Tuesday Book Review: “Too Much Junk in My Trunk!”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

too much junk in my trunk! the adventures of zealy and whubba roe de pinto

Too Much Junk in My Trunk!
The Adventures of Zealy and Whubba, Book 4

by Roe De Pinto

ISBN: 9781478790259

Synopsis*:

The Adventures of ZEALY AND WHUBBA Children’s Book Series – 14X Award Recipient – Mom’s Choice, Readers’ Favorites 2016-2017, Readers Views, Independent Press, & National Association of Book Entrepreneurs, Pacific Book Review 2016/2017 Books 1, 2, 3 & 4

This newest release, “Too Much Junk in My Trunk!” teaches children to eat a variety of food, encourages them to try new foods from early on, and teaches them not to overeat as well as providing comfort in knowing that their parents will usually “fix their boo-boo” so they know who to go to when that occurs! This edition actually engages the child throughout the book through questioning the reader, which enhances the child’s experience of what the characters are embracing throughout the story. Splish- Splash with Zealy and Whubba-more to come!! Watch for it!

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

“Too Much Junk in My Trunk!” is Book 4 in The Adventures of Zealy and Whubba series by Roe De Pinto.  It is about two friends named Zealy (a seal) and Whubba (a killer whale) who ate too much. They went to Zealy’s mom and told her that they had a bellyache. The book says they had too much junk in their trunk that made them feel like funk. The book taught me that it is good to have other nutrients in our bodies and to try new different foods.

I liked that Zealy and Whubba had to have water and they ate some food. I liked that Zealy’s mom helped them feel better.  I did not like that they went into the deep end. It should have been against the rules. There were sharks and bad things in the deep end.

I thought the art was good! I really liked the cover because Whubba is hugging Zealy. On another page, the pictures showed the food that the friends were going to eat. I also liked that the pages were colorful and that all the pages had a blue background because blue is my favorite color.

I really liked this book because it is a good book and it is all blue! Other kids will like it because they can learn that they shouldn’t eat too much food or their bellies will hurt too.

Parent’s Note

Russ really seems to like this book. He runs around saying, “Too much junk in my trunk makes me feel like funk!” When I asked him about it, he said that if he feels like he is eating too much, that he won’t because it will make his belly feel bad. He also knows he needs to eat a variety of foods and take his vitamins. I think “Too Much Junk in My Trunk!” by Roe De Pinto is perfect for little boys in the “potty talk” stage where they make up words anyway.

– reviewed by Russ Cramer (age 6) for Reader Views Kids

Other Reviews

For fans of Zealy & Whubba, the fanciful girl seal pup and her orca friend and mentor Whubba, we all get to join this duo as they go on yet another adventureAuthor Roe De Pinto brings these characters into new situations up in the cold water off of an imaginary Big Rock Island in episode 4Too Much Junk in My Trunk! In this episode, the two wander off to a new place where they come across a feeding area of new and flavorful fish, clams, lobsters and mussels. Zealy tries many new delicacies of colorful fish as Whubba eats his favorite crustacean diet. Along come some sharks, but since Whubba can protect Zealy from the sharks, they all decide to join the feeding frenzy. It’s a happy, festive feast when all of a sudden, oh boy, Zealy & Whubba both get big stomach aches.

They go back to Zealy’s parents where her mother tells them both, “Too much junk in your trunk makes your belly feel like funk!” So after drinking more water and feeling better, they come to a finale dance and celebration saying to each other, “Too much junk in my trunk makes my belly feel like funk!” Having this repeated by everyone time and time again “drills” in the message to children to watch what they eat, and keep away from junk. The importance of a well-balanced diet is explained, in this case by example.

The illustrations are wonderful and generously placed, interleaving with the story to provide an excellent and memorable bedtime experience. As children are read The Adventures of Zealy & Whubba!, they are taught special lessons of life, however the predominating rule in all of Roe De Pinto’s books is love. Love one another, and love yourself – it is all about love.

The achievement of this series of beautifully illustrated and printed children’s books has created two of the most lovable talking sea creatures since, well Spongebob and his friends in Bikini Bottom. Zealy with her snow white fur and Whubba with his shiny black and white body and blue eyes make ideal role models for kids to find details to love within both of them; making for excellent role models of loving the differences of others not looking the same as you. So many undercurrents of social behavior and family structure are threaded into all of Roe De Pinto’s books which make this series a “must have” collection for toddlers to enjoy – an excellent gift for young family libraries.

Each of the episodes bring to awareness the love of friendship and family and with the illustrations so consistently imaginative, each of the books comprising this series receives the highest accolades from not only this reviewer, but many from others as well.

 – reviewed by Beth Adams for Pacific Book Review

 

This book is adorable! The illustrations are colorful and show just how sweet this dynamic duo can be. There is a good lesson for the little ones to keep their belly’s happy and healthy that resonates through. The wordplay here is something my sons really loved. Highly recommend!
– reviewed on Amazon by Anthony Naber

Book Trailer


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Tuesday Book Review: “A Dolphin and a Pilot”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

a dolphin and a pilot steven lane smith

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A Dolphin and a Pilot

by Steven Lane Smith

ISBN: 9781478791140

Synopsis*:

At critical moments in the lives of two of the world’s premier acrobats, each has to decide the other’s fate. Time will tell whether the risk is worth the reward. Flash is a Pacific bottlenose dolphin with a passion for acrobatics. Aspiring to be a world-wide sensation, he undertakes a 15,000-mile journey to reach the venue of his dreams – Aqua World. Captain Jon “Skip” Roper is an Air Force fighter pilot flying in a formation of four F-16s from Korea to Peru. At the pinnacle of his career, Skip is the master of his universe until a cockpit warning light illuminates in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The drama that unfolds propels the two proud acrobats onto intersecting courses. Each is confronted with a vital decision that will alter the life of the other. The consequences of their decisions signify triumph for the interdependence of Earth’s species.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

A whimsical yet compelling tale in which the fates of an unlikely duo collide, “A Dolphin and a Pilot” by Steven Lane Smith shows how two simple acts of compassion and kindness form an irrevocable bond of trust and friendship.

Flash is a young Pacific Bottlenose dolphin with a dream. The best acrobat in his pod, Flash craves the applause and admiration of humans and hopes to be world famous one day as an entertainer for Aqua World.  Against the advice of family and friends, Flash leaves his pod on a 15,000 mile quest to fulfill his dream. Flash bravely navigates through many of the perils in the ocean, but a treacherous encounter with an unruly group of humans leaves him wounded and vulnerable.  Will he make it to Aqua World or should he return to his pod?

Jon “Skip” Roper is a fighter pilot based at Osan Air Base in Korea. With just hours left of a week-long simulated air combat mission, the control panel in his F16 illuminate. As the systems begin to fail, Skip realizes his only chance for survival is to eject. Injuring his right hand in the process, Skip makes it to his survival raft, but his troubles aren’t over yet. With only a protein bar for sustenance and one container of drinkable water, he is exposed in his tiny one-man raft, in a sea full of danger and no land in sight.

Without giving too much away, Flash and Skip come together briefly at a couple of critical points in the story to teach lessons in mercy and relationships, and restore hope and faith in goodness and humanity.  A tall order for satirical fiction!

I’ve read a few novels by Steven Lane Smith and love his story-telling technique. He has a clear, distinctive voice and his clever wit shines throughout the story. His humor is often so subtle that many times as I was reading one page something he said on an earlier page suddenly clicked.  Skip Roper – ha! Most of the time however, the writing is just flat out hilarious, especially the dolphins’ take on things. For example on page 37, “I know what my life’s work is going to be!  I’m going to entertain humans in captivity!”  Flash’s obsession and obvious ignorance of what being in captivity actually means provides for some serious laugh-out-loud moments.

Not limited to humor, Smith can also write some agonizing drama. In this particular story the author’s background as a former fighter pilot provides a completely authentic experience.  One can actually feel the exhausting, painful ordeal Skip Roper goes through when he becomes stranded on a tiny survival raft through the author’s expert portrayal of the events.

Fans of satire, action and adventure, and general “feel good” stories will enjoy “A Dolphin and a Pilot” by Steven Lane Smith.  It is such a fun book to read and a thoroughly enjoyable experience that I highly recommend.

– reviewed by Sheri Hoyte on Reader Views

Other Reviews

Did you ever read the book, WATERSHIP DOWNS? It is a phenomenal story about rabbits who displayed human characteristics. As I was totally enthralled reading A DOLPHIN and a PILOT, the similarities were huge. This is a book everyone should read; light, humorous, didactic, it kept me fully engaged. This is an extraordinary book whose genius author allowed we readers to glance into another world where humans and mammals/animals portray our “oneness.”

 – reviewed on Amazon by E$rnie Carwile

This book is one of the best “Make you feel good” book that I have ever read. The subtle humor and the “dolphinizing” of human sayings and social issues made me laugh out loud numerous times. Bravo Zulu, Mr. Smith. I have recommended this book to many of my friends and, the ones who have read the book, made similar comments. This book will make a great Christmas present for all ages and genders.

– reviewed on Amazon by John Fenton

Steven Lane Smith is a brilliant fiction writer. His grasp of the human condition coupled with his simple, profound observations have made him among my very favorites. A Dolphin and a Pilot is another thoroughly enjoyable SLS offering that rises to the very high standard this gifted author has set. I highly recommend this wonderful book.

Smith is a master story teller. In A Dolphin and a Pilot he weaves a compelling tale of a young dolphin’s love of acrobatics – something difficult and beautiful. The dolphin’s problem is that in his immaturity, he has confused the rush of adulation with the deeper satisfaction of doing a difficult thing well. The addiction to public approval is so strong that he is willing to give up everything important in life to achieve it.

We meet fighter pilot “Skip” Roper is he is preparing to depart on what he believes will be a routine flight. Smith – a veteran fighter pilot – speaks with authority born of personal experience as he puts us in the cockpit of an F-16 with Roper. Flying a jet fighter aircraft for a living is something precious few have done. Roper, a member of this elite club, has confused what he does with who he is.

When our two friends meet, Smith weaves gentle reminders about uncomplicated but vital life lessons into a compelling, funny and deeply satisfying story. I found it impossible to avoid getting lost in this wonderful tale and it has remained with me long after I finished the final page.

I love this book. A Dolphin and a Pilot. Don’t miss it and let’s hope there are more coming from this talented author.

 – reviewed on Amazon by T.W. Price

Excerpt

(courtesy of stevenlanesmith.com)

THE GANG CALLED Los Bandidos was both an irritant and a source of amusement to dolphins in the pod. The most reactionary members of the pod wanted to expel the motley crew of ruffians, but Churchill, able to recall his own wayward youth, warned his fellow Balboans that what might evolve to take the place of Los Bandidos might be worse.

     Every pod in the Pacific had a similar band of brigands made up of adolescent male dolphins aged between three and five years. Each of Los Bandidos’ goof-offs and smart-alecks was too young to start a family but too old to be satisfied hanging around with his parents. Gang members were variously reckless, rebellious, sarcastic, rude, half-witted, idle, cliquish, selfish, mischievous, proud to be accepted into the gang, and merciless toward adolescent dolphins denied acceptance.

     Churchill once summed up Los Bandidos this way: “Never have so many done so little for so few.”

     Adora frowned on Flash’s involvement with Los Bandidos, but Finbar, who wasn’t eager to hold up his own youth as a model of propriety, was more resigned to it, saying, “Humpf!  Hooligans will be hooligans.”

     Flash was readily inducted into Los Bandidos because of his good looks and his athleticism. The gang of louts even waived giving Flash a nickname, because his name was so cool just the way it was. Nicknaming was an important ritual in Los Bandidos culture intended to promote comradeship among the unruly fraternity of delinquents. It normally was a primary order of business during induction of a new member. For Clyde and Cecil and other less-fortunately named gang members, a name change was thought to be vital. Satire and sarcasm were common.

     “Slim” was as fat as a pig because there wasn’t a time of day when he didn’t have a mackerel stuffed in his mouth.

     “Frank” was the truncated gang name for Frankenstein, possibly the ugliest dolphin in the Pacific. Beside Frank, a Morey eel looked gorgeous.

     “Grunge” had hygiene issues.

     “Gash” got his gang name when the propeller of a ski boat near La Jolla put a notch in his dorsal fin.

     “Stud” was the name claimed by the biggest and most cynical dolphin in Los Bandidos.

     “Gas Man” had flatulence challenges.

     “Einstein” was as dumb as piece of coral.

     “Lefty” listed to port when swimming because his left flipper had atrophied from being stuck in a Mason jar O-ring at an early age. The snout of a dolphin was too blunt an instrument to pry off the ring, and Lefty’s parents were too proud to ask a marlin or a sword fish for help.

     The most morose Bandido of all was called “Happy”.

     As for “Punk,” enough said.

 


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Tuesday Book Review: “Molly’s Rocker”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

molly's rocker susan hoskins

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Molly’s Rocker

by Susan M. Hoskins

ISBN: 9781478789741

Synopsis*:

Molly was born the youngest of seven children and the only girl on a tobacco farm in rural Kentucky. Though there’s a lot of love in Molly’s life, family tragedy follows her from childhood through marriage. Molly is left destitute after the betrayal of her husband’s son but she refuses to abandon her dearest friend, Henry Jackson, the son of former slaves. With no land or income, they must survive alone by their wits, enduring the wrath of townspeople who rail against the bond of a white woman with a man of color.

Inspired by the life of her husband’s grandmother, author Susan M. Hoskins wrote Molly’s Rocker as a book to be enjoyed by grandparents with their grandchildren. As warm as Little Women, Molly’s favorite book, Molly’s Rocker, also shares crucial lessons about the tragedy of racism, sexism, and other ways society forms inequalities. Hoskins helps even the youngest of readers understand the frightening connection between tobacco and slavery and what transpired in rural America following the Civil War.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

“Molly’s Rocker” by Susan M. Hoskins tells the tale of Mary Molly (Van Meter) Fry.  Known by friends and family as simply Molly, the story takes us through Molly’s life from the age of 7 all the way through the end of her life.  The story opens and closes in the present, with her grandson and his wife sorting through old junk in the attic of the family property.  In the process they find an old grand rocking chair and recordings made by Molly, detailing her life as a child and beyond.

The summary of the book as posed by the back jacket supposes that readers are going to read a story about racism and civil rights in late 19th and early 20th century America, something akin to “To Kill A Mockingbird” perhaps, however, that prominent storyline does not really come into play until the last 50 or so pages of the book.  Really, the book takes readers through life as a lower-class farm girl in Kentucky. Readers learn with Molly how to manage house, farm, and family while upholding strong Christian morals and decorum.

While the initial summary is misleading, “Molly’s Rocker” is a decent story.  Molly is a likeable and relatable character who reminds me of Laura Ingalls from the “Little House” books I loved as a child.  Molly goes through her life learning how important the power of love is in raising a family and maintaining a community.  I think this is what the author tried to show when the ideas regarding racism began arising in the latter part of the novel.  The character in question she focuses on in this regard is Henry Jackson, who was born just after Lincoln emancipated the slaves.  He works for a prominent family and comes to be close friends with Elijah Fry, who marries one of the daughters of his employer, and later remarries Molly after the death of his first wife Mary, during the birth of their third child.

A tragedy occurs in the town that sparked because of a struggle between a drunken white man and a young black serving boy who accidentally spilled some water during his duties as a waiter.  The man, who turns out to be running for the Senate, gets physical with the boy, which causes others to join the fray in attempts to restore a peaceful atmosphere.  Instead, a fire is started that rips through the entire town, killing at least two people.  After this, which takes place in the beginning of the 19th century, more dialogue about the evils of racism enter into the text and context of the story.  In all, I don’t think the message assumed by the book summary is that actual message the author was trying to portray.  She still portrayed a good one, as life lessons about love, family, and hard work and strife are always worthy things to learn.

“Molly’s Rocker” by Susan M. Hoskins is a book that can be enjoyed by a wide audience of readers, most likely female in gender, from ages of ten to 80.  Since the book details Molly’s entire life, there is something to appeal to readers of all aspects of life.  Young and old, innocent and wise all have something to learn from the prose.

– reviewed by Megan Weiss on Reader Views

Other Reviews

“Molly’s Rocker” by Susan M. Hoskins is a beautiful narrative about the courageous and inspirational Molly Fry. Molly endured more in her lifetime than most people ever experience, yet she persevered with dignity and grace, a loving heart, and a gentle soul. Molly was truly a woman ahead of her time and “Molly’s Rocker” is a brilliant testament to her life.

The author and her husband Larry discover Molly’s rocker one day while cleaning out the attic. Molly is Larry’s grandson and the son of Molly’s youngest daughter, Tula Mary. Larry remembers his grandmother coming to live with them after a fire destroyed her home. The rocker was the only thing to survive the fire. After seeing the rocker, Larry remembers some old tapes, narrated by his grandmother when she lived with them. These tapes provide precious insight into Molly’s life and the life of Elijah Fry, and how a twist of fate brought the couple together.

Growing up on a Kentucky tobacco farm in the late 1800s, Molly has to quit school at a very early age to care for her family when her mother is taken by consumption. As the new woman of the house, Molly implements some radical changes regarding the roles of males and females and vows to run the farm as an equal to her pa. The reader sees glimpses of Molly’s independent nature and impartiality early on in the story, and when she takes a stand with her father, insisting that women and men should eat at the same time (as opposed to the females waiting for their men-folk to finish their meals), I knew I was going to enjoy learning more about her. One of my favorite lines in the book is Molly’s declaration, “I wasn’t sure what would become of me as the years went by, but there was one thing I knew for sure that night. I was never gonna eat cold eggs again.” Don’t you just love her?!

Readers also learn the story of Elijah Fry, who comes to be Molly’s husband, by what can only be deemed as providence. Though Elijah has a rough start in life, he flourishes under the loving upbringing of his aunt and uncle, becoming a respected member of the community. His tragic past leaves him with trust issues however, and his only real friend is Henry Jackson, the son of former slaves.

Elijah and Molly raise a family, and have a successful tobacco farm. Life is good for awhile, until an unforeseen tragedy leaves Molly and Henry Jackson in dire straits. The two pool their resources to make ends meet, and their friendship causes quite a stink with the bigots and small-minded members of the community. Molly once again shows courage and integrity in the face of those trying to drive them out of town.

This story is absolutely amazing! It encompasses so many issues that are sadly, still relevant today. From feminist issues to racial tensions, the author manages to cover some serious ground in a seamless, thoughtful read.

Whenever I read historical fiction I get so wrapped up in the lives of the characters that I want to know everything about them. Where they lived, environmental conditions, cooking methods used, along with popular food items of the period, clothing styles, education – you name it, I want to know about it. Hoskins has excelled in writing a novel that authentically depicts every aspect of the time period. The characters have depth and integrity, and the dialogue is dead on, taking the reader straight back to another time, place and century. I contentedly imagined myself walking amongst the characters as I was reading.

I am truly in awe of “Molly’s Rocker” by Susan M. Hoskins. Imagine love inspiring a story through an old rocking chair that almost founds its way to a local flea market. I highly recommend this book to fans of historical fiction, coming of age stories, and those wanting to experience the life and times of a different era.

 – reviewed by Sheri Hoyte for Reader Views

I wasn’t quite sure this book was the genre I was looking for. I had read a few of this author’s other mysteries and this did not sound anything like them. I quickly found myself absorbed into the very fabric and folksy details of Molly and her circle of family and friends lives. It was a captivating read . It was interesting to watch Molly through the years affect her family. This is a book that has a few book club discussion questions to mull over a few cups of coffee.

– reviewed on Amazon by T. Packer

I loved this book. It reminded me of The Little House on the Prairie. It is set in the late 1800s around Elizabethtown, Kentucky. It’s based on real people and places, but the author has taken license to invent a storyline and create characters that enhance the tale. In one sense it is old-fashioned; yet, it deals with controversial issues that we still face today. I really liked the dialect that comes from the mouths of some characters. I find it difficult to enter into some fiction, but this one got me. I was close to tears several times. The author writes with an authentic voice that drew me into the scenes. It’s an adult book; but middle school kids would probably enjoy it (though it does deal with some adult matters). I had read one of the author’s previous novels–of the thriller genre, so I knew she could write. Molly’s Rocker was a joy to read.

 – reviewed on Amazon by E. W. McLaughlin

Book Trailer


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From the Archives: A Reader Views Book Awards Retrospective (#2)

Welcome back to our Tuesday segment, where we’ll be revisiting some of our most popular posts from the last few years.  What’s stayed the same?  And what’s changed?  We’ll be updating you on the facts, and taking a new (and hopefully refreshing) angle on a few timeless classics of Self Publishing Advisor.

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[ Originally posted: April 5th, 2016 ]

This week we will be leaping off of the platform we set last week, in which we took a look back in our archives at a number of posts related to the Reader Views Literary Awards.  As of last week, the Reader Views Awards committee had revealed its finalists, and this week they have released the winning titles for the 2015-2016 round to their website.  We will not rehash last week’s post, but we will build upon it:

 

readerviews

Last week, I wrote about how the Reader Views Literary Awards are not just for authors, but for readers, too–and this week, with the announcement of not just its finalists but its winners, I can’t help but think how right I was.  (I’m working on humility, too, I promise!)

The award categories are as follows:

  • Children, from toddlers through 5 years of age
  • Children, from 6 to 8 years of age
  • Children, from 8 to 12 years of age
  • Teens, from 12 to 16 years of age
  • Teens, from 16 to 18 years of age
  • Body, Mind, & Spirit
  • Business, Sales & Economics
  • Fantasy
  • Gay, Lesbian & Erotic Novels
  • General Fiction Novels
  • Graphic Novels & Short Stories
  • Health & Fitness
  • Historical Fiction
  • Humor
  • Ebooks
  • Memoir, Autobiography & Biography
  • Mystery, Thriller, Suspense & Horror
  • Poetry
  • Religion
  • Romance
  • Science Fiction
  • Self Help
  • Societal Issues & Spirituality
  • Travel
  • Classics
  • Regional
  • Global

And if that wasn’t enough reading for the awards committee to knock out, there are also fourteen (fourteen!) special individual awards.  If I had to pick five of the books that particularly pique my interest, they would be:

As Executive VP for Outskirts Press, I’m always excited to see so many of our books in the winner’s list.  This year, there are twelve.  (Twelve!)  But really, I’m mostly just honored that my company has attracted people of such talent, and I’m equally excited to pick up the other award winners to get a peek at what great company they keep.  The Reader Views Literary Awards just keep getting better and better, year by year.  Kudos to you, Reader Views!  (I promise to stop fangirling now.  Just for a minute or two.)10:00 AM

Thanks for reading.  If you have any other ideas, I’d love to hear them.  Drop me a line in the comments section below and I’ll respond as quickly as I can.  ♠

KellyABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com.

From the Archives: A Reader Views Book Awards Retrospective

Welcome back to our Tuesday segment, where we’ll be revisiting some of our most popular posts from the last few years.  What’s stayed the same?  And what’s changed?  We’ll be updating you on the facts, and taking a new (and hopefully refreshing) angle on a few timeless classics of Self Publishing Advisor.

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[ Originally posted: March 16th, 2009 ]

Last week Reader Views announced the official winners of their 2008 Literary Awards and just in time for National Reading Month.

The Reader Views annual literary awards were established to honor writers whoself-published or had their books published by a subsidy publisher, small press, university press, or independent book publisher geared for the North American reading audience.

If you’re looking for something good to read this month, why not try one of these award winning books: Click here to view Reader Views winners.

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[ Originally posted: November 14th, 2012 ]

As a self-publishing author, it is important to constantly market your book and improve your credibility. One of the best ways to accomplish both of those tasks is entering your book into contests. Winning awards shows potential readers that your book is worthwhile and that you are a serious author, and it often results in great publicity as well. One of my favorite book award contests for self publishing authors is the Reader Views Literary Book Award. Here are all of the details.

What is the Reader Views Literary Book Award?

The annual literary awards were established to honor writers who self-publishedor who had their books published by a subsidy publisher, small press, university press, or independent book publisher.  POD books are accepted.

Who is eligible?

Reader Views Literary Awards are open to all authors  regardless of residency; however, the books must be published in the English language and targeted for the North American market. Works published by major book publishers are not eligible.  Books must  have a 2012 copyright date.  Submission for more than one category or more than one title is acceptable.  Books that have racist themes will be not be accepted.

Three finalists will be chosen in each fiction and non-fiction category. First and second place winners will be awarded in each category. Third place will receive an honorable mention. One finalist, the top score in each area, will be chosen in each regional and global category. Each winner will receive a certificate.

Finalists will be announced in Reader Views’ weekly e-mail newsletter on March 4, 2013 and the winners on March 25, 2013.

For more information, visit http://readerviews.com/Awards.html.

I’d love to know, have you entered your book into the Reader Views Literary Awards before or are you planning to do so this year? Tell us about it in the comments below.

Well, it’s that time of year: Reader Views have released their list of finalists for their 2015/16 Literary Book Awards, with winners and placements to be announced in upcoming weeks.

readerviews

We’ve been following Reader Views and the awards in question for some time, as you’ll see in the first post above, which ran on Self-Publishing Advisor back in 2009.  We’ve kept up with them, too, and in 2012 I took a moment to break down what, exactly, the awards are all about.  (Hint: You.)  And the good news is, in the interim Reader Views has kept up its good work, delivering year after year of high-quality indie finalists for their subscribers to discover and enjoy.  Books appearing in the final rounds of competition see, as a matter of course, spikes in popularity and sales–and this is exactly the kind of exposure that you should pursue as a part of your holistic marketing strategy!

It’s for Authors

Luckily, submitting your book for consideration remains as easy in 2016 as it was in 2009 and 2012, and all the information you might need to do so can be found at the Reader Views website, under the “Literary Awards” tab.  Submission dates change from year to year, of course, so it’s always worth double-checking what this year’s requirements are (particularly if you’re a time-traveler and stumble across this in some other year than 2016)!

It’s for Readers, Too

That’s right!  As I’ve already mentioned, the exposure finalists and winners alike receive throughout the submission and consideration process reaps all sorts of rewards for authors–but it has a wonderful side-effect of benefiting readers of indie and self-published works in equal share.  How?  First and foremost, the competition generates lists.  Several lists!  Lists of nominees, lists of finalists, and lists of winners and their placements.  Each list serves as a siren call to readers looking for something new to add to their to-read bookshelves and to their Amazon shopping carts. By raising awareness about such a carefully curated list of high-quality indie works, Reader Views broadens the discerning reader’s horizons.

It’s Worth a Look

A lot of book awards are the province of institutionalized hierarchies enforced and policed by the traditional publishing industry–but Reader Views is something else altogether.  In the spirit of discovering the undiscovered, recognizing the unrecognized, and treasuring the undervalued, the Reader Views Literary Book Awards filter through the noise of a crowded self-publishing market to find the very best of the best–and then they present their findings to the public, free of charge and free of any agenda other than celebrating the good work done by good authors.  That’s an agenda I can get behind–and I think you can, too!

Thanks for reading.  If you have any other ideas, I’d love to hear them.  Drop me a line in the comments section below and I’ll respond as quickly as I can.  ♠

KellyABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com.

2013 Book Award Season

It’s that time of year again. No, I’m not talking about the holidays. I’m talking about book award season, one of the most exciting times of year for self-published authors.

Over the next couple months, some of the most popular book award programs will be accepting submissions for books self-published in 2013. Here is an overview of some of the upcoming awards.

Reader Views: December 1, 2013

Works published by major book publishers are not eligible. Books must have 2013 copyright date. Authors are encouraged to submit their entries as soon as possible but postmarked no later than December 1, 2013. To learn more, visit http://readerviews.com/literaryawards/.

Ben Franklin Book Award: December 31, 2013

The IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards, which include fifty-five categories recognizing excellence in book editorial and design, are regarded as one of the highest national honors for independent publishers.Any books submitted with copyright dates other than 2013 must be accompanied with proof of initial distribution  in the year 2013. The deadline is December 31, 2013. To learn more, visit http://ibpabenjaminfranklinawards.com/.

ForeWord Book Award: January 15, 2014

Any independently published titles in any format—including eBooks—published in 2013 are eligible. New editions of previously issued books are eligible with newly issued ISBNs. Submissions must be postmarked no later than January 15, 2014. To learn more, visit https://www.forewordreviews.com/services/book-awards/botya/.

I’d love to know, which contests are you submitting your book to this book award season?

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog at http://kellyschuknecht.com.

Self Publishing Author Contest: Reader Views Literary Book Award 2012

As a self-publishing author, it is important to constantly market your book and improve your credibility. One of the best ways to accomplish both of those tasks is entering your book into contests. Winning awards shows potential readers that your book is worthwhile and that you are a serious author, and it often results in great publicity as well. One of my favorite book award contests for self publishing authors is the Reader Views Literary Book Award. Here are all of the details.

What is the Reader Views Literary Book Award?

The annual literary awards were established to honor writers who self-published or who had their books published by a subsidy publisher, small press, university press, or independent book publisher.  POD books are accepted.

Who is eligible?

Reader Views Literary Awards are open to all authors  regardless of residency; however, the books must be published in the English language and targeted for the North American market. Works published by major book publishers are not eligible.  Books must  have a 2012 copyright date.  Submission for more than one category or more than one title is acceptable.  Books that have racist themes will be not be accepted.

Three finalists will be chosen in each fiction and non-fiction category. First and second place winners will be awarded in each category. Third place will receive an honorable mention. One finalist, the top score in each area, will be chosen in each regional and global category. Each winner will receive a certificate.

Finalists will be announced in Reader Views’ weekly e-mail newsletter on March 4, 2013 and the winners on March 25, 2013.

For more information, visit http://readerviews.com/Awards.html.

I’d love to know, have you entered your book into the Reader Views Literary Awards before or are you planning to do so this year? Tell us about it in the comments below.

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog at http://kellyschuknecht.com.