May 17, 2017

I’ve been thinking a lot about reviews lately.  Why don’t people leave them?  My daughter just finished a yoga class at her school that everyone loved.  That teacher did simultaneous classes at maybe 5 places, with a total of maybe 50 families.  After the last class, she emailed us some final info and mentioned that we could leave a review on her Facebook page.  I read that, had every intention to do so, but didn’t.  After a week, thinking about my own frustration with getting (or not getting) reviews, I added “review yoga class” to my to-do list.  Another couple of days later, I made that review…and I was the first one.  So many happy clients, and not one review, and I probably would have forgotten also if not for my own lamenting.

Why don’t we write reviews?  Are we selfish, too busy, uncaring?  I don’t think of myself or my friends/fans this way, yet we don’t take the 2 minutes (literally that’s how long it took) to go online and review a product we enjoyed.  I understand we can’t review everything, but when it’s a friend, acquaintance, community member we see around, I really think we should make that extra effort.

Wanting more reviews of my books, I’ve been doing some research, and thought I had come up with an awesome idea….a Facebook group for authors in my area to have physical meetups where we would read one another’s books and write reviews on the spot.  But the more I’m reading about Amazon in particular, I don’t know if this is allowed.

I’m still sorting through all this, so I’m pasting links I find helpful regarding Amazon reviews at the end of this post, mostly for myself, but you may find it helpful as well.

What I do know is okay:

  • Verified purchases.  If you bought one of my books through Amazon (or Kindle), your review is the most respected.  Please take a minute to write a few words.
  • Friends.  Amazon draws the line at “close” friends.  Who knows how they value my friendship to you…go ahead and take a chance.  😉 write a review!
  • Strangers, fans, etc. If I don’t know you personally, it’s perfectly okay for you to review my books, and because you don’t know me, that makes you even more awesome if you do this for me.

And of course, word of mouth is also great, and according to one blogger, is even better for an increase in sales than reviews.


Is my new group idea okay for–An unusually high number of reviews appearing suddenly may get flagged…–2 instances of “review clubs” that are not okay:  The customer is a member of a review club where sellers or brands give the customer ratings or refer the customer to other sellers or brands based on their review.  The customer is a member of a review club where they are asked to register their Amazon public profile so that sellers or brands may monitor their reviews of products offered through the club.  SO OTHER TYPES OF REVIEW CLUBS ARE OKAY?–One author’s opinion about Amazon’s new rules, says avoid asking for a review in exchange for giving one (which isn’t exactly what would happen in my group).–places to get reviews (several comments liking my idea for a meetup group).  Goodreads also has a large community of “genre specific review groups” that says they adhere to Amazon’s guidelines because they ensure that direct review swap doesn’t happen.  If I review your book, you won’t be selected to review mine.

Well, if you think my group idea is okay, and you’re in the area, click here to join: Westchester Authors

Another blog post about the importance of reviews, I haven’t quite finished reading it yet, but good so far:

Keep writing those reviews and telling your friends about the great books you’re reading!


Mother’s Day Events and beyond

May 5, 2017

I’m doing two Mother’s Day readings: One in Long Island, and one in Westchester, NY.  They each present a new opportunity for me, and I’m so excited to be branching out in this way.

  1. Dolphin Bookshop and Café this Sunday at 11:30 in Port Washington.  This is my first event outside of Westchester, and first time hosting an event at a location I have not yet been to.  I’ve heard great things about this bookstore, and I have pretty amazing steps to follow in at this well-known spot where JK Rowling and others have done events!

2. Barnes and Noble Eastchester Thursday night at 7:00.

I stopped by yesterday to drop off copies of Welcome to Motherhood and No Place Like Earth, and ran into this:


I love the way this came out, and am so appreciative of the effort this major retailer is going through for someone who is not quite yet a best seller.  This is the official conclusion to my Welcome to Motherhood book tour, the book having released almost a year ago.  This will be my first event at this Barnes and Noble, which I knew from opening day I just had to do.  This store is beautiful with a fabulous restaurant, bar, and gorgeous outdoor patio (where I hope to hold the event, weather permitting.)

While I seem to have come a long way from my book launch party one year ago, these events will be similar to that.  Rather than focus on the book, these events are social ones, a chance for moms to relax and meet others.  Whatever mood you’re in, tired and wanting to just grab a comfy seat with a drink, or energized by the opportunity to meet and chat with other moms, these events should have what you’re looking for.

Moving on from Welcome to Motherhood, my new picture book, No Place Like Earth, will also be available at these events (and I may do a reading of that at the Port Washington event if there are kids interested.)  There was a bit of overlap in my touring for these books, with my launch for the new book happening Earth Day at the Greenburgh Nature Center.  I had two great crowds for my readings there, and am excited to once again be working with children.  I think this is where I’m headed, with a few more picture books floating around in my head.

Some highlights from the Earth Day reading:




I’ve done some updating to my website with all the great things happening lately.  I hope you’ll stay awhile, check out my new photos, press, and where to buy the book tabs.

To the moms out there, have the best mother’s day, remember to take some time for yourself, and I hope to see you at an event!

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