Sunday, 31 July 2022

A SAD (and difficult) ANNOUNCEMENT


Discovering Diamonds opened on January 1st 2017 with the aim of helping good indie and self-published authors of historical fiction to get noticed. Good reviews of good books, however they are published, are always welcomed by readers who do not particularly care how a book is produced as long as the reading experience is rewarding, satisfying and entertaining. Our aim was to showcase well-written historical fiction for readers to enjoy. I think we achieved our goal. 

But it is with sad regret that I am announcing Discovering Diamonds is to no longer continue. I have spent many hours running the site these past years - alas, I am now visually impaired, have muscle damage to my hands and find that I do not have the time I need to write, and market, my own books. Therefore I have made the regrettable decision to call it a day. The site will not be deleted, all reviews, articles etc will remain accessible to readers looking for a good book to read. I am particularly delighted that our last few reviews were 5 star Discovered Diamond Reviewer's choice selections - we have ended on a high note with some 'very good reads' to end on!

We had a total of 1,461 books submitted to us for potential review. Several were, unfortunately, not selected to have a review published, but many received our five-star rating, some of which were selected as Book of The Month. We also received not far off 600,000 visitors. We published 1,496 posts, mostly reviews, but some articles, and for each year during December our much loved December Story Song short stories. 

Sadly, and most regrettably, the closure of Discovering Diamonds has meant the disbandment of our planned Award for 2022. My apologies to the authors.

However, if you are an author seeking a suitable (free and respected) site for your books, please consider contacting Pauline Barclay's Chill With A Book Awards - she'd be delighted to welcome you as authors or potential reviewers. 

Pauline Barclay
Founder of Chill With A Book award

there is also
(although there is a fee for reviews)
IndieBrag does good promotion for books and 
you get gold stickers to place on your books to promote a standard of excellence


yours sincerely,
Founder of #DDRevs  January 2017 - July 2022
Website   Facebook   
Twitter @HelenHollick

* * * 
My enormous, grateful thanks to...

ANNIE WHITEHEAD
Senior Reviewer and admin editor

Twitter  @ALWhitehead63 

and to the authors and reviewers
who regularly supported 
Discovering Diamonds one way or another

THANK YOU

Susan Appleyard
and
Guest Spot

Cryssa Bazos

Anna Belfrage
and Guest spot



and

and 

JANE HARLOND
(author J G Harlond)

Alison Morton

Robyn R. Pearce


Elizabeth St John


and

RICHARD TEARLE (deceased)1948-2021
Senior Reviewer
reviewed from 2012-November 2020


Marian L Thorpe

My thanks also to 
our other non-author reviewers
Anne and Jack Holt
Cathy Smith
Christopher Fischer
Cindy Vallor
Dawn Lee
Ellen Hill
Jeffrey Manton
Jessica Brown
Kristen McQuinn
Louise Adam
Lucy Townshend
Mary Chapple
Nicky Galliers
Richard Abbott
Richard Dee

Cathy Helms and Tamian Wood graphics designers, 
were  our joint Cover of the Month judges

CATHY HELMS
website   

TAMIAN WOOD
website 

And my thanks to you
the readers and visitors of Discovering Diamonds
Thank you

36 comments:

  1. Oh Helen, I knew this day would come, but how selfishly sad I am. You have contributed more than you can imagine to my progress as an indie author; whenever I was having doubts, I could remind myself that Helen said my books were good and she really knows her onions! And you have never hesitated to offer guidance, advice, ideas, support and encouragement. How incredibly lucky we authors and readers have been to have you and Discovered Diamonds. In short (hah!), thank you.

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    1. Thank you Susan - I will still be supporting good writers - but through my own blog, website and newsletter.

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  2. Helen, you created a brilliant site, and we've all been so very grateful. To have a book review here is no small thing.
    Thank you for all the time and effort you've spent promoting others.
    Three cheers for Helen. HURRAH! HURRAH! HURRAH!
    👏

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    1. That's me, Loretta, lol. I did a klutz again!

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  3. Obviously sad that it came to this but you're right to look after yourself, Helen. Meantime, thanks many times over yet again for the 'service' you've provided for authors. (The quote marks are because the word services doesn't even approximate the extent of the support, encouragement and goodwill that you've brought to all of us with your reasoned, enlightened attention over the years. Take care of yourself and all good wishes for the future.

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  4. It has been a great pleasure and honour working with you on DDREV all these years. No one has ever worked more tirelessly in support of indie authors around the globe than you have, dear Helen. But it is high time that you looked after yourself and your own writing! Cheers to you and the entire staff.

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    1. thanks Cathy - I was truly fortunate the day I 'met' you!

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  5. Discovering Diamonds has been an invaluable asset for indie authors and I know many of us are sad to know it will be ending. However, I am certain this is the very best decision for you personally. While indieBRAG is not a review site (we provide feedback to authors and honor worthy books) we have great respect for the intelligent and honest reviews that DD has provided over the years and has given so many readers the necessary incite into which books might be worth their time. I am honored to have you as a B.R.A.G.Medallion Author and particularly as a friend. You mean a lot to me personally and your advice from the very beginning of indieBRAG has always been spot on -- you will always be considered the "God Mother" of indieBRAG! I look forward to all the future books you will now have additional time to write. I am sure I will be seeking your advice again in the future and hopefully meeting up once again.
    Your friend-
    Geri

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  6. You've created an amazing legacy community for authors, readers and reviewers, Helen. Proud to be a #DDRev alumni, and thank you with all my heart for your boundless energy and passion. You are an inspiration, and I'm excited for YOUR next journey. xx

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    1. Thank you Elizabeth - I'm so pleased we have 'met'!

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  7. I am so sorry, Helen. You and the team have been such a support to so so many and you've certainly helped me in my writing career. But I do understand your need to put your own writing and health first. You've made a lot of friends on this journey. That will still continue. Take care. My warmest regards.

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    1. thank you - and all the best for future books!

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  8. Thank you so much for all you've done ... for historical fiction authors and readers alike.

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  9. I’m so sad to read this but absolutely understand the reason. Thanks to you and and your reviewers for your years of effort with this exceptional book review site. We were so proud to receive your mark of excellence for our anthologies.

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  10. Helen, you have provided encouragement and support to so many of us, and I have always been in awe of you! This is sad news but absolutely the right thing to do. The site is a marvellous resource and I hope you enjoy being able to focus on your own writing.
    Ruth Downie

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  11. Helen, I am sorry to read about your health issues. I am keeping you in my healing prayer intentions. Wishing you the very best as you focus on writing more fabulous stories. God Bless. Mary Ann

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    1. thank you, I'm OK - just can't continue doing everything :-(

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  12. I am always proud to display my Discovering/Discovered Diamonds logos - they are very valued and will continue to be so. Take care Helen, and many thanks for the excellent support you have given to indie authors.

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    1. thank you, sadly the majority of authors don't do so, which was always so frustrating

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  13. Rosemary J Kind1 August 2022 at 00:46

    I know from my years running the Alfie Dog Fiction download site how hard it can be to balance your own work. You have done an amazing job and I as an author will always be grateful for your work. Good luck with your own projects and thank you.

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    1. thank you, yes I got to the point where I realised that I couldn't do it all

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  14. I too am very sorry that you are having to close the site, Helen but I can appreciate what an enormous amount of work you have had to do to maintain its high standard and realise that there comes a point where you have to prioritise what you are able to do. I'm sure you will remain in touch with all your writer friends and I hope you know what a support and help you have been to so many of us over the years. Look forward to more Helen Hollick books being published.

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  15. Helen, I'm so grateful to you for all you've done to lift up and support indie authors. It's been a tremendous amount of work over many years, and has benefited so many people. It's been a delight and an honor to see my books recognized and appreciated by your reviewers--and I know the DD stamp of approval has helped me succeed as an indie author. I hope you'll now have more time to focus on your own writing and marketing, along with all the other things you love doing. Big, big thanks and appreciation to you! All my best, Amy Maroney

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    1. thank you Amy, I have a list of at least 8 books I want to write!

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  16. Don't be sad, Helen, be proud; this whole enterprise has been a resounding success. It gives me pride that I was part of it and was able to make occasional 'umble contributions to the reviews over the last few years. Enjoy your 'retirement' and keep in touch. JJ Toner

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    1. Laugh - not exactly retiring - just working on my own books (to be honest I think DDRevs would be the easier option! :-)

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  17. Thank you so much for all you've done, Helen. I hope your increased efforts for your writing are rewarding in all kinds of ways.

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  18. It was never anything but rewarding and fun to work with you and the crew and with you on the bridge there was never even a hint of mutiny. Onwards and upwards my dear friend and shipmate!! xxx

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