The 2023 POLAR BEAR PLUNGE Reading Challenge will run January 18–31, 2023
The Polar Bear Plunge is an annual Reading Challenge that takes place every January. This is a month-long challenge, where participants read and review as many qualifying books as they can.
Daily winners are chosen using the Rafflecopter system of earning points. More points = more chances to win free books provided by sponsors (that would be you).
Reading Challenge participants earn DOUBLE POINTS by reading sponsoring books!
Application Deadline: January 14, 2023
Fee Payment Deadline: January 16, 2023
BOOK ELIGIBILITY DETAILS
To be eligible as a prize for the Polar Bear Plunge your book must be:
- Fiction only (novels, novellas, or anthologies). No picture books, children’s chapter books, poetry, or memoirs.
- For Middle Grade, Young Adult, or Adult readers.
- Written or co-written by an LDS author.
- Full-length novel, novella, and/or anthology at 90 pages or more. No short stories or novelettes.
- Available as print and/or ebook (both .mobi AND .epub options). You may also offer an audible book.
- FINAL version of the book that is currently available for sale. No ARCs. No pre-release/uncorrected galleys.
- Available for purchase or pre-order on Amazon.com. (This is to help YOU with sales.)
- At least 10 reviews on Amazon, with a 4-star or above average rating. (See exceptions under Quality Check.)
- Rated on My Book Ratings. This is a FREE service (you do NOT need to get the paid version) and it helps match readers with content preferences. (If you need help with the form, click here for step-by-step instructions.)
- Meet any additional eligibility requirements in the specific promotional option (see below)
Before completing the form, you MUST have a MyBookRatings.com rating.
There are TWO types of promotional opportunities available during the Polar Bear Plunge.
If you put your book in an option for which it does not qualify, I will contact you about changing it.
1. Reading Challenge Rafflecopter Giveaway
This giveaway is conducted using points earned through a Rafflecopter form. Prizes are displayed on the Prize Page.
- $5 per book, plus a copy of your book sent directly to the winner.
- Original release date between January 1, 2021 through January 1, 2023. (That is, no more than 2 years old.)
What You Get: For the Rafflecopter option, your book will be posted on the Prize Page (with links to Amazon) during the entirety of the challenge. Your book will receive promo posts on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram. Links to the challenge will be included in my weekly newsletters and on my social media on a regular basis, before and during the challenge.
What You Do: If accepted, you will provide one copy of your book as a prize in the Rafflecopter giveaway. Winners may choose their book from the Prize Page. When your book is chosen, I will forward the winner’s contact information to you. You (or your publisher) are expected to send the book directly to the winner in a timely manner.
2. FACEBOOK GROUP GIVEAWAY—FOR OLDER OR BRAND NEW BOOKS
(Limited to 10 books this year)
This giveaway is conducted in the Storytellers in Zion Readers Facebook group. Not all members of the Facebook group participate in the Rafflecopter portion of the reading challenge, but their comments and posts in this group get your name and book in front of more people. This also keeps the energy going and draws more attention to the official reading challenge. We give away 1 book a day, Mon–Sat during the challenge.
**This is a great option for older books OR for books released during the reading challenge.
- $5 per book, plus a copy of your book sent directly to the winner.
- Release date before January 1, 2021 or during January 2023; must be live or on pre-order on Amazon before your assigned date for the giveaway.
What You Get: For the Facebook option, your book will be featured in the Facebook group on a specific day, along with a challenge for group members. (See example). Post will include an image of your book and a link to it on Amazon.
What You Do: If accepted, you will provide one copy of your book as a prize in the giveaway. A comment on your post will be randomly selected. I will forward the winner contact information to you. You (or your publisher) are expected to send the book directly to the winner in a timely manner.
Free Spots: On Saturdays during January, we do an “everybody wins” post for a book that’s free on Amazon. If you are running a free promo on your book on a Saturday during the reading challenge (there are 2 this year), let me know right away. There is no fee for these spots and they fill up fast.
APPLICATION & ACCEPTANCE PROCESS
To apply to be a sponsor of the Polar Bear Plunge, you need to:
- Read this page carefully—in its entirety! Failure to do so may result in rejection of your application.
- Use the links above to go to the Polar Bear Plunge Application Form.
- Submit your application form(s) by January 14, 2023.
- Submit one form for each title/promo.
- Application does not guarantee acceptance. All applications will be submitted to a quality check and all decisions are final.
- Acceptance will be emailed by January 15, 2023 and will include instructions for paying the fee via PayPal. (Multiple accepted applications will be included in the same invoice. Payments will be processed through the InkSplasher PayPal account.)
- Payment must be received by January 16, 2023.
- As soon as payment is received, your social media promo will be scheduled. Promos will start as early as January 4, 2023. The sooner you pay, the earlier your promos will begin.
We want prize winners to be pleased with the books they receive. When poorly written and/or formatted books are given as prizes, or when prizes are not delivered to the winner in a timely manner, it decreases enthusiasm for future giveaways and diminishes the effectiveness of other author/book promotions.
- Every submission will be reviewed by a committee before acceptance. Preference is given to books with professional look to the cover design and formatted interiors, as well as quality writing.
- Submission does not mean automatic acceptance as a sponsor.
- Using the book sample available on Amazon, a committee will do a spot check on each submission for book cover, internal design, and writing level. Books don’t have to be perfect and we’re not looking at stylistic preferences, but each title should meet minimum reader expectations for a published book.
- We will also read a few reviews, at all star levels. The content of the review is more important than the actual star level given. (Don’t worry, we can tell the difference between a thoughtful reviewer and trolls.)
- We understand that brand new books may not have many reviews. Exceptions will be made for authors who have a backlist of published books with good reviews, authors who have done well in our previous reading challenges or giveaways, or if a trusted reader has given it a good review.
- We also understand that some authors have many family and friends who 5-star their books regardless of the actual quality or content. Despite the average rating of your book, it may not be accepted if responses to your giveaway in previous challenges have been negative or if a trusted reader has given it a poor review.
- If your application is not accepted, we will notify you.
SPONSORING FINE PRINT
Please read carefully. By submitting any application, you agree to be bound by the following:
- Prize must be the FINAL version of the book that is currently available for sale. No ARCs. No pre-release/uncorrected galleys.
- Prizes may be either print (shipped to U.S. addresses only) or e-book. Sponsor must be able to provide the ebook in .epub AND .mobi formats.
- Sponsor may be either the author or publisher.
- Traditionally published books: Some publishers are willing to provide the book as the prize, if their author pays the $5 fee. Be sure to check with your publisher for their policy.
- Preference is given to newer releases and to books that will create a good blend of genres, if available. However, quality of the book is the main determining factor. All decisions are final.
- Sponsor shall pay a $5 fee per title, upon notification of acceptance as a sponsor. Each $5 fee purchases one promotional opportunity for the Polar Bear Plunge.
- You may submit applications for multiple titles, as long as they meet the Eligibility Requirements above, but you may only give away one copy per title.
- Depending upon the number of submissions, we may need to limit prizes to one title per author. If I have to limit the number of sponsoring books, I will contact you to determine which of your titles you want to give away.
- Sponsor shall send book to the prize winner selected by Storytellers in Zion.
- Sponsors must be able to accommodate e-reader preferences as to .epub and .mobi formats.
- Sponsor shall contact the winner and send the book within one week of receipt of notification from Storytellers in Zion.
- Polar Bear Plunge promotional posts will be made to Storytellers in Zion social media accounts and newsletters throughout the challenge. These posts will cover the challenge in its entirety and also feature individual titles (alone or in a group) at least once during the challenge.
- Sponsors are encouraged to notify their readership through email and social media about their own titles in connection with the Polar Bear Plunge.
- Sponsors may also participate in the reading challenge and are eligible to win prizes.
- Sponsor may withdraw and request a refund (minus PayPal’s processing fees) via email by January 16, 2023. No refunds shall be given after that date.
- If for some reason the Polar Bear Plunge is cancelled due to default by Storytellers in Zion, sponsors will receive pro-rated refunds for the days the challenge was cancelled. There will be no pro-rated refunds due to acts of God or temporary server downtime.
- If you have any questions, please contact me at ldsbookgeek [at] gmail [dot] com.
- Sponsors are strongly encouraged to join the private Storytellers in Zion Authors Facebook group. This is the easiest and fastest way for me to give you updates and answer your questions.
- We use our Amazon affiliate links on all promotional and contest posts to supplement the cost of this service.
Disclaimer: Although I cannot imagine a problem developing, I have been advised to state the following: The owners of Storytellers in Zion (www.storytellersinzion.com) make no claims nor offer any guarantees of effectiveness and shall not be held responsible for any traffic or lack thereof generated by sponsoring Storytellers in Zion. Storytellers in Zion shall not be held liable and prizes may not be retracted once the reading challenge has begun. The owners of Storytellers in Zion, other companies that support or contribute to Storytellers in Zion, readers, family, friends, neighbors, etc., etc., etc. CAN NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE for any outcome, positive or negative, that may or may not arise from participation in this sponsorship program, including but not limited to individual blog/website traffic or lack thereof as generated by sponsoring this website and/or its contests; increase or decrease of book sales; a late post date; or anything else that may or may not irk you. SPONSOR AT YOUR OWN RISK.
*LDS = Member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints