Sunday, February 21, 2010

Edit vs Review

Editing is usually a paid service pre-publication. There are different levels of it. There are professional editors. If you have a major publisher, one would be assigned to you. Other options are authors who are well published who also offer this service. For more detailed info on editing, please visit K L Brady's blog where she has a nice write-up on it.

Reviewing can be pre or post publication and can be paid or free. Usually, the review is the property of the reviewer to post anywhere they deem please. They do give you the rights to use in part or whole however. Some reviewers offer it as a paid service where they give you the option of not posting the review if it is a negative review or if it is less then a 3 on a scale of 1-5 stars. Sometimes, the payment is for the purpose of expediting the service. Common reviewers of AA literature or non-mainstream self published work (not exclusively!) are RAWSISTAZ, APOO, OOSA Online Book Club, the Romer Review (TRR), AALBC, AAMBC, etc. There are also several smaller Book Clubs or Blogs that offer these services such as Joey Pinkney, Author Exposure and Flavor Book Club etc.

Rules I would advise we go by are as follows:
1) Be cognisant of the fact that you are never assured of a positive review. If it is pre-publication, do not ask for a review if you are not willing to change anything about the project or incorporate the advice. If it is post publication, if you produced quality work, enough reviewers will see that and the occassional negative or lukewarm review will not matter. Reviews are subjective. One person's opinion may not necessarily reflect how the public will receive your work. But do pay attention to criticism and use it to improve on yourself and your work even while staying true ro your vision for your project.
2) Try to send your work to reviewers of similar work or the same genre. For example, some reviewers only do fiction. Pay attention to their review and submission guidelines and their past reviews on similar writings.
3) Know that most reviewers do not keep to the timeframe that they promise. This is partly because a lot of these free services are run by volunteers and they have normal jobs and lives. Be patient with them. A rushed review because of the pressure of frequent emails from you is not in your best interest.
4) Do your research about your project and make sure you cross all your 'T's and dot your 'I's because someone will notice it if you don't.

Now I will go and apply all these rules even as I try to patiently await more reviews this week! Here's to hoping there aren't one or two places I've sent my book for review that I should not have!
Do have a blessed and productive week.


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