I have 25 five-star reviews for my book on Amazon – and one two-star review. The person who clicked two stars didn’t bother to write anything about why they felt my book deserved two stars. 

It was a legit trolling, a “fly-by fruiting,” as Robin Williams said in Mrs. Doubtfire. And instead of being hurt or pissed off, I was elated! 

If you’re thinking that seems a bit off, let me walk you through what happened for me. 

Not believable 

While I am thrilled that 25 people took the time to write five-star reviews for my book, I have to admit that when I look at reviews, if a product only has five stars, I figure they bought the reviews in some way. 

It seems too perfect and thus likely fake. 

I am more apt to believe 4.7 or 4.8 stars as representing real reviews from real people. 

Not the end of the world

If you put yourself or your work out into the world, people will try to knock you down. People will say and do unbelievable things behind the anonymity of their keyboard. The meanness on the internet is something you have to expect as a creator. 

Sure, if someone tells you that you suck at what you do, it hurts – but only for a bit. 

If there is something helpful in the feedback, take that as information. 

If your book wasn’t written for a reader in that situation, ignore it. 

I had a reviewer on Goodreads say that my book didn’t land for them because they didn’t work in a corporate job or as an entrepreneur. I was not surprised to read that. They were not my intended reader. 

What I was surprised about was that they decided my book wasn’t a good book because it wasn’t written for them, and then decided to call that out on a public platform. 

To be honest, it stung a bit because it was right after the book’s publication, but it helped me brace for the inevitable trolling that would follow. 

Not demotivating 

After I saw that two-star review, I felt a burst of energy like I haven’t felt in months to promote my book and get it to the readers who need it. 

The unexpected upside of being trolled wasn’t making me question myself or my book, it was giving me rocket fuel. 

You’re not doing something important if you’re not pissing some people off. 

Photo by MARIOLA GROBELSKA on Unsplash