Monday, October 1, 2012

Paid Reviews and Polls

I've been hearing a lot about paid reviews. I've also been doing some thinking. Questions have risen in my head and I'm looking for public/author feedback here.

I understand that buying a review raises some eyebrows. However, what if those weren't all 5star or 4star reviews? What if the reviewer uses a specific scale, rates the book on specific things, and gives a little detail on each?

For Example:
  • Story/plot (1 star)
  • Grammar use - not a ton of typos (1 star)
  • Well defined characters (1 star)
  • A command of the language (1 star)
  • Transitions/flow (1 star)
Would you then look for that company or reviewer's posts on books before you bought them? Would their voice mean more or would you still assume they were rating unfairly because money changed hands?

Let's be real for a moment. Indie authors give away hundreds of thousands of books every day with no guarantee of a review. There are many that might pay for reviews if they didn't feel like they were selling their soul to the devil. Let's face it, the guarantee of a 5star review is appealing, but who does that help? Honest reviews will sell more books, right?

I know not everyone can afford to buy a review. But we all know that reviews count in algorithms and that we're desperate for them as indies. They can make us or break us.

What if the company or reviewers publish every review, no matter the star rating, even if they were paid to review the work? Would you be less skeptical of the review once it was written and more apt to seek out that company or reviewer's reviews before making a purchase?

I'm rambling here. Basically looking for reader/author input. If you would, participate in my little poll below.

Answer poll questions now!

Thanks for taking the time. My brain is a hub of curiosity. I'll post results Friday.

Don't forget, if you want some free promotion here on my blog, go check out my post about the BLOG PARTY. Yay!

That's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!



  1. About the survey - Question II.d:

    I don't think specific points on a set scale are absolutely necessary. But I would like to see the reviewer making specific mention to and analyzing aspects of the book (e.g. plot, character building, etc)

    1. Thanks for the feedback, Helene! I'm still not sure where I stand on the whole paid review thing...

  2. Indies do face a lot of challenges when it comes to reviews. But I personally wouldn't spend any of my book budget on paid reviews. For instance, Kirkus Indie will review your book for $425! I think you could spend that money better elsewhere.

    1. WOW! That's a LOT of cash! What does he do, call out the media and get you blasted on televisions coast to coast? Geesh! I gotta Google this dude... He better show up and clean the house for that price. LOL! Thanks for the comment, Heather!


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