The Mill’s first 1 star review, it finally happened! But I’m not sad. You can never please everyone, it’s just not possible. I’m very glad that this was not my first review of The Mill – that may have been a little soul crushing – but all the same, her opinions and views are valid and potentially helpful to other readers.
I respect Evelyn all the more for her honesty, she truly hated my novella! And that’s fine, because she does not hate me as a writer/human being (I hope >_>).
Most reviewers are not interested in attacking you personally – and if they are, you know who not to talk to anymore. Evelyn was pretty brutal with her assessment, but only because she wants to see the work improve. Who wants to read a shitty book? No one! While it makes me nervous now that everyone will feel this way about my work, I’m not disheartened. This is an exemplary learning opportunity.
Step one to Learning
Identify if the criticism is coming from your target audience. If the answer is no, probably take it with a grain of salt, but still investigate. If the answer is yes, write down all of the points in the criticism that the reviewer mentioned as unpleasurable to them.
As unbiasedly as humanly possible, take all of the points and reread your work. Write down where you notice what the reviewer mentioned, then postulate on how to fix the issues.