Welcome! This weekend I thought I’d share with you a fabulous woman I recently met online, Mary Gramlich. Not only does she do reviews but she helps authors donate their books to our troops overseas! So, I thought I’d introduce you to Mary via an interview…
SKY: Welcome, Mary. It’s great to have you over for the weekend!
MARY: Thank you so much for asking me over – it is truly an honor to be here with you.
SKY: For those of you who haven’t heard, Mary Gramlich is The Reading Reviewer. Mary, tell us a little bit about yourself and the services you provide.
MARY: I am foremost a person in love with the written word and love anything in print. Nothing brings me the peace and joy that reading does and writing a review of what I have read is my way of giving back to the author and saying thank you. My goal is to drive sales and make the book and author a success in whatever way I can, so they can write more and I can read more.
SKY: Well, thank you so much, Mary! I think it’s fantastic that you do free book reviews. Those reviews really do make a huge difference for authors. I’d say they’re definitely one of our main marketing tools. What inspired you to start doing reviews and providing such a wonderful service for authors?
MARY: I hope they do help and that is my singular objective. I want an avenue to help sell books and thought if one person buys a book based on a review of mine then maybe a book club will. I think I am good at writing about a book but don’t think I could ever write one.
SKY: Oh, you might be surprised! If you ever do write one, let me know, I’d love to read it. Mary─bless her heart─is also an avid supporter of our troops (SOS America). Tell us a little more about that.
MARY: My brother is retired Army so I know the importance of being supportive to the military but like so many people scratched my head at what to do. But a funny meeting of minds happened while standing in line at the 2006 Romantic Times Book Fair in Daytona Beach, FL - I met Kim Adams. She is a military spouse and avid reader so a friendship blossomed and ideas abounded on what I could do to help her with donations or whatever was needed. We struck up a friendship over emails and she outlined what she as a military spouse does to support the troops and the marriage of book donations to the military was born. I was able to read and review the book and then donate it to the soldiers or have it used for giveaways as a thank you for a donation for the military causes such as SOS America or the USO. Wild Rose Press is now actively involved in this and thank you barely comes close to the gratitude that I feel for the authors involved. Everyone wants to do something and anything counts as a big help so any donation is appreciated so thank you Sky and everyone at Wild Rose Press
SKY: Such a fantastic service! Mary, it was wonderful having you visit. Thank you for all you do!
MARY: Again thank you for having me it was a great pleasure speaking to you and you know anything I can do to help promote books and authors I will do anytime just tell me what it is and with the best of my ability it shall be done.
My only additional thought I want to convey is my philosophy on reviewing. I will never, ever give a bad review so don’t ask. Now that is not to say I love all the books I read – I do not but just because I don’t like it does not mean I have the right to speak ill of it because the person next door might love it and I do not want to trash someone’s hard earned work. This philosophy is not a popular one and I have received very unkind emails and comments about it but I am sticking to it. If I don’t like your book I will not review it and will tell you so but more than likely just ask for more time to put that down and come back to it with a fresh perspective. My opinion is that it is just that my opinion. I can express it or not and if I choose to not say something negative it is my right. These days everyone wants to chime in with a thought and the thoughts that are heard the loudest are those that are negative and I don’t want to be part of that.
Sky here! I’d like to once more thank Mary for popping in the weekend. If you’d like to learn more about Mary and the wonderful things she does for authors and soldiers alike, perhaps read some of her recent reviews. Visit Mary at her Website or Blog.
While I have you, keep your eyes peeled as I welcome Mary’s close friend, Kim Adams to my blog sometime at the end of September.
Have a super weekend all!