How to Get Book Reviewers to Ignore You

(a guide for indie authors full of helpful tips and honest-to-god snark)

 (1)  Ignore submission policies.
Yes, ignore that tab on the top that says “submission” or “review” and “policy” in some combination in every book reviewer’s page. If you don’t see those, ignore the “About” page too.

(2)  Don’t look at what genres the reviewers will read.
Why bother? You’re confident that everyone wants to review a memoir from a complete nobody on the internet.

(3)  When you email the reviewer, address them by the wrong name.
Bonus points if you address them as “Simon”, because all blogs that link to each other are run by the same person.

(4)  Amazon gift carpet-bomb reviewers who explicitly state that they don’t want unsolicited Amazon gifts.
I highly recommend this. Since your contact information is not included in the Amazon no-reply email, reviewers can’t reach you even if they wanted to.

(5)  Send invitations to LinkedIn and other kinds of networking sites.
Because reviewers rather be on LinkedIn instead of reviewing books by authors who followed the submission policy.

(6)  Email a general “Check out my books on Goodreads!” link.
It’s an effective way to garner attention when reviewers have 70 unread emails that all followed the submission policy, hence are more appealing to read than the link-maze that you have provided.

(7)  Invite reviewers to your Facebook page, or to become a fan on Goodreads, and so on
Even though they have never read your book because you did not follow the submission policy.

(8)  Attach mysterious .doc and .pdf file attachments to your emails
Although the book reviewer explicitly stated that they would delete emails with such attachments. Yes, because a .doc is a published book format that people take seriously. And because everyone wants to read a press release full of quotes from people we don’t care about instead of reading the summary and/or sample that you should have provided.

(9) Equate social networking with spamming
Because receiving direct replies with “Check out my books on Goodreads!” links from strangers is the reason why we’re on Twitter.

(10) Ask for a review on forum threads that the reviewer has not been on for months
Or use third-party private messaging systems despite the fact that the reviewer has stated that you should follow submission policies and send it to their real email address—because everyone wants to check six private messaging inboxes all the time.

Don’t take this list the wrong way. I heartily support the indie e-publishing movement, and starting this ebook blog is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. The majority of authors are wonderful, they follow submission policies and get their book reviewed. But after sharing thoughts with other indie book bloggers, there are some people who need to read this list. Book reviewers have set up review policies to handle the flood of submissions they receive every day. The easier you make it for them, the more likely they will read your book. If you followed any of the tips above, perhaps you should resubmit that book… and read that submission policy.

Cheers,
Frida Fantastic – Your neighbourhood indie SF reviewer

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  1. Lmao! Delightful post! I’d love to tell you about my personal experiences…wait, I’ll just write it into a book and send it as gift from amazon… Please review it when you get it! Love, Simon (wanna be my linked in friend?)

  2. One of the main reasons I made the borders on my main blog page pink is for constantly being referred to as a guy. Not many female fantasy reviewers into dragons or something I guess, but after a dozen times it can get annoying. Pink fixes everything. Review-wise I get another grey hair every time someone does the #6 Goodreads example. It burns countless time to try and find something that is in pieces all over the place. A couple websites, sure. A 1 hour Google search to find your book, not so cool.

  3. @S. J. Wist. Yeah, I dislike #6 so much. I have very simple book submission policies. If the book is speculative fiction, not a children’s book, not a vampire YA/paranormal book, and not paranormal romance, and 15,000 words and over–email me the link to the Amazon or Smashwords page. That’s it. Queries can be written, etc. but that’s all optional. But it *boggles* my mind when people write 1000+ words and have *no links*. Why? I just want the link!

  4. You forgot emailbombing the editor with every story in a PDF format (which happened to me recently – 15 MB of files and 7 emails) and overwhelming their inbox

    Typos and poorly formatted queries

    Surefire ways to keep me from reviewing your work.

  5. This is great! I shared it on Twitter =)

  6. I love this article! Great job!

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