There are a few things that I was not aware of that will hurt me this time around. One is that the big review sites will only accept books to review four months prior to release. And they will not accept an electronic file – only an ARC copy.
Why, you ask? Well, self-publishers and smaller indie presses often don’t have an ARC until weeks (or sometimes even days) before release, if they ever have one. Most print on demand publishers don’t do an ARC, and once the book is ready for printing it goes to print.
So I have deduced that the big reviewers (The New York Times, Barnes & Noble reviews, bookreview.com, RT Magazine) are using the four-month/ARC guideline to keep out the ‘riff-raff’ – the smaller publishing houses, the self-published and the indie publishers.
There are, of course, ways around some of them. RT Magazine informed me that if I buy an ad space for my book, they would consider reviewing it. That ad space starts around $500. I believe there was a similar way into the NYT, though their rates begin at $2,500. Bookreview.com will ‘allow’ you into their reviews if you pay a $175 fee.
If you, like me, are with a very small publishing house, and don’t have an ARC to hand out 4 months prior to publication and also don’t have the big advance to draw from in order to pay your way in, you are left high and dry.
I have to believe that with the evolution of the publishing world will come the evolution of the review sites. In the meantime, is anyone doing an e-book review site that is non-elitist? Do you know of any book review publications that are willing to take a look at something from a small publisher?
Because if this service does not exist, then we need to make this happen.
Please leave a comment with a review site link if you know one! I would love to compile a list for all the new and indie authors out there.