I work for free, but I don’t come cheap.

Hi my name is Pam,

I have had this book blog for three years. Before that I wrote about tech, and before that music. I have been working with publicists online since 2006. I was a publicist for two years. I live for the pitch. I read them all, but I respond to maybe 5% of them. I used to give you my ‘no this isn’t for me and this is why response’ but you didn’t seem to want to hear that so I just stopped responding all together. These are the reasons:

1. You don’t seem to know me at all lover.

I know it takes some extra time, I know you are super busy, I know that there are 500 blogs just like mine out there in this crazy internet world. However, if you:
a) call me Dear Blogger
b) call me something other than Pam
c) pitch me something I don’t read

Then you have effectively wasted your time.

Let me tell you a story. There was once a publicist for Christian Fiction who went after me for a review for a year. The books changed but her tactics never did. I would know she was getting ready to pitch me because she would retweet everything I tweeted. Then the pitch would come with the header “Dear Blogger!” and I would cringe every time. Every. Single. Time. So after a year I wrote her an email. I asked her to stop mass emailing me with 50 other bloggers to use the BCC. I told her that I was openly atheist and that I was probably never going to respond about one of her books. I told her I knew some folk who review Christian Fiction, I would send her links if she wanted.

She told me to go to hell. That I was too ‘big for my britches’ and that bloggers sucked, that we get free books and we should be grateful to have them.

I shouldn’t have but I responded. I told her actually I had gained five pounds thanks for noticing my pants were too small. That my blog gets an average of 1500 unique per day and that even if I wanted to help her get the word out, and even though I have a large audience, the audience I did have wouldn’t be interested so it would be a waste of her time and mine.

I told her that I work for free but I don’t come cheap. That a free book isn’t going do it for me. Yes, I love ARCs, they fill my shelves and make me happy. I am only one person though. Once your TBR hits 80 ARCs a year or more then your year is booked.

I want to read more, I want to do more, I want to help so very much. When you use me and my blog as a step stool though I can’t help but notice. I have spend years building this blog into something that can help, it EXISTS to help.

Please don’t insult me with the ‘you are getting a free book lowly blogger who is good at nothing!’ stuff. I am good at something. I am good about spreading awareness to readers. I am fully aware I am not an industry mover or shaker, but at my book club. I AM GOD.

So really what I am saying is, help me help you :)

11 Responses so far

  1. Gravatar

    Oh, my gosh.

    I am sorry. I sometimes get this treatment, too. It shouldn’t be like this. Because first of first of first of all, you are a person.

  2. Gravatar

    Good heavens! When courting any sort of service, which book blogging is…one might want to, you know, not be a giant paint in the rear. That means SHE is a giant pain in the rear. YOUR rear, is lovely. :0)

  3. Gravatar

    Wow. I cannot believe that lady came at you like that. I worked in PR for many years and would never (ever) think to be that mean.


    …and there is nothing wrong with free books. :)

  4. Gravatar

    I just delete mass emails. Keep emailing me if you want. I won’t respond. What’s worse is when I get emails that actually use my name, say they’ve looked over my blog and then continue to pitch to me when I have no clue who they are. Funny because in my review policy, which is the first place a publicist or author should go, plainly states I’m not accepting cold calls. So the start of our relationship is you lying to me? Delete unanswered. Actually, I even state I will delete those emails unanswered in my review policy because, well, if you can’t bother to read my shit, I can’t be bothered to read yours.

  5. Gravatar

    Pitchers can call me anything they want as long as their book sounds interesting. But the vast majority of them don’t.

  6. Gravatar

    Well, that wasn’t very Christianly of her. I can think of several CF bloggers who would, if not reviewed her book, featured it and their readers might have bought it. Know your audience, it’s important. And it’s not like we’re hard to figure out: review polices, book review archives. It’s not difficult to tell if a blogger reviews CF.

    That second email tells you how she really feels about us.

  7. Gravatar

    Dear Blogger -

    How would you like a free book filled with the top tips on tuning up your engine?


    Sorry, Pam. Couldn’t resist. Great post. I hope those who need to pay attention to it, do. =)

  8. Gravatar

    Go Pam, Go! Good for you! Like me, you read and review because you love it. And, btw, you do it well so don’t change nothing!

  9. Gravatar

    Hi Pam!
    Well, this is interesting. Would you like to further elaborate about this issues?
    I’m currently writing my thesis for MA in Publishing Industries.
    My thesis is about YA lit and I get specific on marketing practices to reach and engage public thru trend setting and info catering (I prefer the term over “gatekeeping”). That’s exactly what you do and are: a liason… or GOD, as you have noted, hehe.

    Are you interested on some Q&A? Let me know.

    Thanks and keep the good work!

    (I’m cross posting this to your email)

  10. Gravatar

    I wish authors like that would stop assuming that we’ll read ANYTHING. Look at the titles we review. If they don’t remind you of the book you wrote, most likely we won’t be interested.

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