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Crystal Raven
November 29th, 2005, 02:22 PM
I love the contests I see on here for books, as I am an avid booklover and this is not a rant, but a suggestion...

If you are going to offer a book(s) as the prize, please don't make the contest question something about the character or content in that/those particular book(s).
My reasoning is this:
Most people that would enter the contest for the prize of a particular
book(s), probably don't have the book(s) and probably haven't read it/them, but would love to.
If I already owned and read the book, why would I want to win a second copy? The reasoning may very well be for the autograph, but this would still leave a large majority of potential contestants "out of the running" so to speak.

Just my 2 cents
Thank you

Yasmine Galenorn
November 29th, 2005, 03:10 PM
I love the contests I see on here for books, as I am an avid booklover and this is not a rant, but a suggestion...

If you are going to offer a book(s) as the prize, please don't make the contest question something about the character or content in that/those particular book(s).
My reasoning is this:
Most people that would enter the contest for the prize of a particular
book(s), probably don't have the book(s) and probably haven't read it/them, but would love to.
If I already owned and read the book, why would I want to win a second copy? The reasoning may very well be for the autograph, but this would still leave a large majority of potential contestants "out of the running" so to speak.

Just my 2 cents
Thank you

Let me tell you a little about offering contests as an author. When I ran one off my site regularly, I began getting over a thousand entries per contest. Fully half of the entrants wouldn't even fill out the entry form right, making it a headache to sort through.

I told people one entry per person. There were dozens of double, triple, even quadruple entries.
I asked people what name they wanted the book autographed to. A number of people requested a different book in that space--they didn't want the one offered, they wanted one of their choice.
I asked people for their snail mail address. They listed their email address instead.
Signed copies were ending up being sold on E-bay. These things didn't happen just once, but every contest, with increasing frequency.

Then I found out that some stupid site that lists contests for freebies on the net had found my contest offering and slapped it on their site. People were signing up who didn't even have a clue what the contest was for.

I got fed up and took down my contest form. Why should I spend my money and time to send free books to someone who hasn't the faintest interest in my writing? I pay for those books, I don't get them free. And hell, why give them away if people were just entering to get them to sell? I might have as well offered the copies on E-bay myself. Out of all the books I've given away--and there have been a lot of them through various sites and chats--I've received two thank you notes when the person received the book. That's all. Not even the courtesy of an email to say, "I received the package."

So now, when I offer a contest--whether here or through my newsletter--I make people work a little for it. By looking through the first chapter of one of the other books that I have on my site to answer a question, they can then decide if it's a series they might be interested in reading. The information is available on my site to anybody who enters. It's not out of the book that I am offering as a prize because I think that would have spoiled the surprise of reading it.

I guess I've gotten really jaded, but this is something that happens with a lot of the authors I know--and they're all just as frustrated. We want people to actually be interested in reading the books they win, not just entering contests to get something for free that they'll never use or just toss in a corner when they realize what they won. We can't control whether you'll like the book or not--or what you do with it afterward. We know that.

But we can, at least, ensure that there's some rudimentary interest in what we're offering--especially with gift baskets and more expensive prizes. That's why some of us actually ask the entrants to take a little bit of time with their entry. That may seem unfair to some people, but it sure doesn't seem it from this side of the fence.

Yasmine :colorful:

Crystal Raven
November 29th, 2005, 05:42 PM
Then I found out that some stupid site that lists contests for freebies on the net had found my contest offering and slapped it on their site. People were signing up who didn't even have a clue what the contest was for.

awwwww :hugz: thats just awful, am sorry to hear all the troubles you've had for being generous.

However...

I make people work a little for it. By looking through the first chapter of one of the other books that I have on my site to answer a question
I fully agree with this kind of contest, its from a different book other than the one thats being offered as the prize and/or its on your site which is accessible to everyone...as for working for it, dang right they should, nothing wrong with that at all!!!

p.s. I never thought of the "selling it" aspect...I am a greedy little book pig and never sell mine, at best I will lend out, but expect it back within 3 weeks!!! :lol:

Yasmine Galenorn
November 29th, 2005, 06:01 PM
awwwww :hugz: thats just awful, am sorry to hear all the troubles you've had for being generous.

Yeah, it sucks because I truly enjoyed being able to run a contest for my readers--now I tend to through established chats or charity auctions. It was just so overwhelming in terms of sorting through the mess after awhile that I said, 'forget it...'


However...

I fully agree with this kind of contest, its from a different book other than the one thats being offered as the prize and/or its on your site which is accessible to everyone...as for working for it, dang right they should, nothing wrong with that at all!!!

p.s. I never thought of the "selling it" aspect...I am a greedy little book pig and never sell mine, at best I will lend out, but expect it back within 3 weeks!!! :lol:

LOL...you'd be surprised what we get asked for. There are several people that make the rounds asking for autographed bookmarks and bookplates just to sell them off E-bay (I have no idea what they think those things are worth--anybody can get one from me by sending me an SASE). Some people have asked for autographed pictures--I usually say no unless it's a bookstore, I'm not an actress, I'm a writer. And a lot of people try to scam free books for non-existent charities (most authors I know check out claims very carefully). It kind of makes you really skeptical when you deal with this a lot.

However, I try not to let it interfere with how I feel toward my 'real' readers--which is a lot of gratitude and joy that they love the work I write and that by buying my books, they make it possible for me to stay home and write them.

Yasmine :colorful:

dragoncrone
January 6th, 2006, 04:37 PM
For some publicity, I advertised a contest in a science fiction/fantasy magazine. You would not believe the mail I got from incarcerated felons...not only entries but letters asking about employment, etc.

I did find out something useful, though: according to law, people in those institutions cannot receive books from their family or friends. They can ONLY receive them directly from the publisher. Since my book is self-published, I did manage to sell a few to those who requested them.

It was an interesting experience, but one I probably won't repeat.

dragoncrone
January 6th, 2006, 04:43 PM
And a lot of people try to scam free books for non-existent charities (most authors I know check out claims very carefully). It kind of makes you really skeptical when you deal with this a lot.
:

My book, 'Ten Dragon Tails,' is a hardback...OK? So imagine my surprise when I noticed a soft-cover edition offered on Amazon.com!!! It took me a minute to figure it out - but some *#%&! was selling a galley proof!!

(For those who might not know- that's a paperback version of your book that the printer sends you so you can get a look at what the finished product will look like...AND correct errors, which while not numerous were present...not something intended for sale...grrrrr.)
:rant:
So be careful what you get from Amazon....

Yasmine Galenorn
January 6th, 2006, 09:22 PM
My book, 'Ten Dragon Tails,' is a hardback...OK? So imagine my surprise when I noticed a soft-cover edition offered on Amazon.com!!! It took me a minute to figure it out - but some *#%&! was selling a galley proof!!

(For those who might not know- that's a paperback version of your book that the printer sends you so you can get a look at what the finished product will look like...AND correct errors, which while not numerous were present...not something intended for sale...grrrrr.)
:rant:
So be careful what you get from Amazon....

I belong to several authors groups and we have frequent discussion over the discovery of ARCs on sale at ebay and so forth...--it's a common problem. And it's a no-win situation. Refuse to sign them at a signing and word gets out your a bitch, sign them and you lose a sale and watch them break the rules.

Yazza :colorful: