defeatist carThe Defeatist actual kindle image

Dear readers,
I’ve decided to use my last couple of free promotion days together before they run out at the end of the month. I think it’s a case of trial and error and luck. My first two promotion days weren’t all that successful, but the one I did back in July was. I had 135 downloads in just under 24 hours, and managed to get a few reviews from it.
-I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read and review “The Defeatist” so far. It means a lot to me! (It has a 4.6* average rating on Amazon, and I can’t help but feel a little bit proud!)

Learning curves- Goodreads trolls.

Goodreads has taught me that there are trolls out there. I have to admit that I’m not very keen on using Goodreads as a platform. People seem to think that they can write whatever they want on there, or leave you a poor review, with no reason why.
An editor approached me on WordPress, offering her editorial services. I wanted to know more, so got in touch with her via my personal email. At first, she was pleasant enough and then we got onto pricing. She wanted to charge me approximately 1p per word. That seems like nothing, but “The Defeatist” is just over 98,000 words long, which would have amounted to £980! I have to admit, that I got cold feet and I basically told her thanks, but no thanks. I barely knew anything about her, and didn’t want to jump in at the deep end. Nothing more was said, until about a week later, I checked my Goodreads profile, and to my horror she’d left me a 2* rating. No comment, no constructive feedback, just a horrible, 2* review. My heart absolutely sank. It was so ironic; I’d actually spoken to her about people trolling authors work. I didn’t know what to do, I honestly felt absolutely devastated and stepped away from the internet for a while to decide what to do. I plucked up enough courage to ask her why, and she couldn’t even give me a straight answer. I decided to cut my losses as asked her to either : add a comment, or delete the bad rating. She chose the latter option.

What’s next?

-I’m always on the hunt for new book reviewers! If you’d be interested, please contact me on Twitter @SE_BownsFiction or Facebook :

I’d love to say that I’ve just started writing a new novel, but unfortunately, I haven’t had ‘that’ wave of inspiration yet! I’ve tried planning various ideas, but none of them have come to light yet. Perhaps I need a longer break. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to start planning and writing a new novel/ novella by the end of the year, but who knows?

Where can you download ‘The Defeatist’ ?

‘The Defeatist’ will be FREE on Amazon on :

Monday 17th August – Tuesday 18th August.

You can get your copies from Amazon from the following links :










©Sophie Bowns 2011-2015


19 thoughts on “The Defeatist, and my learning experience. (I’ve scheduled two free promotion days on Amazon Kindle for 17th- 18th of August)

  1. Sorry to hear about your experience. It’s a double-edged sword, being a creative person. You want to put yourself and your work out there, but doing that leaves you vulnerable to bad reviews and also people who get their jollies being mean.

    1. Hello- thank you so much for reading this post and leaving a comment.
      Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind constructive reviews, but this was just a terrible rating. I still don’t fully understand why a so called ‘professional’ would do that? It all felt a bit cruel.

      1. Hmm, that’s basically what I thought, and yet she claimed that she was.
        In the end, I didn’t know what to think. I was slightly horrified/ confused. It was like she was trying to get revenge or something. I asked her to delete the review and left it there.

  2. I see you have come up against a piece of nasty. Sorry to hear that. This may or may not help but I am going to leave with you a blog LINK for Shawn MacKenzie’s blog. Check out at the top of blog ‘EDITOR-AT-LARGE. It will give you an idea of who Shawn is and something of what to expect.

    She is my life partner, a damn good published author [we are working on writing a children’s book series together], she is an editor; who wrote the book ‘Red Line/Blue Line’ which came about from writing Editor’s Corner on her blog.

    I told Shawn I was going to give you her information. She does free editing of five pages to show you what to expect. If you decide to contact her, use this email address: You can work out what you want edited and negotiate the fee from the point after she has edited the five pages of your work, if you decide to contact her. I gave her a copy of your book The Defeatist a short while back, so she is familiar with your work.

    It’s in your hands. I promise she would never betray you in the manner the other quite unprofessional editor did. Shawn is an honorable person and extremely talented. She helps me edit my work all the time. It really improves what I write 100%. It’s b/c she knows what she is doing and she does it well.

    Sorry Sophie, you had to endure such an experience as that person put you through. You do not deserve such treatment in any way. I hope you do check Shawn out. But do not feel obligated to do anything. I just want to help. Up to you now.

    So, you have started a new book. It is a daunting procedure to embark on but exciting. I am about to begin reworking my blog novel Private Writings and to convert the sequel from the almost finished screenplay into a novel. All that remained to finish on the screenplay was the dialogue. I have also written five different endings, b/c I don’t want to know how it turns out until I get there.

    Exciting adventures ahead. Good Luck on the August 17th & 18th book Give-a-way. I must tell you I actually purchased two of The Defeatist up front. One for my legal persona and one for my nom de plume. I forgot to switch over my Amazon account. But it was worth the extra purchase. Now Shawn has her copy. So there are three copies of The Defeatist in our house. I do have Azure & Teddy, also.

    Well, I better get going. Want to do some fiction writing and also I want to do some coloring in our new collection of Adult Coloring Books. An assortment of all sorts of designs. The Coloring Book I want to work on first is Snowflake Mandalas. The artwork outlines are amazing. Bought through Dover Publications in the US. If it is something you would be interested in, I would assume they are international. I am doing this to help meditate and to relax and also to relieve stress. That damned thing called STRESS. Have way too much of it.

    You hang in there. Write your heart out and enjoy it. Missed you. Have been doing way too many things. Reorganizing my priorities. Hope it works.

    Ciao! jk 😎

    1. Hello jk!
      It’s always so lovely to hear from you, it has been a while.
      I’ve followed Shawn’s WordPress blog, I’d love to have a proper look at some of her work, and find out about her pricing/ rates. I mean, I know only a little about editing, so I’m not entirely sure what the standard rates are. It’s something I’d like to pursue, as ‘The Defeatist’ has received some great feedback. (I’m fully aware that it needs to be professionally edited.) Ideally, I want to find someone based in the UK.

      I actually haven’t started a new book, but I’m hoping that I’ll be able to come up with some proper ideas before the end of 2015. We’ll see!
      Ah! That’s amazing, thank you for purchasing it. Has anyone else in your household read ‘The Defeatist.’ My Mum actually read it about a month ago, and said that she thoroughly enjoyed it.

      Good luck with your books. My younger sister is the artistic one, I’ll have a look and show her. She might like them. 🙂
      Meditation is very helpful, I do it myself. Take it easy and look after yourself.

      ~As always, thank you for your kind words.
      Thank you jk.

  3. There are the two of us, so I have completed The Defeatist and Shawn in reading it presently. If it is any help, we both are anglophiles and watch British TV, Films, and read and know more about British Writers than US ones. One author Shawn worked with lived in South Africa but was living in China at the time. So global location, I think, does not effect/affect how one edits. Just wanted you to know Shawn lived in England and traveled in Europe when she was growing up as a child. So spent a great deal of time overseas. Just an added bit of info.

    Now, I can’t remember why I thought you were working on a new book. Do you have a genre or subject matter welling up deep inside you are desperate to explore? What you did with The Defeatist was brilliant. It was so inspirational. Spirits. Questioning Death and the other side. The whole other realm.

    Anything in your life from the past that might need more investigation. Maybe something to inspire the creation of book. A story needing telling.

    Oh, do tell your sister about the Coloring Books. The selection is endless. So unique in the types of designs and the quality is incredible. What artistic medium does she work in? Oils, acrylics, CGI, computer art…I do love painting but these days I strictly use the computer. The CBs will be an extension to hands on. Remember coloring when I was a kid and loved it. Never liked coloring outside the lines. Not sure what that means psychologically but it was important to me to make it perfect.

    Isn’t being creative marvelous. I can’t imagine not being able to create. It would make life miserable. I am not limiting creating to just the Arts specifically. Coming up with ideas for technology or any other form of making something new and original.

    Let me know when you feel an idea for a book coming on. Do not feel you have to be specific. Just want to be encouraging.

    Ciao, Jk 😎

  4. The majority of the books I read tend to be British. I’m on the search for a new one at the moment, it’s been a long time since I’ve read an incredible one. Maybe I’m far too fussy?
    Thank you- I love reading about the afterlife. One of my favourite all time novels is ‘The Lovely Bones’ by Alice Seybold. Have you read it? The film is directed by Peter Jackson, and as expected his direction style was absolutely stunning! It moved me to tears.
    There is something that I could potentially write about, but I don’t think that I’d have the guts if I’m honest.
    I’ll mention those books to my sister. 🙂
    I do love having quite a vivid imagination. Novel writing is SO exciting, I get lost in my own little world and become stuck in the heads of my characters. I wouldn’t even know what perspective to take, and can’t decide whether I prefer writing in the 1st or 3rd person. I couldn’t even tell you what I think I’m best at. I just don’t know!

  5. The Lovely Bones. I saw the film, You are right Peter Jackson did an incredible job with such a delicate subject. What a difficult story to get through. So many triggers. Tried reading the book. Loved it but then it started to freak me out and had to stop. The subject matter was too close. I do write about abuse but take it only so far. It would be a powerful subject to tackle. You did tackle Death. Maybe in a different fashion but if you were able, the type of subject in The Lovely Bones would knock people over if you wrote a novel with it at the center.

    Some of the ideas we want to write about seem difficult, you have to go there in your head as well as your emotions. It would be tricky. I know I would like to experiment with some stories but my fear is the person reading what I wrote would think somehow there is some truth to the words on the page. It is a feeling that can limit a writer. So I say, what the hell, write what I want to, so if someone thinks it is true, let them.

    If The Lovely Bones is subject you want to investigate, try it out in a short story first, to get a sense of what it would feel like. If it works, expand it into a full length novel. I know from your writing you do have it in you to accomplish such a feat. You have to believe you can and it may just enable you to do it. It would be a wild ride for sure.

    You could use me as a sounding board.

    I must say the best part of The Lovely Bones is the place the children go afterwards. It is the most lovely of places where no one can ever harm them again. They also have each other.

    Think about what I said.

    Jennifer ❤

  6. I adore ‘The Lovely Bones’ but it’s an excellent book in it’s own right. It was raw, beautiful and powerful. I couldn’t stop myself from crying. I felt a tiny bit inspired by that book/ film when I was writing ‘The Defeatist.’ I’m not sure if I’d ever be brave enough to write a novel about abduction or murder, but never say never!
    ~I’ll have a good think.
    I need to start brainstorming or something.

    1. Ah, no I’m not defeated. It just annoyed me, that’s all. I know that some people wont like my work, but I thought her turning round and giving me a 2* rating was a bit sly and very unprofessional. At one point she was full of praise for it, I know exactly what made her ‘turn.’

  7. I rarely visit my Goodreads account. I have never seen so much snark on one website in my life. I am sorry for your terrible experience. Yes, we all know what made her “turn”. It was the lack of 980 pounds. Good riddance-at least she deleted her comment. I’ve shared this on both my personal and blog Facebook accounts. I do have a cousin I recently discovered (well, she discovered me) and I found out, to my delight, that she co-manages a indie bookstore in a suburb of New York City. She’s on vacation but who knows, maybe she will be intrigued enough to grab a copy.

    1. Hey Alana- no, I probably only check mine once a week. It can get really nasty on there! Thank you for your support and understanding. I’m actually quite glad that I’ve got that little story off my chest.
      Ah, it would be wonderful if she could have a look at some point. Thanks Alana.

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