Not long after I started this blog I hit on the idea of running a competition as a publicity gimmick. The competition was called "The International Bookreader Awards" and the object was to write a review of any online novel. To my surprise - and delight - several people took it seriously. There were two winners. One was a guy called Lance Panzer, an American. He writes erotic Gothic fiction, a genre about which I know next to nothing other than that it appears to be thriving.
Lance used his prizemoney to take out an add in the magazine Gothic Beauty promoting his novel Vampire Seductress . You can take a look at his book here. A copy of the magazine arrived through the post on Friday from Lance. I'm still working my way through the Total Skull fashion article about the new clothing line from Sheri Moon Zombie. I have to say, Lance, it makes Marks and Spencers look a bit staid.
The other winner of the Bookreader Prize, incidentally, was Carla Nayland. Carla wanted to donate her prize to a mountain rescue organisation. Sadly, I lost the details and then forgot about it. I don't know if Carla still visits this blog (she gave me a lot of help and advice in my early days) but if she does - drop me the details again, Carla, and I'll belatedly forward your prize.
Both John Baker and Debi Alper have written recently about the trafficking of women and young girls that appears to be growing in the world. The Council of Europe has recently drawn up a Convention on Action Against Trafficking in Human Beings. Shockingly, the UK has so far failed to sign up. You need to write to your MP and protests at this outrage. If you live outside the UK find out what your own country's stance is on this and take appropriate action.
The function of being a child is exactly that. To be a child. Not to be some kind of sex object exploited by parents and a bunch of perverted old men. In different circumstances these could be your sons and daughters. Maybe it could even have happened to you. Let's fight to put an end to this sorry business. Childhood is precious, we must fight to preserve it for everyone.