If you need to lose weight and get healthy (this will not be a get skinny quick scheme, but will be focused on losing weight and being able to maintain it for the rest of our lives, even when we don’t have a larger group to be accountable to), let me know by emailing me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
All romance readers and all published romance authors (whether traditionally published, self-published, print-published, or digital only) are welcome to join. No amount of weight to lose is too much (but we definitely advise you to consult your doctor before starting any weight loss program), and no amount of weight to lose is too small. The purpose behind the competition is for everyone to get healthier, period.
Start: July 5, 2011
End: January 5, 2012
Duration: 6 months
Who: Up to 50 romance authors and 50 romance readers, separated into 10
teams of 5 authors and 5 readers each
Note: If you’re interested please let me know ASAP so I can include your name; otherwise, I will put you down on a waiting list in case someone decides to drop. (Email: email@example.com)
UPDATE: We have maxed out on the number of romance readers and will not be adding anyone new as a reader. However, we are still open if you are a published romance author.
Why: To encourage each other to lose weight and get in shape will always be the main goal. However, added bonuses include interaction between romance readers and authors, the possibility to win prizes, and a great publicity opportunity for authors.
Rules and Other Details:
At the beginning, teams will be assigned by the group’s coordinator
Note: I have had several people who want to participate but who have informed me that they only have a few pounds to lose (5-15). I am still figuring out how to place these participants in teams, but be assured that no one will be penalized and forbidden to participate because they don’t have as much weight to lose as others. Also, people who reach their goal weight will still be able to continue in the competition, although I am cooking up something separate for them for prizes and challenges.
Each team will choose a representative who will report on the team’s total weight loss percentage each week. A Yahoo group will be established for updates and announcements. Each team will be encouraged to email each other off loop. A blog will be created to post updates for the public to keep up with and comment with encouragement. Members may schedule to write posts for this blog, and we will also have outside fitness and dietician resources who will post as guest bloggers.
Like the Biggest Loser, the members of each team will encourage each other as they try to become the team with the largest percentage of weight loss each week and at the end of the contest.
However, unlike the Biggest Loser, no team or team member will be kicked out of the contest for failing to lose a certain percentage (team members may still quit at any time if they’re unable/unwilling to go further). No pictures or actual weight numbers are required for participation, only the percentage of weight lost each week.
(Please note, however, that the Grand Prize Reader Winner and the Grand Prize Author Winner will each be required to submit before and after pictures that will be posted on the public blog before the grand prize for each will be rewarded.)
All participants will also be required to provide a short bio which lists: either their author name or their first name and first initial of their last name; the state (if US)/country they live in; their favorite romance sub-genre; the reason why they decided to join this competition; their own personal goal/prize if they reach their goal weight (such as a pair of Manolos); and their goal weight to reach by the end of the 6 months. Each participant will also be required to sign electronically (type in your name) a form that releases both Ashley March and the competition from any liability.
Entry Cost for Published Romance Authors: Each author will be required to put in $100 to participate and 5 copies of books (either print or digital) in order to participate (more copies may be donated).
All money and books will go toward prizes, both for the grand prizes and for intermittent prizes along the way, as well as for the shipping of those prizes. None of this money will be used for publicity purposes or to line my own wallet. Before we start, I will ask every author to mail their print books to me so I can bundle them for prizes; digital-only authors will be sent an email when they will be required to send out their books to winners. I will also invoice authors for the $100 that will be paid to a PayPal account set up specifically for this competition, and will be happy to provide receipts for prizes purchased and shipped throughout the competition to show that every dollar is accounted for if anyone asks.
Entry Cost for Romance Readers (this includes readers, bloggers, and aspiring writers): Free
*Each week, the members of the team which has the largest percentage of
weight lost will receive one or more free books. Winners may also receive promotional items donated by authors.
*Each month, the members of the team which has the largest percentage of
weight loss will receive a prize (TBD).
*At the end of the competition, all members of the team which has the
largest percentage of weight loss will receive a prize (TBD).
*At the end of the competition, the author who has the largest percentage
of weight loss will receive $1,000 through PayPal.
*At the end of the competition, the reader who has the largest percentage
of weight loss will receive $1,000 through PayPal.
Note: I am also considering prizes for those who can prove they meet certain challenges during the competition.
If you are interested, please email me as soon as possible at firstname.lastname@example.org to make sure you get on the list! (Comments on this post indicating interest will not be accepted, although I will gladly answer questions.)
Also, we welcome any author or other person who does not wish to participate to donate books or other items for prizes. Contact me at email@example.com if this is something you’d like to do.
Thank you, and I look forward to working hard and eating healthfully right along with you as we work to get in shape!