Not Just a No: The Decision Behind a Rejection

Let’s face it—getting rejected sucks. You poured your heart and soul into a book and were brave enough to ask other people to read it…only to get shot down.

Quite frankly, doing the rejecting isn’t all that fun either. We editors and agents know the hard work that goes into writing a manuscript, and it’s never a good feeling to know you’re crushing someone’s dream. We’re not sitting behind our desks, holding red pens and grinning evilly as we write a giant “NO” on someone’s submission. We want to fall in love with books. We want to publish them. But not every submission will be a fit, and here’s why. Continue reading

The Almighty Book Review: How to Get Reviews and Where to Get Them

If you are sending your book—a galley or ARC (Advance Reader Copy), if you’ve planned well—off to be reviewed, you are saying to yourself and the world of book critics that you’re ready for attention. You package up your book, your press release, a list of endorsements, and a cover letter, and you hope for the best. But how can you get reviews when you’re a self or indie publisher and you’re competing against authors with a whole PR team behind them?

First, plan ahead. Get your book in top form and create strongly written and designed materials to accompany it (for a reviewer’s checklist, see the sidebar). Second, target your reviewer market. Look for publications or websites that focus on your subject matter, whether it’s paranormal YA romance or the history of a third world country. You’ll be much more successful if you don’t waste time or money trying to get reviews from people who won’t be interested.  Continue reading