Manuscript help, book reviews and author interviews
A year ago, Artika Bakshi and I decided to start The Good Book Corner ( thegoodbookcorner.com ) – a space for free book reviews and author interviews. The industry practice of authors paying to get their books reviewed did not make sense to us.
A year on, has The Good Book Corner helped readers pick up good books to read? We do hope so. Have we introduced authors to new readers? We most certainly hope we did.
We certainly have had the time of our lives. Apart from reviewing books and conducting author interviews, we helped authors with their manuscripts, engaged with producers for TV and film who were looking for great content, attended many literary festivals to understand trends and new writing, connected authors with literary agents and publishers for their works and organized a writing workshop for children in Sri Lanka.
We are voracious readers and constantly seek good stories – we scan publisher sites, popular blogs, sites dedicated to literatures of different cultures, writer and publisher workshops and retreats, literary magazines and literary festivals – and also reach out to literary agents and our bookseller/publisher/editor friends for their recommendations.
We learnt this – most authors are wonderful people and always ready to share their thoughts and stories. Many editors are passionate about the works of their authors and walk an extra mile for them. And many readers love to share their reviews with us!
We also learnt that it is easy to write a bad review for a book, but The Good Book Corner is not a place you will find a nasty review. If we don’t like the book, we generally don’t publish the review – we send it to the author detailing what we did not like in the book. (Some over-rated books that just did not cut ice with us did merit a published review).
This October we take our love for books and authors one step ahead. In association with the Scarsdale Library in New York, we are initiating the Scarsdale Salon – a quarterly platform for published, and not-yet published authors, to present their work to an audience of readers and listeners. In Sri Lanka, we have plans for book clubs, and workshops for writers and children.
We wanted to thank you for your support, and hope that we will connect more authors with their audiences!
Artika Bakshi and Preeti Singh