Howdy peeps. I'm super-uber (oh, yeah...I just went there) excited over how well my blog has taken off since it began a little over a year ago. I love reading, I love writing, and I love discovering new books. And I love reviewing for you guys. But lately my inbox has become swamped with requests and I feel myself bobbing up and down just trying to stay afloat. And the water has been murky my friends.
I have a few, let's call them suggestions, about how to ask me to review your book. Better yet, how NOT to ask me to review your book, cause those that misbehave get nada, kiss the concrete, nothing but a quickie with the delete button. Ya get my drift? Cool.
First and foremost, ADDRESS YOUR REVIEWER. Hello. <waves> My name is Devon, and just so we're clear, I'm a girl. Please don't address your request to Madam (I'm not sixty), Miss Dreamy (I'm not a stripper), Crazy Dream Lady (I have crazy dreams. I am by no means crazy), and certainly not Sir or Mister (did you not notice the blog is all pink and girly?). A simple Devon or Miss Ashley would be wonderful and will increase the odds of me continuing to read your email by 100%.
READ MY REVIEW POLICY. If you can't take the time to read a few paragraphs on my review policy page, why should I be bothered to read your novel, which is far more time consuming. It's got all sorts of nifty information on there...maybe even a steamy pic or two. ;) I realize a lot of bloggers put notes up there when they're not currently taking on submissions and forget to take them down. If I ever do so, I'll give you dates so you'll know when I'm truly closed to submissions.
PROPER GRAMMAR. I know, this is a toughy, especially since you're supposed to be a writer. I by no means expect perfection, but I expect an author to be able to put a few sentences together. Obviously, I don't mind if you use words like wanna or gonna (like I do), or abbreviations like OMFG. In fact, as a courtesy, I prefer that you do veil your expletives (ie. freakin' or effing). While I by no means curse like a sailor, even I throw out a few subtle innuendos here and there, and won't be offended if you do too.
And HELLo! thiS is notfun too reed. If you can't even shoot me a paragraph that's readable, then HELL to the NO I'm gonna read what crap you've managed to slap together in ten days. I like my Kindle Fire. I don't want to hurt it. Please don't make me hurt my precious.
KNOW WHAT I LIKE TO READ. There's a reason I list favorite genres, highlight a review page and have my favorites located in the sidebars for your viewing pleasure. If you're not comparable with those books, I'm probably not gonna like it that much, which in turn would probably get you a less than stellar review and rating. Seriously, offer the book to reviewers that like to read YOUR type of book. I promise that what I have listed as favorites are actually favorites. I don't get brownie points for making it up (if I did I'd be super fat by now).
KEEP YOUR AWARDS TO YOURSELF. You won a writing competition? Super. Me too. Putting that in there isn't gonna make me wanna read it anymore, so just omit the competion I've never heard of. But be proud of that award; highlight it on your website and slap that puppy on the cover of your book. Whether or not I read your novel all comes down to whether or not your synopsis wets my whistle (although a pretty cover may disillusion me in your favor as well)(and chocolate).
Your book is your baby. You've eudured endless hand cramps, mind farts and painful ergonomic issues to get that book where it is today. Don't just throw it at anyone that'll take two seconds to look at it. Pick and choose wisely people.
LENGTH. Please, please, please, please, please, please, please, PLEASE
(don't beg) and don't send me a proposal that never ends! OMG! If you can drag out your pitch that long, I can only imagine the agony of trying to read your book. Further more, while I appreciate short and to the point, I'm never gonna follow up on this kind of proposal:
1. (book name and link deleted)
2. PDF or probably a paperback copy
3. No hurry.
Yeah. That's an actual cut and paste of a proposal I received once. Eye catching, isn't it? Can't say I'm surprised that only one person has put that book in their to-read queue. I imagine everyone that got that proposal flushed it down the toilet as fast as my two year old can spot and snatch an electronic device.
And finally, A LITTLE PERSONALIZATION GOES A LONG WAY. If you're gonna solicit me here at the Crazy Dream blog and my sister blog Dark Horse Indie (and trust me, a lot of people do), I don't wanna see that email twice. Yeah, I'm the one that picks up on both ends, and when I see the same email filter through that's an exact carbon copy, I get a little turned off cause I'm thinking you're desperate to get it into the hands of anyone that'll answer.
Yeah, some of that may have come off as a bit bitchy, but hell, where's proper etiquette gone these days? I can honestly say that I feel for the literary agents out there. I receive only a smidgen of the requests they do and I'm honestly appalled at how I've been approached at times. Sometimes I'm left thinking...Seriously?
If you're thinking of submitting, I hope I didn't scare you off. (at least not too bad). In the future, just follow these simple guidelines:
1. Address me as the super awesome woman that I am
2. Tell me your name, genre, book title and throw in that description that took you longer to write than your entire novel.
3. Tempt me with pie. (kidding...)
4. Link your book to GoodReads. If it's not on there, get it on there already.
5. Tempt me with delectable truffles from See's Candies (kidding...maybe...probably not)
6. Give me a time frame if one is needed, or tell me if you want me to take part in a blog tour
7. Got a blog or website? Link it so I can be snoopy and check you out behind your back. :D
8. And relax. I can't bite you through the computer.
And if your proposal is gonna make me laugh, make me laugh with you, not at you.