We’ve all had it happen before. And we are polite.
A mass email, not even addressed to us.
A review request that clearly does not fit into the genres we read.
A review request that states this book is “different” than other books in the genre.
And my absolute all-time favorite, a review request that is not a genre we read with the author’s plaintive “I know this is [insert genre type], but I know you will enjoy it” type of comment.
No. No. No. No. No. No. No, it is not.
Don’t make us mad. Even though it may be “behind closed doors,” reviewers and bloggers do talk.
I have had people contact me on Facebook, no less, bombarding me with poorly-written review requests. Mind you, these folks don’t even follow me on Facebook. If you can’t take the time to click one button, let alone fine-tune your review request, you should not be submitting requests. On top of that, they have no idea what types of books I review or do not review.
But here is the kicker: I have been closed to review requests for over a year. It has been stated clearly at the top of my Review Policy page. And yet I still received requests emailed to me, and messaged to me on Facebook.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, do not message reviewers on Facebook with review requests. Instead, contact the reviewer directly through email so she has a record for reference.
Click on a link that takes you directly to their blog. Check it out. Is their blog suitable to your needs as an author? Read the review policy. Is your book a genre that the reviewer will read? If not, move on.
Recently a fellow blogger had some serious grief with this. She promoted a period of open review requests. When closing time came, she was still receiving review requests weeks later. Some authors have become bullies in pushing their books off on reviewers, like my friend.
What does it matter if authors break all of our rules? So what?
We have to make a statement. If we want our policies followed, there must be a draw-back, just like there are consequences for law-breakers.
Here is what I have instated on my blog, and I have updated my review policy page with more specific details about my policies.
I feel a few statements need to be laid out before even getting to anything else.
- Please read all information on this page or linked to this page prior to emailing me.
- Please read my policies regarding what is acceptable and not acceptable to submit to me for review. If your book does not fall into the acceptable genres, do not send it. If you submit a book that is clearly not within my acceptable genres, you will be blacklisted.
- If you submit a request to me while I am not accepting review requests, you will be blacklisted.
What does “blacklisted” mean?
If you violate the review request policy in any way, as mentioned specifically above, your name will go on a list forever. I will never review a book of yours. You don’t get a re-do. You won’t have an opportunity for me to review your book ever if you don’t follow these rules.
I am hoping this helps my friend, as she also has a blacklist policy. There are too many authors out there and way too many books that we would love to read, but receiving unwanted requests is not something I want to continue. Quite honestly, after only two years, it makes me not want to ever open review requests up again, but for now this is what my policy will be to stave off the unwanted.