Thursday, May 5, 2011

Kraken Comments Dive Deep!

You know, it’s been a good week for my “Where Did The Kraken Go?” contest. I wanted to chat a bit about how wonderful it is to see how the imagination soars when challenged to wins something neat.

Is it like this with writing contests? Is it the glory of having some wondrous bit of bling to attach to the badge at the next conference? The better to dazzle the newbies in the elevators as they crane their necks, trying to read your name and identify the blitz or bling – does any of that mean you are somebody they should know and kowtow to?

(I’ve actually been tempted to buy some small pins and attach them all over, just to play with people. “OH, that? I won that for the best kiss-off scene. And that one? Best use of a kraken in a contemporary setting, from the Tortuga chapter of the RWA.”)

Is it the prize money, not the bling? Not that most contests offer much in the way off monetary glory. And most contests I see on Facebook are all about gift cards.

Now, okay, we know it’s often the prize judges. I couldn’t offer up any sort of sooper-dooper prize judges when I needed to rally some interest in my contest.

So, I resorted to bribes. Hey, selling books is about the writing, but to begin with, it’s about the readers. Actually, it’s always about the readers and getting the readers to notice the flowers with the right sort of pollen.

My pollen is a Sony Pocket Reader. For starters. And a Kraken Parasol. And a cool Betsy Johnson ‘octopus’ ring. I also will be giving away some e-books, handmade pirate perch hats, and kraken bling. Now, on Sunday the captain commented on how much all this must be costing me.

BWAH HA HA! I am a shopping genius and all I can say is this…not as much as you might think. (I’m a little worried about the postage when I award these puppies…but it’s a contest, I’m not going to limit it to the US. I’ll worry about that bridge when I come to it.)

You know, I’m off track here… Let me see… Oh, yeah! About how imaginative the comments have been! All for the sake of the bling and swag or is it because we all love a chance to stretch our minds and come up with some wild-assed ideas? Or to use my favorite image, strap those wings to the ass and leap off the cliff.

I imagine writing contests are a bit different…you need to polish and shine those entries. They are so much more restrictive than the wild whoopee leaps a fast writing challenge gives. We’ve seen it here on the blog, when the Captain challenged us to spin a story from a fast lead… And Sin-sister did a good job on Wednesday with the Q&A stuff.

I might enter more contests if they were the let ‘em rip blips. Like a make-up-a-title contest. Or throw-together-a-premise contest. A blurb contest. (For a book that isn’t written and probably won’t be written…) You know, goofing off! ;-)

What spins you up? You ever take a flash writing challenge and let it rip? And actually find it useful with the WIP? (I did!)


And those who follow the links… Yes, you can post another guess at where my Kraken went and be entered into the contest! Come Sunday, I’ll be talking the contest again and sharing my favorite guess at the Kraken’s whereabouts…and award a prize! My blog is up and running and collecting comments also!



Quantum said...

Chance, you're turning into quite the sales guru as well as being a stunning author. . . Darn it, Silvestri actually had me blushing in the Kraken's mirror, even though I was reading it in secret! :shock:

I ask myself "Is there nothing this woman can't do?"!

Regarding the cost of prizes, I can only quote my old maths professor as he tried to flog his text book:
"It's a small price for a successful career!" :lol:

I do enjoy a writing contest if it doesn't soak up too much of my time. I used to contribute a weekly story in the drabble contests on EJ/JQ BB and in Janga's occasional short story contests.

When I beat the Bosun once, I was over the moon for a week. Yep, I think it must be the glory that drives me, as well as the scotch I consume while competing. :lol:

Donna said...

Chance, I'm glad it's been so successful. :)

I think your prizes are great, however I was motivated by the challenge of coming up with a bit that I found entertaining. I guess it was the mind stretch aspect that appealed to me.

And the novella I just finished was actually inspired by the flash-fiction-ish thing I had on my blog last fall -- the one where everyone wrote a little story based on the puppy and the ball. I took my bit and turned it into a novella. :) So that was definitely worthwhile!

Bosun said...

Donna - I loved the puppy prompt and how very different all the versions were. Go you on turning your fun riff into a novella.

Bosun said...

Q - I am honored to be the measuring stick against which you gleam your glory. I still get a kick out of knowing I beat several others who are now multi-pubbed. LOL! Though the fact that I am not means they get the last laugh! And the glory.

I was just talking to a coworker about soomething similar this morning. While I was working on my college degree, I was receiving tuition reimbursements from my employer. In order to receive the full reimbursement, I needed a grade no lower than a B. Thanks to that motivation, I graduated Magna Cum Laude. I shudder to think where I would have graduated without that incentive. LOL!

As for contests, I'm considering entering for two reasons. One is to get my work before specific final judges. The other is the chance to say I finaled (or placed!) in such and such contest on my query letter. Let's face it, that's a resume and every little bit helps.

As for your contest, there were also two reasons. One - it's fun! Fun should not be undervalued. Two - I LOVE that parasol. LOL! And it would be great to give kiddo the pocket Sony.

Marnee said...

I'm glad this is a success too, Chance! I had fun thinking up a couple of different options. LOL!!

And your prizes are tempting, for sure. :) Hope you get some traffic because of the contest.

2nd Chance said...

Q - Sounds like the sort of contest I might be able to sink my teeth into! A fast and short challenge just for the fun and glory...

Silvestri is making you blush? Huzzah! ;-)

2nd Chance said...

Donna - I remember that bit of flash fiction! So, that is pretty cool that it inspired you to write more. Something about a puppy and a ball...very hard to just walk away!

2nd Chance said...

Bo'sun - I think most of us will rise to meet a challenge when there are specific rewards to truly inspire us.

As we chatted yesterday about deadlines and the like...those things really do nudge us with more effect than we might think!

Glad to hear the prizes are providing incentive!

2nd Chance said...

Marn - I got some fast response on Sunday, but not much most of the week. But I figure when I guest places or post on the Revenge, that's when I'll get the traffic...

You've come up with some cute ideas!

And Q - Marketing genius? Well, we'll see at the end of the month how that goes!

2nd Chance said...

Hmmm. Much the same way this blog is going...some fast comments and then it dies... Hope it will pick up later...

Bosun said...

It's been slow all week. Maybe it's the weather? Too nice to stay inside on the computer. I'm stuck in the office, of course, but no motivation to actually do work. LOL!

Janga said...

You're the resident promo genius, Chance. I love the "Where's the Kraken?" contest. It's imaginative, fun, and incentive-rich. I plan to enter. I'm still thinking.

Readers like winning free stuff. You can see it on blogs. Even when the prize is only a free book, lots more people post.

2nd Chance said...

Janga...remember, you can enter more than once... so if you come up with a good one, then a better one...just enter again!

And thanks...had to make lemonade out of that lemon of losing my tentacle!

Hellion said...

I am digging this contest. :) Admittedly the Kindle type contest sends me running to participate.

You have had a lot of great comments this week; everyone has been very clever, I think!

Sorry I've been absent. I have my nieces (23 & 4) with me and we went to the park to play. You know when you go to the park with bubbles, you are VERY popular with the packs of kids.

2nd Chance said...

You have a 23 year old niece who like bubbles? ;-) She from California?

Hee, hee.

I know, 2, 3 and 4... ;-)

Hellion said...

Please. Absolutely not would *I* be out with a 2, 3, & 4 year old children. I have a 4 year old great-niece and a 23 year old niece who gave birth to the 4 year old. I am out with both today; and I assure you we all love the bubbles. But at the park, there were all these school kids and they saw we had bubbles and they swarmed on us, wanting to share. So we did.

P. Kirby said...

Hmmmm. I like bubbles and haven't seen 23 in a few decades. Just sayin'.

I'm not much good at writing prompts, writing challenges, etc. I have a stupid subconscious hangup about it not being my idea. This also spills over into art and commissions. Commissions are great. Guaranteed money! But I struggle with them because my bratty inner child is screaming, "No, no, no. Don't wanna. Wanna work on my ideas! Wah!" Sigh. So stupid.

Happy Friday!

2nd Chance said...

Ah, I wondered 'bout you for a moment, Cap'n! Three little ones that young would certainly challenge anyone... With or without bubbles.

I like bubbles, too, Pat. So do my dog and cat. And my catsitter plays with catnip bubbles with my cat. (My cat dreams of running away and living with my catsitter...)

I'm always willing to play with writing prompts. Not serious ones, to be perfectly honest, but give me a goof-mood inducing one and I'm off. I especially like to make up blurbs for non-existant books. Scifi, paranormals and really stange erotic ones are the most fun!


Quantum said...

Terri: I still get a kick out of knowing I beat several others who are now multi-pubbed. LOL! Though the fact that I am not means they get the last laugh! And the glory.

Not YET Terri.
"The carnival isn't over until the fat lady sings"
It's only a matter of time!

In England a pub is a place to drink beer and scotch. So multi-pubbed has a special colloquial meaning for me. 8)

Hmmmm. I like bubbles and haven’t seen 23 in a few decades. Just sayin’.


I was sitting by a lake this afternoon watching trout just below the surface. They were blowing bubbles!

I wonder if the kraken blows bubbles using sea weed slime.

Silvestri is making you blush? Huzzah! ;-)
I saw that your books have a heat rating of 4. Can they possibly get any hotter?
If so I'm gonna get extra ice for my scotch! :lol:

2nd Chance said...

Great guns, Q! I like that idea of multi-pubbed!

And yes, my publisher has a 5 star heat rating...