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Book Reviewing Ethics and Etiquette for Self-Publishers

Where do Indie authors draw their lines?

Linda Gillard asks ALLi Members Where They Draw Their Lines

On Wednesday last author Joni Rodgers took Amazon to task for what she sees as their high-handed treatment of author-reviewers. Some believe the new policy amounts to censorship, but Amazon needed to respond to the many bogus reviews posted by authors – some well-known – who thought disparaging rival books with fake reviews or penning their own eulogies was all in a day’s work.

Such practices are indisputably unethical, but many think Amazon over-reacted. So what is acceptable when promoting your book? Where should we draw the line? Talking to a group of ALLi authors, I found the boundaries of their moral comfort zone varied. Authors are also readers and reviewers but, disappointed and frustrated, some have now given up posting on Amazon and have decamped to GoodReads.

When posting their reviews, do ALLi author-reviewers use a pseudonym? And do they post honest reviews? Richard Bunning rejected pseudonyms. “I really feel that authors need to be seen to be squeaky clean. Full disclosure and honesty demand the use of author name.”

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International Rights Agent To Work With Alliance of Independent Authors

Jennifer Custer, International Rights Director, AM Heath

We’re delighted to announce that we have secured the services of Jennifer Custer, Rights Director at AM Heath, to represent those of our members who have suitable books in translation markets.

Founded in 1919, AM Heath has always been one of the UK's leading literary agencies and has represented some of the iconic writers of the 20th Century. The agency currently represents a broad range of best-selling and award-winning authors, including novelists, historians, biographers, and children's authors — and has a reputation for successfully launching talented newcomers.

The agency offers representation in all markets and all languages throughout the world and Jennifer Custer heads up the international rights department. “We have huge successes,” says Custer. “Many of our authors, Hilary Mantel, Conn Iggulden, and

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