What? You didn’t know? You haven’t seen it tweeted, FaceBooked, haven't read a blog about it, or or caught it flashing in multiple sidebars? Where have you been? Just kidding. The information I’m about to unveil doesn’t exist out there. The great “not contest” of 2010 resides right here on Middle Passages Lane.
Call the following a demonstration of gratitude, though the term “not contest” has more pizzazz than a boring old “thank you”--and seeing by the time most of you read this, it will be my birthday, na, na, na, na, na, na, I get to name this particular celebration in blog-land whatever I want. So there.
Hmmm. Confused? Don’t blame you. Need me to elucidate? Sure, I can do that.
Look at my sidebar. Believe it or not, the feet-dragging tortoise that is the number of Middle Passages followers, finally managed to lumber over 100 before the author stiffened from arthritis and was forced to check into a nursing home. I know, as I write this, the number is actually 101, but one of those followers is me. Don’t bother asking how I managed to follow my own blog because I’m clueless and since I don’t know how I did it in the first place, I sure as heck don’t know how to undo it. If you do, please share. Anyway, I digress.
Apparently it’s de rigueur to hold a contest now that I’ve reached 100 followers, or have written my 368th post, or tapped three times on the window, and, in so doing, I should ask my current readers to blog, FaceBook and Tweet about said contest, so that by this time next week, Middle Passages will have 200 followers all eying "the prize.” Most times, I’m all about conformity, but here I demur, cuz folks, slow and steady and all that, ey wot? And besides, I like readers who aren’t in it for the give-aways. You know, the ones that actually stick around and, um, read?
Don’t get me wrong; I’m grateful for every Middle Passage follower and commenter, but the bulk of the credit for my forward momentum over the last year goes to several loyal, helpful and inspiring individuals through whose caring comments, I continue to grow as a writer.
Thus my “not contest”--structured to reward any three readers who meet simple guidelines, but statistically weighted toward those who have been commenting since the beginning, or, ahem, since last August, which was when I finally began to receive comments on a regular basis.
As such, behold the “not selection process” which, since I get to make the rules, has already occurred:
• I tallied up every Middle Passages comment since August 1, 2009 and July 21, 2010 (Here is where you are invited to say: “Get a life, Liza.”)
• and, entered anyone who commented over five times during that period.
• Every comment equaled one chance. For example, if you commented 27 times over the specified time period, imagine 27 raffle tickets with your name on them, added to a drawing.
Three “not winners” were selected in an unscientific process today--i.e., my daughter shook up a container filled with white slips of paper with names printed on them, closed her eyes and pulled out three.
Now, we get to the fun part.
What is a “not contest” if it doesn’t offer “not prizes?” Not much, right?
So here’s the deal. Each “not winner” will not receive...just kidding again, they will receive one of the following three books, all of which by the way, I have not read.
1) The Pocket Muse. Ideas & Inspirations for Writing, by Monica Wood
2) The Faith of a Writer. Life, Craft, Art, by Joyce Carol Oats
3) The Courage to Write (How Writers Transcend Fear), by Ralph Keyes
The first prize winner will select their choice of books. The second prize winner chooses next, and the third prize winner will receive the remaining book. Clear enough?
Now, a drum roll, please.
The winners are:
First Prize: Jody Hedlund of Author Jody Hedlund.
Second Prize: Glenn from Differences with the Same Likeness
Third Prize: Tabitha Bird from Through My Eyes.
Jody, may I ask you to please email me with your book selection and an address where you would like it sent? Tabitha and Glenn, please email me your 1st, 2nd, and 3rd preferences in books. Depending on which book Jody chooses, I’ll do my best to honor your choices and if you also, would send addresses to my email, I’ll mail your books off to you. Tab, I’m fine with the overseas deal.
I hope this “not contest” helps in some way to convey my appreciation to all of you who read Middle Passages. Aside from the three folks above, there are 32 other readers who have offered consistent feedback; some over long months and some more recently. I know too, there is a quiet group in the background cheering me on. You all know who you are. In my mind, every one of you is a first place winner.