But I wonder about some of these contests. Specifically ones in which the judges are readers. You know the type, readers vote online for the the best book out of a group of entries. The book with the most votes wins. Simple. And yet not so.
Often, a writer will call upon their friends and associates to help them out by voting. Which is fine. Unless these people haven't read the book. Unless they are simply voting to help a friend. On the other hand, if all writers do this then what's the harm? But are these contests really a reflection of the best book, or of the writer who has the most friends?
Does it matter? Should we care? And as a writer, is this a hollow victory? Would you, as a writer, be happy winning a contest knowing that your friends and associates put you there? Or would you rather win based on the votes of total strangers?