If you'd like to be a part of Magical Ink, there are several ways to participate:
BOOK REVIEWS: If you'd like your book reviewed on this site, please contact me on the about page, using my email address. Please put: SUBMISSION FOR BOOK REVIEW on the subject line. Send me:
*A blurb about yourself and links to your website/FB page/other social networking sites (please don't include more than three)
*A blurb about the book you'd like me to review, as well links to where it is sold (Smashwords, Amazon, B&N, etc). Also, please mention if you can provide me with a free copy—I accept both e-book and print. Please know that those who can provide me with a free copy have a better chance of being accepted. I wish I had the funds available to support every author I know, but so far, a rich long-lost uncle hasn't appeared yet! ;) If I'm sufficiently interested in your book, though, there is a chance I might go ahead and buy it.
*Realize that I reserve the right to reject your request for a review. I do not accept books for review if it contains:
*Lots of cussing. Occasional mild cuss words are OK, but I will NOT accept anything with the F-bomb in it. Also, know that I will probably knock off a star depending on the frequency/severity of the cussing.
*Lots of sensuality. Again, some is OK, but sex scenes are to be kept off-stage and behind closed doors. I DO NOT want to read about that! Also, know that I might knock off a star depending on the frequency of sensuality. I also WILL NOT accept books with non-Scriptural relationships (the exceptions are affairs and living together before marriage IF not portrayed in a positive light).
*I AM OK with people drinking alcohol. A glass of wine after a nice dinner or a beer on the weekend doesn't bother me. Likewise, drug use and drunkenness are OK if they are NOT portrayed in a positive light—the character must be actively trying to kick their habit or another character must be trying to get them to kick the habit.
*I WILL NOT accept books that are extremely, graphically violent or portray the occult in a positive light. I don't mind magic—in fact, some of my favorite books contain magic. But if your good guys are doing sorcery (raising the dead, etc), please don't submit your book for consideration. (Post with my reasoning coming soon.)
*I DO NOT accept the following genres:
There is nothing inherently wrong with these genres, but I rarely, if ever, read and enjoy them. If I read the stuff I like, there's more of a chance that you'll get a good review. It's a win-win for both of us. ;)
*I DO accept: suspense, thriller, detective/murder mystery fiction, chick-lit (yes, I know, it's a sub-genre of romance…), and anything speculative in nature: spiritual thrillers, fantasy, steampunk, urban fantasy, science fiction, etc (ESPECIALLY steampunk and urban fantasy). I will also read "monster books"—those with werewolves, vampires, zombies, and other creepy-icky things. Please be aware, however, that I'm not overly fond of monster fiction and it might get a lower review than if you took it to someone who really enjoyed that stuff. ALSO, I will NOT accept vampire fiction where the vampires are good guys. (Post on my reasoning coming soon.)
*ALSO, please be aware that I am an honest reviewer. I give my true opinion of the books because I am dedicated to promoting good, well-written fiction. If you can't handle the possibility of getting a one or two-star review for your book, please don't submit. My rating system is as follows:
*Five-star: I couldn't put it down and I wanted to read it over as soon as I finished it. (this is a rare rating—most books I read receive a three or a four.)
*Four-star: I will definitely pick this up again—it was well-written and enjoyable.
*Three-star: This was OK and I may read it again.
*Two-star: I slogged my way through this book.
*One-star: I couldn't finish the book.
*I WILL accept both Christian and secular novels. Both are held to the same standards that I've listed above—I will NOT make exceptions.
*You should know that I also post my reviews on the following sites (where applicable):
*Barnes and Noble
*Hopefully I didn't scare you off with all of that. I truly do enjoy good books and am looking forward to the privilege of reading yours. Submit away!
If I've read your book and enjoyed it, there might be a chance that I'll email you asking for what I call a NOVEL SPOTLIGHT. What this means is that I will put your book on my Shelfari bookcase on the top of my blog, where it will be featured for an entire month. I will also ask you to submit a guest post (see below for more information.)
Requirements for a NOVEL SPOTLIGHT:
*You must be either:
*Published with a small, independent press (Marcher Lord Press, Port Yonder Press, and Splashdown Books are what comes to mind).
*Books must adhere to the guidelines stated in BOOK REVIEWS.
*I must have rated the book three-stars or above.
What You'll Get When Your Book is SPOTLIGHTED:
*A review the second Monday of the month
*A guest post slot the following Friday.
*Your book on my Shelfari bookcase, to be featured for an entire month
*Your book review posted not only on the mentioned sites above, but also on my Facebook author page as a Note (NEW).
If you're as-yet unpublished (or I've picked your book for a NOVEL SPOTLIGHT), you have three options for guest posts.
*Author Interview: INVITATION ONLY. This option applies only to those authors whose books are:
*Asked (by me) to be included in a NOVEL SPOTLIGHT
For others, you have two options:
*I try to blog primarily for READERS. If you have a reader-oriented article or a short (under 1,500 words) story that you think would be an appropriate fit for Magical Ink, by all means send it on!
*Character Hijack. This is a post where anything can happen! Some popular options:
*You interview a character in one of your novels
*Your character interviews you, the author
*Your character completely takes over the post and is allowed to talk about whatever they want: their city, their family, their job, how much their author irritates them, etc. Other characters can chime in if you want. Basically, this one is a character free-for-all. :)
*Book excerpt (no longer than 1,500 words.)
*Please keep in mind that my genre restrictions in BOOK REVIEWS (no romance, no historicals, no non-fiction, and no good-guy-vampires) also apply here.
*For a guest post, I ask you to adhere to the following restrictions:
*NO cussing. Zip, zero, none. (What is allowed: Heck, darn, etc, and "telling" the character cussed by stating something in the narrative like: "He swore." A good guideline--if you've seen it on my blog or in my writing, it's OK to use.)
*LITTLE sensuality. (What is allowed: kissing, hugging, etc. "Sweet romance" kind of stuff.) No non-Scriptural relationships (affairs/living together before marriage are allowed if not portrayed in a positive light.)
*Again, alcoholic drinks are OK. If your character prefers to conduct the interview in a fine restaurant with a glass of wine in hand, that's fine. Addictions are OK if it is made clear that the character is trying to overcome it/has a friend who is pushing them to overcome it.
*NO extreme graphic violence or portraying the occult in a positive light.
Again, I truly hope that I haven't scared you away with my list of requirements. This is to minimize time wasted for the both of us and help me find excellent content for my readers without having to sift through a load of crap. I appreciate you taking the time to read all of this and look forward to your submissions! :)