Some hobbies pay, in the long run. Take up a new hobby and write weekly book reviews. People will begin to find ways to thank you. Not for money but for turn around. Fact is, some people will review your book if you just haul off and review theirs.
Do not get me wrong, if someone comes and offers me a hun-ski ($100.00) to review their book, I might still review it. But, I’d explain what I am attempting to explain to you here. Fancy covers don’t always equate to good books. People want to try to figure out a little about what’s inside.
There are a number of ways they can do this. Browse at the Library and thumb through it. Most of those people, then just check it out and read it. They would not be browsing for it, perhaps if they’d not heard of it in a review or accolade.
Also, on the major book sellers websites you can read free excerpts. You may know on Amazon you can “look inside.” , as you can see at the top right of my book there. Also the purplish blue “Free Excerpts there lower down the page.
Read The Book
A great way is to, determine our interest is to read reviews written by someone who has read the book. We have already discussed reviewing books gains you reviews. This of course requires a well written, well-designed, formatted and nicely appointed book. Your publisher and the printer do matter.
The writing is of course the steak, however, the meat, potatoes, vegetable, and sauces etc. make up the meal. If the fare or the service are deficient the wait person suffers potential financial loss. The tip will shrink.
As a book review writer, you need to exercise a little finesse. You do not want to make an attack on someone’s work and livelihood. But let’s face it some books just don’t float our boat. Two options present themselves. One read the book and don’t review it if it’s really bad, Review it if its good.
A friend of mine from way back became a pilot. This happened after I dropped him off at the bus station at age 14. He ran off to Minnesota, and he joined job corp. He got certified in small engine repair and started working and paying for flying lessons.
I did not see him, for many years until he found me at my parent’s home one day. He told me of his experiences as a flier. He ended up flying Rock-N-Roll Acts around the world in a turboprop airplane. He flew the band Chicago, Blues Artist Johnny Winter, Barry Manilow, and Eric Clapton was up next. But one of the other crews took off with Lynerd Skynerd on board.
The crew and several members of the band died in the crash. Naturally, the tour company was finished flying Rock Stars. Ironically Clapton was a member of the tour and in another of the four helicopters later in 1990 when Stevie Ray Vaughn died in a crash.
Bob, my friend had written a book called Rock-Roll-Flier. The book laid out his experiences in the fifteen years of flying. By then he had become a corporate jet co-pilot and then Captain. He still flies jets. I see him every once in a while riding his bike. At that time I was considering writing a book and had talked to Mark Levine.
Reviewing, Friend And Foe
He knew his book which he’d written and designed himself without editing, cut rate printed, was not superior. From this vantage it would be uncomfortable if he asked me to review it. The story was great, he needs an editor, formatting and a professional book cover design. So this is the type of situation that can arise. So you need to think things through.
You don’t want to be critical of anyone’s work and livelihood. So be polite and walk away. This will encourage someone to improve the offer. You do not ever want to rave about an inferior book, whatever the reason it suffers, because your reputation as a reviewer will suffer.
The fact is good book reviewers who read and often review achieve celebrity status. There are lucrative jobs for the really good ones.
Goodreads is a book lover’s hangout online. It was started by a delightful woman from the UK. Her name is Elizabeth Chandler and her husband Otis Chandler. The idea was to gather a community of people who enjoy books to allow them to discuss, review and celebrate books.
Amazon and Goodreads
Originally it was not associated with any booksellers. But when the virtual room grew to a certain point, Amazon noticed and bought Goodreads. You’ll see a link in the long list there: Goodreads.
Amazon’s Faulty Understanding
Amazon sells more books than any bookseller in the world. Pretty sure they are going to give themselves a black eye with their recent move. Amazon may have become “too big for their britches” as my grandmother used to say. They have modified their commission payout from 6% to 10% paid to affiliate marketers, downward to 1%-3%. Affiliate marketers advertise books and goods through linking websites to retailers. like Amazon.
My observation: “Amazon did not make the affiliate marketers.” The affiliate marketers helped extraordinarily to make Amazon. We will see how this all shakes out. I’m watching with interest.
Voting With Their Feet
But for now, Wal Mart 4%, Books A Million 5%, Thrift Books 6%, booklocker (not an affiliate program … highest royalties paid among POD publishers), my publisher, pay better than Amazon. My prediction is that affiliate marketers will do what is best for affiliate marketers. Where interest is concerned, self-interest will rule the day.
Before I ever reviewed a book, I went to Goodreads, as Angela (my publisher) suggested and read many book reviews. I made friends with Jeff, one of the prolific reviewers there. I listened to what Jeff had to say and just watched.
After a month or so, making a few friends, Its sort of like Facebook only less fiddly as Elizabeth Chandler wrote. I hauled off and reviewed a book. Then a few more. After that I reviewed a few on Amazon. One of them appears in this website on another post.
Usually, at this point in a website building program, I publish posts and not pages. Because posts allow readers to comment on your site. Once I get to thirty posts or so, I will slow down and probably post once per week here to keep my line in the water, adding content.
People like to return to sites where there is quality, new reading on a consistent basis. Always Remember keyword targeted content so people will find you when they type a word of phrase in their browser. Everything I do here is for a reason, as Kyle, Angela, Richard, Carson and others have taught me.
So my good counsel today, if you like reading books, is to go check out Goodreads.com. Begin to read book reviews there and when you gain confidence, buy a book. Read it and review it. A hint, E books are less expensive but still qualify you as a verified purchase to be a verified reviewer on Amazon.
Then, if you’re like me, go to the library and check the book out, if you prefer paper over the screen for longer readings. Yesterday I posted a page. I am posting this one as a page also. Go on goodreads Goodreads.com consistently to gain notice and more traffic on your website. I intend to do more posts and will provide places where you can get paid to review books. Additional notice of my own books is the why, I have shared this with you.
Reward yourself by constructively reviewing the work of others on the chance enough of them will review your work. Another avenue to sell more books online. Don’t think this has to be limited to books either. Thank you for your visit. Thank you for reading. Please come back as often as you like. Chris. 4/26/2020. Happy Reviewing.