Today I welcome author Ike Pius onto my blog, who is discussing his experiences when marketing his book.
I am not going to commit suicide. I say this early in this post because after reading the sad story I am about to tell many readers may think I am a dejected soul, beyond breaking point, straying towards the edge, looking for a way out, hoping to die… I am not.
I am just going to be a realist, and share some of my experiences as a self published author. So please do not panic, and do not call the suicide helpline. This is my Story.
How it Began
A couple of years ago, I wrote a short story which I featured on an e-magazine. The story was to draw attention to my first novel.
I based this short story on some true events: a guy from my country had put explosives in his underwear and had boarded a plane bound for the U.S with the intention of blowing it up.
The bomb had failed to blow, and he was in deep, smelling shit. I titled my work Bomber Boy: Rise of the Underwear Bomber and decided to publish it separately.
Promoting My Book
The first thing I did was sign up for a marketing forum. I then posted a short description of my book there.
Next thing I saw was a user on the forum calling me a terrorist, saying that I was using my book, and by extension the forum to promote terrorism, and that I should be banned.
If you search Bomber Boy by Ike Pius you may still see this. I signed up for Twitter with the hope of broadcasting my book to the world, but soon discovered that I need my book needs lots of reviews if it is to be given a chance.
So I started requesting reviews. I have been ignored over a hundred times but that is the good part. The bad part is that some people agreed to write reviews only to bash my writing so bad that I contemplated suicide. Examples below:
Hate, Hate, and More Hate
I wrote to an American woman and she agreed to write a review. What I didn’t know was that the woman was a Stewardess on the Airline in which my story is taken from. That means either she or her beloved colleagues nearly lost their lives on the day of that event.
If she was a nice person she did not show it in her review. The woman poured out so much anger and hatred on me and my book, calling out even the slightest error, and literally saying my book was trash and would amount to a waste of dollars if anyone bought it.
I was broken.
Another woman made me wait for 3 months only to write that my book was an attempt to humanize a terrorist. She said that she condemned strongly my writing, and implied that I was trying to spread some kind of propaganda. She further said that I had no talent.
If you think that I have over elaborated a small issue, then perhaps I should state that the first woman came back to look for my book AFTER TWO YEARS this time on Goodreads, and then gave it an evil One Star rating.
She had killed my chances on Amazon, and when she saw that I was doing quite well on Goodreads she came to shoot me down there as well. Again you can just search Bomber Boy by Ike Pius to see that this is true.
A Canadian man who is dear friend, a fellow Author, and my Reviewer saw the bile spewed on my writing was moved to say: ‘racism takes many forms.’
Alas! My sales have been so poor that I have less than $100 in my royalties account. That means I may not be getting married because I don’t have the means to set up a Trust Fund for my kids. That is the sad story of Ike Pius, the Author that could have been.
Coming Together-Solving a Problem
Perhaps this is the best time to talk about the problem Authors face from unfriendly reviewers.
Sometimes these are people who themselves have tried their hands (perhaps unsuccessfully) at writing, and now take consolation in bashing the hard work of other writers.
Something must be done. You may not like a book, and I think you have every right to determine what to like or otherwise, but you can state that without killing a person’s chances in the industry.
Who can say how many potential readers I have lost as a result of these mean reviews which unfortunately I can do nothing about.
I am very sure that I do not stand alone in this issue. Surely many talents out there have been nipped in the bud by the excesses of over-enthusiastic reviewers. It is time we came out to seek redress.
Evil reviews should be subjected to some kind of scrutiny and/ or censorship. They are harmful to the chances and mental health of hard working Authors.
I would be thrilled to see your suggestions in the comments section of this post.
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About Ike Pius
Ike Pius is the Author of Bomber Boy: Rise of the Underwear Bomber.
He is a Nigerian Author and speaker with two electronic format books that highlight Terrorism, Religious Conflict, and there impact on the World Community.
His book has been reviewed and endorsed by over 30 bloggers and Media Enthusiasts around the world.
300 Passengers, One Bomb, One Plane. One Omar Farouk to set it all Ablaze.
Welcome to the Fast Moving World of Advanced Terrorism where Jihadists in Oman or Afghanistan can blow up Buses, Trains, and Planes in New York, Madrid, or London without even going there.
This is not the World of the Future, it is Our World as it is Now.
A World Unpredictable, Unforgiving, and Deadly.
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Thanks to Ike for being today’s guest poster and sharing his experiences as an author.
Please check out his links and if you have any questions, please leave them in the comment section below.