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Fair Game by Patricia Briggs

I fell in love with the characters even more than I already was.

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Saturday, June 25

Blog Helper (3): Review Requests

Review Requests:

Indies asking for reviews can be an everyday issue, especially for those that hate saying no. This issue can be amplified by people that clearly don’t read your Review Policy.

Why they can’t read a paragraph when they expect you to read an entire book is beside me, but it happens consistently.

My way of weeding out those that don’t read my review policy is having a phrase that must be included. It can be anything from my Indie Review Requested to a format such as Title: Name-Indie to gibberish like irr.

Anything that distinguishes those who respect your time enough to extend the simple courtesy of reading your review policy.

Another step in this is telling those that have followed all the steps required that you simply don’t want to or can’t review their book at the time is the rejection. I hate this. Hate it. Many times a simple no does not even suffice.

My canned response* to this is as follows:

Regretfully at this time I do not have the time to dedicate to reading {title}, Thank you for having me in mind.

Simple. Straightforward. And polite.

I’m going to assume you know how to accept a request. Hopefully with lots of YAY-ness and squeeing.

ARC Request:

Information and personalization is important in this process. This is my usual format, but it changes with what I’m requesting and from who. I almost always refer to The Story Siren’s Dear Publisher posts to make sure I have the information that publicist is asking for.

Name of Publicist;

What I’m asking for  {Title by Author: ISBN} and if I have anything that pertains to either the book or the publisher. Such as my LGBT challenge for LGBT fiction.

Introduce your blog. Blog name. How long you’ve been blogging. What you review.

Stats: GFC Follower, Daily Pageloads or Unique Hits as well has how many views fromthe feed. (If you don’t have your feed through Feedburner, go get this now.)

Social Networking Cred. This is the place for how many followers you have in Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads or any other social media you implement. I’m now including my Klout number as well.

I’ve attached a review of “so and so book”. A book that you’ve reviewed from that publisher previously.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Rie Conley
Address  Do not forget your address!


Often the best way to find a contact is in the author’s FAQ page, but for general contacts type this in your search engine. {Publisher} Publicity. 9 out of 10 times this will take you to the page of contacts for the publicists of the different imprints of a certain publisher.

When you’ve finally made your contacts guard them with your life! No seriously. With your life! The big publicity contacts are amazing and they are so swamped with requests that these are like gold .

Publicists unaffiliated with a publisher that work in the book field are FREAKING amazing contacts. They will go beyond the call of duty most of the time and small press publicists are usually in this category as well.

Do you have any tips for dealing with either of these issues that I’m missing?

*Canned response- This is gmail feature where you can save a message to use later with a click of a button. I use this for many of the daily emails I must do. I cannot stand having backed up email, and I get on average 50+ emails a day that must be responded to. Organization is key. I might do a post on this in the future.


  1. Very helpful! My requests have similar formatting and information. Great to know I'm on the right track!

  2. Thanks! This was a helpful post :) I'm still new so these are very good tips.

    Mickey @ imabookshark

  3. SO funny, because I JUST changed my review policy and added a special email address so I will KNOW who actually read it and who didn't!

  4. Of course, there's no one way to make a good request. In all the years I've been doing this, I've never given a publisher my stats (nor have I had a publisher ask for them), but it certainly hasn't kept me from getting books. I generally provide a link to a similar review (not an attachment) and a link to my review policy, but the most important things are that you've got a polite, professional request and an engaging website.

    Glad you found something that works for you - good luck!

  5. Of course not! I was simply giving some guidelines to how I do it. I think hearing from publicists and what information they like is key, which is why I linked to Dear Publisher.

    There's never only one way to do anything.