And for review…

The process of doing book reviews isn’t as easy as you might think. I belong to two review groups online and they keep me as busy as I want to be. It’s all strictly volunteer, so there is no money involved. The big benefit is that I get to read! And, I get to read new books for free! Every so often, I receive notices from the groups telling me that an author has submitted a book for review. I can choose to volunteer to review the book or wait for one that is more to my liking. I then respond to their query and they contact the author to arrange to have the book sent out to me.

Once I receive the book, I spend my spare time (of which there is precious little) reading through and gathering the pertinent points of the book. Generally, I choose self-help or non-fiction books. I have an easier time remaining objective on these. After all, they are either on topic or they aren’t. Some are better than others, and for those that don’t quite live up to the hype provided on their book jackets, I try to find the most positive aspects of the writing and review those. I usually don’t focus on negatives so if the book is so bad that I can’t find anything positive to say, then I don’t do the review.

After I have completed my reading, I sit down and write the review. Each review group has its own template for submitting reviews. Some require more information than others. Some review sites have rating systems such as the stars or other quirky symbols related to their theme. Most require general information such as the title, author, ISBN, price, and number of pages. For the most part, the actual “review” part is about two to three paragraphs long. Sometimes, this comes easily and other times, it has been a struggle just to get that first paragraph.

I have enjoyed writing reviews and I always appreciate those who have taken the time to read and make sincere comments about my writing. Sabrina Sumsion is a publicist who recently reviewed my book, In the Wash on her blog, Sabrina’s Reviews. As a fellow reviewer, I appreciated her matter-of-fact style and unique insights into the books that she chooses to review. Take a look at her reviews. I’m sure you’ll find them interesting and you might even get a lead on a great book!

Until next time…

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