Welcome 2017! Just before the New Year, I wrote about my year in review. You kind of have to, don’t ya? I tried to make that blog as upbeat as possible. Not everything is upbeat, however, because now I’m going to talk about five mistakes authors make when asking for a book review. I’ve written other blogs about this, but I keep seeing the same – dare I say stupid? – mistakes over and over again. These five mistakes drive me bananas! So, without further ado, here we go:
- Using a private e-mail address with a cute name. My personal favorite? You and your partner’s name joined with the word love. This doesn’t seem like a big deal, but it is. Because it’s not professional. Indie authors get enough flak about our lack of professionalism. There’s no need to make it easy for the haters.
- Using an e-mail address which is directly related to one of your books. This also doesn’t seem like a problem. If you’re only planning on writing one book, it isn’t. But if you are going to write more books? Houston – we have a problem. You’ll have to start over with gathering e-mail addresses. Reviewers and bloggers will be confused about who you are. Your e-mails from your new address may in fact go into their trash boxes because this is not the e-mail address they have on file. You’ll have to rebuild relationships. Marketing a book is hard enough without adding unnecessary work.
- Reacting badly to friendly criticism. When I first started getting review requests, I’d often give the writer a few tips. For example, if there were typos in the e-mail, I’d say something like “I don’t know if you noticed, but…” Sounds friendly enough, right? Um, no. The vast majority of responses I got were nasty. Who do you think you are? They ranted. I can tell you what I’m not – a reviewer of your book! I no longer point these things out to writers. I simply hit delete on any e-mail that contains more than 3 typos.
- Reacting badly to no. This one pisses me off. I’ve actually taken the time to read your e-mail and respond to it. Trust me, that doesn’t always happen. And then the writer has the gall to write to me that I should reconsider or that it’s my loss. Really? You’ve just been put on my never gonna read list.
- And my top pet peeve about review requests – general emails. If you can’t bother to figure out my name (hint: it’s in the e-mail address), I’m not bothering to read your request. Delete. And if the request is super long with no hint that you have no freaking clue what I like to read or who I am, forget about it. Delete.
I could go on and on, but I promised to list only my top five. How about you? What are your top pet peeves with review requests?