There exists a group of people in the literary world who are unsung heroes and, as an author, I would like to sing their praises: I want to extend a digital-hug, to you the reader. Thank you for talking about a book on Facebook, thank you for passing on a book to a friend, thank you for accidentally leaving it on the train, and a big thank you to those of you who take the time to knock out a review on Amazon or Goodreads.
I live to write – but once a book is finished it marks the end of what has been a long, loving, and sometimes enervating relationship. I then hand the words over to you. It’s like sending your child out into the world, but you never get an email or a tweet or text from your first born. Then suddenly – a sign. It starts with a comment on Goodreads: “I’m currently reading KEY WEST”. This then blossoms and 5 stars appear on Amazon. My heart soars. And then comes the icing (whipped cream) on the Key Lime Pie -- a review.
It’s so gratifying to receive the feedback directly from the reader’s keyboard (or those of you who got a tax refund – touchscreen). To know that she or he has read your work is exhilarating – to know that he or she enjoyed it – is humbling.
When reviewers take that extra step to pass on why they enjoyed the book, it means a lot to me. Most recently, the comments make reference to my many zany characters – it’s this unconditional feedback that opens my eyes to what the readers enjoy and thus helps me to shape my characters and storyline for my next book. I’m currently writing the sequel to KEY WEST and you, dear reader, are helping to enrich the DNA of my next offspring.
If I wore a baseball cap I would now take it off in salute to you, the reader. Thank you.