Monday, June 07, 2010

Should "self-published" authors pay for book reviews?


Should self-published or print-on-demand authors accept offers to pay for book reviews?
A recent opinion from December 15, 2009 by Stacey J. Miller on the Book Promotion Blog says no (link here). It gives away “amateurism” and money could be spent on more above-board book promotion tours and campaigns. Unsolicited reviews (if favorable) obviously can help a book promotion campaign.

Back in 2001, Wired ran an article “Pay to Publish, Pay for Review” about the concept, link here.
The article discussed “ForeWord Reviews” (“Good books independently published”) on which authors could pay for reviews but would not have to disclose that they had purchased the reviews, but the site would (the site today is here. )

Of course, in academia, there is a sense of “payment” (through university tuitions) for peer review of theses and dissertations that get published and often add a lot of value to the latest material on a challenging subject (Ph.D.’s are supposed to require originality of concept in some way).

See also "BillBoushka" blog Aug. 22, 2011 for related story.

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