Writing Ethics 2: Voting in Readers’ Choice Contests

This post is a follow-up to my last post and continues a conversation at Grow Your Writing Business.

Mary Emma Allen questioned the ethics of writers asking people to vote for their books for awards, whether or not the voter has read the book.

Recently I told you that my client David Bowles’ book was a finalist in a readers’ choice awards and told you how to vote … “if you’d like to help make Spring House a winner.” I posted the same information on David’s Web site, and Michi Beck also posted about the voting. I’m sure people who haven’t read David’s book voted for it. I wish every one of you would buy and read the book because it really is a great book. David has had great reviews and has finaled in the historical category of the Indie Excellence Books, a contest judged by publishing professionals.

However, I always consider a readers’ choice awards a popularity contest, not an objective evaluation of literary merit. In that regard, I didn’t have a problem offering readers the chance to vote for David (and I do think the book has literary merit!).

However, I’m curious what others think about this? Is it unethical to ask for votes in a popularity-contest type competition?

Related Posts:
Writing Ethics 1: Fake Testimonials

[tags]writing ethics, readers’ choice awards[/tags]

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