Book Blogger Confessions–Review and Guest Post Requests

 

Book Blogger Confessions is a newish meme hosted by Tiger’s All Consuming Media or For What It’s Worth.   On the 1st and 3rd Monday of every month they be discuss a topic that effects book bloggers and then give other bloggers a chance to vent, share their opinion or offer a solution.

If you want to participate just grab their button and include it in your post with a link to either Tiger’s All Consuming Media or For What It’s Worth.   They will be providing a linky at the end of their posts so people can "hop" to see all the participants answers.

Question for Monday April 16th: Review/Guest post requests: Do you have a review request policy? Has it changed over time? How do you handle requests that don’t meet your criteria? 

In the past, what types of "pitches" have caught your attention? Are there any (non-specific) examples of requests that are off-putting to you as a blogger?

When I first started blogging, it never occurred to me that I would have any interaction with other bloggers, let alone authors or publishers.  After finally connecting with bloggers and publishers, I started receiving review books, which was a big milestone for me.  Eight years later, however, I have realized too much of a good thing really is too much of a good thing.  There are days that I am so stressed out because I have books literally leaking out of my ears.  I receive at least a dozen review requests a week, and I have finally had to admit that I just don’t have the time to read everything and post about everything that I would like.  There just isn’t enough time in the day to work my real job, take care of my animals, spend time with my family, and then address all of the blog issues I want to, too.

I do have a review policy, one that needs to be updated.  But then I hesitate to spend the time on that, because half of the requests that I receive do not fall under the guidelines, so it’s obvious that not everyone bothers to read them.  As I have become overwhelmed by books (that is nothing new; I have always been drowning in books!), I have gotten pickier about which books I agree to review.  After some unpleasantness with self-pubbed authors, I have drastically reduced the amount of review requests that I accept from indies and self-pubbed authors.  I am usually up to interviewing any author, though, because I genuinely enjoy learning more about them and reading their responses to my questions.  I wish I had the time to have more features highlighting authors and their books, but unfortunately, I do not.

There isn’t a specific type of pitch that catches my eye.  Either to book looks interesting enough for me to read, or it doesn’t.  If I’m on the fence at all anymore, I turn the request down.  It’s hard to turn some of them down, too!  I am a book junkie, and turning down a book is like a chain-smoker going cold turkey.  It’s painful.  What if that was my next, perfect read, and I rejected it? Ugh!

What do you do when you are inundated with review requests?  How do you handle requests that fall outside of the scope of your blog?

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5 thoughts on “Book Blogger Confessions–Review and Guest Post Requests

  • April 16, 2012 at 10:55 am
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    You make a good point – is there much of a point spending time updating a review policy when they are so often ignored?

    I am not currently accepting review requests, last year I fell into the “too much of a good thing” category and missed out on a lot of books that I wanted to read because I had so many that I *had* to read. When I receive a review request that is outside of my interests I simply reply with a “thanks but no thanks” kind of email. If it is a book that I’m genuinely interested in but don’t have time for, I will add it to my goodreads TBR list!

    Bonnie @ wordsathome.ca

  • April 16, 2012 at 11:22 am
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    @Bonnie – I’m really bad at responding to requests outside of my review policy! I need to work on that

  • April 16, 2012 at 12:17 pm
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    ”I have realized too much of a good thing really is too much of a good thing.” – This is SO true! When I first started blogging I was accepting everything under the sun and became so overwhelmed. I’m much better about it now and try to remind myself that this is a hobby, NOT a job and I have no obligation to read these books.

    Also, it does indeed sometimes feel utterly pointless to have a review policy because 80% of authors don’t read the thing!

  • April 16, 2012 at 2:32 pm
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    I finally created a review policy after 2 years of blogging and really don’t know if it was worth it. I honestly don’t think it gets read, but at least it’s there for those that do read it.

    I agree with you that too much of a good thing really is too much. I love getting review requests but I also love reading my own books. I have almost 200 books sitting on my bookshelves that I haven’t read yet plus I love using the library. I try to balance all that and only accept those requests that fall within the genres I read. I want my blogging to be fun and when I feel it’s a job, I tend to get discouraged.

  • April 16, 2012 at 5:23 pm
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    I don’t respond to anyone who obviously didn’t read my policy. I don’t feel obligated if they didn’t take the time.
    Who knew when we started blogging that there was such a thing as too many books??!!
    It really is a case of too much of a good thing.

    “What if that was my next, perfect read, and I rejected it? Ugh!”

    I feel like this all the time and it takes awhile for me to decide to reject a book but I turn down most these days just due to lack of time.

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