I am sure you have all received books from authors and publishers or Requests to reveiw a book you weren't excited to read...
How do you say NO without completely turning those publishers and authors off from sending you books in the future?
or if your an author, what is the best "No Thanks" you have received?
I think if you tell them up front that the book doesn't fall within your reading preferences and remind them that they'd probably rather receive no review than a bad review, they'll appreciate that perspective. And you can word it quite nicely.
If they flat out send you a book without querying first, you can always swap with a blogger who may appreciate it more.
Great advice! Thanks so much, I think that is probably the most honest response and could be worded in a polite and professional way.
Maybe it's because I'm also an author I do NOT have trouble saying, "sorry, but I really have too many books in my slush-pile just waiting to be read already." For one thing, as an author, I don't want people reviewing my book if it felt like a burden for them to read (i.e., if they were pressed for time). That would just be counter productive. Bloggers who might be feeling bogged down are doing an author a FAVOR by saying, "sorry, I cannot review your book." That's so much better than doing a rush job of it.
Another thing that helps me say "NO" to authors, when I did NOT solicit their submission and the book looks like something I don't want to review is the fact that quite often such authors did NOT do any research into what sort of books I write reviews for in the first place. (Lazy authors make it easy to say 'nope' to.)
Even my blog title gives away what sort of genre I'm looking for. My blog is VampireReview.blogspot.com so if you're an author whose written about a Christian Nun who fell in love with a Panda while doing missionary work in Japan ... I'll have no problem replying: "I am sorry but you've seriously picked the wrong book review genre."
Here's the images for my eBook if anyone on here IS indeed looking for vampire books to review. Send me a message! (I can review another vampire book sometime in May with the way things are looking in my book Review department.) My TBR pile is getting slightly thinner (but not as fast as it used to thanks to having so much other work to do right now.)
Psst, Tami, I hope this is something you can fix, but you have a typo in the first sentence of that blurb!
Speaking quite honestly, that is something that would put me off a review copy.
I don't have a problem saying No. I usually say that I don't think it would be a good fit for my site (A Site for Moms, we have a few reviewers so if I don't want to read it someone usually win). I have also read books and contacted the publishing company giving them the option of me not posting my bad review.
A great place to start making contacts is NetGalley. From there you can get eCopies of ARCs and some publishers will even mail you a paper copy. As you develop those relationships, you can establish contacts with publicists and authors.
This is also a great resource for small publishing houses and indie authors!
As an author who has just gone through this process, let me add my perspective. I started a blog about a month ago and issued an e-book edition of my fantasy novel "Paved With Good Intentions". Then I searched for book bloggers who reviewed books. I read their Review Policies to learn (1) if they were presently accepting books for review, (2) what format (Kindle, EPUB, or print), and (3) what genres they reviewed. I purposely did not contact any reviewer unless they stated they read my book's genre, fantasy.
I narrowed down my list to 110 book bloggers. Thirteen agreed to review the book. Eighteen said they were too busy, One said he did not review fantasy even though his blog's review policy said otherwise. One wrote back "We have a long list of books awaiting review. Your book can be placed at the top of the list for a fee of $30." The remaining 77 did not reply to my query.
As an author, I appreciate a reviewer telling me he or she is not interested in reviewing my book, as it saves me the time and expense of sending them a copy. If a blogger is holding oneself out as a reviewer, then that blogger should respond to all review offers. We authors understand a reviewer cannot review every book but I was surprised that 70% of those contacted did not extend the courtesy of a reply. I won't even comment on the notion of paying for a review.