NovelNook Writing Contest – Sponsored by Bellakentuky

Ramblings and a Writing Contest

“When life gets busy, sometimes you just got to strip down to your tighty-whiteys and jump into the pond!” – Kent‘s Grandma

Life has been busy for me over the last few weeks. The result of that is this post – I’m titling…

Bellakentuky’s First Ever

Super Fabulicious Flash Fiction Writing Contest

But don’t let the ridiculous title fool you!

There is some really good food for thought in this article!

I hope it will inspire you!

Today’s post is going to be an exorcism (of sorts) from me, and a writing challenge for you!

Ramblings and Challenges

Photograph by Diana Robinson

In the past week, I had two, very distinct, and quite different, memorable moments occur in my daily life. One of them was a triumph and the other an utter defeat.

The Triumph

I have worked as a photographer for the same company for over ten years; first as the general manager at two of their locations and then later as a freelance photographer. The job has always entailed (among numerous other things) sales. When I was a younger man, I would have bet money that I would never be good at sales. But history has proven me wrong. As it turns out, I’m pretty darn good at sales. What we sell are family photographs (sometimes just their children) – portraits done on the beach here at Hilton Head Island. While this product definitely has intrinsic value, you would think that there would be a cap as to how much someone might spend on this particular product.


Photograph by Kent DuFault

Last week, I had the biggest sale of my career. It was the second largest sale in the company’s history. I’m not going to tell you how much it was, but I will tell you that it was in the five figures category. This client, and the ensuing sale came out of nowhere: they made their appointment late, had no lead time to prepare, and they almost made a decision to cancel.

But they bought, and they bought a lot. I kept waiting for the deal to fall apart, for them to change their mind, or for the credit card to be declined. These are all things that have happened to me in the past. But nothing happened. They made their decisions, their credit card went through, and when they left our office…

I was shaking, and I felt victorious!
Ramblings and Challenges

Photograph by Laura Gilmore

The Defeat

My defeat came the very same day. About six weeks ago, my wife and I adopted a puppy. She’s a cute little thing: part Chihuahua and part Boston Terrier. She’s smart. We worked with her constantly on the housebreaking, and she really seemed to be getting it. We slowly allowed her more and more leeway around the house.

Then we discovered it. She had been going in the house all along, but hiding it. What made this particularly defeating was the fact that I knew, that she knew, it was wrong. She was hiding it. Hiding it in part of the house that we rarely visit. It hurt me deep down because I’d had so much confidence in her.


The puppy is in jail. Photograph by Lisa Brandt Heckman.

Well, it’s back to square one with her.

She’s now once again confined to her pen where if she chooses to be sneaky, she has to live with it.

The Challenge

I challenge you to write a flash fiction story that incorporates the two above elements: a victory at work and a defeat at home.

These are the rules

  1. It must be 1000 words or less.
  2. It must incorporate a victory at work, and a defeat at home, into the plot.
  3. It must be edited to the best of your ability.
  4. It must be submitted by Midnight, July 15th, 2013.
  5. You must submit it to,
  6. You must submit it in the body of the email – not an attachment.
  7. You must accept the results of the contest without complaining.

These are the prizes

  1. The winning author will receive a free cover from my graphic designer wife for the writing project of their choice.
  2. The winning story will also be published on the blog on August 19, 2013.
  3. The winning story will receive a critique and an explanation as to why I chose it as the winner when it is published on the blog.
  4. The winning author will receive an Amazon Gift Card valued at $20.00 USD (for USA Amazon only)
The Fine Print
  • The cover must be redeemed by December 31, 2013.
  • This is for an electronic Ebook cover only.
  • The book cover will be produced to the cover standards as dictated by Amazon.
  • The prize includes design and illustration. If photography is requested, you will be responsible for purchasing the usage rights.
  • You will get three consultations with the graphic designer via email: An initial interview to convey your ideas, an initial proof round, a second proof round. After that, she delivers, and you take what you get.
  • All rights to your entries remain with you!! We’re asking for nothing but a good (well edited) story and first publication rights for the blog.

Second Place! Will be published on the blog on August 26, 2013 and will receive a critique by me.

Here is a sample cover that my wife produced for me. I will be publishing this book on Amazon in the near future.


Book cover by Clarisa Ponce deLeon

I look forward to reading your stories!

I am very opinionated about the craft of writing, and life in general. But… I am well-tempered with an enthusiasm for debate. Please leave comments, even the ugly ones, I dare you.

You can follow me at

Facebook     Twitter     LinkedIn     Pinterest     Amazon

I’m also an avid reader. If you desire success in your writing career, you should be too.

I’m currently reading, “Unexplained Mysteries of World War II”, by William B. Breuer

All my best on a beautiful day in South Carolina.


Part 5 – How Do I Turn This Thing On?

Publishing with Novelnook is easy and so is promoting yourself and your eBook!

In an earlier post, I showed you how to create a future eBook to create buzz. If you already have an eBook you want to publish ready to go, it’s also an easy process.


First, you will click on the “My Account” button. Then, find the “Publish!” button to the right of your screen and this will take you to the “Publish your eBook” page. Fill in all the information. You will need: Continue reading

Testimonial from Web3Box

“Novelnook, a platform for authors and writers”

Novelnook’s web development company, Web3Box, recently released an article detailing unique features and developments of our site.  We took the liberty of publishing it here all to see.  A special thanks to Web3Box and their team led by Sorin Dinca for their devoted efforts to supporting Novelnook.

Testimonials – Projects
Novelnook – It’s a no-brainer, we’re free and it takes just 10 minutes.” Yet, another challenging project developed by our team here at Web3Box Software. An interesting concept based on a prolific cooperation between Web3Box Software  and our customer, Novelnook.Based on Joomla 2.5 and Virtuemart features as well as on a specific custom coding made by Web3Box development team, Novelnook is a platform for authors and writers to publish their eBooks free of charge.

Design and Concept

Authors are able to publish their books, by chapters or entirely, at desired price. Each author can edit its own page in order to add social media links, advertise to their blogs or websites, track visitor traffic, monitor purchases, add a biography, view their points, message other users, browse various features that are unlocked with points, and more! And, all these through the Author Module developed by Web3Box Software.

Web3Box Software Web Design and Development

Right from the home page you will be able to easily access the module you’re interested in. Once you’re logged in, both as author or reader, you can check the unread messages from your inbox or to simply search for the Genre, Author or Title you’re interested in.

Another interesting module, developed with PHP and jQuery, is the slider you’ll notice right from the first visit. Here you will find newest books, featured books, featured authors or the best sellers, all in such an easy manner to look for.

Web3Box Software Web Design and Development

The featured authors can also be found in the front page in a custom developed section. This module lists up to 8 authors and provides the preferred genre of the author based on the number of the books he wrote in a specific genre. It also provides the rating the author received.

Web3Box Software Web Design and Development
Most websites view readers as customers. One of the main concepts was to involve the readers being a part of Novelnook community through a ranking system. If they want to place the ratings for the books they purchased, the readers should enter their profile, in the purchased books section, choose the book they want to rate and place any comments to the author, reviews or ratings.

Another Web3Box Software custom developed section you can find in the front page is the “New to Novelnook” module which lists the new members of the Novelnook community, both authors and readers. They can be easily identified by the “glasses” or “pencil” signs placed in front of their names.

Web3Box Software Web Design and Development

“Selling Points”

One of the selling points of this project is “the points system”, is a 100% PHP solution developed by Web3Box team which allows the authors and the readers to accumulate points based on their activity within the website like the ratings (placed or received), comments (placed or received), the books they buy and read or the books they publish.

What do points do?  They unlock a variety of features used to help authors promote and market their eBooks, you can take the benefits of having followers or so called “bookworms”, an interview on the Novelnook blog or you will receive a Novelnook social media marketing campaign. The points each reader or author collected can be seen in their private profile.

Web3Box Software Web Design and Development

Another selling point of the project is the “one move payment”. This means that a reader can buy several books at once from different authors with one payment only. Each author receives its related amount via PayPal.

Earlier we have mentioned the so called “bookworms”! What is all about? It is a custom coded module which allows the subscribers to closely follow-up all the moves of their preferred authors such as new published books or activity of the author within the site.

Web3Box Software web design and development team invites you to check the functionalities of the project we’ve developed together with our customer in order to have a clear view of the all custom components we created for this interesting and challenging project.

And remember, it takes roughly 10 minutes to sign up, submit an author application, and start uploading eBooks at Novelnook!

Novelnook on Youtube

Novelnook’s Youtube Promo

Launch date Thursday 29 Sep 2012