A couple years ago, a book I'd waited for with much anticipation was released. Anxious to find out all about the story, I broke my cardinal rule. I read a review.
Then I read a second review.
And a third.
Pretty soon I found myself searching out everything I could find about the book because I just couldn't believe what I was reading.
Everyone hated the the book. Everyone.
Disappointed (and broke) I put off buying the book. Why spend money I couldn't really afford on a book I would be disappointed with?
Two days ago while at the library, I found a copy of the book and on a whim, I checked it out. I just finished the book. I absolutely LOVED it. And for two years I denied myself the pleasure of reading it based on opinions of total strangers.
I am angry with myself and for good reason. I allowed other people undue influence over my reading choices. Never again. The only good thing about this entire experience is this: Book TWO will be released next month. How providential is that???
In the meantime, I'm both encouraged and discouraged by my experience. I'm discouraged because no doubt there are people who have given my books a pass because of negative reviews. That makes me feel sick.
On the other hand...maybe after a couple years, potential readers will forget any negative reviews they've read and will try my books. That's encouraging. Very encouraging.
And finally--I received this note from a reader today and I truly needed the encouragement!
"Just wanted to tell you that the Mystic Valley Series is the best series I have ever read. I am so excited that there is another one coming out soon. I hope it isn't the last. :)"
Thank you so much for your kind words, Diane!