Category Archives: Contest

And the Winner is…

Family Matters by Jacqueline Vick

Buy Now at Kindle!

Well, it is just past noon on Christmas Day and I’d like to say my Begging for Reviews contest was a 100% success, however… I will have to settle for saying it was a huge success.

Last week I offered to give away a Kindle Touch to one lucky winner if reviewers (of any level) posted 50 reviews onto the original Blog post. Here is what happened.

Free Book Sent – 55

Reviews Posted – 25

It’s not bad overall, I hoped for more, but this makes me very happy. On behalf of all the author reviewed, we sincerely thank you for your time and willingness to jump at my request. Your reviews have already began earning us sales and for that we will remain sincerely appreciate.

Now, about the Kindle Touch. I had kept in my mind that if at least 40 reviews were posted, I would go ahead and give away the Kindle. Unfortunately that did not happen. So in the spirit of Christmas, I have decided that I would go ahead and give away a $25.00 gift card to instead.

The winner was chosen by my husband who had no idea what the heck I was doing. He picked a number and that was that.

Congratulations to Jackie Vick.  I will be sending her the gift certificate.

I hope in the future all of you will consider reviewing books (not just ours) on a regular basis. I can also tell you that I hope you will continue to read my Blog and Echelon books. You never know when I might have another contest, or what I might want to give away!!

May this day be filled with nothing but joy to all of you and those you love. Thank you again!!


So Close…Yet So Far

An Angel's Wish by Karen L. Syed

Not too late to read my little itty bitty short story. BUY NOW!

Here it is the eve of the eve of the eve of Christmas. Did I count that correctly? At any rate, I thought I would give you all an update on the WTF? Begging for Reviews Contest. These numbers are as of right now. So, before I go any further, you might want to tell a few friends about this one. You’ll see why in a moment.

Books Sent: 50 (notified that 3 people cannot meet the 12/24 midnight deadline, so technically only 47.

Book Reviews Posted: 12 (Okay, we need 50 posted if I am to give away that Kindle Touch. I know, grumble grumble…rules is rules.)

Books Selected: As of this morning all 10 books have been selected for review. THANK YOU!

Happily, I have only take a small bit of rubbish for my methods with this contest, but it served a very important purpose–actually several.

1. It helped a few people realize that they were qualified to review books and that they could in fact write solid reviews.

2. It opened up the eyes of many authors who thought (seriously) that the reviewers would come looking for them. I wish it were true. Would save me a lot of hours in many days, but as publishers and authors we MUST seek out the reviewers.

3. In at least a couple instances, it helped readers realize that its okay to step a little bit out of their comfort zone because they might just find an author, or a genre, they didn’t know they would enjoy.

4. And most importantly for Echelon and our authors, it got us out there into some new forums. For more than a decade I have sought reviews with almost no success, and without really knowing why, we have sat aside feeling neglected.

So far the reviews posted have been solid and I feel the readers have been pretty honest. I have learned a lot and will make every effort to enhance the quality of our books from this point on.

So, get out there and tell ALL your reader buddies that YOU want to win a Kindle Touch so they need to read a book or two by Midnight 12/24. If they really love you, they will. (okay, I know that never really works, but I couldn’t think of anything any more clever to close with.)

But since I just added that other stuff, I am now closing this post, in a non-comedic way. That means not funny, cause hubby says, I think I’m a lot funnier than I really am. He has other good qualities. LOL He irons his own clothes. I know, right. How cool is that?

And to lizziecracked (not broken) who write the Running Naked With Scissors Blog (which you really should follow) I give you this link. The History of Christmas. You asked about Christmas and when it actually started or something like that, and then somewhere you asked for links, I wasn’t sure exactly what links you wanted, but I assumed it was in reference to the whole Christmas thing, so I went out this morning (cause I had so much time to waste, and I found this link that I think gives a rather good description of the history of Christmas and while I was raised a Christian, I always had a problem with that whole Jesus born in December thing, but that’s a whole ‘nother blog post.

Pick Your Battles Wisely

Force of Habit by Marian AllenWell, it was bound to happen. After a week of begging for reviews (WTF? Begging for Reviews), I finally got the email I had been expecting–took a little longer than I would have thought. Yes, you guessed it. I pissed someone off by asking for reviews, no “begging like a spoiled child” is what I supposedly, actually did.

What kind of publisher would post a Blog telling the world that no one would review your books?” Have I lost my mind? What the hell as I thinking? Um, the fact that many of our books had no reviews might have been a sign to the world. Furthermore.

Is it your goal in life to ruin the careers of all your authors?” How dare I? No kidding, why would I want readers to tell other readers what they thought of our books. That might actually encourage someone to go out and buy one of the books. I suck!

Perhaps no one reviews your books because you publish mediocre writers who can’t get published anywhere else.” Um..yeah, that’s it. I only publish people who suck.

Come on, Asshat. Really? I have not, nor will I respond directly to this person–who by the way submitted to us and was rejected. Obviously they read my blog and can see my response here. So you all know, I am not taking my professional hat off, but I am tipping it a little to the side.

Who do you think you are? Seriously. You have the audacity to question my intentions and level of professionalism? Did you think I would not recognize your name when you signed your email? I do keep records. Did you think that sending a publisher a note calling them names and insulting them would gain you favor anywhere? Did you really think I would NOT post my response publicly? You obviously have not read enough of my posts. You should consider yourself lucky I did not take off the professional hat, or your name, email address, and web address would be in HUGE bold letters with this response. I’m sure I will get more than one request from Echelon authors to know the name of the person who called them all mediocre.

There is something you obviously have not learned about me throughout the years that I have been blogging and speaking freely about my role in the industry. I am not a lemming. I do not follow along blindly and let everyone else dictate how I run my business or my life. I have every intention of continuing to succeed in this business. I have not “failed to intrigue or energize readers or reviewers with lackluster plots and mediocre writers.” I have published damn good stories that entertain readers. And if some of our books have errors in them, then I sincerely apologize, but we are human.

People, authors, readers, etc, don’t let stupidity rule your life. If you don’t like something, then find a considerate way to say it. This isn’t about publishing, it’s about human decency. I don’t expect everyone to agree with everything I say or do, but if you don’t, then either give me constructive advice, or shut the hell up. Don’t keep telling me that I am doing something wrong until you have solid advice on how I can do it better.

I would wager there are tons of people out there who don’t agree with my tactics for gathering reviews, I thank you all for not sending me pissy emails calling me a “hack publisher wannabe.”

With all that said, please don’t think this has swayed me in any way from my path to riches and success. There are still four more days for you to request your book and get those reviews posted on the original blog post to be entered to win the Kindle. So send me those requests. The family won’t mind sandwiches another day so you can finish that book.

And to those of you who have requested books and are sending/posting your reviews. I cannot thank you enough. Your support of Echelon is very much appreciated.