First, I want to thank Suzie Townsend (agent at Fine Print Literary) for not only taking the time to read my blog post yesterday, but for commenting as well. She also tweeted her appreciation (for the blog or the video, I’m not sure which), and that made my day.
My day was further made when Kathleen Ortiz (agent at Lowenstein Associates) tweeted that she thought the blog/video was “pretty fabulous.”
I know it’s polite to praise someone when they do something you think is good, but really, winning the contest was sufficient praise of my efforts. Tweeting and commenting on my blog went beyond polite and into, “Gee, that’s really nice!” And for that, I want to recognize these two “really good people.”
I am also going to recognize the people over at WEbook as being “good people” too. Somewhere around a week ago, they announced a $1000 cash prize for the highest rated page on Page to Fame, and while this sounds great, it seems to have an unfortunate side effect. People want money; especially *free* money. What was once a competition based entirely on individual effort is now a comparision between individuals, and what sort of methods come to hand if you want your page to have better ratings than others?
Yup, you guessed it. The ratings on my page took a huge hit. Where I have consistently scored 3s, 4s, and 5s, I am now scoring 1s and 2s. I reached 160+ ratings with only one 1, and suddenly I wake up and I have 4 of them. Not cool. I posed the question on their forum to see if anyone else was experiencing the same shift in ratings, and several people have agreed that this is not an isolated phenomena.
You may be wondering what the WEbook people did to make it into the “good people” category when their actions appear to have caused me grief. Well, you see, I also tweeted my concern about the plummeting ratings and they contacted me to find out what was going on. (Yes, WEbook follows ME on twitter, not the other way around. ) I explained my situation, and when I checked in on my submission later in the day, I found that at least 4 ratings had been removed – all of which were 1s, 2s, and 3s. While this doesn’t completely remediate the damage done, it certainly helped. I felt my concerns were heard, and I appreciated the gesture.
Will it stop bad ratings from coming in again? Probably not. Besides, someone out there rated my page as a 1 long before the cash prize was announced, so it’s possible others feel the same way. As much as my ego would love for them to remove ALL the low ratings, I know that is neither fair, accurate, nor realistic.
The WEbook people are “good people” today because they listened to my concerns and made an effort to address them. Way to go WEbook!
Tomorrow I will post about all the nifty things I’m learning about pitching a novel to an agent or editor at a conference. I’m picking up the theory because this is what I want to talk about during my Skype chat, and I don’t want to spend time covering the basics. If I can learn it ahead of time, I can use the agents’ expert advice on how to refine and improve my pitch rather than have them tell me what a pitch is.
From beyond the keyboard,