Why I Review Books

ThumbnailI’ve been reviewing a lot of books on this blog lately. The question comes up about why I review these books. Do I get paid or what? Well, let me tell you how it started.

I started this blog a little while ago just to have a place that I could write in long form, have a bit of a soapbox, and to publicly talk about what I was working on or what was going on. I’m still working on my writing. Actually, lately, I’m picking up the pace, although the novel I have been working on has taken a bit of a back-burner right now while I try to develop my skills a little more. It’s a project that’s really important to me and I want to be sure that I can do it justice. Being able to publicly talk about it creates a feeling of accountability. Admittedly, it does help with marketing if you know how to leverage it, which is something I’m working on. So, it’s not entirely for art’s sake.

I started reviewing books on this blog mostly because I needed content. It was very early in my blog’s life and I need to add content. At the time, things had kind of come to standstill with…well, everything. So I started putting my name on lists for review copies of books in several locations and began receiving some. The caveat with getting these is that they want you to provide them with a review, which is only fair. They give you a free book, you pay them with an honest review. I started putting these reviews on this blog and there you have it. It just became a thing.

I enjoy doing it because, aside from writing, I also enjoy reading. By reviewing these books, not only do I get to share my opinions and potentially help some authors, particularly new authors, but I get to reflect on what I just read and chew it over a little more, making sure I really understood it and got the most out of it. Do I get paid for it or do I want to get paid? Well, I don’t really get paid (with the Bizarro Brigade, I earn points toward receiving a free book, but that’s it). As for whether would I like to be paid, sure. Everyone would like to be paid for just about everything they do. I’d like to get paid for breathing, but that’s probably not going to happen. But if I were to ever get hired by a website or other publication to write reviews, I wouldn’t object. And I’m hoping that when I do start publishing my work (soon, I hope, once I get what I’m working on to a state I’m happy with), that they might return the favor of reading and providing an honest review. I can take criticism, and really I prefer honesty over anything else.

I did get myself into a situation a little while ago where I wound up receiving so many review copies that I couldn’t keep up. I’m still catching up, but I’m making a lot of headway. So if you’re a writer, editor, or publisher who needs a review and you want to send me a review copy, you’re welcome to contact me at the link above, but remember that I’m still catching up, and I’ll get to your book as soon as I can.

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