Dear Author Personal Assistants,

I love the author you work for, and I genuinely want to help her succeed. If this wasn’t the case, I wouldn’t have requested to be on her street team or review team. Lately though, I have found some of you to be curt and down right rude in some cases. I have had to leave a review team based on the way one PA spoke to the group. I realize that some people can pull shenanigans when it comes to reviewing ARCs and sharing releases, but I believe you can still be positive in addressing the group. So here are my Top Ten Tips to Author PAs.

Top Ten Book Review

Do not post blanket statements addressing behavior. If I haven’t done anything wrong, I don’t want to be yelled at for it. Handle the issue with the offenders. If you want to make sure it doesn’t happen again, then do a group rules refresher. (Yes, I see the irony in this tip seeing as I am talking to the group rather than the individuals. Touché.)

Top Ten Book Review

Don’t forget that the people in the street team are not paid employees. They are people who love the author and want to help; however, they are also people who have jobs, families, and other commitments. They understand their responsibility in the author/reviewer/street team member relationship. They are not there to be ordered around. You are not actually their boss or sergeant.

Top Ten Book Review

Keep your tone excited and up beat. Instead of saying, “There are people who have not posted their reviews. You have 24 hrs to do so before you are removed from the group” say something like “Hey guys! We’re really excited about this new book and anxious to see your reviews. Remember it helps (Insert Author Name) for these reviews to be up by the release day. Please PM me if you aren’t going to make the deadline.”

Top Ten Book Review

Don’t have unrealistic expectations for reviews. For instance, if you send out an ARC 2 weeks before the release date, don’t expect all of your reviewers to be able to meet that deadline. Some reviewers have a schedule of books and reviews that they need to follow for their blogs.

Top Ten Book Review

Be specific in your deadlines. If a reviewer asks for a release date and you don’t know, don’t respond with “It’s not next week so you’ll have plenty of time.” First, how do you know that? Do you know the reviewer’s schedule? Second, reviewers need hard dates to work out their schedules. Please don’t be upset if a reviewer misses release day because you didn’t provide the date with the ARC.

Top Ten Book Review

Remove adult rated content from the page when it’s posted. Just because the author writes romance doesn’t mean I want to see pictures of penises especially when I might be scrolling through my FB homepage while on break at work.

Top Ten Book Review

Also, remove content that members post about their personal lives. I’m in the street team/ review team to be up to date on the author. Nothing is more annoying than checking a notification from the page to read about some stranger’s personal life. Quite frankly, these type of posts are what lead members to ignoring notifications or even turning them off.

Top Ten Book Review

Keep members from using the page to try to grow their direct sales business. Also, gofundme pages are a complete no.

Top Ten Book Review

Shut down arguing. Nothing kills a page like members arguing and being hateful to each other. Again, I’m here for the author not drama.

Top Ten Book Review

Stay present on the page. The majority of the posts should not be from the members because that is what leads to the drama, extraneous content, and turned-off notifications.

Do you have a problem with these types of things? What advice would you give Author PAs?

13 Comments

  1. Rachel

    Love this post and the tips. They are so helpful. I haven’t had this experience on a Street Team but wow that this does actually happen. Especially from someone hired to help the author. Seems like that kind of behavior is doing the exact opposite.

    I always default to “be professional” as advice. As a PA they’re representing the author so the onus is on them to be professional, not the Street Team member who’s just trying to help out when they can for an author they love. Big difference in terms of responsibilities and expected conduct IMO.

    Reply
    • The Geeky Junkee

      Thank you! I completely agree. I don’t know what happens. Like they become stressed with it all and lose their professionalism. I’ve experienced posts that were just down right condescending, and that was when I decided it wasn’t worth the ARCs and left the group. I still read and review the author, but I do it without the harassment now.

      Reply
  2. BemusedBookworm

    I def agree with everything you said. Rude people or whiney/gossipey people ruin the experience for sure.

    Reply
    • The Geeky Junkee

      Right? Sometimes it feels like people forget the purpose of the group.

      Reply
  3. Kathryn Dee

    Brilliant advice Rachael. Ive also been in a position to have been yelled at when in fact, I never take an ARC unless I know I can fulfil my commitment. The “professionalism” tag is a must for a great PA.

    Reply
    • The Geeky Junkee

      Thank you! Exactly. I agree. I take it just as seriously as they do. No need to resort to rudeness.

      Reply
    • Parajunkee

      Thanks Kathryn – Sabrina my co-blogger wrote this. 😀 Give her the brilliant credit. I know she’s active in a lot of street teams, like you are. I think professionalism is the key to the entire situation lol.

      Reply
  4. Michelle

    Cliques may develop. Be cognizant of how different members interact with each other. Moderate and stop the us versus them posts between the “old-timers” and “newbies.”

    Under NO circumstances should members engage in anything negative toward other reviewers, bloggers, authors, readers, etc. I quit a street team that “prided” itself on how quickly they voted down any reviews that were less than four stars. Conversely, they would “like” the reviews that were five-stars.

    More troubling, however, were the negative comments posted on bloggers’, authors’ or other reviewers’ blogs, and/or social media pages.

    A good rule of thumb for all groups is “Be nice, or be quiet.”

    Reply
    • Parajunkee

      Oh yeah! I remember when that was happening a lot – the street teams were being used as attack dogs. I hope that still isn’t happening. I know all the groups that I’m a member of have rules that say “don’t engage”

      Reply
  5. Felicia the Geeky Blogger

    I would add Dear Author Assistants don’t blanket email people who haven’t agreed to be on street teams or review teams with “post this now” if you haven’t read a review policy

    Reply
    • Parajunkee

      Yes indeed. 😀 Ugh those kill me.

      Reply
  6. steph at fangswandsandfairydust

    Amen to this!

    Here’s one more: don’t blanket email or send messages to bloggers who are not on the team. If someone leaves the team STOP emailing them.
    Don’t send emails to bloggers saying we are a good match and that you have looked at the page. Mine clearly states I am NOT accepting review requests and don’t work with tours. When you say you have checked my page and then solicit it, you are lying to me and lose my respect.

    Reply
    • Parajunkee

      I guess with those Google Docs that they usually make you fill out, they would just keep you on the list and not check if you are part of the team anymore. Maybe email the person that manages the list to remove you. Or email them back when they email you – and say remove you. If it continues even after that, I would block their email. But, hopefully they will listen to you.

      Reply

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