Friday, September 12, 2008

Contest or not to Contest?

I'm feeling every Skakespearish (if there is such a word) this week-end and am immersed in reading Hamlet. "Contest or not to Contest? That is the question." How to answer it? There is an article in RWReport titled, "Contests for readers: Do they work?" A lovely idea to have contests where readers, other than friends, enter. I have sponsored two contests and the entries came from author friends and other friends. No outside person responded.
There's a tagline under the headline of the article in RWR. "Contests are one way to bring readers to your web site, but is it worth all the trouble?" From my experience it wasn't worth the trouble except for the fun of doing it, especially my Portrait of a Lady in Blue contest. The entries were fabulous. I posted them on my blog, should you want to read them.

Sherry James who wrote the article certainly did her research and interviewed various authors for their opinions. The majority of authors Sherry contacted "said they saw no increase in their sales due to the contests they host on their web sites. But author, Monica Burns (Dangerous) summed it up. "My strategy has always been that contests area about rewarding the reader and about name building. They are not about driving sales, they're about generating reader good will and author branding."

How I wish I could reward a reader by hosting a contest. But readers are illusive. I'd like to have a few turn up on my web site and send me a letter. Here's the cover of my fifth book with Cerridwen Press, Too Young To Die. It's a romantice suspense. If you love the suspense genre drop by my web site and read an excerpt. That's an invitation. Write me a letter. I'd love to hear from you.

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