Kindle Publishing: Build Goodwill — Review Before YOU Need Reviews


Kindle Publishing is HOT. I write several blogs for writers, and create classes and writing guides for them too, so I talk to writers every day. I’m receiving more and more questions from writers who are writing books for Amazon’s KDP platform.

They want to know how to push their books to a top ranking on Amazon.

I’ve been thinking about that, not just for my writing students, but also for own interest, because KDP has inspired me to get back to my roots. Well over 30 years ago, I began my writing career as a romance novelist, writing for MacDonald Futura, a British publisher.

I’m writing a series of romances, and I’ll be publishing the first in the series via KDP towards the end of the year. (Unless I chicken out and decide to go with a publisher. :-))

Here’s what I’m doing: I’m focusing on writing reviews of other authors’ ebooks, for now. By the time I release the first book in my series, I want to build up a solid bank of goodwill.

Reviews are essential on Amazon, and one way to get reviews is to help others.

I’m not the only one who feels this way. Penny C. Sansevieri: The Secrets to Getting More Book Reviews (Even if Your Book Is Already Out) suggests:

“In order to get reviews, you might need to become a reviewer. I know this might sound crazy. Who has time to review books? Well, that’s how we got here in the first place, remember? Reviewing other people’s books (who write about similar topics to you) is not only a great thing to do for your industry but a great way to network.”

You can write reviews too

My reviews will be completely unsolicited. When I’m browsing forums, I see offers where writers do reciprocal reviews.

That’s a turnoff for me… I’m a reader before I’m a writer, so I’m focusing on doing unsolicited, honest reviews.

It’s no hardship for me; I read voraciously. Some days I get through a couple of books. A review might take me a few minutes, but if I love the book, writing a short, enthusiastic review is a pleasure.

If I don’t love the book, I won’t do a review. Primarily because I won’t torture other writers, but also because if I don’t love a book, I won’t finish reading it anyway.

If you’re writing for KDP, let me know your thoughts about reviews. Are you reviewing others? Considering it? Leave a comment, or contact me on Twitter.

Kindle Ebooks: Get Together with Other Authors

Rock It Reads
Rock It Reads

Publishing can be a lonely business. Self-publishing even more so. If you’re writing for the Kindle platform, going it alone is stressful. How do you promote your ebooks so that they’re found?

Consider getting together with other authors.

This article, Several authors form Rock*It Reads brand for self-pubbed romance, reports that several popular writers are striving to get heard above the self-pubbed noise:

By establishing Rock*It Reads, we’re giving readers an effective, streamlined way to find really great books. Our beautiful new website is a one-stop portal for finding our books and for keeping up to date on latest news and upcoming releases.

I’ve just visited Rock It Reads. The site looks good, and will be useful for fans.

Takeaway from this post

Love it or hate it, promotion is essential, whether you’re self-pubbed or not. You must help your readers to find you. Joining with other authors is one way.

Update September 26, 2013

I wrote this post well over a year ago; the website’s going strong. Kudos to them. :-)