How to Get Honest Reviews

In Amazon, you can click on the reviewers and that gives you an email (sometimes). Find reviewers you like from reviews on similar novels to yours and email them a request to review your book, and comp them a copy of the book for an honest review. Be very professional when you do so you do not taint your reviewer in any way. Or have someone else do it on your behalf.

I’m not sure how to comp them a book, though you can send books to someone directly on their Kindle. They must know the name of their kindle device so you can email the manuscript to them, and they must add your sending email to the permitted senders list. Some people may be wary about accepting direct books, but it works. Do not send PDFs. Those do not scale. Send a Word document.

Perhaps those that have done this process know a better way to comp books. If so, I’d love to hear it.

This is in response to Brandy’s comment about gaining honest reviews.

Also, M.J. Moores writes a tremendous piece on the other side of this, here:

Reviews for your Book.

I also read an interesting piece on whether authors should pay for reviews.

See here:

Should Authors Pay for Book Reviews?

The longshot of that is no, you shouldn’t. There is an alternative, which is to solicit reviews. As the article says,

Going through the process of getting blurbs, testimonials and reviews is one of the best exercises in feet-on-the-ground book marketing any author can have. It will teach you a huge amount about how books actually get sold, and how your book is being received. That’s incredibly valuable learning for any author.

The hard part is figuring out how you go about the process, etc. It’s much easier said than done.

Who is the toughest audience for military sci-fi? Vets.

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I’ve been slowly writing. We’re up to 10 k. I clearly need a word count widget, then people can check in to see the thermometer: “We’re this far toward our goal.” Aw, shoot.

I handed the first four chapters to four military vets: USAF NCO, USAF Officer (in satellites, no less), US Army MP and current LEO, and my steadfast mentor, Canadian Army tanker vet.

The first critique came back, and he’s saying I need to tell more about the environment.  Yar. And that I need to make the speaker tags clearer where I don’t have it. And he hates the scene where the protag removes her armor and lays down her weapon, and I can see why, so that gets a rewrite.

I’ve rewritten some sections and added more thoughts by the protagonist so we can get inside her head a little more, maybe form that emotional connection so we give a flying you know what about the character and read a little further just to see what happens.