Third Annual Indiecember!
(Entry forms are now live! See link section below.
Forms and reviews are due January 15th.)
The holiday season is a time for giving, and this challenge is designed to give back to both self-published authors, and those who support them.
The challenge is based on the common bingo-style reading challenges but is designed to raise awareness of self-published/indie books specifically.
All you have to do to play is read self-published books (at any time) and then leave a text review for them during the month of December. There is a 5x5 board, and two playing styles.
With bingo-style, the player wins by drawing a line across the board but can only count each book once.
With flush style, the player wins by covering the whole board but can count books multiple times.
There are also a few ways to earn wilds for players who are slow readers or don’t have the ability to purchase books. Players who win will get entry into a giveaway going down in January! Bingo style gets you one entry into the giveaway and flush style gets you two.
Ways To Earn Wilds
Each wild card type can be used once. For verification (which goes live in December) save links for posts, and book titles and names for the others.
Have something you'd like to see on the list? Tweet at me, reach out via the contact form, or comment on one of my recent videos.
Request 3 indie books at a library
Create and share a fanart or Bookstagram photo of an indie book with #Indiecember
Buy merch from an indie author and share a photo with #Indiecember
Become a patron to an indie author
Post a video or blog about Indiecember
Make 5 posts with #Indiecember on a platform of your choice
Convince a friend to partake in Indiecember
Follow 5 new indie writers on social media
Join the mailing lists of 3 indie authors
Gift an indie book
Beta read an indie book any time during the year (no review required).
Add 10 new indie books to this site
Copy 3 of your old Amazon reviews to Goodreads or Goodreads to Amazon (if you only reviewed in one place the first time around).
There will be three standard prize packs containing roughly $130 worth of books (many of them will be of the winners choice), and one grand prize that will contain a bonus Kindle Fire HD in addition to the $130 of books.
Additionally, this year everyone who gets bingo will be get a free bookmark with a 2020 exclusive design. The bookmarks will not be sold or obtainable through any method besides winning Indiecember. Shipping is free and open internationally.
If you won Indiecember, you can claim a bingo-style win
The deadline for both reviews and the giveaway forms is January 15th this year, on account of
*waves hands vaguely*.
Any unclaimed contributions will be divided up between the four prize packs and added to the $50 prize base which will go towards self-published books of the winner's choice. To contribute, just leave a donation the Go Fund Me. If you'd like to be listed as a contributor either include your name and a social link of your choice in a comment, or reach out to me via the contact on the fundraiser, or the contact on this site, or Megan@CloudKittenPublishing.com.
To contribute a specific self-published book:
Please donate an amount equal to the retail cost on Amazon x the number of books you want to donate (just the retail cost, we'll cover any and all shipping). Then reach out to me via the contact on the fundraiser, or the contact on this site, or Megan@CloudKittenPublishing.com. In the message let me know
1) The link for the book or books you're donating x the number of copies
2) If you'd like to be listed as a contributor, let me know a name and a link of your choice
Any and all contributions are appreciated!
What do the colored squares mean?
The colors are in reference to the book cover. The more of the color the better, but as little as a few pixels are enough to qualify.
Amazon isn't letting me post a review, can I still participate?
If you're unable to post reviews on Amazon, you can leave a review on Goodreads.
How do I sign up?
You don't have to sign up to participate. At the end of December (if you get bingo) you'll be able to claim your free 2020 exclusive bookmark and enter the giveaway either through this site or via giveaway forms (as in previous years). In the meantime, you can join the mailing list and/or Discord to stay up to date on features and timelines.
For the squares involving numbers of reviews, do we go off of the number at the time we started the book?
You can base it on either the count at the time you started or the time you posted your review.
I can’t really donate. Is there any other way I can help?
Definitely! You can help by participating and talking about Indiecember in social media posts and videos.
Does the book need to have been read in December?
No, the book just has to be reviewed in December. So if you've read indie books in the past and forgot to review, you can review them now and count them!
Is there a minimum page count?
We may implement this at some point, but as of this year, there are no page count restrictions (besides the "over 500 pages" square).
I want to participate, but I’m broke. Do you have any suggestions?
My best suggestion for this is to get Kindle Unlimited. Especially if you haven't taken advantage of their free trial. Alternately, many self-published books have ebooks priced under $1. If you don't have an e-reader, remember the Kindle app can be downloaded onto most phones and computers.
You can also join the Discord and post an arc request in the "books-wanted" text channel under "review matchmaking". Many authors will give out free e-copies in exchange for honest reviews.
Or alternately you can request an indie book at your local library. Many will stock books upon request. And if you request three you even get a wild card for your efforts!
What’s your definition of indie author? Do Lulu, BookBaby, and other vanity presses count?
An indie author (self-published) is an author who published on their own through a self-owned publishing company, Createspace, Kindle Direct, IngramSpark, or another similar service. Vanity publishers and services like Lulu and Bookbaby also count. Essentially, an author is indie if they do not have the backing of a company besides paid-for services. Keep in mind that an author published by a small press or an indie publisher is NOT an indie author. *We may expand this definition in the future.
How can I tell if a book is by an indie author?
Here are a few ways you can check:
Scrolling to the bottom of the amazon page and looking for the publisher. If it says Createspace, Amazon, Lulu, Bookbaby, or another vanity or self-publishing platform, you’re golden. Also if the publisher's name includes the author name or series name, it’s generally safe to assume it’s self-published.
If the book lists a publisher’s name but you still suspect it’s indie (which is quite common), just do a quick search of the publisher’s name. If they have a website that only lists books by one author or lists the author in their about or in their staff list, it’s safe to assume it’s indie.
You can also reach out to the author on social media and ask.
Because of the difficulties of verifying this both for you and for us, we are allowing a margin for error. So give it your best try, and if something by an indie publisher rather than an indie author slips through because the company wasn’t easily searchable, it isn’t the end of the world and we won't reject your giveaway form.