Then, one year I was making the rounds at the North Texas Book Festival in Denton. I met Rita Dear. She is the author of the Eutopian Destiny series as well as Roxann, Lady in a Chair and The Smart Ass Guide to Breast Cancer. I bought the first book in her series, Preacher Man, took it home and read it. I was hooked. I got the rest of the series, over the next few months and devoured them. The next thing I knew, I was writing a review for her. I sent it to Midwest Book Review and my “calling” was launched!
I reviewed a couple of other books that I had picked up at the book festival that year and Rita began supplying me with books from some of her author friends (several of whom have become my friends, even though I have never met many of them). Over the next year I started working on a plan and decided to let the authors at the next book festival know that I would review their book(s) and publish my reviews in Midwest Book Review and any place else they might have a POS. I am now finding more places to publish the reviews and that is really great for the authors to be getting more exposure.
I began to get books in the mail on a regular basis. I was on the way – I have been reading and reviewing a lot of great books. I have been able to find the good in every book I have read and am really enjoying it. The reviews are fun, too. I write reviews and let a friend read them and give me input on syntax, spelling, etc. to make sure I am saying what I meant. I just need validation. :-)
I seem to be doing a pretty good job as I am getting great feedback from the authors and at least one small press publisher. Also, I have received some more reaction from some of the places I am publishing the reviews. More validation!
I am going to keep reading and reviewing in an effort to help self published and small press authors. There are a lot of gems out there that the much of the public does not hear about and I would like to think that some of my reviews will help further the cause of self published and small press authors, some of the best unsung authors in the ‘bidness’, as far as I am concerned.