does not help. But that’s how I view things. Everyone is different. And I’m always of the opinion that I could be VERY wrong about things. 🙂
Let me know your thoughts, if that’s okay. 🙂