Head To Top Ranked Blogs To Discover Some Great New Blogs

Happy Saturday! Here’s a quick post.

While searching for new blogs I have recently discovered Ranked Blogs run by Charles Sipe.

Ranked Blogs have lists of blogs for over one hundred topics such as: Book Reviewing, Baking, Green Living, travel and Yoga

The book review blog list currently has 114 book bloggers listed, so if you are an author and are looking for new reviewers do check out the list.

Cathy Ryan, from the review team is listed as well as this blog. In a show of support for featuring our blogs, Charles asks bloggers to help spread news about the lists. On the site you’ll see a one click option to vote for us and any of your favourite bloggers, just hover over the thumbs up image and it will turn blue, then ‘click’ to vote.

Depending on the number of votes, each blog gets a chance at being a ‘featured blog’ on the site homepage.

It would be lovely if you had a few minutes to look around Ranked Blog’s website, the black button above will take you straight there. Once you’ve checked the list and hopefully made a couple of votes, do click on the list of ‘All Topics’ at the top of their page and see what other blogs interest you.

 

 

10 Reasons Your Book Is Not Getting Reviewed (by #BookBloggers) #WritingCommunity #WriterTip

Ten reasons your book is not getting reviewed (by #bookbloggers)

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Do you keep submitting your books to bloggers, but are yet to have them reply with a ‘yes, I’d be happy to review it?’. Book bloggers do get snowed under, and sometimes state on their blogs that they’re currently closed for submissions. What if this is not the case, though, but you still keep getting a ‘thanks, but no thanks’, or no reply at all?

 

Do any of the following apply to you? If so, it might be an idea to have a rethink.

  1. You’ve sent a generic request, without finding out the blogger’s name (forget ‘dear book blogger’!), having a browse around it to see how he/she reviews, and if the blog will take self-published books, or those from independent presses; some don’t.
  2. Your request is badly written, with typos, grammatical or punctuation errors, or it’s too informal. You’re not expected to write a business letter, but cracking jokes/trying to be funny is off-putting.
  3. You haven’t checked out the genres the book blogger prefers. Or you have, and are trying to squash your romance book with a tiny unanswered question into her preferred category of ‘mystery’, etc.
  4. You’ve taken no previous interest in the blog, have never shared or retweeted a post, never read one or commented, not followed the blogger on Twitter (if the blog is promoted via this site), or via WordPress or blogger.
  5. Your blurb is badly written, has errors, is too long, is a rambling synopsis of the plot, is too short, or doesn’t adequately portray the book’s genre.
  6. The ‘Look Inside’ sample that anyone can read on Amazon has errors. Many book bloggers look at this sample first, and even an out of place comma can put some off. If it has actual typos, grammatical errors or spelling mistakes, forget it. Your first page should ‘hook’ the reader in. It’s also a good idea if you leave all the author notes, etc, to the end, so that anyone who looks at the sample can start reading the book itself more or less straight away.
  7. Your other reviews are all very obviously from friends and family – by which I mean all 5*, and all from people who have never reviewed anything else, or only a couple of other products. Most new writers start off by getting friends and family to review, but if they’re all just one or two lines saying that it’s the best book that’s ever been written, it makes you look unprofessional and desperate.
  8. Your cover is a free Amazon standard, or very badly homemade. Of course not everyone can afford professional covers, but you can buy them for as little as £30 these days, if you don’t have the skills to make your own. Not bothering with the cover might give the impression that you’ve skimped on the book itself, too. You’ll probably be able to get away with a substandard cover if the blurb sounds really brilliant, but if your book keeps being rejected, it might be worth thinking about making the investment.
  9. Your review request bigs the book up, and tells of other wonderful reviews and awards. Bragging doesn’t impress; it has the opposite effect. Do the book blogger the honour of allowing him/her to make his/her own judgement.
  10. You have been rude or made bitter comments about other book bloggers online. The internet can be a surprisingly small place, sometimes, and it doesn’t take much to get a bad reputation.

 

Last point:  If someone has taken the time, at your request, to read and write a review, and post it all over social media, have the decency to thank them.  One book blogger told me that about a fifth of the writers she’s reviewed for don’t do this.  Even more staggering, some of them actually ask her to review a subsequent book.  Don’t be one of these people!

If none of those items apply to you, keep trying! If you think a particular book blogger really would be interested in your work, let him/her know why you’ve chosen the blog, and why you think he or she might be interested in your book. Good luck!

#TwitterTips Change Your Twitter Name. Catch All Your Tweets

Blogging like a pro. Easy with these two tweaks.

Friend and editor Alison Williams shared some twitter tips which I’m re-posting for the benefit of our new readers.

The mistake I made when I set up my Twitter account was my choice of twitter username/handle. I wanted to use my actual name. I have a really common name, so Alison Williams wasn’t available, and neither were any variations using numbers that weren’t far too complicated to use. So I decided to use a capital ‘i’ in place of one of the ‘L’s in Williams. Sorted.

Problem, Technical, Issues, Technology, Error, Delay

Problems arose when I was tagged in a tweet. People assumed that my twitter username was @AlisonWilliams (with two lls). It wasn’t. So I didn’t see a tweet and therefore couldn’t retweet it. This meant I lost out on sharing that tweet with people. An editing client tweeted how pleased she was with the work I did for her – she asked me a few days later why I hadn’t retweeted. I lost out on some free advertising there.

Mistake, Error, Question Mark, Fail, Wrong, Trouble

I realised that I needed to change my username to something that, first of all, people could spell correctly, and secondly that would lead people to me on Twitter. So I decided to change my username to @AlisonW_Editor

My name is now spelt correctly. It also means that anyone looking for an editor on Twitter is more likely to find me.

Changing your username is really simple to do. Just go to your Twitter profile, use the drop down menu to select ‘settings’, and change the username listed in the username field. Click ‘save changes’ and you’re done. It doesn’t affect anything on your account; you keep all your followers, and all your past tweets, favourites and lists are still there. Or click on your picture icon, select ‘profile’, then edit ‘profile’ and you should see a box to change below the option to change your picture.

If you use WordPress. Make sure Twitter is correctly connected to your WordPress account. This way, when followers use the Twitter share button on your post, you will get notified on Twitter.

Here’s what you need to do:

  • Go to WP Admin
  • On the left hand side under ‘Settings’ you’ll see ‘sharing’ – click this
  • Scroll down until you see: ‘Twitter username to include in tweets when people share using the Twitter button’
  • In the box alongside this enter your new Twitter username. (No need to add the @)
  • Save changes

And you’re ready to go.

Kids, Drawing, Scribble, Lines, Girl, Boy, Child

Extra Tip: Make your Twitter Handle is as close to your “Author” name (or Business Name) as possible so fans can easily follow you.

For more blogging and Twitter tips see here 

Sunday Connection – Books We’ve Reviewed This Week Plus Blogosphere Links #SundayBlogShare

Sunday Connection February 25th

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Monday – I reviewed western romance Call Of The Canyon by Zane Grey

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Tuesday – Terry reviewed WW1 PTSD novella Fred’s Funeral by Sandy Day

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Wednesday – Karen reviewed thriller The Weight Of Shadows by Karl Holton

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Thursday –  I reviewed Romantic comedy The Year Of Surprising Acts Of Kindness by Laura Kemp

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Plus women’s fiction A Country Escape by Katie Fforde

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Friday – Judith reviewed horror Ghosts Of Manor House by Matt Powers

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Saturday – Olga reviewed historical romance Tearagh’t by Craig Newnes

Plus links to the blogosphere

Be an organised blogger with these tips

http://avalinahsbooks.space/tools-can-help-organized-blogger-social-media-networking/

5 reasons your blog will never make any money

https://elenaopeters.com/2018/01/27/reasons-blog-never-make-money/

Why reading can make you a better writer

https://rachelpoli.com/2018/02/22/why-you-need-to-read-good-books-to-write-good-books-guest-post/

How to move your blog from Blogger to WordPress

http://avalinahsbooks.space/move-from-blogger-to-wordpress/

Confessions of a book blogger

https://booksnacksblog.wordpress.com/2018/02/23/blogging-confessions-sneaky-things/

Sunday Connection – What’s Been Happening This Week? #Blogging #SundayBlogShare

Catch up With This Week’s Book Reviews.

Then Follow The Links To Posts From Around The Blogosphere

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Monday – I reviewed romantic suspense The Obsession by Nora Roberts

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Tuesday – Noelle reviewed Victorian romance The Viscount And The Vicar’s Daughter by Mimi Matthews

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Wednesday – Robbie reviewed WW1 survivor’s tale Fred’s Funeral by Sandy Day

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Thursday – I reviewed contemporary The Things We Don’t Say by Roberta R Carr

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Friday – It was my turn on the blog tour with a review for paranormal thriller The Doll Funeral by Kate Hamer

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Saturday – I reviewed novella and paranormal romance Confessions Of A Pirate Ghost by Jo-Ann Carson

Fun posts

Tuesday Teaser – from thriller The Intruder by P.S. Hogan

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What am I reading? For WWW Wednesday

Plus links from around the Blogosphere

Ever wanted to write a memoir?

https://blog.reedsy.com/how-to-write-a-memoir/

Advice about querying publishing agents

https://lyndseyhallblog.wordpress.com/2018/01/18/in-the-query-trenches-author-toolbox-blog-hop/

Book Blogger Etiquette: How To Get Comments

http://avalinahsbooks.space/book-blogger-get-comments/

The One Thing That Will Kill Book Sales Dead—And 10 Ways to Avoid it.

http://annerallen.com/2018/01/kill-book-sales-10-ways/

Fanna’s post supports fellow book bloggers

https://fannatality.wordpress.com/2018/01/25/discussion-book-bloggers-a-publicity-team-that-should-be-respected-oh-and-theyre-free-for-an-unlimited-time/

Shannon discusses expanding  the YA & NA genres

https://shannonathompson.com/2018/01/27/na-or-ya-college-aged-protagonists/

3 #Blogging Challenges for 2018

New Year, New You, New Blog Posts

If you’re looking for new ideas to freshen up your book blog, why not consider one of the many challenges available to bloggers.

I’m going to try the 2018 Book Blog Discussion Challenge hosted by Shannon @It Starts At Midnight (on Twitter here ) and Nicole @Feed You Fiction Addiction (on Twitter here) All the details and a signup can be found here

Did you know Top Ten Tuesday will be moving host from January 16th? Your new host will be Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl (on Twitter here) Jana explains how it works…

How it works:

I assign each Tuesday a topic and then post my top ten list that fits that topic. You’re more than welcome to join me and create your own top ten (or 2, 5, 20, etc.) list as well. Feel free to put a unique spin on the topic to make it work for you! Please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own post so that others know where to find more information.

You’ll find the schedule of upcoming TTT topics below so you can plan ahead. I’ll post a Linky on the blog each week so you can link up your post (if you want). If you don’t have a blog, post your picks in the comment section below! Have tons of fun talking books and getting to know your fellow bloggers!

Teaser Tuesday is hosted by Ambrosia @ The Purple Booker (on Twitter here) If you want to join in grab your current read, flick to a random page, select two sentences (without spoilers) and share them in a blog post or in the comments of The Purple Booker.

Don’t forget that you can also use #TuesdayBookBlog for any book related blog post that you publish on a Tuesday which would include all of the above challenges.

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT A Taste Of His Own Medicine by @LindaFawke #Fiction

Today’s team review is from Jenny Reeve

#RBRT Review Team

Jenny has been reading A Taste Of His Own Medicine by Linda Fawke

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Review by Jenny Reeve

I give this book 4 stars

A Taste of His Own Medicine by Linda Fawke

Fiction

Set around a 30 year University reunion.

This book is a good read overall with good plots. Kate Shaw is after revenge whilst she attends a 30-year reunion at her old University. There are a few old ‘Uni pals’ that need to be taught a lesson. The characters are very different from one another, which helps the story to unfold at a good pace. Some authors can drag a story out whilst introducing characters, but Linda does a very good job at keeping the saga steady.

Kate’s best friend Becky unwittingly gets dragged into helping Kate with the revenge plots, mostly by distracting others. Becky arrives at the reunion late and leaves early. There is a very exciting reason for her behaviour. You must read the book to find out what it is. It was unexpected that is for sure.

Jonathan is the best revenge of them all, but Kate has to make it worth the effort that she puts into organising the final act. A lovers revenge that has a real good twist at the end.

It was easy to read this story and I had to keep picking up my kindle to read more between doing work and chores.

Revenge can be bitter sweet…..so I am told. If you’re not careful it can backfire and hit you like a hammer on a nail.

Book Description

How long can the desire for revenge last? 
Kate Shaw, a successful pharmacist, goes to a thirty-year reunion at her old university and uses the weekend to settle some old scores. Her main target is her ex-lover, Jonathan. She decides to scar him for life as he scarred her. Her bizarre plan works but he shocks her with his strange, unwanted reaction. 
What is the unexpected link between Jonathan and Kate’s husband? 
What is the significance of the ‘Love Bite’ photograph? 
What hold does Jonathan have over Kate? 
Revenge is never simple. 
A darkly humorous story of love, lust, loss and vengeance

About the author

Linda Fawke

Linda Fawke is an arts person who studied science but always wanted to write. Now retired, she indulges this passion, writing fiction and non-fiction, even occasional poetry, preferably late at night. She has recently completed her first novel, ‘A Taste of his own Medicine’, using her background in pharmacy for its setting. 

She has been a winner of the Daily Telegraph ‘Just Back’ travel-writing competition and has published in various magazines including ‘Mslexia’, ‘Litro’ online, ‘Scribble’, ‘The Oldie’, ‘Berkshire Life’ and ‘Living France’. She was recently a finalist in the ‘Hysteria’ short story competition.

She is now writing the sequel to her book.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

#HotNews We’ve been nominated for a Best Book Blogger in the 2017 BloggersBash awards and we need your votes. Please vote here (Best Book Blogger)

Thank you.

http://sachablack.co.uk/2017/05/18/2017-annual-bloggers-bash-awards-voting-open-bloggersbash-bloggersbash/

2017 Kindness 7 week Challenge with @NikiMeadowsWA #REVOFKINDNESS #MondayBlogs

2017 Kindness Challenge I’ve signed up for the 2017 Kindness Challenge run by Niki Meadows, who is a Worthiness Ambassador. A 7 week challenge following weekly prompts. The challenge begins on May 7th and there is still time to sign … Continue reading

10 Reasons Your Book Is Not Getting Reviewed (by #BookBloggers) #MondayBlogs #WriterTip

Ten reasons your book is not getting reviewed (by #bookbloggers)

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Do you keep submitting your books to bloggers, but are yet to have them reply with a ‘yes, I’d be happy to review it?’. Book bloggers do get snowed under, and sometimes state on their blogs that they’re currently closed for submissions. What if this is not the case, though, but you still keep getting a ‘thanks, but no thanks’, or no reply at all?

 

Do any of the following apply to you? If so, it might be an idea to have a rethink.

  1. You’ve sent a generic request, without finding out the blogger’s name (forget ‘dear book blogger’!), having a browse around it to see how he/she reviews, and if the blog will take self-published books, or those from independent presses; some don’t.
  2. Your request is badly written, with typos, grammatical or punctuation errors, or it’s too informal. You’re not expected to write a business letter, but cracking jokes/trying to be funny is off-putting.
  3. You haven’t checked out the genres the author prefers. Or you have, and are trying to squash your romance book with a tiny unanswered question into her preferred category of ‘mystery’, etc.
  4. You’ve taken no previous interest in the blog, have never shared or retweeted a post, never read one or commented, not followed the blogger on Twitter (if the blog is promoted via this site), or via WordPress or blogger.
  5. Your blurb is badly written, has errors, is too long, is a rambling synopsis of the plot, is too short, or doesn’t adequately portray the book’s genre.
  6. The ‘Look Inside’ sample that anyone can read on Amazon has errors. Many book bloggers look at this sample first, and even an out of place comma can put some off. If it has actual typos, grammatical errors or spelling mistakes, forget it. Your first page should ‘hook’ the reader in. It’s also a good idea if you leave all the author notes, etc, to the end, so that anyone who looks at the sample can start reading the book itself more or less straight away.
  7. Your other reviews are all very obviously from friends and family – by which I mean all 5*, and all from people who have never reviewed anything else, or only a couple of other products. Most new writers start off by getting friends and family to review, but if they’re all just one or two lines saying that it’s the best book that’s ever been written, it makes you look unprofessional and desperate.
  8. Your cover is a free Amazon standard, or very badly homemade. Of course not everyone can afford professional covers, but you can buy them for as little as £30 these days, if you don’t have the skills to make your own. Not bothering with the cover might give the impression that you’ve skimped on the book itself, too. You’ll probably be able to get away with a substandard cover if the blurb sounds really brilliant, but if your book keeps being rejected, it might be worth thinking about making the investment.
  9. Your review request bigs the book up, and tells of other wonderful reviews and awards. Bragging doesn’t impress; it has the opposite effect. Do the book blogger the honour of allowing him/her to make his/her own judgement.
  10. You have been rude or made bitter comments about other book bloggers online. The internet can be a surprisingly small place, sometimes, and it doesn’t take much to get a bad reputation.

 

Last point:  If someone has taken the time, at your request, to read and write a review, and post it all over social media, have the decency to thank them.  One book blogger told me that about a fifth of the writers she’s reviewed for don’t do this.  Even more staggering, some of them actually ask her to review a subsequent book.  Don’t be one of these people!

If none of those items apply to you, keep trying! If you think a particular book blogger really would be interested in your work, let him/her know why you’ve chosen the blog, and why you think he or she might be interested in your book. Good luck!

#Bookblogger bashing: in the end, you’re only hurting yourself #MondayBlogs

Today I’m hosting a post written by Terry Tyler which I feel strongly about aswell.

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#Bookblogger bashing: in the end, you’re only hurting yourself.

I’ve read a few posts lately about book bloggers being bullied or ‘trolled’ by writers for whom they have received bad reviews, or whose books they have rejected.  For more on this, here’s a heartrending post from The Happy Meerkat, and an associated one on Fictionophile about whether or not reviews should be objective or personal opinion, amongst other things.

Like 99% of the rest of the online writer/reader/blogger/reviewer community, I’m appalled that bloggers who give up their time to read books by total strangers, for no payment, are receiving such harassment.

I write this from the point of view of a writer, and a book reviewer.  Although my own book review blog is mostly for my own reading choices, I’m also a member of Rosie Amber’s Book Review Team. There are 20-30 of us, who select books from those submitted by authors and publishers.  If we’ve reviewed the book (and we sometimes decline after reading a section), we then deliver the results to Rosie for inclusion on her blog.

On the submission guidelines, Rosie clearly states that we don’t provide a 5* only book review service, and that we pride ourselves on being honest, unbiased, balanced and constructive.  If we were to give only praise for every book submitted, the blog would be a) dishonest and b) therefore not worth reading.  Yet still she’s had to deal with complaints from writers who haven’t received the glowing recommendations for which they’d hoped. Some ask her not to post them, despite the hours of (unpaid) work that have gone into considering the submission, reading the book and posting the reviews.

Book bloggers are a gift to the self-published or indie press published author.  They do what they do simply for the love of reading/blogging/the book world.  They should not be given a hard time because they do not give a wholehearted, 5* thumbs up to what they’ve read.  Since being on Rosie’s team, I’ve heard of reviewers being accused of personal grudges against the author, lack of understanding of the author’s apparent brilliance, snobbery, and even not reading the book. A couple of years ago, one writer was extraordinarily rude, on Goodreads, about Rosie’s 3* review.  He slagged her off in public. She didn’t owe him anything.  He wasn’t paying her for her time.  He submitted his book for an honest review, which he received.  All he did was make himself look like an egotistical idiot.  Less than positive reactions are a fact of life for a writer. All reviews bring the book to the attention of the public and add to its ‘visibility’ on Amazon.

To book blogger bashers everywhere: have you ever watched The X Factor, or American Idol, or any of those shows?  You know the mediocre singer who can’t cope with the fact that he isn’t good enough to make it through to the next round, and is abusive towards the judges?  That’s what you look like when you harass book bloggers who don’t tell you what a wonderful writer you are.

The book blogger community is close and supportive.  If you start throwing your toys out of your pram every time you get a 1, 2 or 3* review, you’re likely to get a bad reputation.

Reading Soft edge

(Please note: in the following section, I’ve referred to the book blogger as ‘she’, rather than ‘he/she’, for simplicity).

If a book blogger rejects your submission it might be for any of these reasons:

  • You have sent a generic request rather than looking at the blog to see if your book is suitable.
  • You have come across as demanding, or unprofessional, or not even bothered to find out her name.
  • She has a busy life and does not have the time to read it right now.
  • Her to-read list is ten miles long already.
  • She is not interested in your particular genre.
  • She has read the blurb, and the subject matter of your book doesn’t appeal to her.
  • She has read the blurb and considers it badly written.
  • She’s read the ‘look inside’ sample on Amazon and does not consider the writing to be of the standard she wishes to review.

All these elements can be summed up by this: she doesn’t want to read your book.  That’s okay.  She’s not obliged to.

If a book blogger accepts your book, but gives it a less than positive review, it’s for this reason only:

  • She didn’t think it was very good.

She’s not being snobbish, or vindictive, and she’s not too stupid to understand your art, she just didn’t like it much, for the reasons stated.  Most book bloggers assess with a combination of objectivity and personal opinion.  If more than two reviewers say the book has unrealistic dialogue, or cardboard characters, or an unfeasible plot, or it’s too long, or it needs editing, or proofreading, it’s likely that they’ve got a point.  Deal with it. Learn from it.

But, most of all, don’t give the book blogger a hard time for pointing it out. It’s arrogant, it’s nasty, and, in the long run, the only person who will suffer is YOU.