Okay, I know some of these answers are a little obnoxious, but these are all actual questions I have been asked. The list will be updated as necessary.
1. Will you review my novel?
Most of the novels I review on my site are ones I read for pleasure and have paid for and those reviews have not been requested by the author. But I have been offered review copies of books at times through my personal site, as well as reviewing books on another blog I contribute to, http://www.thepunkettes.com. That blog only reviews steampunk, clockpunk and dieselpunk, so if it’s not one of those subgenres, the answer is no. If you don’t know what those subgenres are, the answer is no.
As far as my personal site I’m less restricted, but I have very little time to review. Still, I don’t like to give a flat no, so some guidelines:
i) Fiction: I read almost exclusively fantasy, but not exclusively. I’m sick of medieval fantasy. I hate superheroes. I don’t read urban fantasy. Honestly, if it’s fiction, there’s two reasons that will make me say yes, I’ll accept a review copy and check out your novel, and that’s if it’s dieselpunk, or if it involves aviation.
ii) Non-fiction: Does it involve Aviation? Autism/Aspergers?
iii) Memoir: Are you a pilot? Are you on the spectrum?
If you’ve made it this far and still think I might be interested, send me an email through my contact page, and if it sounds like something I’d enjoy, I’ll give you instructions on sending me an Epub review copy.
If you don’t know what a review copy is, please look up and familiarize yourself with the etiquette of soliciting reviews.
2. Will you buy my self published novel and give me feedback on how I can improve my work?
Okay, this is how getting feedback on your writing works: you find a fellow writer and trade novels to give feedback to one another, or sucker your poor friends and family to read it and tell you what they think. You do this before you publish it. Not after. Once it’s published, you’re telling the world that this is the best you can make your work and it’s ready to present to people, and worth paying money for.
This seems to be a bad trend. Places like Amazon are making it so easy to throw up a novel for sale that people are managing to get to that point before they realize they should be taking the time to understand the implications of what they’re doing. There are a lot of self-published authors who have put a lot of effort into setting up a platform and professional editing and what not to make sure their product is comparable in quality to traditionally published work. Those authors get really frustrated at the market being flooded with people who aren’t putting that same effort into their product.
I’m not self-publishing, so I could care less, but you should know so you don’t sound like a nub.
3. I read your novel opening and I really enjoyed it. Do you want to trade novel critiques?
Okay, while this is flattering, it seems one hits a certain point it one’s writing development where they end up with enough critique partners, and those critique partners are satisfying their need for feedback on their writing. Taking on more would be committing myself to more work in returning the favour than I can handle, and I don’t want to make promises I can’t keep.
There are a ton of places online to find critique partners, but unfortunately there’s no shortcut to finding a good one. Some good sites to try out:
i) I could read your novel and you don’t have to read mine…..
Aww! It’s okay – I’ll get it published eventually, and you can read it then. You’re exactly the sort of person I’ll need to put up a review on Amazon when that time comes.
4. Would you like to do a guest post on my blog?
Possibly. Feel free to send me an email through my contact form and we can discuss it.
5. Will you help me in some way I refuse to nail down in an email with my project which I will not describe in detail, but you can click on this link and find out how awesome it is yourself?
Absolutely – I run a private advisory service and I advise you to fire your PR people and find someone who can compose a pitch that doesn’t sound like spam.
6. The self-published writers in the community you’ve built around the Lindsay Kitson blog could use a hand with proofreading. [grammar correcting site] is an algorithmic online proofreader that does just that, and we’d love to give you the chance to review it.
Right. I’m not sure if this was a form letter or the guy was just a tool.
7. Do you want to go out for coffee sometime?
Seriously? You tell me my site needs proofreading, and then you ask me out for coffee? Dude!
All wtf’s aside, for any other guys considering sending that email, I’m going to try and explain to you why the fact that I’m married doesn’t even have anything to do with the reason the answer to that question is no.
Actually, you know what? I’m not. If you can’t figure out why a woman wouldn’t go for coffee with a random stranger who contacted her on the internet, you’re too stupid to live.
8. Do you really organize your Smarties in lines by colour?
My husband would like to add that I freak out if you come and mess around with them once I’ve got them lined up, but I don’t actually freak out. That much.