22 December, 2014

#SpecialFeature :: #GuestPost - Do’s and Don’ts for Querying Bloggers for a Review by Linda Lee Schell

*** Special Feature December 2014 ***

Do’s and Don’ts for Querying Bloggers for a Review


- Don’t address the Blogger by the name of their Blog, or simply say:  Dear Madam.  If an author cruises the Blog the writer will find the name of the Blogger. Blogger’s names are usually found behind the ABOUT Tab.

- Don’t query a Blogger without reading their Review Policy.  The policy will tell the author exactly what information the Blogger must have to consider a book for review. Bloggers have individual needs.

- Don’t send a query for a book for middle grade if the Blogger specifically says he/she reads YA, NA.  When a Blogger indicates he/she reads almost any genre, I have sent my middle grade chapter book, sometimes with good results.

- Don’t SPAM a Blogger.  Send individual queries.  It’s worth the time.

- Don’t send anything the Blogger specifically says he/she doesn’t want to see. They have their reasons. Many times, if a Blogger doesn’t express a preference, I send a PDF of the first chapter and a PDF of the book cover as an attachment with good results.  

- Don’t pay hefty prices for a review.  I have author friends who have paid as much as $450 for a review with no results.

- Don’t challenge a negative review.  The author will come across like a “newbie.”  No matter what, suck it up and move on!


- Do type in the SUBJECT LINE:  Review for your consideration for ABC BOOK, by Jane Doe.  This simple gesture helps save the Blogger time.

- Do review the Blogger’s introduction to who he/she is. If an author can relate to experiences the Blogger has had or to the Blogger’s interests, it is a kind gesture for the author to make a sincere one sentence comment.  If the author cannot be sincere, the author should not make the gesture.

- Do mention where the Blogger’s website was found.  Bloggers like to know what’s working for them.

- Do tell the Blogger the genre, the name of the book, the number of pages, and the year the book was published. Most Bloggers request a Blurb.  If the Blogger doesn’t request a Blurb, I send a Blurb. The only time I don’t send a Blurb is if the reviewer asks the author not to send one.

- Do keep a “cheat sheet.”  Many Bloggers will ask for the author’s website address.  At this time I use the website that Create Space gave me.  Have the Facebook, Goodreads, and Twitter addresses handy, as well as any other social media the author may be using.

- Do leave the Blogger alone!  Once the author has made the query, the ball is in the Blogger’s court. The Blogger may be drowning in TBR books, and is taking on the author’s book out of the goodness of the Blogger’s heart.  Be prepared to wait six months or maybe longer for reviews. Some Bloggers never get back with the author with neither a “yes” nor “no.”  That’s the way the mop flops. Authors should accept the reality of the business, and move on to the next query letter.

- Do say:  THANK YOU!

Contact the Author

Meet Gracie, a ditzy dwarf kangaroo from the Thirty-sixth Universe--a creature who lives in a perfect realm. Because she is bored, Gracie longs for an adventure to St. Petersburg, Russia, a place she imagines is filled with beauty and enchantment. Much to the tiny ‘roo’s surprise, her ability to transport herself to the land of the czars has failed. She ends up at a dairy farm in St. Clair, Pennsylvania, where she saves the life of Gibson, an abandoned Maine coon cat. 
The unlikely pair become fast friends. While Gracie tries to find her way back home, Gibson carves a life for himself on a farm with his newly adopted mistress, the farmer’s young daughter. There’s one hitch: The overworked farmer demands that Gibson earn his keep. Gibson’s task is thwarted somewhat when he experiences strange visions. But are these visions the result of a thrashing he received from the farmer’s two dogs? Or, maybe Gibson sees parallel universes? 
As outsiders the little kangaroo and the cat from the city negotiate the perils of farm life. They meet two malicious rats who hate anyone who is happy. The two devoted friends must contend with stampeding cows and a barnyard of critters that have little use for newcomers. 

Will Gibson keep his sanity and become the little girl’s pet? Will Gracie ever see the splendor of the Russian Versailles? Will the farmer survive the evil machinations of the rats, Bratwold and Eastman? Drift back to the days of Barbie dolls, hula hoops, and Sputnik to find out. 

Here she goes again! Gracie, a dwarf kangaroo from the thirty-sixth universe, is skipping across the cosmos to her dream destination: St. Petersburg, Russia. She's traveling with Gibson, a Maine coon cat whose life she saved when he was unceremoniously dumped in front of a Pennsylvania corn field. Expectations and reality quickly collide. What she expected to find was a city of wintery white nights, a city dotted with a hundred islands linked by dozens of imposing bridges, all book-ended by majestic sculptures cast in bronze. She expected to feast her eyes on historic buildings splashed with pink, yellow and blue pastels. Instead, she finds herself back in the 18th century, in Russia's Imperial Golden Age. This is not the city I expected, she laments as she stands bewildered near the entrance to the city's center of activity, the perpetually busy post office. Then, when Empress Catherine arrives in her royal carriage and points a bejeweled finger at the ever-so-handsome Gibson, and declares: I want that cat...the fun begins.

Buy the Books from Amazon

2 sets of the Gracie Series through Amazon’s Kindle (Come Along With Me &The Palace Buzz equals one set)

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