#FREE help for #Authors: Post 2 Let’s talk some more…


Following on from my recent popular post about getting the most from your friendly book blogger, it’s become obvious that there’s more that needs to be explained.

2012_0622 rose for rosie  wordpress

Here a link to the first post “Free help for Authors” http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-5Qq

So post 2 is about “Getting your book reviewed”:

NUMBER 1 RULE – in my book is go to the blog and find out more about the types of books the blogger reads and their review policy guidelines. Most bloggers have found the need to write down guidelines and NOT reading them sends your request to the BIN/TRASH in all probability.

Here is a copy of my book review guidelines as an example;

I read books across a range of genres, both fiction and non-fiction.

I DO enjoy romance, paranormal, humour, murder mystery, mild thrillers, spiritual, a bit of fantasy and YA/NA books.

I Do Not Read blatant erotica, political or strong religious themed books, nor do I enjoy a book with a lot of violence. I’m afraid poetry isn’t my thing and I can only take a little sci-fi.

I prefer to accept books in paperback, I love their feel, but I’m also happy to work with PDF or Mobi files which I download to my Kindle. Ask me about sending a gift certificate perhaps.

Before I accept a book a few lines about it should be sent along with your details via the contact form at the bottom of this page, plus a link to where I can find the book. The final decision to review the book, is mine. Upon acceptance I will provide a mailing/e-mail address if necessary, I do live in the UK.

Tips to help get your book reviewed;

Getting my name right on the contact form helps your request, I’m Rosie, not Amber or anything else.

Whilst a mass copy and paste review request will put me off, as will a hard sell of your book, let me decide if I will like it.

Take a good look around my site and get to know me, look at the books I have reviewed, I’m a human being, treat me as you might a new friend and we’ll walk a while together on this path of life.


So today my inbox I had this from an author; My own thoughts are in red.

(Note there is no Dear Rosie – First Error)

I’ve read some of your reviews. I like your approach. (Empty sentences, obviously copy and paste, insulting to my intelligence)

My name is Alfie. I’ve written a book that has gone through a rigorous editing process and now . . . it’s here. (Hasn’t told me his full name, nor the all important Title of his book)

Getting it off the ground is not easy. (The learning curve is going to be HUGE) Please check the description (below) and positive reviews. I’m willing to be your guest if you like the book. (Sounds like he’s doing me a favour by offering to be my guest) It could be my first interview! (This comment just threw him to the bottom of the rookie pile, I’m generous but not desperate)

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Here are two more from my Hall Of Fame book review requests;

“I hear you like books, I’ve written one…” (Good for you, keep on walking….)

” Hi Amber, oops! sorry Rosie, ha ha” (If I tell you in my review policy that getting my name right helps your request, then a joke from a complete stranger implies you aren’t serious about me or your work. Wait until we are good friends before you try random humour across the world. This author was then affronted when I told him I didn’t like his approach said he’d never had a problem before…)

If anyone needs a guideline for one type of approach that does get a chance of review here is an example;

Dear Rosie,

My Name is (Insert name) I’ve been following your blog posts and like the short style of book reviews you write. I have recently published my book (Insert title)  it’s about (short description and why you wrote it) You can find more details on my website (address)

I was wondering if you’d be willing to review a copy of my work in due course. I realise you must get an awful lot of requests and I entirely understand if you are too busy or the book is not for you. However if you could spare the time it would be much appreciated. I can provide a copy of the book in Mobi or e-pub.

I very much look forward to hearing from you.


This style of approach will go a long, long way to getting your book reviewed, please pass this on to those who need the advice save me bashing my heard against a brick wall.



What has worked for you as an author? Reviewers, what requests have made it to your Hall of Fame and no further?



Guest Author Rayne Hall

Today Rayne Hall joins us on the blog to inspire you to get the most out of your Twitter platform. Yesterday I posted my review of Rayne’s book “Twitter for Writers”. Here is a link if you missed it. http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-5vM

RayneHall - Fantasy Horror Author - reduced size Portrait by Fawnheart

Let’s read Rayne’s advice.


by Rayne Hall


1. Aim to attract readers, not customers. Blatant promotions such as “Have you read my wonderful novel [Insert Title] yet? Buy it here [Insert URL] bore and annoy. Instead, entertain your followers. If they enjoy reading your tweets, they’ll become interested in reading your books. Choose topics of interest to your potential readers. If you write Paranormal Romance, tweet about shapeshifter lore. If you write historical fiction, tweet little-known facts about life in your chosen period. Writing interesting posts in 140 characters or less is a challenge, but you can do it – you’re a writer!

Rayne Hall - Writing Meme - Twitter


2. Use your pen name as both your ‘Full Name’ and your ‘User Name’, so the people who read your tweets will recognise the name when they see your book.


3. Follow people who are interested in your genre. Many of them will follow you back, which gives you the chance to woo them with entertaining tweets. They are your potential readers. To find people who like your genre, search profiles for keywords such as ‘horror’ or ‘romance’.


4. How many followers you have matters little. What counts is their quality. Many accounts are automated and don’t read tweets; many others are fakes created by the thousands and sold by scammers (“Buy 30,000 followers for only $29!!!”). Having many followers is useless unless they are real people who really read your tweets at least sometimes.


5. Stay away from ‘automating’ your Twitter account. The sellers of such services promise this will save you time – but in practice, it drives your genuine followers away. When they see that you’re faking it, they won’t bother to read your tweets, and they certainly won’t go and buy your book. Don’t auto-greet, auto-thank, auto-tweet, auto-retweet, auto-favourite or auto-anything. Stay real.

TwitterMeme Attention


6. Engage with others as much as you can. Interaction gains more attention than one-way tweeting.

Read your followers’ tweets and respond to some of them. Ask questions, voice opinions, share information.


7. From time to time, retweet tweets by other writers – but choose carefully and don’t overdo it. Don’t deluge your loyal followers with other people’s promotional tweets.

TwitterMeme Quality


8. To connect with other writers, search for tweets with the hashtag ‘#amwriting’. You can also share your own writing progress, adding ‘#amwriting’ so other writers will find you.


9. Search for the hashtag ‘#writetip’. Experienced authors use it to give tweet-length writing advice.


10. When you tweet about your book, include an URL to the book’s product page on major bookselling website. To reach Amazon customers worldwide (Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.ca etc) use a universal Amazon link that opens in the viewer’s regional Amazon. Try Booklinker.net. The service is free.

11. At the end of your book, invite readers to contact with you on Twitter. Many will do this, because it’s a quick way to tell the author how much you enjoyed the book. Retweet and favourite such tweets, and ask your fans about their reading experience: Who was their favourite character? Did they buy the book immediately, or did they read the sample pages first? What do they think of the ending? Such questions show the readers that you value their opinions, and they give you valuable insights into your audience.

12. Be helpful. Often, it takes just a few seconds to share a useful link, answer someone’s question, give a useful tip. Helping others creates good karma for you and makes Twitter a pleasant place for everyone.

I hope you find these tips helpful. If you tweet me (@RayneHall) that you’re a writer and have read this post, I’ll probably follow you back.

WritersCraftCovers -RayneHall - pubbed 2row 2014-01-16

Any questions? Just leave a comment and ask, and I’ll reply.

Rayne Hall has published more than fifty books in several languages under several pen names with several publishers in several genres, mostly fantasy, horror and non-fiction. She is the author of the bestselling Writer’s Craft series and editor of the Ten Tales anthologies.

Having lived in Germany, China, Mongolia and Nepal, she has now settled in a small dilapidated town of former Victorian grandeur on the south coast of England where she enjoys reading, gardening and long walks along the seashore. She shares her home with a black cat adopted from the cat sanctuary. His name is Sulu and he’s the perfect cat for a writer – except when he claims ownership of her keyboard.

You can follow here on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/RayneHallAuthor and Twitter http://twitter.com/RayneHall where she posts advice for writers, funny cartoons and cute pictures of her cat.

TwitterForWriters RayneHall Cover 2014-01-07

Find a copy of Twitter for Authors here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Thank you so much for being our guest today, I hope you have inspired all us authors to be more focused on Twitter.






Sugarcoatin’ is for Candy and Pacifyin’ is for Kids by Nonnie Jules

Sugarcoatin is for Candy, and Pacifyin is for Kids!Sugarcoatin is for Candy, and Pacifyin is for Kids! by Nonnie Jules

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is a collection of the best posts from Nonnie’s blog. Nonnie tells it as it is, straight talking mixed with inspirational quotes and good advice. She talks about creating a nation full of happy loving people and she is inspired by some great people from her life.

I read this right on the back of a book that was all about creating a better world for our children by turning our world from one of fear to one of hope. I couldn’t believe the serendipity feeling that occurred when I read some of the points in Nonnie’s book. Nonnie even names Pope Francis who had a very closely related character in the book I read. (See yesterday’s book review of The Rubicon Effect)

Back to Nonnie’s book, she has a wonderful quote ” A tiny spark ignites a flame, just as a helping hand can do the same”. Nonnie helps others and enjoys doing a good job. She gives plenty of advice to writers and authors about how they can promote their work and she talks about another book she’s written The Good Mommies’ Guide to raising (Almost) Perfect Daughters.

A great writer, this lady deserves your support.

Find a copy on Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

View all my reviews on Goodreads.

Can’t Sell, Won’t Sell by Sean and Daniel Campbell

Can't Sell, Won't SellCan’t Sell, Won’t Sell by Daniel Campbell

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I was gifted a free copy of this book with no obligation to write a review, but it deserves to be talked about. Anyone with the dream to write a book or anyone who has lived that dream and now wants to sell their work should read this book. It’s full of easy to read chapters and sensible advise. It focuses your attention on your work and guides you towards the road to success. Your book may never make the top 10 best sellers, but if you’ve followed the advice in this book I believe you’ll be on your way to more sales.

View all my reviews


Romancing The Crone by Gail Elaine

Romancing The Crone by Gail Elaine. Gail is a writer, cartoonist, illustrator, children’s book author and much more.

Gail has written a self-help book for women entering the third phase of their lives, with 100 tips on how to make the most of it. She begins with a tale from Celtic law, when any woman surviving beyond the age of 40 was believed to be blessed by the gods. They were called “carons” or crones, which meant one who is crowned by the gods. Males would compete for the favor of the eldest caron to win her affections, and thus assure abundance and good fortune for himself and his clan. This tradition was called “Romancing the crone”. Gail’s book will offer something for everyone as she believes they are on the brink of entering the happiest time of their lives.

She quotes an old Irish drinking song;

There’s a legend about a magical spell, that can make any woman feel young. It cannot be found in a bottle or a jar, or a pill that is placed on the tongue. it cannot be stolen or bartered or given, or bought with a gem or a stone, it can only be found in the eyes of a lover, intent on romancing a crone!

A fun book, full of great illustrations which I greatly enjoyed.

The Victim

I need advice…

How do you deal with unwanted pushy telephone salesmen so that you don’t feel like you’ve just been told off by the Headmaster? Plus I don’t want them to call back?

After a call today, I’m left feeling like the victim as he slammed the phone down after I repeatedly said that I didn’t want any new repairs done to the house and couldn’t think of any job in the future that I wanted done either.

Lots of advice welcome, please…

A Parent’s Guide to Primary School by Elizabeth Grahamslaw

In the interests of research I have just read the following book; A Parents’ Guide to Primary School by Elizabeth Grahamslaw. Published by Virgin Books ltd ISBN 9780753511077 It is full of very useful tips an information in readable blocks. With examples and quotes from teachers and parents. It would be good to read if you were choosing a primary school, plus it is good for a recap during any time that you child is in primary education. There is even a piece at the end about the transition to secondary. Some of the tips and advice would cover any number of years that your child is in school. First published in 2004, it has been revised, and as education policies constantly change it may be a little out of date for some, but it has some very sensible material.