What You Need to Know
Federal Trade Commission Guidelines
We will never charge you a fee in exchange for an endorsement or book review. Nor will we negotiate our services in exchange for monies, goods, services, favors, gifts, or rewards.
Endorsements and Book Reviews are types of testimonials used in marketing creative work, and for all practical purposes are considered an “advertisement” by the US Federal Government (Federal Trade Commission). Paid endorsements are never looked upon favorably within the industry, and by law must be disclosed. A “paid endorsement” is one gained by the exchange of monies, goods, services, favors, gifts, or rewards.
We strictly prohibit paid endorsements for the performance of book reviews, testimonials, or endorsements of any kind. A professional opinion toward any creative work, when used specifically for marketing purposes, should never be bought as being made available for purchase (“for sale”) in exchange for any of the aforementioned. We abide by this moral and ethical standard both in the giving and receiving of endorsements or testimonials of any kind. Upon drawing a contractual agreement, all such terms will be clearly outlined and delineated prior to signing.
When networking within the industry, if you ever see a review or endorsement that was obtained via any of the aforementioned, or upon seeking a review or endorsement for your work are asked to provide any of the aforementioned, please beware. Although lawful, that source and their opinion may be of questionable reputation and intent.
See this FTC link for more information.
What is an Endorsement?
Endorsements, like awards, are highly-favored commendations of your work given by individuals or organizations who are either peers or professionals in the industry. According to the Federal Trade Commission, endorsements are classified as a type of “advertisement” used in marketing any creative work, product, or service.
An endorsement is the official gold star or blue ribbon upon your work. They are considered one of the most powerful marketing tools an author can obtain. Although some may choose to pay for an endorsement, such practices are not praiseworthy or honorable, and therefore must legally be disclosed to the public. Paid endorsements do not earn trust or convey integrity within the public eye, precisely because they are bought. Those who cannot rightly gain an endorsement by virtue, may resort to hiring individuals willing to speak the very words they choose. Those willing to provide a paid endorsement should also be questioned in their integrity and character.
An honorable, honest, and ethical endorsement should never come by the exchange of monies, goods, services, favors, gifts, or rewards.
The Immense Value of an Honorable Endorsement
It is critical to understand the value an endorsement holds. Not only are they difficult to obtain; they are of immense worth.
Endorsements take an incredible amount of time which has been invested on your behalf. They are an extraordinary gift. Those who grant them have taken time from their private lives and busy schedules to read your work, and having evaluated it properly, have crafted a statement that places their reputation in league with yours. That is no trite matter. It is worth stating that endorsements are of such weight and significance that they come with incredible risk. Should your work fail; if your reputation is somehow defamed; or if your ultimate success in the industry should wane, those who spoke on your behalf in giving such accolades may suffer as well.
Therefore, if you seek endorsement, it is absolutely imperative that you understand precisely that for which you are asking. Be well-prepared.
Never underestimate the immense worth of an honorable endorsement when it is granted. Of course, always be grateful to those who bestow such a gift. Responding is very important. Making your gratitude known in appropriate ways (remember, no monetary exchanges or tit-for-tat) is always appreciated and in order.
How Endorsements Function
Endorsements contain legal stipulations and restrictions which may not be widely known or understood. Endorsements are officiated by a legal signature and are subject to copyright, which belongs to those who have written them.
The terms upon which endorsements are given and received may vary. Endorsements may be freely offered or requested. Again, they may be sought by hire, and although lawful, this is considered an unethical practice. Once an endorsement is granted, it should never be revoked, and lawfully may be nearly impossible to do. Any attempt at revocation would be entirely counterproductive. Therefore, it is very important that those who grant an endorsement understand its finality, and read the work thoroughly before they award such intractable praise and commendation.
Endorsements may not be forged, altered, or edited. The author to whom the endorsement is granted may use the endorsement in whole or part to market their work accordingly, so long as proper attribution is given. With that said, anonymous or ambiguous endorsements are worthless. Those who provide endorsement should be as forthright in their identity and relations as possible. Endorsements traditionally include a full legal name with a reference to literary works written and/or the organization/company to which they are beholden or belong.
In the publishing industry, an endorsement is only applicable to the edition for which it was written. If there is a previous, revised, or updated edition for that specific work, the said endorsement would not be applicable, as the changes made could justly alter a conclusive opinion. If that endorsement should be used permission would need to be granted from its copyright holder.
The more endorsements an author can obtain for their work, the more weight and validity it will hold within the public eye. Understand that those who grant such endorsement place their own reputation at stake. This is a risk rightly to be assumed by anyone willing to grant endorsement to another author’s work within the industry.
Endorsements should never be given by those of blood or lawful relation to whom bias would rightfully belong or be justly construed.
The Purpose of an Endorsement
The prestige and honor afforded by a worthy endorsement should never be taken for granted. Outside of literary awards, an endorsement is the highest honor an author can obtain for their work. It’s an accolade that does not come easily. An excellent endorsement adds validity which compels readership. Every author should seek endorsements from those they trust within the industry. Endorsements should be sought from those who equal or succeed the author’s level of expertise.
The purpose of an endorsement is to earn public trust, convey integrity, esteem an honorable reputation in the industry, establish author-branding within the specific niche, and last but not least — compel readership. Finding endorsements from notable authors who write on similar topics or in kindred arenas are critically important. People will often judge a book by those who have endorsed it — without ever reading it. The reputations and successes of those who endorse a work will always precede the work itself. Therefore, be very careful from whom you receive endorsement, as your work will be judged accordingly.
What a Proper Endorsement Looks Like
A proper endorsement not only commends the work, but the author as well. Both are duly addressed in praiseworthy and effuse accolades that persuade readers, ultimately bringing success to the work.
An endorsement should never be framed by competition in making comparisons with the works of the one writing it, which can appear condescending. Although the one giving the endorsement may be a seasoned author, far above the one they endorse, people will see through that sore tactic as being arrogant, selfish, and ultimately unrestrained. No back-handed compliments. We make friends in endorsing their works — not enemies.
An endorsement may be as short as two sentences or as long as 250 – 300 words. Anything longer loses its power to strike the reader at the heart. A long endorsement is not always necessary, but is appreciated, especially for more complex works. A generous endorsement will speak to the whole effect of the book upon its reader and their personal experience while reading it, as well as the manner in which it was crafted, subtle nuances conveyed, and any artistry within its prose. A good endorsement should never give away the story or disclose details, but eagerly draw readers toward its discovery.
Endorsements should avoid clichés, which can appear disingenuous, and other types of speech that can be easily misconstrued such as idioms, riddles, or ambiguous phrases. Grandiose statements should also be avoided, as they are rightly perceived as inflammatory. Genuine statements which are well-stated, conveying the rife applause by which one is truly impressed, are always those most appreciated.
With respect to the one giving an endorsement, it is entirely necessary to keep one’s own reputation in view. Crafting an endorsement properly means choosing words carefully, being deliberate about what is said, how it is stated, and its affect or tone. Finally, being able to read it through the objective eye of a potential reader is critical. It should make them buy the book, read it, and hopefully pass it on. If that is not achieved, perhaps begin again.
Any endorsement given should convey the pleasure of the one reading the work, hence the hearty commendation. A worthy endorsement, properly written, should be one of absolution, convincing potential readers they can’t live without the book — precisely because this work offers a wealth no other author could afford.
To Those Seeking Endorsement
As an author it is my honor to endorse a written work for those who are serving the LORD with biblical integrity. If you have a work that you would like to have endorsed, please submit your inquiry.
Please note that we require agreement with sound biblical doctrine and theology prior to any endorsement. Therefore, we kindly ask that you review our CORE before making a submission or request.
1.) Biblical agreement of our CORE.
2.) Signed contractual agreement protecting copyright.
3.) The work must be sound biblically, theologically, and have scriptural integrity.
4.) Submission of the full body of work, final draft, in digital PDF format or other locked document. A hard manuscript or proof may be mailed. When mailing please make sure to provide the appropriate correspondence with tracking information.
5.) Submission of the final draft must be a minimum of one month prior to the deadline.
6.) Endorsement signature must read as follows: Erin Pavlicek, Author and Founder of Appointed Time Press, LLC unless otherwise specified.
7.) The endorsement I provide may not be edited (altered), but may be used in any portion of the work, or in any marketing as the author sees fit, either in part or whole.
For Works of Anonymity or Those Under a Pen Name
Anonymous works and those under a pen name are some of the most powerful ever written, and they are often the most worthy of any endorsement. There is a reason authors use pen names or choose to remain anonymous. They often write on very delicate yet powerful subject matter, commonly being autobiographical in nature, which may put their lives, families, or reputations at risk. Examples would be those in ministry who use an alias, abused women giving testimonies about previous relationships, those who have been trafficked, autobiographies by those who remain in danger, and those serving Christ who need protection from enemy nations.
With that said, and for credibility’s sake, we cannot endorse anyone whose authorship remains questionable or unproven. In cases where anonymous works and those under a pen name are submitted, proven authorship must be obtained before a credible endorsement can be considered. We provide an opportunity for you to prove your identity and your authored work. Please submit the following via mail to verify your author identity and proof of ownership for your work:
1.) Proofing of the manuscript: A proof is a full copy of the original unpublished manuscript. It’s fully edited, granted solely by the publisher, which only the rightful author can either access or obtain for the purpose of approving final publication. Proofed copies are fully bound and traditionally have a watermark seal upon their respective pages. Proofs must be requested by the author and mailed by the publisher.
2.) Editor’s signed and notarized statement of authenticity
3.) Publisher’s signed and notarized statement of authenticity
4.) Author’s signed and notarized statement of authenticity
5.) Copy: Government Photo ID
For those proven whom we agree to endorse: We keep all signed statements of authenticity and the proof. The copy of your government ID will be destroyed.
Exceptions: If you are self-published, or have edited your own work, a notarized statement by your editor and publisher will not be possible. In such cases we would like to provide you alternatives. If you have obtained a signed peer review or literary preview for your work whereby another author or editor has worked with you, please provide copies along with your own notarized statement, your proof, and a copy of your government ID. If these alternatives are not possible, and you still remain deficient in your documentation, please contact us for further options. Thank you.
1.) Fees & Schedules: Fees are strictly prohibited for an endorsement. I am always honored to endorse a work for the LORD that will glorify Him and further His kingdom. I allow a limit of one scheduled endorsement per month. Therefore, endorsements are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.
2.) Written Agreement: A written contractual agreement must be drawn for an endorsement. This protects your work as well as this company. Prior to any official agreement I will conduct a preliminary review of the work whereby I consider whether or not it is agreeable. There are times when a work may not be agreeable, at which point a declination would be served (see below).
3.) Processing of the Manuscript: The manuscript must be completed, and or published. It cannot be altered following endorsement, as any changes may constitute a contrary opinion of the work making it null and void. It is always the goal to read the work cover to cover, line upon line. However, depending upon the specific genre and its length (or otherwise), a worthy endorsement may be given with a screening of the work in which I read a portion of each chapter. A seasoned and developed reader is easily able to determine the quality of a work using this method. This is customary for longer bodies of work, and for various non-fiction genres such as documentaries, textbooks, or studies. Appropriate and accurate sourcing (both biblical referencing as well as research) should always be taken into consideration as well. Please make sure your references, bibliographies, and footnotes are included in the manuscript, and sourced accurately. The agreement will clearly state how the manuscript will be read.
4.) Rating: Endorsements must be worthy of a five-star rating. If I endorse a work, I’ll do my best to provide the reader an honest opinion that would render their eager engagement within two to five sentences. Any work earning less than five stars is not something I can, or should, endorse.
5.) Public Review Following Publication: All endorsements will include a separate and thorough review on Amazon, and any other platform of choice (i.e. Barnes & Noble, Goodreads, etc.). A five-star review, which would indicate a work of excellence, will also be carefully considered for placement on my page, Recommended Reading under ‘Recommended Reads’. To see a list of my recommended reads and the elements I look for in a work of excellence, please visit my page.
6.) Submission of the Official Endorsement: Once I’ve read the work I will submit the official endorsement in writing via a pdf locked document with an electronic signature. All official endorsements, once submitted are deemed inalterable, and will be kept on file indefinitely. In other words, they cannot be retracted. Therefore, endorsements are never taken lightly, which is why they provide such credibility to the author and validity to an authored work within the industry. I endeavor to give a standard 250-300 word statement that is honest, forthright, and compelling. Anything longer is considered generous and may actually be counter-productive to its intended purpose, as it may not be fitting to wholly publish within a book.
7.) Rights to the Endorsement: An endorsement is an official authored statement bearing legal signature. We maintain all rights to the said endorsement under copyright law. The endorsement may be used in whole or part so long as the copy remains unaltered and proper attribution is given.
8.) Editions: Endorsements are irrevocable for the specified edition of work for which they are intended. If there is another edition published (previous, revised, or updated), that said endorsement will not be applicable to those previous or later editions. Such stipulations will be outlined in the agreement, including information on how to extend an endorsement for a previous or later edition of work, should it ever be published. However, the author may use the said endorsement as they see fit to market the intended edition, in whole or part, so long as the copy is not altered and appropriate attribution is given.
I may decline any endorsement if I first review the material and find it disagreeable with, or in violation of sound biblical theology or scripture. This would be the most common reason a declination would be served.
We will not endorse a work authored by a ghost writer.
Should the endorsement be accepted, and after a preliminary review I find the work unworthy of five stars, this would require an unfortunate declination to endorse the work. In such cases, I will make it known to the author in writing, kindly outlining the reason why I cannot endorse the work. Let it be known that endorsements are entirely subjective, and opinions can vary widely. Therefore, any declination should never be construed as a direct insult or personal attack upon the author or their work. We all have room to grow and develop even as we all have our personal taste in literary art.
If a declination should ever be the case, I will only provide feedback which can be useful to the author upon request, should they desire it. With that said, I will refrain from giving unsolicited advice.
Other possible reasons for a declination could be the following:
1.) Time constraints
2.) Length of the body of work
3.) Contrary views with which we cannot agree, support, or be associated
4.) Poorly written or incomplete content
5.) Questionable or unproven authorship
If you would like to submit a request for an endorsement, I would be honored to review your work. Please click the link below with the details of your book. I look forward to hearing from you!
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