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What!! A One Star Negative Review For My Book on KDP? What Should I do?

Updated: Feb 20

Receiving a negative review can be a daunting experience for any author. Recently, I received a one-star verified negative review on one of my books published on Amazon KDP. So I've decided to delve into the world of negative reviews, share my own experience, and offer insights into how to handle them effectively. Negative reviews are an inevitable part of the self-publishing journey, but they don't have to define your book's success. Let's explore the strategies and considerations when facing the dark side of reviews.

Understanding the Negative Review

Before we dive into how to handle negative reviews, let's take a closer look at my own experience. I received a one-star review on a book that had otherwise received positive feedback, with a current rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars based on 45 reviews. The negative reviewer claimed that the book focused too much on the negative aspects of the child (elder sibling' not particularly enjoying the crying, and expressed a preference for a more positive approach.
I provide a snippet from the book in my recent YouTube Video to illustrate the reviewer's criticism, and it's crucial to evaluate such feedback objectively. As authors, it's natural to feel protective of our work, but it's essential to distinguish between valid criticism and subjective opinions.

View my YouTube Video. Click ​HERE​ or the Thumbnail to view.

Handling Negative Book Reviews

Here are some steps and considerations for authors facing negative reviews on Amazon KDP:
1. Review the Reviewer's Feedback: Take the time to read the review carefully and objectively. Is there any valid criticism that could help improve your work? In my case, the reviewer pointed out a 'negative' storyline. Was this accurate or what happens in real life?
2. Report Inappropriate Reviews: Amazon provides an option to report reviews that violate their community guidelines. These guidelines cover issues like harassment, profanity, spam, and more. If you believe a review is unfair or violates these guidelines, consider reporting it.
3. Focus on Verified Reviews: Verified reviews, which come from customers who have purchased your book, tend to carry more weight with potential readers. While unverified reviews, such as those from advance reader copies, can be helpful, verified reviews often hold more credibility.
4. Enhance Book Descriptions: To reduce the likelihood of readers expecting something different from your book, ensure that your book descriptions provide accurate information about the content. This can help manage reader expectations.
5. Consider the Big Picture: Don't let a single negative review overshadow the overall feedback on your book. It's unrealistic to expect every reader to love your work. Instead, focus on continually improving and reaching your target audience.
6. Social Proof Matters: Positive reviews are essential for building social proof and attracting new readers. Encourage satisfied readers to leave reviews, and consider reaching out to your audience for honest feedback.

Negative reviews can be disheartening, but they are part of the journey for every author. It's important to maintain perspective and use negative feedback constructively to improve your work. Remember that verified reviews carry more weight and that the overall impression of your book matters more than individual critiques. Keep writing, revising, and growing as an author, and don't let negativity deter you from your passion.

Receiving a negative review is not the end of your self-publishing journey; it's an opportunity to learn and grow. Keep honing your craft, engaging with your readers, and sharing your stories with the world. As an author, your journey is full of ups and downs, and every review—positive or negative—is part of that adventure, as hard as it is to take onboard sometimes!

All the best with your publishing.

Romney Nelson is an international Best-Selling Author and Best-Selling Course Instructor on Udemy. Romney is the Founder of Global Self-Publishing, where he is committed to empowering individuals with the tools and resources to Self-Publish.

Visit all of Romney’s Best-Selling Udemy Courses on Self-Publishing here:

Grab Yourself a FREE Copy of ‘Self-Publishing on KDP – All the Tools You Need’:


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