Share it Please
As your blog grows, you're going to notice that people will start approaching you. When I first got an email from an author asking if I was interested in a review copy, I was ecstatic!
My blog is still fairly small and it was even smaller back then. I couldn't believe that an actual published writer was interested in my opinion!
Same goes for publishers - I was over the moon happy (and still am!) for every request I get.
Being asked for your opinion is an honor to me, but very quickly, as the number of inquiries grew, I asked myself the question whether I should accept every opportunity I get or not.
More exposure for your blog is great, isn't it?
Would You Have Reached Out to That Author on Your Own?
It can be quite tempting to accept every opportunity you get to promote your blog. You'll be surprised at the amount of independent publishers and authors that will be reaching out to you the second you've met a certain degree of familiarity in the blogging world.
I mean, it's all about cross posting and exposure in the blogging world, so why not take that review copy? Maybe the author will retweet it or let their readers know about it.
That's just the wrong approach to me.
I always see collaborations with authors and publishers as a contract. They're interested in my work, so ideally I'm supposed to be interested in theirs as well.
- DON'T take a review copy of a book that you would never EVER buy in a store
- DON'T agree on that author interview with someone that you've never heard of and don't intend to find out more about/ have never read anything from
- DON'T just snatch those giveaway copies if you haven't read the book and aren't planning to
- DON'T join a blog tour if you aren't interested in reading the book
It's not fair to the author/publisher to just exploit the opportunity they're giving you. I think it's a moral issue. Of course you can say that it's a win:win situation, but to what price?
Does the Collaboration Make Sense?
There's a reason why publishers and authors reach out to your blog. It may be because
- they truly like your style
- they've seen you review a similar novel and think you'd be interested
- they're just looking for exposure themselves (if you're a big blog)
- they're simply messaging all bloggers they can find
The truth is, many small publishers and indie authors are just looking for exposure.
The first hint for you to find out which category they belong to, is to take a closer look at the book. If you have a review policy that clearly states what you like and the book isn't even remotely similar to any of those genres, chances are that the inquiry is a mass email sent to a bunch of bloggers for exposure.
That's not a bad thing, but you have to ask yourself whether you would have been interested in that book, had there been no inquiry.
The bottom line is that you have to decide whether the book or the author fits into the concept of your blog.
Always remember: Blogging isn't about exposure. It's about being true to yourself.
How Do You Handle Review Inquiries?More Tips:
Book Blogging Tips (#1): Requesting Review Copies from Publishers
Book Blogging Tips (#2): 5 Ways to Get Out of A Reading Slump