The New York Journal of Books seeking reviewers

The New York Journal of Books is a new venture seeking to add reviewers. We aim to become the premier source – bar none – for professional, highly respected book reviews, with a large panel of credentialed reviewers critiquing more books than any existing book review. We are steadily adding qualified reviewers and will continue to do this on an ongoing basis. PLEASE REPLY ONLY BY EMAIL TO: nyjb@live.com.

There is currently no purely online review whose reviewers are as credentialed as the long-respected premier print review publications. In light of the shift from print to online content, there is an opportunity to establish a purely online book review positioned to capture the ongoing growth of the online audience. Moreover, by assembling a broad panel of highly-credentialed reviewers the Journal is positioning to offer far more comprehensive coverage of new books than any other book review. While it will be critical to review major new titles as they are released, the Journal aims to review more books in niche or non-mainstream genres than are infrequently covered by the current major review publications. The NYJB aims to also review more books written by first-time authors and books published by smaller independent houses that are frequently spurned by the major reviews. This is both a new enterprise and a “labor of love.”

If you are an author, this is an opportunity to publish reviews in your own genre, thereby promoting your own name and book(s). We also seek individuals with specific expertise, whether published authors or not, whose writing/reviewing meets professional standard to review non-fiction books on the topics in which they have extensive expertise. Non-authors must be highly credentialed in their field of expertise, have a sharp critical eye, and compelling and professional writing skills. Reviewers’ names will appear at the end of the review with reference to their most recent work if an author. For others your byline and presence as a reviewer is an opportunity to augment your credentials as an expert.

By design, we have not sought publicity or high ranking among search engines. The current website is running as a beta. We are in the early stages of building out a permanent, unique, state-of-the-art website with extraordinary functionality to be filled with compelling content and an unparalleled online experience for readers selecting books. Upon completion of the website and once we gain a critical mass of reviews we will fully launch, promoting the Journal both on- and off-line. In the meantime, in the beta site does publish reviews of books that have been reviewed both extensively and minimally – if at all. Additionally, we provide links to our honest and balanced reviews to publishing contacts should they wish to use quotes and a reviewers name for promotional purposes. Like any beta, ours also provides us with important insight for the design of the permanent site. We anticipate that our permanent site will enable visitors to easily navigate to a webpage highlighting all reviews by a favorite reviewer. Here we will be able to include a link to a reviewer/author’s website.

We prefer to review books ahead of publication or very close to release. We work with publishers to provide our reviewers with a complementary advance reader’s copy of a book or a set of bound galleys, delivered to your address. There is no limit on the length of reviews, but we would anticipate as an on-line book review that 3-5 paragraphs of about 400-1000 words at minimum will be sufficient. At times reviewers will be asked to review books they have not selected. However, reviewers are encouraged to decline reading any book that they prefer not to read. Reviewers all set their own pace for submitting reviews. In short it is a priority that each reviewer on our panel is enjoying themselves, not burdened and rushing to meet a deadline.

We do not anticipate any material profit until we establish credibility and are able to commercialize. Only then will the Journal be in a position to compensate reviewers. We believe that most writers are underpaid for their work. It is our sincere hope and plan that the success of the New York Journal of Books will provide a source of supplementary income for all reviewers. We have decided not to offer reviews for a fee. Initially, we were eager to occasionally do just this in order to compensate our reviewers for at least some of their work. However, it quickly became clear that even if reviewers were unaware they would be compensated for a critique of a particular book until after the review was posted, paid reviews would undermine the credibility of the Journal. We do post links to purchase both the book reviewed and a reviewers own books alongside each review to at least support sales of our reviewers labors of love.

Please email nyjb@live.com if interested.

Please include as much specific background detail information that establishes your credentials as a reviewer in one or more genres/categories, including your publisher and/or names of publications containing your writing, and of course, any experience reviewing books. We are pleased to review samples of your work delivered as an email attachment or via a link. (Please indicate if you are a “self-published” author.) Please also indicate the genres/topics you are most interested in reviewing – listed sequentially according to your preference, if any. It will also be useful to know how frequently you would anticipate submitting reviews. (We favor quality over quantity. Everyone produces quality work at a different pace.) Resumes are helpful, particularly for authors whose other endeavors relate to their genre, as is a sample review if you have one on hand. If not, we provide format guidelines upon request, and thereafter accept a review of a most recently read book in a reviewer’s genre. (We are not formulaic. Our guidelines are primarily about formatting.) We will respond to all who apply to become reviewers for this venture.

We are always grateful for any suggestions as to content, site features, etc. from reviewers and others. We have a clear vision for the Journal. We also strongly believe that tapping the ideas of a collective and diverse group who each look at the world at least a bit differently is immensely valuable.

Ted Sturtz, Editor-in Chief, the New York Journal of Books
nyjb@live.com
www.nyjournalofbooks.com
Lisa Rojany Buccieri
Publisher
NYJB.copyedit@roadrunner.com
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