Are you trying to promote your books? Are you a writer, publisher, or agent? Promote your book with this bestselling author's reference, the Book Reviewer Yellow Pages. Make your book promotion easier, and get the publicity you need from book reviewers. Learn how and where to submit your book for review. There are hundreds of new book reviewers listed in this book. Each listing details the individual book reviewer's:
- Contact information,
- Pet peeves,
- Preferred genres, and
- Submission guidelines
Where did you get the idea for the Book Reviewer Yellow Pages? At first, I did it purely out of self-interest! I wrote a nonfiction book in 2007, and I had a very difficult time finding book reviewers. It seemed like an impossible task. All of the regular outlets were closed to me—where do you go when you can’t get a review in the New York Times? Where do the “little guys” go when they need to promote their books? So I started the Book Reviewer Yellow Pages out of my own frustration. At first, the Book Reviewer Yellow Pages was just a big list on a simple website. I added to the list when I had spare time. Book reviewers started seeking me out, and asking to be put on the list, and it just grew from there. In 2009, I published the first “Book Reviewer Yellow Pages,” and the rest is history. The list just grew organically. Now we have hundreds of book reviewers on our list, and thousands of authors subscribe to the newsletter.
How about the book reviewers themselves, what do they get out of it? Many book reviewers just do it for fun, and they get the benefit of free books and ARCs (advance review copies). Quite a few of them also earn money, either from sidebar advertising, blog tours, or other author’s services. There are so many self-published authors out there right now, trying to promote their books without the help of a traditional publisher, so there’s a lot of little business ventures cropping up to serve them.
Many reviewers list their “pet peeves,” is this something that the authors really want to know? Yes! It’s the most popular part of the questionnaire—all the reviewers have their own horror stories. Sadly, many authors have terrible etiquette when they request book reviews. Many don’t take the time to even spell-check their queries, or find out if the reviewer is a man or a woman, so they can address them correctly! I used to review books myself, and it’s amazing how many times I’ve gotten a review request with nothing but a link to the book. No signature, no salutation, nothing! Why would I review your book, when you aren’t even willing to take a few minutes to send me a proper review request? We also added an “author etiquette” section to the front of the book, and that seems to help a bit.
Do Book Reviews really help sales? They’ve helped my own book sales tremendously, and I know hundreds of authors who would say the same. Look, everyone knows that book promotion is boring work. Contacting dozens of book reviewers is time consuming, and you have to deal with rejection, but the payoff from a positive book review is enormous. That’s been the case in my own writing career. Reviews really help sales, and it’s nice to have a public testimonial that customers can refer to when they purchase. On the flip side, many of the reviewers accept ARCs and also work as beta-readers, so if you can get a few good reviewers to read through your manuscript before publication, they might be able to give you valuable feedback. I found a big plot hole in one of my novels that way—a reviewer found the problem, and I was able to fix it before the book went to publication.
Do reviewers ever drop off the list? Can authors get updates? Yes, on our website. Reviewers get added and removed on a regular basis—and the list goes through a complete overhaul once a year. I do a formal update every April. That’s when we put out a new edition of the book, as well as update the reviewer list on the website. The abbreviated list on the website is free, and authors and publishers can sign up for updates to the list here: http://www.stepbystepselfpublishing.net. The newsletter is also free.
Do you have any advice for authors? Be polite to book reviewers, always. Not everyone is going to like your book, that’s just the nature of game. But publishing is a business, and it pays to be professional. It’s just like any other creative business. Reviewers are our critics, and they give us valuable feedback that we need to improve. One of the best reviews I ever received on the Book Reviewer Yellow Pages was mildly negative. The writer gave me tons of feedback on how to make the book better. I followed his advice, and the book has been more profitable since. Book Reviewers really want to help authors—I’ve never met a single book reviewer that was interested in just tearing an author down. We are all in this business together!