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Ask Goodreads > Should You Rate Your Own Book?

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message 1: by Rena (new)

Rena Sherwood (renasherwood) | 14 comments I see some authors rating their eBooks or books on Goodreads and giving them (of course) 5 stars. I'm reluctant to do this for my eBook, Not the New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. What do you think?


message 2: by T.H. (new)

T.H. Hernandez (THHernandez) | 113 comments Personally, I wouldn't. What do you gain by rating your own book at five stars?


message 3: by Chris (last edited Oct 23, 2014 10:51AM) (new)

Chris Jags | 16 comments The other day I downloaded an indie author's book with intent to read and review, because it sounded really interesting. When I visited their page here on goodreads and saw that they'd rated & reviewed it themselves, I deleted it on the spot. It just seemed tacky to me. I could no longer take the author seriously.


message 4: by Rena (last edited Oct 23, 2014 10:52AM) (new)

Rena Sherwood (renasherwood) | 14 comments Yeah, I have a feeling if I gave my eBook 5 stars I'd go blind or grow hair on my palms or something like that. Thanks for taking the time to reply.


message 5: by Judy (new)

Judy (Judy5cents) | 28 comments I've always been irritated by authors who send out recommendations for their own books. It reeks of "Please buy my book. It's really, really good. Honest it is."

I did post reviews on my first two books, saying something like "OK, I wrote this book, so I'm biased. Read it for yourself and tell me what you think." I haven't done it since and don't intend to.

I've considered deleting those reviews, but the books were published years ago, so I figure it doesn't matter.


message 6: by Emma (new)

Emma Jaye | 80 comments Yep, very tacky in my opinion. To me it shows desperation.


message 7: by D.C. (new)

D.C. | 198 comments I use the review space for various things--mostly talking about promos and sequels--but rating it strikes me as tacky. It wouldn't automatically turn me off another writer's work, but it doesn't look professional, and I'd advise against it.


message 8: by John (new)

John Macgregor | 2 comments I see no problems listing your own book as something you've read but giving it a ranking is a bad idea. You aren't fooling anyone.


message 9: by A.W. (new)

A.W. Exley (AWExley) | 599 comments I don't rate my own book, I don't think it's appropriate for an author to do that.
I do use the review space to make comments about the characters or what's coming up next in the series.


message 10: by One (last edited Oct 24, 2014 09:07AM) (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments If your book is something you've read and you think it's a great read, why not give it five stars? An author should be able to rate his or her work. If an author writes it and rates it two stars certainly that counts for something with readers considering a purchase. I mean individual taste will actually determine each individual rating regardless of the author's rating but I think the author's rating helps to let readers know how he or she feels about their effort and overall product. Most of you are sort of saying that because a person is running in an election, that person shouldn't vote. It's kind of cheesy to vote for yourself. I disagree.


message 11: by Dawn (new)

Dawn (goodreadscomdawnchartier) | 2 comments Glad I found this. I've been wondering if I should or should not. LOL Being a new author you have so much to learn. :-)


message 12: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (ALB2012) | 188 comments I'd say not. An author should really think his or her work is great - or if it isn't why not.

I have a 'review' for mine - it says 'my book'.

The only ones I have rated/reviewed are anthologies in which I have stories - and not getting any money for. The reviews are based on the other stories in the anthology.


message 13: by Sherry (new)

Sherry (MsJones) | 1 comments "Should" -- my least favorite word, along with "shouldn't."


message 14: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (ALB2012) | 188 comments Sorry. Been one of those days at work...must be rubbing off on me ;)


message 15: by Andrea (new)

Andrea Zuvich (17thCenturyLady) | 1 comments I don't rate my own books because I feel that it would be extremely unprofessional and, as mentioned above, tacky.


message 16: by Zach (new)

Zach Tyo (Ztyo) | 13 comments I would steer clear simply based on the perception I have for it. If I read an author's review and see 5* then I tend to shy away. Or on the flip side I've seen authors degrade themselves a bit as though they though anything positive they say will be immediately thrown out.

I would, I hope that is more acceptable then should, focus more energy on writing a strong blurb. If I can feel the passion for your work from the blurb, then I know you feel its a 5* book.


message 17: by E.N. (new)

E.N. McNamara (ElizabethMcNamara) | 82 comments When I first joined Goodreads I impulsively gave my first book five stars. What was I thinking?
Thank you for motivating me to go scrub it off.


message 18: by Deborah (new)

Deborah Bowman (bowmanauthor) | 5 comments My feeling, also, is not to rate your own book. I got in a paradox recently, and I know it's because I don't know my way around on Goodreads yet. The only way it would include my eBooks was to give them a rating...I used the rating average they've received on amazon, but Yikes! it looks like I did it myself! That's not what I intended! Now what do I do?


message 19: by Christa (new)

Christa (christaw) | 137 comments Deborah wrote: "My feeling, also, is not to rate your own book. I got in a paradox recently, and I know it's because I don't know my way around on Goodreads yet. The only way it would include my eBooks was to give..."

Go to your book, and where your rating is showing, select "edit review". Once you're on the edit page, click "clear" next to the star rating and then save. I think you can also just delete the book from your shelves and then re-add it.


message 20: by A.W. (new)

A.W. Exley (AWExley) | 599 comments One wrote: "An author should be able to rate his or her work."

Except we don't read our own books as objective readers, we read them as emotive writers who sweated blood over every word. Ratings are for readers, not authors.

The ability is there and ultimately it's entirely up to you if you give your book 5 stars or not (and many of us choose not to). Readers have expressed their opinion of that practice in a myriad of other threads.


message 21: by D.C. (new)

D.C. | 198 comments One wrote: "If your book is something you've read and you think it's a great read, why not give it five stars? An author should be able to rate his or her work. If an author writes it and rates it two stars ..."

How many people are actually objective about their own work? It's nearly impossible. If I see an author rate themselves at five stars, I assume they are trying to inflate their rating a little. If it's at two, it looks either disingenuous or like low self-esteem. It's not like voting for yourself in a public election; it's like entering a contest and judging your own entry. And it really turns some readers off.


message 22: by D.C. (new)

D.C. | 198 comments Deborah wrote: "My feeling, also, is not to rate your own book. I got in a paradox recently, and I know it's because I don't know my way around on Goodreads yet. The only way it would include my eBooks was to give..."

I'm not sure HOW that happened, but if you go to your review and click on the stars, it should let you remove them.


message 23: by Christine (new)

Christine Hayton (CCMHayton) | 124 comments One wrote: "If your book is something you've read and you think it's a great read, why not give it five stars? An author should be able to rate his or her work..."

It's obvious to everyone that an author cannot have a subjective opinion of his own work. Ratings and reviews are for readers and are used to determine whether or not they would be interested in reading the book.

Many threads have noted how important the disclaimer on a rating/review is to the reader. You are talking the author who has a financial and emotional interest in the book. How can that be considered of any value to a reader in their decision.

Personally I do not normally read books that have been rated by the author. I have no problem if the author wishes to use the review section to provide additional information or insights and does so without adding a rating. I ignore books whose star rating has been upped by the author rating it.

It really speaks to the unprofessional attitude of the author and is usually associated with ego-driven, self-published authors. It may be permitted here on GR, but readers do not appreciate it.


message 24: by E.N. (new)

E.N. McNamara (ElizabethMcNamara) | 82 comments It would let me lower my rating but as far as I could figure it wouldn't let me delete my rating.
Any suggestions?


message 25: by Loretta (new)

Loretta (LorettaLivingstone) | 108 comments E.n. wrote: "It would let me lower my rating but as far as I could figure it wouldn't let me delete my rating.
Any suggestions?"


Click edit review, to the right of the stars is the option to clear. I have only just discovered this myself. :)


message 26: by C. (new)

C. Lorion (goodreadscomcmichaellorion) I have not rated my book, and never will on any future books. I did mark it as 'read,' but thinking about it now I don't think I'll do that anymore. If I put a book into print and unleash it on the reading public, don't I believe it's worth reading? Why would I have to rate it? The fact that I published it should be rating enough.


message 27: by C. (new)

C. Lorion (goodreadscomcmichaellorion) Anyone know how to 'unread' a book on GR? In relation to the above conversation, I want to unread my own book, but can't figure out how to do it. Again, if I wrote the thing, why do I need to publicize that I read it?


message 28: by Christa (new)

Christa (christaw) | 137 comments C. wrote: "Anyone know how to 'unread' a book on GR? In relation to the above conversation, I want to unread my own book, but can't figure out how to do it. Again, if I wrote the thing, why do I need to publi..."

You can just go to your "read" shelf and click the "x" to the far right of the book to remove it from your shelves completely. Or, you can move it from "read" to "to-read".

To move a book, you can either go it from the shelf page, or just go the book page, and in the section "my review" click the "edit shelves" link.

You can also just create an exclusive shelf called "my books" or similar and move it from the "read" shelf to that one.

I don't think anyone will think anything of you having it shelved as "read", though.


message 29: by Dawn (new)

Dawn (goodreadscomdawnchartier) | 2 comments I have so much to learn on Goodreads. LOL


message 30: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca McCray (RebPai) | 32 comments I haven't rated my book because, as noted above, I'm biased. However, I did mark it as "Read" -- it just seemed odd to have marked otherwise. I suppose it's unnecessary, but I don't see as an issue.


message 31: by Emma (new)

Emma Jaye | 80 comments I have my books as 'read' as well, nothing wrong with that as far as I can see.


message 32: by Jack (new)

Jack Knapp | 737 comments Mod
One wrote: "If your book is something you've read and you think it's a great read, why not give it five stars? An author should be able to rate his or her work. If an author writes it and rates it two stars ..."

I did rate my own on Amazon, only because they sent me a list of 'Would you give this book...'.
Noted that the first chapters moves a little slow, some of the language is awkward (it's being revised to correct that) but then pointed out that characterization, complex plot, tension, enough action but not too much made the book an A- at worst, hence deserving of 5 stars.
It bounced. I guess Amazon didn't really mean it when they invited me to rate it! :D


message 33: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Connell (SharonKConnell) | 114 comments Emma wrote: "I have my books as 'read' as well, nothing wrong with that as far as I can see."

My books are marked as "read" as well, because I have read them, many, many times before publishing, and even now I go back over them. I simply do not "rate" them. It would be unnatural to not mark them as "read" in my thinking, to appear not to have read your own book before putting it out there for everyone else to read.

Along with Andrea, I think it would be unprofessional to rate your own book. Of course you would believe it to be one of the best or you wouldn't have had it published, would you?


message 34: by One (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments A.W. wrote: "One wrote: "An author should be able to rate his or her work."

Except we don't read our own books as objective readers, we read them as emotive writers who sweated blood over every word. Ratings a..."


I read everything objectively, including my own work. If I thought it was a piece of crap, I'd rewrite it before I publish. An authors rating is just one opinion, one that he or she is entitled to.


message 35: by One (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments D.C. wrote: "One wrote: "If your book is something you've read and you think it's a great read, why not give it five stars? An author should be able to rate his or her work. If an author writes it and rates i..."

I just don't count ratings as the word of "God". I've found that a lot of material is over the head of common people and as a result, it gets lower ratings. Some of the material I've enjoyed most for it's ideas and creativeness has been rated average or less than average by the crowd. On the other hand, some weak material has been rated highly, probably friends and family. I really wouldn't be offended if an author rated his or her own work.


message 36: by One (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments Christine wrote: "One wrote: "If your book is something you've read and you think it's a great read, why not give it five stars? An author should be able to rate his or her work..."

It's obvious to everyone that an..."


Everything sold has a financial interest to the seller and somebody is emotionally connected to its production. Car companies purchase ratings and awards. An author rating is own work is cheating and cheesy? I don't think so, it's just one opinion that the author is entitled to have. I guess that's why it's available for an author to do here.


message 37: by One (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments C. wrote: "Anyone know how to 'unread' a book on GR? In relation to the above conversation, I want to unread my own book, but can't figure out how to do it. Again, if I wrote the thing, why do I need to publi..."

Believe it or not. Many authors can't remember what they wrote by the time they put the story together and publish it. So I think you should read it and rate what you released. It's your personal stamp of approval or disapproval.


message 38: by Emma (new)

Emma Jaye | 80 comments You'd publicly disapprove of your own work? I don't suppose you, or anyone else would actually do that.


message 39: by P.S. (new)

P.S. Winn (goodreadscompswinn) | 7 comments I think you should and add something in the review that isn't in your synopsis on any other sites. I know Amazon doesn't let you write a review but goodreads lets you and it is a good way to add that extra info, of course you should love your own book or you shouldn't be asking others to read it!


message 40: by One (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments Emma wrote: "You'd publicly disapprove of your own work? I don't suppose you, or anyone else would actually do that."

I have publicly disapproved of much of my work. Some things I've done I just didn't have the skill to do a professional job of it but I done the best I could, short of my own ideal of perfection due to not having the income to hire professionals. If I put out a book that I feel is not 100%, I won't rate it five star.


message 41: by One (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments P.S. wrote: "I think you should and add something in the review that isn't in your synopsis on any other sites. I know Amazon doesn't let you write a review but goodreads lets you and it is a good way to add th..."

My work contains important esoteric and occult information. If I don't necessarily love the way I've presented it, a reader can still have a powerful reading experience from analyzing the information provided in the work. I wouldn't take an average or less than average rating by an author of his or her own book as a signal that the work has no value. It just says that the author feels he or she could have done better and a revision may be in the process.


message 42: by Christine (new)

Christine Hayton (CCMHayton) | 124 comments One wrote: "I have publicly disapproved of much of my work. Some things I've done I just didn't have the skill to do a professional job of it but I done the best I could, ..."

You have two books listed here and both have been rated 5* by you as the author. They are the only ratings on the books.

What exactly are you referring to when you claim you have publicly disapproved of your own work?


message 43: by One (last edited Oct 25, 2014 09:54PM) (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments Christine wrote: "One wrote: "I have publicly disapproved of much of my work. Some things I've done I just didn't have the skill to do a professional job of it but I done the best I could, ..."

You have two books l..."


I said that "Some things I've done I just didn't have the skill to do a professional job of it but I done the best I could, short of my own ideal of perfection due to not having the income to hire professionals." That would include plumbing, carpentry, roofing, auto-mechanics and other things. After making the above quote, I then returned to talking about the books I've written by saying "If I put out a book that I feel is not 100%, I won't rate it five star." I've done work on things that looks good and it's fully functional but not 100% professional in appearance. If I do a masonry job and it looks a little sloppy, I'm not going to rate it five stars because I done it. I'll publicly tell anybody what I don't like about it. The same applies to what I write, even then, it's just my opinion. You have to see for yourself if the subject matter and book description interest you. I've seen books with several five star ratings and several two star ratings at the same time. Writing is putting down material frequency in print and to the reader it comes off the paper in sound and the sound is interpreted into a stream of material motion. The rating that a work gets depends on how it resonates with each particular reader. You could have 150 five star ratings and 15 two star ratings, with the two star ratings having more value because the two star raters are freer thinkers as opposed to the five star raters being bots of sort, programmed into a certain resonation by their environment(Western, Eastern or whatever). If one writes something, publishes it, I think he or she should read it and rate it honestly according to his or her level of vibration and consciousness.


message 44: by Christine (last edited Oct 25, 2014 11:25PM) (new)

Christine Hayton (CCMHayton) | 124 comments One wrote: "If one writes something, publishes it, I think he or she should read it and rate it honestly according to his or her level of vibration and consciousness..."

One wrote: "...I've found that a lot of material is over the head of common people and as a result, it gets lower ratings. Some of the material I've enjoyed most for it's ideas and creativeness has been rated average or less than average by the crowd..."

Onw wrote: "...the two star raters are freer thinkers as opposed to the five star raters being bots of sort, programmed into a certain resonation by their environment(Western, Eastern or whatever)..."

I have copied (above) your condescending attitude toward readers. Your narcissistic ego will push customers away. You are not listening. Other authors in this thread are trying to change what they have done to accommodate their readers.

It has been explained that readers (customers) do not want to have the average rating upped by an author adding his 5* rating. It's cheesy and tacky. In this discussion you've made it clear you don't care what readers want- its about what you want.

So - do whatever you want - but do not expect a lot of readers to buy your book. Take a minute and read the comments on this thread.


message 45: by One (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments Christine what you done was cut a sentence and take my words out of context but that's typical journalism nowadays. Readers differ in opinion and an author is entitled to an opinion of his or her own work, that's all I've said. If you believe that all authors will always five star their work, that says a lot about your integrity and character.


message 46: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Connell (SharonKConnell) | 114 comments Okay...this is the first time I've seen such bickering on this site and I feel like I've fallen into some kind of a bad dream with children throwing insults back and forth on a playground. Sorry, but that's what it sounds like to me. It seems to be an exchange of insults, no longer constructive criticism but trying to outdo one another and force the opponent to agree with what you think.

Why don't you send each other PMs instead of taking up space here where we could actually learn something positive from one another. CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM, that's what I'm looking for.

Granted, I'm only the newbie on this site, but this tread seems out of control! Go ahead now, shoot me down for saying it.


message 47: by Jack (new)

Jack Knapp | 737 comments Mod
No shootdown; well said, Sharon.


message 48: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Connell (SharonKConnell) | 114 comments Thank you, Jack.


message 49: by Jack (new)

Jack Knapp | 737 comments Mod
There's entirely too much of this that occasionally pops up here. I will say that the moderators generally are quick when they spot it, but that shouldn't discourage you or anyone from calling out childish exchanges.


message 50: by One (new)

One Iam (One_Iam) | 18 comments I responded to replies directed at me and in a very adult way. I don't care whether you rate yourselves or not but you certainly have a right to do so. I choose to do so here on Goodreads. It doesn't make me a criminal or a shady character, that's all I'm saying.


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