Perfect Chaos

The Blog of Author Steven Colborne

A Question

I think I’m quite a fragile individual. I go to great lengths to avoid negativity. I think that’s one of the reasons why I spend a lot of time alone; I just hate bad vibes and would rather avoid them.

Anyway, that is relevant to today’s post, in which I want to ask for your advice. Do you think it would be wise to read reviews of my books on Amazon and other retailer websites? I know that my books are quite controversial. I have enough trouble moderating the comments on this blog because what I write stirs up the passions of a lot of people. I suppose faith is a very personal and important matter, so people understandably get quite defensive at times (not least, me!).

I have never read reviews of my books on Amazon. I go to great lengths to avoid scrolling down the product pages in case my eyes latch onto something nasty. I don’t know why I’m so sensitive about it — I really believe in my books, and that should be enough, no? I just don’t want to suck in someone’s anger and negativity because it will make me feel depressed.

On the other hand, I do feel that if I read the reviews I might be able to benefit from some constructive criticism. And because of that, the idea of reading my reviews kind of excites me. But will it just feel similar to a visit to Facebook or Twitter these days? Utterly face-palm depressing?

On the whole, my books do get decent star ratings, although they polarise opinion quite starkly. I anticipate that there will be some angry one-star reviews in the mix. But maybe I’m being a big baby about it and I should just be brave, read the reviews, and be done with it.

What do you think?

4 responses to “A Question”

  1. It’s understandable that you’re sensitive to negativity and avoid reading reviews of your books.

    However, reviews can provide constructive criticism to improve your writing. Remember that reviews are subjective and don’t let negative comments discourage you. If you’re not ready to read reviews yet, that’s okay. Focus on your passion for writing and your belief in your work, and remember that you’re stronger than any negative review.

    For “fragile” people it’s just as important to express ourselves, but more often than not, we can’t handle it when we have. Slow and easy, using a calm mind, always knowing that people behind keyboards can be brutal. But, that brutality is subjective…haters will hate.

    When you speak about Christ, the world will hate you, but keep in mind it hated Him first.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sound advice my friend, thank you for the encouragement!


  2. The one thing I would like to add is that people criticize more for their purposes and not for you. It’s natural to think “it’s about you”, I know that for a fact, but it really is about them.

    When I made my announcement a few years ago to leave the US and moved to Korea, I got criticized by this one person, mainly because she is afraid to leave the US and thinks no one else should. Plus she is paranoid that the North Korean military will defeat the US, funny enough.

    I got criticized by some wushu practitioners for doing taekwondo. It’s not that they care if I did wushu with them, but more of their disagreement with that martial art and their feelings about Korea in general.

    I even got made fun of for learning Thai. How come? Because the guy felt like learning the language is too hard for him, so he interpreted my learning the language (badly) is an affront to his intelligence.

    In your case, maybe the criticisms towards your books could also be from those who don’t write and fear doing so.

    So try not to take anything like that to heart. Easier said than done, I know, but you will endure.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m grateful for the reminder that criticism often reflects the mind of the critic and shouldn’t be taken personally. Really helpful advice, thank you 😊

      Liked by 1 person

Steven Colborne

About Me

Hello, I’m Steven and I’m a philosopher and author based in London. My main purpose as a writer is to encourage discussion about God. I write about a wide variety of subjects related to philosophical theology, including divine sovereignty, the nature of God, suffering, interfaith dialogue and more. My mantra: Truth heals.

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