I just received the longest email known to man about how horrid my book was (Dmitry’s Closet). Unfortunately, I had to delete the post. Why? It was so long and such a drag until I refused to let it stay up.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m used to getting the occasional email about my work. And I normally take it in stride. Countless readers have given me constructive criticism, offered their services and tried their best to help me. I appreciate them, and I understand their purpose and points. Some of their words have helped me A LOT.
But when someone sends me a three page letter on why they hated my stuff, I have to draw the line. First of all, who has that type of time if they have a life? Now, I did read the blog response. And I know a lot of authors who wouldn’t have taken the time. So, at least!!!
Anyway, you guys are my friends and my fans. So tell me if I’m wrong. I’ll believe you. But I just can’t take it anymore. Maybe it’s because I’m on my cycle and I am irritable, but maybe there is certain thing called “tact.” And this email didn’t really have much of it.
If this reader felt so compelled to share her response with just me, then why didn’t she just send me an email? I post my email everywhere. Latrivia@LatriviaNelson.com. And all of you know that I get 100 emails a day. Not all of them are nice, but I take time and I respond. It’s important to them. It’s important to me. And it’s part of being a published author. Not everyone is going to like you. I get it. I do.
Instead of sending an email, however, she blasts me on my own blog and expects a nice response. WTF!!! That, my friends, is bullshit. And I am tired of always being nice. You don’t come to someone’s house, fart in their living room and call it air freshener. And you don’t go to someone’s blog, basically tell them to quit their day job and call it constructive criticism. Kiss my ass.
I print out every email. Good and bad. I look over them. Study them. I outline the points that they make, use them to make my work better. But I’m still a person with feelings. I know (whine, whine) but I am a person, and I take my work seriously. If I don’t defend it, who will?
I spend countless hours away from my family, friends and life, doing what I consider to be the best job in the world. I’m going to have feelings about it.
It’s not easy going after your dreams. And often, your first, second and even third try can be semi unsuccessful, but I’m proud of the Medlov series. It’s successful to me. We have sold over 25,000 copies. I’ve made wonderful friendships as a result, and I’ve faced my fears. That is so important to me.
Now, there are things that I’m getting better at…like the copyediting element. And now, I have Karen, and she is awesome. She’s helping me fix things. We’re going back and fixing the grammatical errors that made me a leper in the IR genre. But at least, I’m in the genre. At least, I’m giving it all that I have. At least, I’m living my dream.
When I first started out, I thought, I’ll just wait until everything is perfect. But after Adam nearly died, I realized that no one is promised tomorrow. I looked at him lying in the hospital bed and knew that there is no perfect time. There is only right now. Trust people. This is truth. Don’t let fear steal your dreams from you. Fight for them with everything that you have inside of you.
So, I went balls to the wall, and I did it. RiverHouse was born out of a need to share my voice and my thoughts with the world. As imperfect as my books may be, I still did it. I put it out there, paid a horrid copyeditor, and I published my first book. Now, I’m on my tenth. If I should die tomorrow, then at least I will have accomplished something on my list that means so very much to me. How many people can say that?
I used to think that I had to take the “stuff” that people put out there about me. But one day I looked in the mirror and realized that I don’t have to take it, and I won’t anymore.
You know what really irks me? There are some people out there who hide behind their computers, behind these made up names, and these computer-generated photos. They blast authors, singers, anyone who is trying to express themselves, and they do it anonymously so that they don’t have to face public humiliation after they purposely and maliciously humiliate you.
They pick people apart. They accuse you of having your friends and family post reviews just because they don’t like your book and couldn’t imagine that anyone else would. In essence, they call you a freak fraud.
They stomp on your dreams and your aspirations.
They hope that you’ll quit, give up.
Their entire purpose in life is to embarrass you! But they have never penned a thing, published a thing, had one creative thought in their entire life that they followed through with.
And authors like myself, who put their real picture and name up or authors who use pens names but put their real feelings and dreams into print are forced to deal with what they have said. And we don’t get to do it anonymously. We have to face the humiliation just as we are.
They hide behind emails and computers. We face the world. Who is really coward?
They go online and posts under several names and give horrid reviews. And they don’t buy just one book. It’s like they can’t wait for you to release something else so that they can attack that too.
Why? I don’t know. They do it though. And then they curl up in their beds ALONE and sleep all night with a smirky little grin on their faces, because it makes them happy to tear you and your dreams apart. What a trip!!!!
Well, I don’t have to take it. I won’t take it anymore.
There are going to be bad reviews. And women and men who spend their money and their time deserve and opportunity to share their opinions. I believe that. And I honor that. I want to hear from them. I want to be better for them and all my readers.
But I deserve the right to defend myself as well from that “other” type of reviewer – the one who wished that they could have done something else but didn’t, the one who never found the perfect opportunity so she just gave up and spent her entire life being bitter and attacking others.
As an Interracial Romance Author, I get 10-20 emails a week from hate mongers who tell me that I’m not even human and have no right to write about a black woman and white man marrying each other. I have to hear that my children are an abomination and that I don’t have a soul and should be back on a freaking plantation. It’s hard enough to try to deal with those idiots.
But on top of that, I get letters from sisters who would rather see me flipping burgers at a restaurant than pursuing my dreams. I’ve already given the finger to the bigots of the world. It looks like I’m going to use the other hand to give the finger to you too.
Fifty years from now, if God Almighty sees fit to still bless me with breath in my lungs, I’ll still be writing. I won’t ever quit. So stop sending me emails and asking me to. You’re wasting your time and more than that you’re pissing me off.
Do me a favor. If you are only interested in attacking me, then don’t buy my books. This is for the entertainment of people who want to do more than tear others down. I want to hear from them. I want their criticism, their support – not yours!!!