Monday, May 10, 2010

May's Secret Agent Contest: Early Info

And it's time for another round! This month's Secret Agent contest will be open for submissions on Monday, May 17. Please note: Submissions are NOT OPEN right now. This is an early announcement to give everyone heads up.

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES (please read carefully):

* There will be TWO SEPARATE SUBMISSION WINDOWS. Each window will be open for 2 hours and will receive a maximum of 25 entries plus 1 alternate. This is to accommodate my other-side-of-the-globe readers.
*PLEASE NOTE: You are responsible for figuring out your own time zone. "Time Zone differences" are NOT a reason for not getting your entry in. If neither time works for you, please bear in mind that I NEED TO BE AWAKE AND LUCID during submission windows. So ultimately, they need to accommodate, um, me.
* Submissions received before the contest opens will be rejected.
* Submissions are for COMPLETED MANUSCRIPTS ONLY. If you wouldn't want an agent to read the entire thing, DON'T SEND IT. If an "entire thing" doesn't exist, you shouldn't even be reading these rules.
* Manuscripts THAT HAVE BEEN IN A SECRET AGENT CONTEST DURING THE PAST SIX MONTHS (November-April) will not be accepted.
* You may submit A DIFFERENT MANUSCRIPT if you've participated in any previous Secret Agent contests.
* Only ONE ENTRY per person per contest. If you send more than one, your subsequent entry(ies) will be rejected.
* If you are PAST WINNER, please DO NOT ENTER THIS CONTEST. (Unless it's a different manuscript.)
* Submissions are for THE FIRST 250 WORDS of your manuscript. Please do not stop in the middle of a

Your submission for this contest should be formatted as follows:

SCREEN NAME: Your Screen Name Here
TITLE: Your Title Here
GENRE: Your Genre Here

(Followed by the excerpt here.)

* No "chapter one," chapter titles, etc.
* You will receive a confirmation email with your post number. I don't always get through quickly. Don't resend.
* Submissions go to authoress.submissions(at) (And, um, you replace the word (at) with an @ sign. Yeah, sometimes people don't realize that.) They DO NOT GO to my facelesswords address. Or any other address.

This month's contest will include the following genres:


EDITED TO ADD: NO PICTURE BOOKS! (my apologies for the earlier typo)

[And if you feel your lips twitching in response to the genres, may I gently remind you that whenever an agent says "YES!" to my invitation, or asks me, "May I please be a Secret Agent?" (yes, it happens both ways), I take them as they are, and announce the genres of that particular agent.]

Questions below!


Sarah Erber said...

Sounds Great!

Huntress said...

'...lips twitching...'

**still laughing**

Kelly said...

If our submission gets rejected, will there be some kind of automated note stating such, or no?

Authoress said...

Yes. You will get an almost-immediate, automated rejection.

Amanda said...

I submitted a piece in last year's May Secret Agent. I've also significantly revised the manuscript since then, but I'm guessing it still isn't eligible because it isn't a different manuscript?

Thanks for clarifying :)

Authoress said...

Amanda, if more than 6 months have passed since the last time you entered your manuscript, it is eligible. Unless you were a winner! :)

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Can't wait to see who the agent is this time. I've still got 3 more months before I can re-enter, but that's okay. I'm still doing major rewrites.

Good luck with the process this time everyone!

Tricia said...

When you say "unless you were a previous winner", do you mean grand prize winner or any rank of winner or honorable mention?

Authoress said...

If your entry won any sort of prize in any previous SA contest, regardless of what the SA called your placement, then you are considered a "previous winner" and may not submit the same manuscript.

However, if you are one of the few (as I recall) who were listed on an agent's "honorable mentions" that DID NOT include a prize, then you may resubmit.

Eventually, I may open it up to some sort of "12 month" or "18 month" rule, but for now I'm just saying "NO" because I want to give lots of folks a chance to submit without competing for a spot against someone who has already won. I hate turning people away, but it's happening in increasing numbers.

Jennifer said...

Apologies if I misread something, but I understand that the submission is to be pasted into the body of the email? Thanks!

Authoress said...

That's right. No attachments ever.

eecoburn said...

I would like to apologize for reading everything very carefully, except for the date of the contest, which I now know is NEXT Monday. I sent my entry promptly at noon today!

As the immortal Grover from Sesame Street once said: "Oh, I am so embarassed..."

Authoress said...

LOL If it makes you feel better, I never saw it. It went straight to the bot.

just Joan said...

YAY! I seem to enter my revised YA MS every six months. It's about that time again, but think I shall enter a Picture Book this time. =)

Kristi Helvig said...

Yay for YA - maybe my submission will go through this time!

MuseInks said...

Eeep! What eecoburn said. Grover, you are not alone! ::sigh:: I, too, read very carefully... and set my clock to alert me when it was noon. Just incapable of knowing what DATE it is. Dying of mortification as I spea--

Sam said...

Can't wait to submit--only a few more hours!!!

Kelly Hashway said...

I'm very excited about this contest. Let the countdown begin!

L.J. Boldyrev--YA Writer said...

Kristi, I so hope it goes through! Good luck everyone!

Jenn said...

I feel very dumb but when you say post your screen name, what screen name do you mean?

Authoress said...

It's whatever name you use when you post here. "Jenn," it would seem. :)

Jenn said...

Lol Thank you! Now I'll just sit here with my finger on the send button :)

Anonymous said...

Me too!