My policy is and always will be "Give it to me straight, please." I would rather know your honest opinion of a story than to receive false praises, and as such I learned a harsh truth this week and one for which I am grateful for being told.
Last year my book "Chronicles of Mark Johnson" won an award at indiePENdents.org for excellence. Believe me, nobody was more amazed than I was; for months I had been the victim of mass on line attacks at the Bookrix site and had reached the point of no return, I would stay off line for days to avoid the conflict.
The book had been 'edited' by one of the people on the site-who I later found out disliked me and had done nothing for the book-at the time I didn't realise that this person was jealous of my writing, this fact only sank in when I beat them in a contest on Facebook.
This week, my moment of glory has been somewhat lessened as I learnt from Julia, my editor, the book had been taken down after complaints and re-edited before winning the award.
I am grateful to Julia for doing the task, she has always thought I was a great storyteller, but not so hot as a writer-something which is quickly improving as the present course goes on.
I may not have won the award on my merit-I was reluctant to send the story to be judged-but I can say, hand on heart, "I have never asked friends to buy my books and give 5 star ratings on Amazon," nor asked them to doctor their opinions, so my rating are higher, nor will I delete bad reviews.
In my view, the value of a story is judged by reading the good and the bad reviews, if you only show good reviews that proves you have no value for the work as you don't wish honesty, only praises.