Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2013!

Best of 2013After keeping it a secret for weeks, I’m happy to finally be able to announce that Silevethiel was named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2013! I’ve known for over a month and still can’t quite believe it received such a wonderful honor. To see my name in the same category as such brilliant and accomplished authors as Susan Wittig Albert is truly amazing. If you had asked me a year ago if any of my work would ever receive such praise, I would have told you ‘no’. In fact, if you asked me now, I would probably still say ‘no’. For being a new, independent author with only two books to my name, it is difficult to think my work can be viewed as being of the same quality as so many seasoned writers. I can only hope that I will constantly learn and grow as both a writer and publisher, and produce books that continue to affect readers in such powerful ways. For now though, I am simply going to take the last few weeks of 2013 to enjoy this extraordinary honor and be proud of all I’ve already achieved.

© 2013 by Madison Romig

© 2013 by Madison Romig

Don’t forget that SIGNED COPIES of Silevethiel are available for 20% OFF at mySquare Market. This would make a great Christmas gift for all those fantasy lovers in your family! Unsigned copies are also available, so be sure to check it out! The sale ends tomorrow, Friday 12/20! Hardbacks are also available for pre-order at Amazon andBarnes & Noble and will be shipped on 12/24!

Just one person’s opinion

Reviews are extremely important to a book’s success, or lack thereof, especially for those of us who are self-published. Despite the progress that’s been made, there is still a stigma attached to indie books and authors. Many readers automatically view them as being inferior and won’t take a chance unless there’s a good number of favorable reviews. Yet, many reviewers share the same views as the general public and won’t accept them.  Still, indie friendly reviewers are out there, and I’ve been focusing on getting Silevethiel in their hands. One reviewer I was wary of due to the nagging of my dark conscious telling me nothing I would ever write would be good enough to get a favorable review by such a reputable company, was Kirkus. Nevertheless, thanks to a bit of persuasion by my husband (and a glass or two of Jameson) I took the plunge and sent them Silevethiel.

After weeks of waiting with an equal combination of dread and anxiousness, I received the review. To my surprise, not only was it extremely favorable, but it received a Kirkus Star! I don’t think I’ve ever been so deliriously happy in my life. I checked my account every day for about a week to make sure it wasn’t a mistake, and sure enough, it wasn’t! You can check out the review HERE.

I realize it could just as easily have gone the other way. In fact, less than a week later, Silevethiel received an extremely scathing review from one of the reviewers at the San Francisco Book Review. It would be a lie to say it didn’t upset me. I seriously thought about giving up all together. But after a few days of reflection, I realized that every author receives such reviews, no matter who they are or how they are published. It’s part of the industry. People are people. They will think what they want, and they have every right to express that opinion, regardless of what it is. It’s important to not let any of it weigh too heavily on our hearts or influence who and what we are as writers. I’m not saying to ignore it. Listen to constructive criticism. Pay attention to what people liked. They will both help you grow as an author. But always remember, that at the end of the day, it was just one person’s opinion.

What about you? How do you deal with reviews, good or bad?