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  • WEbook Page To Fame Update

    Posted on May 18th, 2011 jean 7 comments

    A few weeks ago I got some astounding news. My WEbook Page to Fame submission got elevated to the final round! (They call me a winner, baby!) I had to go and check out what this meant… It means that my submission is now hanging out in the literary agent showcase. Then I had to see what that means… Which is basically that all submissions that have made it through all the rounds are placed in a virtual pot where agents can sift through looking for the next bestseller. (Not thinking that my story will get snapped up, but still, very cool!! And good company to be in!)

    So, I guess this is the final deal for my submission. It’s been a $4.95 well spent, I tell ya!

    Oh, and I think I forgot to mention that a month or two ago, the publishing pro who rated my first five pages gave me a 5 out of 5!!!! Whoa! How crazy is that? It almost makes me think I might have something here. 😉 That inspires me to keep on writing! Has a contest inadvertently inspired you lately?

    Ay karumba!

  • Page To Fame Raters–I LOVE You!

    Posted on February 14th, 2011 jean 2 comments

    “Wow.”

    The raters over on WEbook’s Page To Fame contest have knocked my socks off. Seriously. Socks across the room, stuck in a plant.


    As some of you may have read, I’ve been doing the Page To Fame thing over on WEbook. I have one submission that has made it to round 3 (submit 50 pages). Currently it has 7 ratings and a 72% elevation rate (that means 72% of the readers gave it a 4 or 5 out of 5 and therefore want it to go to the next level). That in itself makes me feel pretty good! But what really wows me is not only how many of the raters have plucked the very questions/thoughts, etc., I have from my mind about my work, but also wonderful, giving comments like this:

    “That said, I truly admire the quality of the writing itself—-IMHO you’re writing at a professional level, which I think is rare here.”

    Wow. Just Wow. What an amazing compliment. Truly. This person had issues with the format–something I have struggled with. Do I keep it all letter style or not? I tell you this: Page to Fame rocks. I get to see what readers think and how they react to my work. Maybe I will change the format. Maybe not. We’ll see what they tell me because quite honestly these wonderful readers and raters are rockin’ my socks off and giving me a much needed boost. Thank you anonymous rater–you made my week! Heck, my month!

    (And yes, you may have heard through the grapevine that it took my about 2 weeks to suck up enough courage to look at these ratings. Talk about needing to grow a pair!)

    In my opinion, these raters’ comments are spot on. And I really appreciate the time they have put in to not only reach the status of a round 3 rater, but how they have given up their time to rate a stranger’s work (50 pages) and provide such helpful feedback (300+ words).

    Thank you, raters! You are doing a fab job–very professional and helpful and us WEbookers appreciate you and all your hard work!

  • Update: Goals and Challenges

    Posted on November 2nd, 2010 jean 6 comments

    Okay, who stole last week? No, I’m serious. It vanished without even the typical whooshing sound it makes when a week goes flying by me!

    I think it is about time for a little update from me. As you know, I have issued a few challenges to myself in the last year. Here are the goods:

    Good news first? You betcha!

    My romance group critique partners and I issued each other a challenge–get a literary agent by Christmas. Well, guess what? 2 of the 3 of us have! I would be in that statistic–due to a humongous leg-up from Calista Taylor–she put a well-timed word in for me. The third partner is doing edits requested by an agent that could very well lead to representation. Wow! Can all three of us meet that goal? I think so!

    PASS!

    (So, yes. I am now ‘agented’ and have been working on my proposal for my nonfiction Kid’s Play project. We hope to have that out on submission soon. Cross your fingers for me!)

    Other good news:

    My WEbook Page to Fame submission (Humorous women’s fiction) got elevated to round 3! I haven’t submitted it yet, but will soon. (More on that as time goes by.)

    PASS

    And then I’ve been letting other things slide…

    Remember my challenge to myself to read 5 banned/challenged books in one year? Well, I didn’t quite make it. I blame all those other good books in my life and how they’ve weasled their way ahead in the To Be Read lineup. I do still plan to read those banned/challenged books. And I will.

    FAIL

    As for my Read Around the World Challenge which is an ongoing project… well, I haven’t posted anything in months, but I have been keeping tabs on what I read. I’ve gotten to the point where it is typically the same three or four countries being read over and over again. But, I do have a little something from France that I will post (one of these days).

    Er… FAIL? Er…PASS? You decide.

    And lastly, there is my tidy up and organize my life New Year’s plan. Yes, I am still working on that one. Decluttering, etc. I have shredded and recycled a whole pile of old manuscripts–don’t worry, I still have copies! But I still haven’t cured the problem of the tumbling items on the top shelf of the back door closet yet. Working on it though. Well, mentally. (I might mention that in the New Year’s Plan post I also mentioned getting an agent and also relaxing a bit–I’ve done both.)

    Er… PASS? Mostly.

    That’s all from me at the moment, any news updates from you?

  • WEbook Round 2 Update

    Posted on August 28th, 2010 jean 2 comments

    I’ve noticed that a few fellow aspiring writers have been getting a bit peeved about the lack of meaningful feedback in the WEbook Page to Fame contest. (You get a number ranking out of 5 and if raters so wish to, they can click on some pre-made comments that may apply, or add their own typed comment.) Personally, I have been finding the feedback pretty good–especially for a contest.

    For the first 50 or so ratings my piece was garnering a 68 – 70% elevation rate. (That means of the 50 raters, 68-70% were giving it a 4/5 or a 5/5 and wanted to see it elevated to the next round of the contest.) Talk about being pleased with myself as well as completely shocked and stunned.

    In fact, I started to worry and wonder. How was it that my piece was speaking to this many readers? While most raters rate in the genre of their interest (mine being women’s fiction), my story starts with a woman at her most unhinged moment. That doesn’t exactly speak to everyone.

    Then in the last week or so my ratings have slid down to the mid-60s for elevation ratings. While disappointing, I’ve also gotten a few written comments about my main character. I love it! Here’s why: The way I see it she’s either going to make the reader hoot with laughter, cry along with her sorrows, or want to completely wring her neck and then punt her in the pants. It’s going to depend upon the reader’s personality as well as their life experiences. In a nutshell, they will react differently to her and that is what I am seeing this week in a few lowered ratings as well as a few comments about the fact that she is ‘unpleasant’ and a ‘lunatic.’ Excellent.

    The latest reviews: 68 ratings, 63% want it elevated (chose 4s or 5s).

    Another reason why I love the comments about her being a nutjob is because she is getting under their skin of the reader in 1200 words or less and that she is getting so under their skin that they are feeling compelled to take the time to write me a comment. How wonderful is that? Even if they don’t like her and would toss the book across the room, I’m getting to them. (And yeah, maybe it would be nice if they loved her to pieces, but still. They took the time to write a comment!)

    So, darlings, it’s in the pudding. What I mean is, feedback tells you something about your work and that, my dears, can be absolutely wonderful.

    Good luck!

  • WEbook Contest Update

    Posted on February 14th, 2010 jean 7 comments

    Whew, what a week! I love it when weeks streak by, and that one certainly did. Let’s see, we bought a larger second-hand vehicle this week, I started a new job, did a hefty pile of good things for friends and acquaintances (working on my sainthood here), and we put my beloved Dodge Shadow up for sale. (sniff, sniff) I even almost destroyed my computer this week. And then I discovered, it wasn’t actually me or the computer, it was Windows and a bad update. Whew! I thought I had lost everything. That would have really sucked bo-bo. In a big way.

    Speaking of updates, I remembered to check on my WEbook Page to Fame submissions today. I tell ya, I’ve gotten a lot of entertainment out of those $5 submissions.

    Anyway, here’s a screen shot of how I’m doing at the moment:

    I’m doing much better since they’ve removed all the ‘bad’ votes. It turns out some folks were going on there and lowballing submissions that weren’t theirs. I had kind of wondered why I had the almost exact same crappy marks for two very different projects–one that had been very much edited and one that hadn’t (at all, really). Now, there is a variety in marks which is relieving and expected. The edited project is doing 4% better (it’s the 2nd one in the above image). Interesting, isn’t it?

    I may have already mentioned this, but I love the fact that this contest (which allows you to submit the first page–about 250 words if I recall correctly) has opened my eyes to things I need to improve. Looking at my first page and looking at the marks that were coming in, I quickly realized my story was not showing how it was different right up front. It was, well, kind of average in its topic, if you know what I mean? Thanks to this contest, combined with a few bits of agent feedback, I have since improved my opening with a few tweaks to let the reader see that this might not be your typical girl-getting-married-and-having-second-thoughts kind of story.

    I sure do love it when feedback helps me see what I need to do to push my writing to the next level.

    How about you? Have you gotten a tidbit somewhere lately that’s opened your eyes to what you need to do to make your work better or make it stand out?

    P.S. I’ve blacked out the contest submission titles as I don’t want folks I know inflating my marks out of the kindness of their dear little hearts. 🙂 Just in case they might be tempted….