No, you haven’t been transported to the wrong blog. You’re in the right place…but the blog has had a little facelift. I had a couple of hours this afternoon and so I whiled it away creating a new theme for the blog – aka facelift. It seemed too close to spring for really wintery pictures and it’s still too cold here in Iowa where many of us just got a load of snow dumped on us (with more forecast for Monday and Tuesday) to go with something really springish for a theme. I ran on to this picture of a pup sleeping near the fire on iStockphoto sometime back and thought it kind of captures the cozy, warm, relaxed, comfortable feeling that a lot of us equate with winter reading so I decided to buy the photo and use it to create a theme for the blog. It reminds me a little of a theme we had at about this time last year. That one had a picture of a cat sleeping near the fire. I guess you can probably all tell, I’m an animal lover.
This week will be the last week to claim prizes from 2012. I will be taking down that list of winners the end of the week. Prizes not claimed will be forfeit forever.
Because sending prizes has always been kind of a time intensive project (when we give away a lot of prizes) I’ve generally cut back on the giveaways recently. I hate that because I generally like contests, games, fun, and giving things away. Necessity being the mother of invention, I’ve been thinking of a new way to handle prizes that I think will provide a much smoother work flow. What I’ll be doing will be creating numbered prize envelopes containing all the prizes for our giveaways…kind of like grab bags…but fully packaged and ready to send out. I will probably mark the envelopes with what is inside so that I can have some idea what we’re giving away but I may or may not announce what is in the envelope. When we have a giveaway the prize will be envelope #10 and whatever is inside it. It might be the code for a free ebook…or two…or three…or more. It might be a gift card. It might be a book cover, a bookmark, or any number of other things that I come up with when I am looking for cool things to give away. Since the envelopes will already be stuffed with the prize all I will need to do to send out the prize is address the envelope…which should be quite easy compared with the databases and lists and everything I keep now. When a prize is claimed the envelope will be marked with the winner’s email address…so I won’t need to keep an extensive list of who has won and claimed what. If you have won something, you will have an envelope with your email address on it. When you claim it the envelope will be gone and will no longer be in the box. Sound fun? I’m hoping this will make getting prizes out to winners a whole lot quicker and will allow us to have more giveaways.
Please take a moment and answer my question about whether you are more likely to enter contests when you know what the prize is or when you are entering for an unknown prize…like a grab bag. You can find the poll on our Facebook page. Please be sure to like us while you are there…and don’t forget to add us to an interest list so you can follow all our posts and enter the contests we may have there from time to time.
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