Last spring I entered my first (and only-finished-so-far-personal-labor-of-love) book in the Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards for 2016. Alas, I did not win. Not that I expected to, but I thought it would be worth a shot, you know – to take advantage of the opportunities that arise, eh? The truth is, even with little hope or expectation, I was still disappointed. The life of a writer…
But then something AMAZING happened!
Yesterday I received a review from them – on my very personal book, “You Are Forgiven.”
They marked me with all 4’s out of 5’s. Yes, folks – that’s a 4-star review from a monolith in my industry! They are the same people that produce the Writer’s Market, which most writers have a copy of on their shelves somewhere. They opened their doors in 1920, so they know their stuff.
Needless to say, I am thrilled and feel validated. (They are back on the nice list too!) And, of course I will be fixing the typo they caught!
So thank you, Anonymous Judge, for the book review you sent me from Writer’s Digest!
And…here it is, folks!
Citing: WD “Judge, 24th Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards.”
“Entry Title You Are Forgiven
Author: D. M. Paul
Judge Number: 39
Entry Category: Inspirational
Books are evaluated on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 meaning “needs improvement” and 5 meaning “outstanding
Structure, Organization, and Pacing: 4
Spelling, Punctuation, and Grammar: 4
Production Quality and Cover Design: 4
Plot and Story Appeal: 4
Character Appeal and Development: 4
Voice and Writing Style: 4
The author demonstrates an impressive familiarity with and grasp of Scripture, and it’s very clear that faith is very important to this author. Reader feels that strength of belief and competency in wisdom, feeling immediately well-led in this journey. The opening, questioning why people ignore signs from God is an effective and engaging one, allowing the reader to connect not only to his or her penchant for expecting, hoping for and possibly demanding signs from God, but also to explore if and why we may ignore them when we get them. An excellent engagement section here for the reader. We are drawn in. Watch out for sections of ‘telling,’ not ‘showing’ – I spotted many sections here in which the author summarizes something that happened, scenes that would have come more to life with dialogue, action, reaction, thoughts and other scene-setting. Watch out for typos: on page 27, ‘Grow Growing into adulthood…’ Author’s writing voice is friendly and welcoming, yet still informative. Well done. I enjoyed the action statements, such as listening to Christian music only for a period of time, to assess one’s own personal effects. Well done. Author has a nice balance of insight and action here. There is comfort here in the book, some very unique insights on perennial interpretation challenges, and moments of great connection.”