Tag Archives: self-publshing

How to Get Ebook Reviews Without Slitting Your Wrists


Writing a book? That’s great. You’re very busy with your book, but now’s the time to start thinking about reviews, and preparing for them. Not only will your reviews lift sales, but if you go about getting them in the right way, you’ll also get readers. This is a good thing for the future.

Study Goodreads’ reviewers carefully

I’ve just written an article about increasing ebook sales, in which I discussed Goodreads’ Author Program. Join Goodreads, and create your author profile.

Once that’s done, look for books which are similar to yours, and which sell well. For example, if you write contemporary romances, find hot-selling books in that genre on Goodreads. Choose the books which are most similar to yours – in plot and voice. Read the reviews.

Ideally, you’ve read the top-selling books in your category already. You have an opinion on them. Find reviewers whose taste is similar to yours – they like the books you do, and dislike the books you dislike.

Make a list of the reviewers. Then approach them one by one (don’t send out boilerplate messages.) Comment on a couple of reviews of theirs which you enjoyed, and explain why you enjoyed them.

Now ask for a review. Explain that you’re self-publishing if that’s the case, or which company is publishing your book if you’re going with a publisher. Make it clear that you can live with a less-than-wonderful review, if that’s what the reviewer gives you. You’ve read their reviews, you respect them, and are interested in what they’ll say about your book – good or bad.

Reviewers are busy. Many authors want reviews, which means that there’s every chance you’ll need to wait months for yours. Assure the reviewers that you’re happy with what they give you, and you don’t mind how long it takes for their review.

(Your ebook will sell for years, so it hardly matters if the reviews take time to trickle in. You’ll get a sales boost with every review, so your patience will be rewarded.)

Approach book bloggers

Book bloggers with popular blogs have huge numbers of books to read. As with the Goodreads’ people, look for bloggers who share your taste in books.

Before you approach any book blogger, become a constant reader. Comment on reviews they’ve written. All bloggers appreciate comments. They’ll love the fact that you stop by, and you’ll be known to them before you ask for a review.

Follow the same routine as above. Be friendly and open, and make it clear that you’re interested in what they think of your book because you respect them. And tell them that you’re happy to wait. 🙂

Be emotionally prepared for negative reviews

Some authors don’t care about bad reviews. It’s water off the proverbial duck’s back. Other authors care deeply. If you’re overly sensitive, think about why that may be so. Not everyone will love what you’ve written. Some people will hate it, because it triggers something in them.

Be prepared for bad reviews because the reviewer just dislikes the book.

That said – do minimize bad reviews you can avoid. I wrote about proofreading to avoid one-star reviews.

Ensure that your book’s formatted well, and edited, before you go hunting for reviewers.

Getting ebook reviews is fun. Each review helps you to build your readership. Be grateful: reviewers take time to read and think about your work. With any luck at all, you’ll get some wonderful reviews. Good luck with writing your book.