How to get paid to read books in 2022

God knows that I have been weirded out by the kind of things that people have done to get paid, so if you feel nervous reading this or thinking about getting paid to read books, your worries have been taken care of. 

Do you know what surprises me and is actually an unusual career? Competitive eating. Like, why? Why would you want to compete on eating food? As much as that doesn’t solve any of your problems, it comes with a host of other attendant risks. 

Getting paid to read ought to even inspire you with joy because not only do you get to read the most interesting books, from the smartest and most creative individuals in the world, you also get smarter while doing that. That’s a win-win for everyone. 

This post tries to answer the question that has plagued the minds of book lovers for millennia, which is the question of how to get paid to read books.

This post not only focuses on how to get paid to read books but also on the ways to train yourself to be eligible for pay and then obviously the people who would be paying you to do so.  

Introduction 

People have always from time immemorial been paid to read, but just not in ways that are currently possible right now. As times change, so does the need to adapt to the prevailing conditions as well. 

In the past, some individuals used to get commissions from kings and chieftains to enable them to read or do research or something, but right now, there are very few kings or chieftains handing out commissions, so that leaves the question, who would then pay me to read? 

This question is easily snuffed out the moment you ask why anyone would want to pay you to read in the first place.

The answer is majorly for quality purposes. It is either to make sure their ideas or thoughts are quality enough or because they need the writing or the flow proofread to erase redundancy or diction and spelling errors. 

Either way, if you do it stunningly well enough, as in many other areas of life, you can get paid well enough for you to make it into a career. 

Who is a book reviewer? 

A book reviewer is a conduit of literary culture, determining which books, writers, and publishers are good and which are great, as well as which are terrible, disappointing, and dim. The basic aim of a book review is to analyze a book in ways that include its subject, strengths and weaknesses, and context.  

This infers that as a book reviewer, you are sometimes expected to come up with your own writeup that explains the truth about what you have just read. While some may see this as easy work, a bit of research sometimes comes into play.  

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Even if the book is a work of fiction, investigate the topic while discussing the novel’s background. If you’re evaluating work on slavery, for example, look up historical material and compare it to the author’s perspective on the subject.  

Compare the author’s thesis and use of evidence against other published works on the same topic if it’s a nonfiction book about slavery. You should also provide some information about the author, which will aid your reader’s comprehension of the content, especially if it’s a nonfiction book. 

As a book reviewer, you must give your opinion on the book at the end of the review. This isn’t just your opinion; it’s an evaluation of the book’s strengths and faults, as well as how effectively it accomplished its goals. 

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How much does a book reviewer get paid? 

Another important question asides from the niceties that are part of the art of book reviewing, it is also important to know how much you would be made from such sometimes intensive work, and if you still don’t know after, consider answering some money questions

ZipRecruiter, In its research on book reviewers, has an estimate that is quite up to date. Their estimates report that the average yearly compensation for a Book Reviewer in the United States is $62,611 as of December 2, 2021. 

In case you need a quick salary calculation, that comes out to be around $30.10 per hour. This equates to $1,204 each week or $5,218 per month. 

While annual salaries for Book Reviewers range from $31,000 (25th percentile) to $75,500 (75th percentile) on ZipRecruiter, the majority of Book Reviewer salaries currently range from $31,000 (25th percentile) to $75,500 (75th percentile), with top earners (90th percentile) making $110,500 annually across the United States.  

The typical compensation for a Book Reviewer ranges widely (up to $44,500), implying that there may be several prospects for growth and higher income dependent on skill level, location, and years of experience. 

Who is a professional reader? 

A professional reader is someone who reads, reviews, and recommends books to other people, whether for libraries, bookstores, classrooms, or online via blogging.

If you spend the majority of your time reading newly published books and enjoy sharing your thoughts and enthusiastically discussing them, then you’re the ideal candidate for this job. 

How do you become a professional reader? 

To become a professional reader who gets paid to read books, it is important to get certain things in place before you get yourself stuck. So here are a couple of things that you may need to do; 

1) You must be able to exert some sort of influence.  

How does anyone read what you have to say about the book another person has written when you have zero influence over how they think? Think about it too. This influence can come through your professional employment as a bookseller, librarian, or educator, or having a large social following online, etc.  

To influence a huge group of individuals, you’ll need a wide audience. Consider it this way: your job as a professional reader is to assist people to learn about books before and after they are released, therefore you must have an audience to enlighten. 

2) You need a blog 

Creating and maintaining a blog requires a great deal of imagination, effort, time, and a lot of writing. If you want to attract readers and establish an audience, you’ll need to produce blog entries on a regular basis, which I define as roughly every week or every couple of weeks.  

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This is especially challenging if you’re your blog’s sole content generator. When it comes to blogging, collaborating with a buddy or multiple pals is usually a good idea. 

3) Make contact with your preferred book publishers. 

Once your blog is up and going, you may start requesting advanced reader galleys from your preferred publishers. You may do this directly by writing the publishers and asking specific titles (many publishers’ websites provide contact information for persons in charge of publicity).  

If you’re new to this, though, you may not be aware of which titles are accessible as galleys or how to arrange your request. This information may be found in a variety of sources. While the communication with publishers is indirect, this method may make finding titles much easier. 

Additionally, if you evaluate galleys for a publisher on a regular basis and they like your opinion, they may approach you directly through email (if you choose to grant them access to your email address) and ask you to review additional galleys. 

4) Examine the galleys you’ve been given. 

Definitely, all these come in after you have set up your blog and are ready to start writing. This way, you know who is sending what and who is receiving what. The work then is quite simple, read and write an honest review. 

You are not required to submit a review, however, it is strongly suggested, as long as you offer input on the galley you got. You may be as creative as you want if you decide to post a review. 

Most publishers love the excitement and constructive criticism, but they also respect the reader’s viewpoint, so be truthful. You should write this review on your site and inform the publisher of your thoughts. 

What is the 50-Page rule? 

if you find reading stressful or to be something that stresses you badly, then the 50-page rule, though a bonus to this article, tries to help you develop the necessary habit to cultivate a reading culture, at least enough for you to earn through it.  

The 50-Page rule states that you pick a book that interests you and commit to reading the first 50 pages. So this leaves you with the opportunity to read the first 50 pages of the billions of books that are readily available to you. More on strategies here.  

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Is there a website that pays you to read? 

Yes, there are apps and online websites that pay you to read and perhaps write content in the process. Here are a couple of them; 

1) Booklist 

Booklist describes itself as part of the American Library Association, and as one whose reviews help and continue to help school and public library workers in recommendations. It also describes itself as “the haiku of book reviewing.”  

For readers who don’t know what haikus are, haikus are Japanese short poems written in short groups to pass their messages clearly. The poems are sometimes of seventeen syllables, in three lines of five, seven, and five, traditionally evoking images of the natural world. 

For Booklist, because of the content, projected popularity, or other compelling collection building measures, every book we examine is recommended for purchase in a library context. 

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For well-written book reviews, Booklist pays between $12.50 to $15. Instead of accepting unsolicited evaluations or suggestions, they will assign reviews to be completed. They recommend that you acquaint yourself with their publications and writing style by signing up for their newsletter and receiving it before sending them an inquiry. 

2) Kirkus 

Of course, Kirkus also pays you to read and then write a review of what you have read. The company is steady taking changes and hiring capable hands.  

If you are reading this and would be willing to give it a go, then Kirkus Media is looking for experienced book reviewers of English and Spanish-language titles to review for Kirkus Indie, the book review magazine’s section dedicated to self-published authors. Reviews are in the same format and held to the same high standards as other sections of Kirkus Reviews

On Kirkus, book reviews must be provided within two weeks of the day on which they were agreed to be written, and they must be around 350 words long. Your remuneration will be determined by your level of expertise. 

Payment is made in the form of a check, which is mailed 60 days after the review is completed and submitted. While most people like their employment, it is not predictable and should not be used as a primary source of income. 

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3) The Online Book Club 

The company starts with a warning that tells people that it isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme. So there are no promises of billions waiting for you at the end of the writing tunnel. It’s funny and okay at the same time. 

The company explained that many publishers and aspiring writers are eager to provide you with a free copy of their book in exchange for an honest review. Over ten thousand authors have emailed us their manuscripts for assessment. This is a collection of books that would typically cost money but from which you can select a free book. 

Indeed, there is such a huge demand for reviewers to accept these offers that many of them include a fee in addition to the free book. In other words, you will receive a free copy of a book in exchange for an honest evaluation of that book.  

If you didn’t enjoy it, you don’t have to lie and pretend you did. You’re getting compensated for a candid, short evaluation, not for a favorable one. 

Conclusion 

Rather than assume and hope for the best, you can take a direct approach and reach out to authors themselves and try to eke out a deal where you get paid to read books they’ve written and then leave them a review. Sometimes, the direct approach works. 

If you are willing to search for and pursue possibilities, you will find them, especially one where you get paid to read books. While book reviewers do not earn a lot of money, they do so while doing something that the majority of them like. 

References 

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