Whether you like it or not book reviews are an important tool when it comes to promoting books. The jury is out on whether reviews actually influence readers to make their decisions but one thing’s for sure, reviews bring attention to books and you can’t have sales without attention.
I hear you mumbling from here. “Oh but Stacy it’s such a pain in the butt to gather reviews.” True but this is a necessary evil you must learn to like. Most new authors don’t realize there are certain rules in the industry when it comes to seeking reviewers. Well, I’m here to help.
Below are nine things you shouldn’t ever do when seeking out reviews. Imbed these into your mind and learn from them.
Don’t #1: Approach published authors you do not know for a review
This is definitely not recommended. There is a difference between asking an author to blurb your book but never ask an author you don’t know to review or critique your work. Soliciting an author for a review is intrusive. Unless the author is also a reviewer and actively seeking books to review, cross authors off your reviewer list.
Don’t #2: Send a reviewer your book before asking them for a review
Make sure you follow guidelines for a reviewer before contacting them. Most reviewers prefer an author or publisher to contact them before sending them a book to review.
Don’t #3: Hold a grudge against a reviewer who declined to review your book
Sometimes reviewers will decline to review your book. It doesn’t mean they don’t like you or wouldn’t be interested in reading it. Reviewers have TBR lists like you wouldn’t believe and sometimes it’s impossible for them to finish the books they’ve already committed to. If a reviewer declines your book remember that rejection comes with the territory of writing. Suck it up and cross the reviewer off your list for now. But don’t hold a grudge against them on a personal level. You might wanna contact them for a review again some day.
Don’t #4: Hassle friends and family for reviews
Friends and family members are the first ones to promise reviews and most of them never even read your book. That’s life. Whether your book is already out or is soon to be released, don’t beg and hassle friends or family to write a review for you. If you got to ask them there might be a reason. They might not like your book or might not have even read it. That might be tough to swallow but this is where you gotta realize that the world doesn’t revolve around your book. Let family and friends decide on their own whether to review your book. You don’t wanna be the annoying dope they all run from because they are afraid you’ll ask them about your book.
Don’t #5: Contact reviewers who do not review your genre
Don’t #6: Beg people on Facebook for reviews
I can’t count how many times I see authors and even publishers begging for reviews on Facebook. This is unprofessional and tacky. The more you annoy people, the less they’ll be interested in reviewing your book. You can contact reviewers on Facebook unless they say otherwise but leave the general public alone.
Don’t #7: Stalk readers who have read your book and hound them for a review
If you see that someone on Goodreads has read your book don’t contact them asking them to review it. This will put the reader on the spot. They might not want to review it. If a reader intends to review the book then they will. They are not obligated to review a book. Don’t be that nutty author that stalks for reviews. No one will want anything to do with you.
Don’t #8: Speak negatively about a reviewer in public
Don’t badmouth reviewers or anyone in public. Whether the reviewer declined to review your work or didn’t respond back to you, don’t post about it on FB, your blog or anywhere else. If you do and other reviewers see this, they most likely will keep their distance from you and your book.
Don’t #9: Expect the publisher to get reviews
Most publishers will get reviews for you or at least aid you in getting them. But some won’t lift a finger to get you one review. It’s your responsibility to know which type of publisher yours is beforehand. Don’t sit around for months before your release date assuming your publisher will get you reviews. You’ll end up scrambling for reviews at the last minute.
Be sure to view the post: What To Do When Seeking Out Reviews
Please help your fellow authors by sharing posts you find helpful.
Don’t have a copy of Become A Successful Author? What are you waiting for? Become A Successful Author will be used in the “How To Write That Novel” course at Chicago State because it covers everything from branding to writing to editing to formatting and uploading electronic and print books to marketing and so much more. Your time is money. Look at all the time, thus money, you’ll save by ending your search for answers: Purchase Become A Successful Author (eBook) for only $4.99 from: Amazon (US), Amazon (UK), Barnes & Noble or print copies for only $7.99 by using the Contact page of this website and tell Dee know how many copies you’d like and shipping address. She’ll email the ordering information.