How do you deal with friends and relatives when your books are released? Do you give them free copies? If so, do you expect reviews? Do you get them?
When I started writing, I had three short stories published in the CUP OF COMFORT anthologies. Needless to say I was excited and thrilled to be a paid writer. In addition, the publisher provided one free copy and the option to buy more at a discount in the event I wanted to sell them myself. I bought more copies but I didn't sell them. I gave them to family and friends because I was newly published, looking for exposure and hoping for a few favorable reviews on Amazon.
Everyone loved the stories - at least that's what they told me. Every day I checked Amazon and every day there were no reviews. Finally, I resorted to asking for reviews, then begging, cajoling and finally demanding. My husband, kids and a few friends finally posted their comments - uniformly good, and hopefully honest.
But what was the problem? I gave them a free book. Did I expect too much just because I provided a copy? If they really liked the story, why were they hesitant to review it? Are people just too busy these days to think about giving a friend a review? Or do they think writers get umpteen free copies to distribute?
What do you think?