Tag Archives: Author

Review Circles for Authors

Are you an indie author or an author looking for more reviews? Well, let me help!

I’ve created a private Facebook group to address this and hopefully help us all as we work on our promotions.

Let me get this out there to be clear: THIS IS NOT A REVIEW EXCHANGE! We will NOT review book for book. You will not be expected to review a book from an author who is reviewing you. That would make for a dishonest review (or at the very least, the temptation to leave a higher review since you’d expect them to give you a higher review). I don’t like how that works and I don’t condone it.

In it’s most basic form, it works like this:

Review Circle


Here are a few guidelines to consider:

All authors will be expected to buy the book they’re reviewing as long as it’s $1.99 or less. If it’s over that price point, I want the author to gift it to them or send the reviewer a free copy.

I prefer reviewers buy the book to give the review the “Verified Purchase” tag. But I also want people to stick around and if they gotta keep paying more than $1.99 per book for something they may or may not normally read, I feel it’s asking too much.

Reviewers will have two weeks to read and review the books. All authors participating must not argue with the review received. These are honest opinions and if your work isn’t up to par, work on it first.

All reviews are honest. If as an author you get a review lower than what you expect, please do not argue with the reviewer. By submitting to the Review Circle, that’s the chance we take. That’s what an honest review is. This is not an opportunity for us to hand out five star reviews “just because.” It’s meant to help each other gain honest reviews of our work. Honest doesn’t always mean pleasant. Again, please do not argue with the reviewer.

Reviewers, though you are tasked with leaving an honest review, please be courteous. We’re not trying to discourage our fellow authors with negative remarks. You can voice your opinion in a thoughtful and constructive manner. Please do not crush your fellow authors.

For the book you’d like to have reviewed, please make sure your book is well constructed and edited, preferably by a professional. This is not a Beta reading circle. We are working under the assumption your book is a final product. What we read is what any reader would read. Make sure it’s the best representation of your book.

Try to keep all books requesting a review under 350 pages or less. Since this is a fairly quick turnaround of two weeks, longer books won’t work well. If your reviewer is OK with a longer book, go ahead and submit it. If not, please consider a different book.

By participating in the Review Circle, you must be ok with reading various genres. I will try to assign reviewers according to their tastes but I can’t guarantee it’s gonna be in your wheelhouse. If that happens, please keep an open mind and review the book on its merits as a story, not on if you like the genre. We can all learn when reading outside our specific genres.

So that’s it. I’ve run something like this in a Facebook group I’m part of, but I think it’s time to branch out and start a group based solely on this premise. If you’d like to join and are ready to be reviewed while offering your honest reviews, please send over a request to join the Review Circle for Authors Facebook Group. Thanks!


Peeling Back the Layers

Since June, I’ve battled myself trying to figure out what the hell I’m doing. I’ve contemplated giving up this writing path I’ve chosen because honestly, who’s reading? Who cares? Am I any good? Am I another screaming mouth in a cacophony of unintelligible noise?

It’s been frustrating. All writers fall into this pit at times–I think. It’s not a fun place to be.

I’ve tried “faking it till I make it,” manufacturing enthusiasm for my work. I’ve started writing challenges, mostly for myself, to push me forward. It’s been a half-assed effort on my part. I want to succeed more than anything. I think about what I should be doing all the time. Then when I have the time after work or on the weekend what do I do? Not enough.

It’s like my give-a-damn has left, taken a vacation or something. I’ve been seeking it, hoping to corral it again, make it behave, make it submit to my will. Instead, it’s on the run like a fugitive leaving me taunting notes and thumbing its non-existent nose at me. I swear if I catch it, it will pay dearly for its behavior.

I’ve been struggling with who I am as a writer. Am I a genre writer? What the hell does that mean anyway? What qualifies me as a writer? Do I have the right skills? Am I a fraud? At a recent event I had an older guy (one who drank a bit too much) ask me “What qualifies you as an author?” I’ll be honest, his question stopped me in my tracks.

Just because I put words on a screen or paid to have them printed on paper with a colorful cover, did that make me an author? Anyone can do that. Is it because I revised and edited and revised my work again? Who declared me “Jason J. Nugent – Author” other than myself? Do I need someone else to say it for it to be real? If so then I’m judging my entire writing career on the approval of someone else.

But what I write, I do for myself. The stories I create, the worlds I visit, the characters I interact with–I do that for me because I love it. I do it because I enjoy escaping to my worlds, my people, and my imagination. I suppose if I want to be successful I have to keep the reader in mind, and I do, but ultimately what fuels me is creation. My ability to craft stories I’ll enjoy leads me to eventually share them with others and build that same level of enthusiasm.

So why tell you this? Why whine about it to you my dear reader? Cause I can. Cause maybe out of the few that care, you’ll understand and not judge me too harshly. And mostly because I need to vent. I don’t normally share these kinds of internal thoughts and figured “what can I lose?”

It’s been difficult but those that have stayed with me over the years and even recent converts–THANK YOU! Writing is lonely but it’s awesome when you jump on board with me. I hope you’ll stay and find something valuable in what I do. If so, let me know!