Let me say from the beginning, Kindle Scout is not to be missed; it can only improve a writer's skills. The whole campaign was extremely well organized. Participants are given a web page, which includes the first five chapters of the book, a photo of the cover and one of the writer. I soon learned those two vital words, 'Hot and Trending' would appear each day under the book on the webpage, if it had a sufficient number of nominations from readers. As you know my PC and email system crashed so I could only fully promote in the last week, but at least my book appeared for the whole thirty days. So the experience has given me a really good appreciation of the value of the campaign.
On submitting my manuscript, I entered a bubble of creativity and nail biting competition. Kindle Scout staff are truly kind, supportive and encouraging to the aspiring competitor. The campaign took over my life for thirty days.During this time, I must say I lived for Kindle Scout, hopes, dreams, disappointment, euphoria all swirled together in this bubble of creativity and hope. Nevertheless, my experience with Kindle Scout was illuminative, disappointing and strengthening, a dissonance I know, but one which was necessary for me, for it could only lead to success.
The tables of statistics provided for each day of the campaign were enlightening. I was amazed to discover what avenues of promotion were best at least for my genre. From one of the listings, I could immediately see what promotional outlets were the most active. So now I have a clear idea of what promotion companies I will use in future.
I also discovered that although the words Hot and Trending may appear under some of the books many times, it does not mean those books will be accepted. For example, I saw one book had the words appearing almost every day but it did not get through. This clearly showed that a book is accepted for its value and not because it had the most money spent on it in advertising. This is so reassuring for a writer who cannot afford to advertise as often as others. True you have to promote and show your endeavors in making people aware of the book, but you don't have to despair if you cannot afford the big promotions.
As for non-acceptance, maybe you are a niche writer, or the genre is not popular at the moment. Maybe you didn't do enough proof reading, or your book was too badly formatted; whatever, you can't lose on Kindle Scout. My book was not accepted, but I am amazed at its success when I put it on Amazon. I have won some fantastic support. A major advantage is when you publish your book, the Kindle Scout team will contact every person who nominated your book to tell them you are now on Amazon. Wow what an incredible advantage, you will certainly collect more readers. Your book will have the exposure it needs to grab the attention of a reader. It's an incredible way of advertising really, it might be negative but it can also reap such rewards, even fans. I did at first think that I would not want people to know my book was not accepted, that readers would think it was not good enough. But then a friend pointed out the advantage of exposure, so I gritted my teeth and took action. I can say this in all sincerity, within hours of putting my book on Amazon, it raced up the ranks, 10,000 in Amazon.co.uk and 21,000 in Amazon.com. With that push, I can now happily promote the book even higher.
So I wish you all the luck in your endeavors, just remember you can't lose either way. So keep writing and keep publishing.