Archive | 2 Book Contests –– How to Win Them, How to Use them RSS feed for this section

What You Can Win by Losing: The 2012 IPPY (Independent Publisher) Awards Have Been Announced! Didn't Win? Some Words to Cheer You Up

4 May

On May 2, 2012, awards for the the last few categories of the 2012 IPPY (Independent Publisher) Awards were announced. Did your book receive an award in the 2012 IPPYs? Mine didn’t, either. I’ve been entering the IPPYs for years. This was the first time I didn’t win something. Kinda shocking.

I know, it hurts to have your masterpiece spurned. It doesn’t hurt half as much as getting a one star review, though. That’s like a crossbow bolt to the heart, except you don’t get to die. You get to read those words savaging your beloved baby forever, or as long as your book’s Amazon page lasts. So losing in the IPPYs isn’t that bad.

You feel better already, don’t you?
This is an article about surviving not winning in book contests. Usually I write about how to win book contests. One of the things I say in those articles is that you can do everything I say about “winning” and still lose. I just proved that it can happen to anyone.

Winning Book Contests: It's too Late to Enter Most of the the 2012 Competitions, but You Can Still Be Hysterical Waiting for the Results

19 Apr

I just received a notice from Jim Barnes of the Jenkins Group, which hosts the IPPY (Independent Press) Awards. The IPPYs are the oldest and largest contest for books produced by independent presses.


In honor of the last phases of book contest participation, I’m re-posting my Mother’s Day bulletin of 2011. In it, I set out exactly what I do to win awards in contests. It’s too late to do any of that stuff this year, the contests are closed and in the judging process. (Though you can still get into the Best Books of 2012 (USA Book News). They have the latest closing and award announcement dates of the indie contests.)

If you do read my earlier article, which follows these introductory remarks, you may want to run screaming, vowing never to think about book contests.

Is that what it takes to win? Yeah. That’s exactly how I’ve done it.

How to Buy a Good, High Quality Self-published or Indie-published Book or eBook

12 Nov

Talk to readers about self-published books or books produced by independent publishers and you’ll almost always hear the same thing: Their quality sucks. We’ve all bought them: abominable self-published books. We can complain about them forever. But how can we guard against them? I have two ideas that may separate the cream from the dreck: contest wins and star ratings on major review sites. It’s difficult to win book contests. I spell out how difficult. As a consumer, you should feel somewhat confident in buying prize winners. Reviews on major sites are a good guide. Believe it or not, not all good reviews come from friends and relatives. Here are a couple of sites where the requirement all books listed must have a minimum star rating of four stars on at least 10 reviews.