A nice thing happened on the way to my keyboard last Sunday. I got a note from Big Al’s Books and Pals that Flaps Down-The Reluctant Hero has been nominated for a Reader’s Choice Award in Romance category. The nomination is an honor twice over. Big Al’s Books and Pals is the premier Review Blog in our indie universe. Almost the instant I dipped my toe into indie publishing I learned if Big Al says you have a book–you do. If he says you don’t, he doesn’t pull any punches telling you why not.
As soon as I think I have a book fit for publication, I submit to Big Al for a review. Thus far all of my romance titles have passed muster with three, four and five star reviews. The three and four star reviewed titles got another round of edits and formatting.
Back in the day when we submitted our mss to publishing houses, if the title was bought and a writer went to contract, you knew you had a book. You didn’t have to fret or wonder because an acquisition editor said so and paid an advance. That sealed the deal. With indie publishing, I don’t have that utter confidence–I just hope I’ve written a story that readers will buy and enjoy and don’t have a clue until reviews start coming in from the reading public.
Big Al’s reviews do not mean every reader is going to like my books. They don’t. But I have the confidence to know I’ve produced my best writing for a particular story. One reviewer who ticked a one star review on Amazon for The House on Persimmon Road wrote something to the effect:
What’s going on with all of those five star reviews? Nothing is happening!
Mmmm. The book was in a free promotion and made TOP 100 in all of its categories, one of which was family relationships and love. When I looked at the book sitting at #1 in that category–there it was–sitting on the same page as alternate lifestyles; bare boobs, erotica and lesbian affairs. Oops. I took the book out of that category, but too late for that reader.
I felt bad for the reader. She read all the way to the end waiting for that grand slam f/f love/sex scene. It wasn’t there. I write sweet romances. I made an indie author mistake and did not understand the kinds of books that went into that category.
Big Al himself reviewed Flaps Down-The Reluctant Hero and gave it a four star. His reviewer, ?wazithinkin gave it a five star. I am flattered beyond measure to have my book nominated.
Books and a $50 Amazon gift card are up for grabs for voters. You won’t recognize many of the books and authors–but you can buy and read them knowing the author wrote a dang good story.
For the next few days you’ll have the chance to vote on your favorite books to pick a winner in each of thirteen categories. We’re also having a giveaway with the following prizes:
Grand Prize: $50 Amazon Gift Card (Your choice of Amazon.com or Amazon UK)
First Prize: Your choice of any six of the nominated books gifted to you in Kindle format.
Second Prize: The latest book from three of our Pals. Pete Barber’s Allah’s Revenge, Keith Nixon’s The Fix, and Michael Thal’s Koolura and the Mystery at Camp Saddleback, gifted to you in Kindle format.