10 Reasons Your Book Is Not Getting Reviewed (by #BookBloggers) #MondayBlogs #WriterTip

Rosie Amber’s recent post [Ten reasons your book is not getting reviewed (by #bookbloggers)], which I am reblogging today, has resonated with many reviewers and authors alike. As a very-early-stage-fiction-writer, I am guilty as charged of putting out a piece of work with errors and issues. And I regret that. Bitterly. I’m in good company, as Nick Miller recently admitted his first novel, Z Is For Zombie, that he had spelt the word “rhythm” incorrectly 38 different times before someone pointed out his unfortunate error. Luckily, on the feedback of reviewers, for which I’m immensely grateful, I have formatted and fixed numerous mistakes in my published (gulp) work. I was lucky; such feedback is totally outside the remit of a reviewer and is completely unacceptable from a submitting ‘author’.

However… I would ask reviewers, the majority of whom have written and released books, to cast their minds back to the beginning of their own self-publishing journey. You are a wife, a father or maybe a well-known member of a small community. You’re writing a little something outside your stereotype. And, perhaps, you’d prefer to write incognito, either because of your subject matter or simply through lack of confidence. So, who do you tell? No one.

In this case, getting reviews is tough. No friends and family to bounce off. No feedback before you begin your journey (yes, I tried writers’ forums, where everyone will assure you that you’re brilliant, assuming you reciprocate with a similar sentiment…).

So, aside from #RBRT, I have reached out slowly, one-by-one to:

1) individual reviewers from similar genres on Amazon [those few who reveal contact details] and;

2) reviewers of my genre in print form – I have been in touch with some wonderful people who define themselves as ‘dinosaurs’ and only read something if it is ‘printed on a dead tree’. Yet, they provided valuable feedback on my novella and some even reviewed it on Amazon – a first for them, and consequently, I hope they will start reviewing other works on the platform.

It is far too easy for all of us (myself included) to regard reviews as solicited without understanding the time and pain gone through to obtaining them. I approached people by emphasising I would appreciate their honest and impartial feedback, nothing more. If my writing is a complete waste of time, it is far better I know immediately than trying to push on in a genre/style that simply doesn’t work for me. I have lots of other things to be getting on with if that’s the case!

So, to reviewers everywhere, I offer a heartfelt thank you for your time, effort and knowledge. It takes real guts to review honestly and also to say, “no thanks, this book isn’t for me”. Without you, where would the Indie writing business be? But, please try to give the benefit of the doubt, even just occasionally; a misplaced comma, a typo, a review you’re suspicious of. Are they really the be-all-and-end-all? Or can you find a great story to lose yourself in?

It is, after all, what reading is all about.

Rosie Amber

Ten reasons your book is not getting reviewed (by #bookbloggers)

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Do you keep submitting your books to bloggers, but are yet to have them reply with a ‘yes, I’d be happy to review it?’. Book bloggers do get snowed under, and sometimes state on their blogs that they’re currently closed for submissions. What if this is not the case, though, but you still keep getting a ‘thanks, but no thanks’, or no reply at all?

Do any of the following apply to you? If so, it might be an idea to have a rethink.

  1. You’ve sent a generic request, without finding out the blogger’s name (forget ‘dear book blogger’!), having a browse around it to see how he/she reviews, and if the blog will take self-published books, or those from independent presses; some don’t.
  2. Your request is badly written, with typos, grammatical or punctuation errors, or it’s too informal. You’re…

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5 thoughts on “10 Reasons Your Book Is Not Getting Reviewed (by #BookBloggers) #MondayBlogs #WriterTip

    • Hi Rosie, I feel fortunate to have connected with you and your team – your reviews are honest and thoughtful, totally without obligation or presumption and entirely selfless. And it looks like you all have a lot of fun! I love it.

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  1. Hey, good post! Of course, there’s also the number 1 reason books don’t get reviews – nobody finds them! Or, people do visit your book’s Amazon page, but are turned away by an amateurish cover or byline. Step up the promotion as much as you can afford to, and have a decent cover. Run your byline and story description by as many friends and strangers as you can before it goes up on Amazon. That way, you can make sure your potential reviewers both find the book and stick around to try it.

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  2. Hi TCC, nice to hear from you!

    I think being prepared for your launch and preferably having two books ready to go must be the way forward. I knew both of these things before I went ahead and self-published but just did it anyway because I was too impatient and wanted to learn the ropes. And I have learnt so much! It’s all very chicken-and-egg, but of course, you have to start somewhere and I felt like starting here.

    As you say, the blurb must be perfect (I say this as a reader) and, ultimately, you need to be selling a well-written entertaining product that people will enjoy. Not all people, of course.

    I can see that you can help with the content aspect, over at your blog (https://writeorelse.com/) and I’ll keep popping over to have a look 🙂

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