Show and Tell is not just for school


How many times have you been told, “show, don’t tell,” when people have read your work? Yeah, me too. It’s something most of us know about but often forget or just don’t know quite how to do it. It helps to know how to recognise each of them first.


Joe was a tall man, with greying hair and a habit of chewing his lip when nervous.

It was cold, at least minus ten and a thick layer of ice covered the lake.

Sophie walked the streets looking for David but couldn’t find him anywhere.

The spaceship came into land and everyone was glad the long journey was over.

He looked like a businessman with his leather briefcase.


Joe towered a good head and shoulders over her, forcing her to crane her neck to look at him. She longed to run her fingers through his black curls and thought the greying threads at his temples gave him a distinguished air. A slight smile fluttered at the corners of his mouth as he chewed his bottom lip like a frightened child.

His breath turned to ice, making rainbow coloured diamond dust that fluttered away in the light morning breeze. Half a dozen brave ducks padded across the frozen lake and he wondered why their feet never stuck the ice. The forecast said it would be at least minus ten by dawn and as he drew his scarf tighter around his neck, he knew it was colder still.

The rapidly darkening sky brought a mood of gloom that settled over the city and Sophie shivered. The shadows cast by the newly lit street lamps leapt menacingly, every one a serial killer waiting to pounce as she crept past. Music blared from bars, drunken crowds gawked and several wolf whistles reached her ears. Walking these same streets in the light of day brought no such terrors for Sophie and she wondered at the power light has over the emotions. The early afternoon sun had still been warm when she set out to search for David, but now, in the threatening darkness and with blisters on her feet that bit painfully at every step, she turned for home alone.

The still calm of the morning was rent as the roar of engines approached. Looking up, he saw the spaceship approach and smiled with relief. Dust flew in whirling turmoil, stinging his eyes and coating his robe as the ship began its final descent. Leaves, wrenched from the ancient oaks that lined the landing strip, flew like a cloud of butterflies and covered the ground in a lush green carpet. The journey has been arduous, the mysterious engine failure almost costing the crew their lives and their late but safe arrival was reason for celebration.

He strode along the street, the understated but elegant grey suit moving with him as if moulded around his body rather than simply being manufactured. The white shirt was plain and devoid of extraneous decoration, as was his silk tie and matching pocket-handkerchief. Quality speaks for itself and needs no assistance from fussy details, he would always say when standing for a fitting with his tailor. The water buffalo hide briefcase swung silently as he walked and he remembered his father giving him his first briefcase on his first day at the company. “Only cheap leather creaks,” the old man said.


See the difference? Not only do we know more about the characters and settings, but they come alive for us. We are really there when we read the ‘show’ examples. The ‘tell’ examples give us the information but we can’t connect with it on an emotional level and that’s what you want your readers to do.

Show us the character, show us his emotions, his feelings, his physical state. Bring the environment alive. Don’t just give us a photo, take us there.

When you show rather than tell, your writing will often be longer too, which is always good for word count, but don’t let that be a reason for unnecessary waffle. If you try to show everything in such detail, it becomes annoying and people will get bored waiting for the action. There is often benefit in telling rather than showing, to get to the action for instance, when your character is going from A to B. We know he needs to get from home to the hospital, but unless something along the way is important, just tell us he goes to the hospital. Sometimes you need to cover ground quickly, ground that would harm the story if you left it out altogether and in such cases, tell us about it and move on.

You can also avoid the ‘adverb/adjective’ crime by paying more attention to showing rather than telling. Rather than telling us the old house was spooky, show us the shadows dancing, let us hear the creaky doors and floorboards, let us feel the cobwebs on our skin. How do we react to the dark, the noises? What is our imagination doing? Don’t just tell us the car was racing along the road, give us the wind in our hair, the adrenaline rush, the G-force as we are pressed into our seat. Words like, ‘paranoid,’ ‘sadly,’ ‘grand,’ force us to work harder to bring them to life. I don’t have to work so hard if you show me the shadows leaping and dancing. Let me feel the weight upon my heart and the sting of tears behind my eyes and I will understand. Give me doric columns, marble staircases, and gothic arches and I’m there in your grand hall with you.

Working on showing and telling makes you think about your writing in a new way. It’s good discipline and forces you to think much deeper about not only what you’re writing, but how you’re writing it. It can sometimes feel as if it’s taking away from the purely creative aspect and making it more ‘mathematical’ but it needn’t. Keep in mind that it is not stopping you from being creative, it is allowing you to be even more creative.

Societal breakdown in 50 years or less


Over the past ten years (give or take), I’ve noticed society changing for the worse. Rules are broken more, help is harder to find, and compassion is dying. We don’t care about each other anymore. We are angrier, more impatient, less tolerant, and more selfish. We scheme, deceive, and disobey. We need, we want, and we hate. Oh how we hate.

People kill each other more often and for even more stupid reasons than ever. More people are afraid to leave their homes than ever before. You are more likely to get mugged, robbed, beaten, raped, and murdered today than ever before, by people who are far younger than ever before. You can’t trust anyone today. Not your family, your neighbours, nobody. Your doctors and health care people are not only less well trained, but they are more likely to kill you than they were fifty years ago, either on purpose or because they just don’t care enough. The police and government are corrupt. That hasn’t changed, they’re just more open about it than ever before. We’re bombing each other off the face of the earth for control of a dwindling oil supply, yet refusing to invest in wind/solar/hydro power that will power society forever without harming our world. We’re trying to get to Mars but spending nothing on cleaning up the mess we’re still making on this planet.

You can’t even go into a store and be smiled at by the staff.

Society is breaking down, fast. I first began to notice it around ten years ago but it’s moving faster now. Over the past couple of years I’ve watched society hurtle ever faster towards its own destruction. I firmly believe that we are now way past the point of no return. No matter what we try now, we cannot save ourselves. There is nothing for us to do but sit and watch as we destroy our own societies. It is as inevitable as the dawn.

Why is this happening? There are two reasons I can think of right away. Population and human nature.

There are now far too many of us for the planet and our preferred way of life to support. As our personal space becomes, by necessity, smaller and smaller, we become more and more territorial and defensive. We need a certain amount of space to call our own and when that space is gradually eaten away, forcing us into ever closer contact with others, there comes a point where it is detrimental to our mental health and aggression is the result. More people mean more building for homes, schools, shops, workplaces. More buildings need land. More land for building means less for each of us to have as our personal space. Squeeze us too hard and we’ll push back. When deprived of the right environment for mental development, we become mentally imbalanced. Sociopathy, psychopathy, schizophrenia, and other mental diseases become more prevalent and our behaviour towards each other deteriorates.

How can we overcome this problem? I don’t think we can now. I think it’s far too late to recover and I firmly believe that society as we know it today will have totally broken down within the next fifty years.

Have you seen the new Mad Max movie? That’s where we’re heading, fast.

Answering questions and that maddening lack of understanding


I’m having one of those, ‘WTF’ days.

What TF does it take to get my books noticed by the masses?

Where TF should I got to find the ‘perfect’ place to advertise/promo?

How TF am I supposed to get people willing to read my books?

Why TF am I and my work ignored?

and finally,

Why TF don’t I just stop cos I’m obviously wasting my time?

I find this last one is a common occurrence just after I release a novel. It’s a kind of post publishing syndrome I have to go through. There is so much that I see and experience that seems to be telling me to give up, I mean like every day something will happen that makes me realise, ‘yep, I’m wasting my time.’

I’ve seen other writers on facebook talking about their ‘Street Teams’ and what they’re doing for them and how useful and wonderful and incredible they are. Great idea, if you can find people willing to be on your street team. I can’t, of course. No one is interested in being on my Street Team. I tried to get one, I really did. No idea why the lack of interest.

I see people, not always writers, posting about this or that person’s book and how you really ought to read this fantastic book by this fantastic author because your life really won’t be worth living if you don’t. Nobody posts about my books like that. Nobody says that about me or my work. I have several hundred people connected to me on facebook and just shy of four thousand on Twitter, but I never get an embarrassingly sweet repost or mention. I do get one or two, (I really do mean one or two btw) people who repost my cover photo (thank you Theresa and Tiffani and Rebekkah) and I’m hugely grateful for that but it’s a bit like spitting into the wind really. I’ve no idea how to get people to crow unashamedly about me or my work. I’ve no idea how the other writers achieve this. Common sense tells me they pay for it, or the people are family members. I have neither family nor the money to pay people. I guess therefore that this will never happen.

I must interject here because I know people will be saying, “oh well dear,” (really, don’t call me dear, it just makes you look like a poisonous self righteous twat), “if your book is good enough people will shout about it.”

No dear, they won’t. They especially won’t if it is wonderful. If it can ever be considered a rival to their own shit, not only will they not crow about it, they will endeavour to keep it down by any means possible. People won’t read my books, so no one can say they are bad. In order to know whether a work is good or bad, you have to read it first. Just simply being technically brilliant won’t automatically bring readers like some magical force conjured up by a bearded and be-robed Gandalf lookylikey. As usual, you’re argument is totally invalid.

I’ve blogged about the lack of money to advertise several times, so I won’t go there again here.  Suffice it to say that I still have no money to pay for advertising, nor the qualifying number of reviews. I therefore continue to assume that this is not going to happen either.

As I do not know why all of the above is as it is, I have only conjecture on which to base an opinion. There are a couple of possible reasons.

Sheer bad luck.

A personal campaign.


I am willing to accept that much of the reason I spend my life smeared in shit is down to sheer bad luck. Scientists have done experiments about luck and they have found that some people actually ‘attract’ bad luck. I am that soldier, on steroids.

I know and will admit, that there are people within the so called, ‘writer’s community,’ (community? What fucking community?) who hate me, personally and with a passion. I know this is true. You can’t please everyone all of the time. There are some people who will just automatically hate you the moment they set eyes on you. There are people on facebook who I  have pissed off because I tell the truth and don’t subscribe to their imaginary world where they are the best thing since soft loo roll and the bringer of all that is right and good with the world.  I don’t and will never suck your dick or lick your arse unless I genuinely feel you deserve it. Just so we’re clear, I’m 53 and so far nobody has deserved it so the chances of you deserving it are slim in the extreme. Don’t hold your breath love. People hate this about me and hate the truth even more. I can say with complete honesty that I’ve been ‘deleted’ by a lot of facebook folks. They talk to other facebook folks. They pass on their opinions. This goes on. I know it, I’m not stupid.

Even those who seem to be accepting soon prove themselves to be like the rest. They make overtures of help, advice, constructive criticism and when you venture a little further, you hit their brick wall of indifference. For instance, I joined a facebook group where everyone writes little shorts and crits each others work. I have found over the time I’ve been a member that I only ever get a couple of comments, whereas everyone else gets twenty to thirty. I have assumed this is down to some crazy kind of hazing rights of passage probationary shoolyard mindset thing and have put up with it with a smile and gushings of praise to everyone else even when they don’t deserve it (and shit, that has been painful, believe me.) I did however, take the few crits very seriously and re-wrote one of my shorts, after being assured that ‘they’ would “love to see what you’ve done with it,” and compare it with the first version.

Yep, you’ve guessed right (give that person a five pound note and a packet of cornflakes), it has been totally ignored. I mean totally. Not one single like, not a comment, not a ‘fuck you asshole. Nothing, nada, zip.

This kind of thing happens, not only to me but to many other autistic people. It’s the kind of ‘ism we live with every day.

I have a firm belief in destiny and of all three possible reasons, this is the one that has the loudest ring of truth. The universe might just have it in for me. There may be nothing I can do to get my name out of that little black book of ‘people to fuck with for shits and giggles.’ Yes, even the powers that run the universe have their own twisted sense of humour and they have a list of souls whom they use as ‘fuckabout fodder.’ I think I’m at the top of that list.

In all probability, it’s most likely to be a mix of all three. I can do nothing about any of them. I have control of neither luck nor destiny and people will be what they wish to be. If they wish to have a campaign, they will do and I can do nought to change that. I still refuse to buy reviews. I still refuse to bribe people with money and gifts. Don’t wait around here for the chance to win a free kindle honey, you’re wasting your time.

The only thing I can control is what I do and it comes down to one thing in the end.

Do I enjoy what I do?

I enjoy writing. The process of creation gives me much that is and has always been, missing from my life. As an abused child and an autistic adult, my imaginary world makes me feel better and more powerful than this one of yours ever has done and ever will.

I don’t enjoy publishing. I don’t enjoy it because it has proved to be unsuccessful and therefore, a waste of time. People are choosing not to read my books, for whatever reason and this is unlikely to change all the time I refuse to pay them to do so.

The sensible thing to do would be to do what I enjoy and stop doing what I don’t enjoy.

Dreamspinner is here

final 4

I am delighted to finally be able to share the cover  and blurb of my latest novel, Dreamspinner.  This is still going through the process of uploading to Amazon and I’m waiting for a proof copy to arrive, so it will be a day or so until I can provide purchase links. As soon as I have the links, I will upload them to the Dreamspinner page.

What is your worst nightmare?

Tearan Lindo, serving soldier with the Inter-Galactic Elite Command, found himself living his when he woke up apparently alone on an empty and abandoned space ship with no memory other than his own name, age, and rank.

He soon finds that he is not alone aboard the Novosentia, but where are the other three? The friendly engineer, the haunted doctor, and the mysterious hired gun. Who are they and why can he never find them? What is causing the shadows, the noises, and the time discrepancies? Then there is the woman from the nightmares who feels so familiar. Desperate for answers, Tearan and his companions struggle to make sense of their situation.

When he stumbles upon evidence of a scientific involvement, Tearan realises he got it all wrong. They’re not survivors after all, they’re lab rats.

Angry and frightened for his future, he fights to uncover the truth.

What he discovers is more profoundly shocking than he could ever have imagined.


All the purchase links are now up and live on the Dreamspinner page here

I  hope you decide to give it a chance and that if you do, you enjoy it.

Product Review – L’Oreal Brow Artist Genius Kit


Eyebrows are a thing now. I mean, they always were a thing, but now they’re more of a thing than ever. Every woman now has to include brow husbandry into her daily routine. There has always been an accepted ‘best way’ of doing one’s brows. There’s the ‘proper’ places to start and finish, the ‘ideal’ height of arch, and the ‘accepted’ thickness etc. The internet is awash with examples of brows gone horribly, hilariously wrong and those of us of a certain age can look back in horror at brow fashions of the past. Who remembers Angela Rippon and those surprised arches we all dreamed of copying?

Today, the accepted look is a fuller, bushier brow and I, for one, am grateful. I can distinctly remember Brooke Shields being torn apart by the media for her bushy brows but she remained resolute and I bet she’s laughing now.  While the rest of us have to fill in and paint over the bare patches caused by our over eager plucking, hers are naturally healthy and bushy and just need a bit of a tidy up.

I learned how to do mine well for the first time in my life, by following a Youtube video and I’ve been happy with this routine for the past year or so since I learned it. Then I splashed out on semi permanent eyebrow tattoos, which was a mistake I would not recommend anyone repeating. For three days I had beautiful natural looking brushstroke eyebrows that quickly became brown smudges that I still had to fill in just as I did before. Waste of time and money. Learn from me and don’t do it.

Now we have a new kit from our old friend, L’Oreal in the form of the Brow Artist Genius Kit. I purchased this from Boots for £9.99, which is not too much to risk for nice brows.

Inside the metal tin are two square palettes of colour, a teeny pair of tweezers, and a teeny brush. The kit comes in two choices, fair to medium and medium to dark. I got the medium to dark as although I’m 53, I’m still a natural brunette.

The palette on the left is a wax, which goes on first. Brush it on just as you would your normal powder or pencil. This does not colour the brows, it’s just wax.

Next, the palette on the right. This is the actual powder colour which you brush on over the wax. Again, just do it like you would with your normal powder or pencil. The powder sticks to the wax and holds in place better than powder alone.

The other end of the brush is a spooly, which you then use to gently brush through and you’re done. It’s easy to do and lasts all day, which powder alone doesn’t. One thing worth noting is that I find the medium to dark has a distinct red tone to the rich brown. If asked before I purchased, I would not have welcomed this as I’m used to years of black brows, but I’m so glad now I’ve used it. The rich brown is so much more natural than black, which women of my age must unfortunately be more aware of than you pretty young things.

I love this product, and will most definitely be making it a permanent part of my cosmetic bag.

5 stars.

Goodreads giveaway – my experience



Further to this post about my experience using facebook paid ads, I decided to throw caution to the wind and run a giveaway on Goodreads for my last novel, Fetish. This is yet another attempt at raising a little awareness ‘out there’ towards myself as an author and my books.

Goodreads giveaways are free to run, but there are one or two points to remember. First, it’s only for paperbacks. Yep, those of you who publish only in ebook formats can leave the room  now, or why not hop on over here and find something spectacular. For those who, like me, publish in both ebook and paperback, stick around a while. So long as you are prepared to give away an actual, physical book, you can have a Goodreads giveaway. This means purchasing at least one copy of your own book, and then paying to mail it/them to the winner(s). Other than that, there are no additional costs.

Second, it is absolutely forbidden to contact the entrants or winners for any purpose whatsoever. To do so gets you labelled as a spammer. This means you can’t add them to a mailing list, nor even say hello, buy my other other books while you’re waiting to win this one, etc. Many authors are a little trigger happy, so this might be painful for some.

You can choose to give away as many books as you want, or just a single copy, whatever blows your skirt up. I gave away three signed copies. You have control over which countries your giveaway is open to, which I guess is to allow you to control postage costs. Most people go for USA, UK, and Canada, although just about every other country in the world in on the list. Click on as many or as few as you want.

My giveaway ran for a calendar month and in that time, I had 864 entrants. This is amazing when compared to my last attempt at running a facebook giveaway event, which gathered an immense crowd of just two entrants. Some of the other giveaways in the list have thousands of entrants. I suppose it comes down to how well known you are and the genre of the book you are giving away that dictates how many entrants you will attract. That is 864 people who now know I exist and that I write science fiction novels. There is now a chance, albeit slim, that a few might venture to take a look at my books. They might  not, they probably won’t, but there is  now that chance where there was none before.

If the three winners actually read the book and like it, they might buy some of my others, or tell their friends how they enjoyed it, review it even. It is all maybe and what if’s but it’s something, a chance I never had before. It’s a step along the marketing road, a road I seldom travel.

Now for the figures. I had to purchase three copies of my paperback, which cost me £15.24. Postage costs for the 3 books to the winners, all USA residents, was £22.35

This means the entire cost of this promo experiment was £37.59. To get that back I need to sell five paperbacks or twenty ebooks.

The point of this experiment was not entirely to make sales though. What I’m trying to do is build my brand permanently rather than make a quick sales spike that lasts a day then flatlines again. I’m trying to get myself into the public’s awareness, get my books onto their radar, as a permanent fixture and not just a flash in the pan.

With so many marketing and promo opportunities out there that cost a whole wedge of cash, this seems to be one of the cheaper ways to get my books into readers’ hands, even if it is just a couple of raffle winners.

4 days left to win a signed paperback

There are just 4 days left for you to enter the giveaway and win one of 3 signed paperbacks of my novel Fetish ~ Sinclair V-Log BY915/M.

Yes, that’s a signed paperback, delivered to your door. Only 1 person in the entire world has a signed copy of Fetish. When I’m rich and famous, just think how long you’ll be able to dine out on having one of only 4 signed copies.

To enter, click below and good luck.


Goodreads Book Giveaway

Fetish by Merita King


by Merita King

Giveaway ends September 12, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

How one reader buys her books


I have a good friend with whom spend a couple of hours every Friday morning. She knows I write science fiction novels but has never read any of them. She is a reader, although she admits to being a very slow reader. Last Friday, she asked me how my writing was going and I told her I had begun editing my next release. There followed a little back and forth, with her asking questions about the process and me answering. She seemed genuinely interested. She’s an intelligent woman with a very well paid job and lives in a large house in the countryside. She’s successful and has the kind of lifestyle I dream about and envy. I’m telling you this so you can get a true picture of her. She’s educated, respected in her field, worldly wise, and wealthy. She’s not some ill educated untermensch.

At some point during the conversation, she asked me, “how are they selling?” I was truthful and told her, “they’re not.” We then discussed the problem of trying to get our brand ‘out there,’ in an over saturated market and I asked her a very important question. I said, “as a reader, how do you approach buying a book when you want to read?”

She told me that she tends to stick to authors she knows she likes, or she’ll listen to recommendations from friends, then she reads reviews. She admitted that she is so overwhelmed with choice and said that she finds searching on sites like Amazon, difficult and time consuming, so she tends not to bother. She said she is so busy that she doesn’t have the time to spend searching online for books she doesn’t know whether she will enjoy. It is much easier and quicker for her to stick to what she knows, or walk into a book shop and browse the shelves.

This was very interesting information and confirmed what I’ve always said. The good stuff is buried under a mountain of trash so huge that readers are put off trying to wade through it to find the good stuff to read. Unless you have a lot of money to spend on advertising experts who can get your name ‘out there,’ you’re wasting your time trying to make money from writing novels.

We talked about the impossibility of getting reviews and I told her about sites like Bookbub, where you can pay a large amount of money to have your book advertised, so long as it has a large number of reviews at 4 star or higher. I asked her, “as a reader who is just looking for a book to read, have you ever heard of Bookbub or similar online sites?”

No, she’s never heard of it, nor any other similar site and I suspect the vast majority of ordinary people haven’t either. This part of the conversation confirmed something else I’ve always believed, that much of what is considered by authors as ‘the right thing to do,’ is done to impress other authors and not readers. Attracting other authors and attracting readers are two totally different worlds and some people get too caught up in the wrong one.

The salient points are that she is a busy working woman with a family, a successful business to run, and a large home to keep. She has neither the time nor the inclination to wade through a mountain of trash to try to find something she might enjoy reading. She is  not aware of advertising tricks, and uses past experience and reviews to influence what she reads.

Another important thing to consider here is that modern life is different to how it was a few decades ago. We don’t read as much now as we did when I was a child. I used to clean houses for a living and of all the homes I went into, no more than 2 out of 10 had any books at all, let alone the shelves of books I remember everyone having in their homes when I was young. People might take a book on holiday to occupy them on the flight or while sitting by the pool, but those two weeks per year are probably the only time they will read anything other than a newspaper, a magazine article about a celebrity scandal, or a facebook meme.

So where does this leave us, as authors?

Truthfully? I think the time of the traditional length novel is dying fast. I think the way forward is 25-35 thousand word novellas, short story collections, 10 thousand word novelettes perhaps. Modern humans don’t have the capacity to stick with an 80 thousand word novel any more. They need instant gratification that they can grab, consume, and discard in a couple of hours. Everything about our modern life is instant, freeze dried, reconstituted, pre packaged, and disposable. From the clothes that fill our closets, the food in our superfast microwave ovens, to the ultra short bland porridge on their digital e-readers.

Those of us who write full length novels with twisting plots, group dynamics, and twists at the end are catering for a dying market. The new breed of weirdo geeky nerds who live in the dark and read science fiction epics of 80 thousand words and more are our customers now. They are few, they are the new ethnic minority, and they are a dying breed.

Update and reminder

Editing has begun on my next release, Dreamspinner, which I hope to have ready for release by the end of October, maybe a little earlier. I’m very excited about the concept of this novel and proud to have been able to bring the story out in a form that I hope will excite and hold readers. I will keep updating as progress continues.

Just a reminder that you can still enter my Goodreads giveaway for the chance to win one of three signed paperback copies of my novel, Fetish ~ Sinclair V-Log BY915/M.

We all have dirty little secrets, don’t we? 

When Sam Sinclair is called home to help solve the murder of a fellow law enforcer, he assumes the motive was revenge. Within hours, this case quickly becomes everything but straightforward. As the evidence points to deviance of the most horrific kind, they realise that a new breed of killer is stalking the streets of Sam’s home city. Fear grips the people of Alimenika and even the most hardened of criminals are terrified into silence.

A fetish is just harmless fun, until someone dies of course and as more victims come to light, Sam and his team must delve into the darkest side of man’s nature before they can hope to stop this monster’s reign of terror. Swept along by the most unsettling case of his career, the killer’s insidious influence makes Sam doubt himself as never before.

As his personal life is turned upside down, he suddenly becomes the killer’s latest plaything. Unable to free himself and battling the rising panic, the accusation of his own deviance forces him to examine his actions during those terrible four hours, almost twenty years ago.

To enter the giveaway, click below. Good luck.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Fetish by Merita King


by Merita King

Giveaway ends September 12, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Pay to enter competitions – just why?


Maybe it’s just me but I have never been able to understand the whole concept of pay-to-enter competitions. I view the winning of such a competition as being less desirable than a competition I did not have to pay to enter. The money thing takes the edge off, know what I mean?

Some of these pay-to-enter things are quite high profile, with big name companies running them, big companies who want you to pay big bucks for the pleasure of entering your work into a competition you most likely won’t win. It wouldn’t be so bad if you got your money back if you didn’t win but just losing the money and getting nothing seems a bit nutso to me.

If you want to throw money away, throw it at me. I’ll post on my blog that you’ve won a competition and I’ll even design and send you an E-certificate as a prize which, along with the considerable kudos of course, will make you feel all fuzzy inside. No?  Why ever the fuck not? It’s exactly what you’re doing when entering all those other pay-to-enter competitions so why not pay me to enter mine?

Seriously though, why are authors so desperate to get rid of their money? Have they no discernment? No common sense?

I seriously doubt whether winning such a competition actually translates into real lasting sales increases. Oh you might get a spike for a day or so until something else on facebook catches people’s attention, but will that increase continue for years into the future? I don’t think so. The other thing I wonder about is whether normal everyday readers actually give a shit whether you’ve won this or that competition when they’re wondering whether to shell out their hard earned on your book or not.

Maybe these competitions are more for authors to promenade and display to other authors, rather than to impress readers.