IWSG — How Do You Get a Bestselling Author to Review Your Self-Published Book?

Today’s the day for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) where, on the first Wednesday of every month, writers get together to share their insecurities and offer encouragement. The IWSG was created by Alex J. Cavanaugh, and you can learn all about it and sign up for it here. IWSG_Badge

Recently, I was looking through the listings of newly published fantasy books. One in particular caught my eye. It was written by a new author, and what got my attention was the review quote posted along with the blurb — or rather, not so much the quote itself, but the fact that it was from a NYT bestselling author. I didn’t look to see if both were published by the same house, but I did wonder who secured the bestselling author’s review. The new author’s agent? Editor? Publisher?

Then I wondered how a self-published author would go about getting a prominent author to review his/her book? Do you go to their website or wherever, find contact info, and just ask?

Has anyone who has self-published done this? If you did, what kind of response did you get? Were you taken seriously, or were you shot down because of the stigma associated with self-publishing? I’d love to hear about anyone’s experiences with this!





© Lori L. MacLaughlin and Writing, Reading, and the Pursuit of Dreams, 2015. All rights reserved.

42 thoughts on “IWSG — How Do You Get a Bestselling Author to Review Your Self-Published Book?

  1. I’m with Alex. It’s all about who you know. Big authors get hundreds if not thousands of requests, and unless you’ve made a personal connection or are asking through someone in their immediate circle, the chances are really slim they’ll take a look.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not sure about self-publishing, but in trad publishing it’s usually the publisher doing the contacting of authors that they also represent/publish. Then, of course, if you know any personally, you can contact them. I know someone who self published a writing craft book and contacted people she’d met while working with a writer’s group. She got Jeffrey Deaver to agree to blurb it. Same for Robert Crais and some others. Not too shabby. All because she helped run a writer’s conference and group.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I guess it’s probably about connections, but a friend of mine contacted a big-name author and asked for advice and he replied to her right away. She made a connection out of thin air, so I think it’s possible to get a reply even if it isn’t the norm.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I asked three best selling authors to review my book, two I had written book reviews for years ago and the third I had met off and on through my (non-writing) training. The first two were very kind but replied they were in the midst of writing and editing books themselves and didn’t have time. The third never replied. The first two no’s did bother me a bit because I had helped them years ago, but, such is life. I can’t imagine though asking someone I had no previous contact with.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I can’t add anything that anyone hasn’t said already, but I think you’ve got a good chance at getting what you want. I mean, you’ve already made it on TV! I think there’s a lot of promise there for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. If traditionally published, I think the publisher would take care of finding someone to blurb the book, although sometimes the author knows someone. Connections are key. And it never hurts to ask. The worst they can do is say no.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Make contacts first thru conferences, writers’ groups–like this one or local chapters of RWA,MWA, SFWA, Sisters in Crime, whatever genre you write in, or online groups like MFRW. I don’t think cold calls work well. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. 99% of the blurbs you see by bestselling authors were arranged by the publisher or the agent. The other 1% is personal connection or pure chance by meeting one at a convention and having them like your idea/book ad be willing to take a chance on it. Also, sorry to say, that I’ve heard that the blurbs are often written by PR people and the actual bestselling author never even read the book. They just all support each other if they’re in the same publishing house or have the same agent.

    Liked by 1 person

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