Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A Review, A Review, My Kingdom for a Review...

By:  Kimberly Hitchens is the founder and owner of Booknook.biz, an ebook production company that has produced books for over 500 authors and imprints. 

(This article is a reprint from the Booknook.biz website)

As many of you know, I have long touted the amazing Jenny Blake Spreadsheet as a detailed roadmap to self-published success, coupled with the Locke book.  For those  of you who missed my proselytizing on the subject, the discussion of the Blake Spreadsheet was discussed by the ubiquitous Seth Godin on his Domino Project website, here:  http://www.thedominoproject.com/2011/06/a-spreadsheet-for-the-self-published.html which I wrote about in my following month's newsletter.  If you haven't read the newsletter, the articles on my website or Jenny's own site (http://www.lifeaftercollege.org/), you should check her out, and more importantly, download and use that damn spreadsheet, folks!

However, one topic that keeps arising, both in the various writer's groups to which I belong, and the KDP fora (forums) is the inability to score reviews.  Last year, we posted some articles with review links, and I thought listing them again might prove useful.

Below is a list of networks and otherwise useful sites, which provide book and ebook publishing news, commentary, reader and writer forums, and reviews or features that can be submitted by anyone and everyone. These sites are helpful tools in your navigating of networking, enabling you to more quickly find popular and/or effective blogs for review, and in stocking up on voluntary reader reviews for your book, which often make landing a big-time blogger review more likely.

Websites are listed by Alexa ranking, which rates blogs according to traffic and therefore popularity.
  • -http://www.amazon.com 17: A website on which consumers can buy, sell, and review books and ebooks... as well as pretty much everything else.
  • -http://www.goodreads.com 1,009: A network/forum focusing on readers, featuring book recommendations, book clubs, trivia games, and giveaways.
  • -http://www.mobileread.com 7,885: A forum for e-reading, featuring e-book and e-reader recommendations and news.
  • -http://www.Librarything.com 8,066: A personal book cataloger, allowing readers to catalog books from Amazon, Library of Congress, and 690 other world libraries, and to find new books based on what others have read with similar tastes.
  • -http://www.kindleboards.com 15,928: A forum in which members can "feel free to talk about anything and everything related to Kindle!"
  • -http://www.absolutewrite.com 20,898: A bulletin featuring newsworthy deadline information for commercial authors and forums for writers.
  • -http://forum.writersdigest.com 32,083: News and forums for writers on how to write better and how to get published.
  • -http://www.sellingbooks.com/ 72,365: A guide to writing, publishing, and marketing books and ebooks. (Not a review site, per se; but worth reading & subscribing to, really!)
  • -http://www.authonomy.com 77,981: A networking community for writers, readers, and publishers developed by HarperCollins.
  • -http://www.Redroom.com 121,918: A network connecting published authors, aspiring writers, readers, publishers, agents, associations, students, and researchers.
  • -http://kindlenationdaily.com/ 127,724: A site that catalogs free kindle books, gives kindle tips, and provides related news and commentary. It features "books of the week" by genre and price.
  • -http://www.nookboards.com/forum 150,145: A forum featuring the Barnes and Noble nook.
  • -http://www.selfpublishingreview.com/ 175,292: An online magazine devoted to legitimizing self-publishing: news, book reviews, publisher reviews, interviews, opinion, how-to's, and a social network for writers.
  • -http://www.webook.com 178,015 :"Writing community for writers, readers, and literary agents: Submit works, read and rate writings."
  • -http://www.writingforums.org 205,616: A network of discussion forums and site announcements for creative writers, featuring contests and author interviews.
  • -http://www.writersbeat.com 374,125: A forum for writers only, featuring  discussions on the writing craft, marketing ideas, and enabling posts for critique from fellow writers.
  • -http://kindlereader.blogspot.com 1,729,177:  An Amazon.com affiliate blog run by a librarian that features kindle books that cost $4.99 or less. It is designed to be "a time-saving menu of reading choices," as opposed to a review site.
  • -http://indiebooksblog.blogspot.com/ 3,758,915: A blog that features (not reviews) independent writers' books. Follow the directions to submit a book: http://indiebooksblog.blogspot.com/p/get-featured.html
  • -http://indiebookman.com/ 22,641,246: "A meeting ground for the Indie Publishing Revolution blogging all things of interest to self publishers, indie presses, guerrilla book marketers and other soldiers of the revolution." (check out his blog radio shows)
Next blog:  more review sites and other goodies. 

In the meantime, as a shortcut CHEATSHEET to understanding all those tedious "how-to" posts on Social Media, we thought you might like this:  http://www.ecademy.com/node.php?id=174046

Happy writing, all!


  1. Thanks for a great list of resources. Giving books away on Goodreads and LibraryThing work well for getting reviews, and sending out emails to book bloggers can be effective as well.

    I've never participated in the sites where members read and vote on unpublished manuscripts, and I'm not likely to, because they take too much time. Long ago, I entered one of my scripts in Project Greenlight (the first year). One of the scripts they sent me to review was a bloody horror story, and I decided afterward that in the future, I would only read fiction of my choice. :)

  2. This is an invaluable post. Thank you for writing it and thanks to L.J. Sellers for sharing.

  3. This list of resources is awesome! Thanks to all of you, guys, and mostly thanks for sharing L.J. Sellers. You rock!

  4. Note of caution: I just discovered that Self-Publishing Review charges a $50 fee for reviews. Of course, Kirkus and Publishers Weekly both offers paid reviews now too, so it's the writers choice.

  5. WOW! What a list. Trust me, I'll be going through it with a fine-tooth comb (does that date me?) in a few months.

    Thanks, Hitch!

  6. What a treasure trove of information. Thanks so much for sharing this post.


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