Monday, April 4, 2011

April Secret Agent Early Info

Please note: This is NOT the call for submissions! The contest will open NEXT Monday, April 11.

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. This is to accommodate my other-side-of-the-globe readers.
* SUBMISSION WINDOW #1: Monday, April 11, NOON to 2:00 PM EDT or 25 entries, WHICHEVER COMES FIRST.
* SUBMISSION WINDOW #2: Monday, April 11, 7:00 to 9:00 PM EDT or 25 entries, WHICHEVER COMES FIRST.
* 2 alternates will be chosen from the second submission window.
* 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.
* 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 (October-March) 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 a 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 EXACTLY 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.
* Submissions go to authoress.submissions(at)gmail.com. They DO NOT GO to my facelesswords address. Or any other address.
*PLAIN TEXT is your best bet! And if you receive a rejection notice that claims you didn't include TITLE, etc., please TYPE THE SCREEN NAME, TITLE, AND GENRE BY HAND and resubmit. (In other words, don't copy and paste that part.)
*It doesn't matter what you put in the subject line. The only thing you MUST NOT do is to use "RE:" The bot will think you are attempting to respond to an email, and will reject you.


As always, there is no fee to enter the Secret Agent contest.

This month's contest will include the following genres:

  • YA: thriller, contemporary, SFF, horror, paranormal
  • Commercial Women's Fiction (including UF, suspense, and paranormal)

Post your questions below!  (One small note: If you're not sure what your genre is, I'm not sure I can help you, since I haven't read your manuscript.  I don't mind [EVER] when people email me questions, but sometimes I'm simply not qualified to answer!)

38 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why is the genre always YA?

Authoress said...

The genres for each contest reflect whatever the Secret Agent represents, as posted on their agency web sites. This month's contest also includes Commercial Women's Fiction.

hopejunkie said...

Wish I'd not used my thriller last month, since this agent specifically wants them. Ohh well. (Also, you might want to change Sept-Feb to read Oct-Mar)

Authoress said...

OOO thanks hopejunkie! I was kinda rushing this morning. :)

Amethyst Greye Alexander said...

No question, and not submitting yet, just wanted to send you a virtual hug.

Ames

Jade said...

SFF means science fiction/fantasy, right?

Authoress said...

Ames!! *****snugs back*****

Jade -- Yep!

Jade said...

Hooray! :)

Anonymous said...

What is meant by screen name? Not everyone is on Twitter or have a blog, so just wondering, does it have to link up to a site or account?
Thanks,
Krista

A.E. Martin said...

Screen name is the name under which you post your comments on the blog. Right now for you it would be "Anonymous" Mine is "A.E. Martin"

Aldrea Alien said...

Once again a no-enter for me.


Ah well. I get to wish everyone luck on getting through next monday instead. :)

Bron said...

Can we enter if we were in the Baker's Dozen Agent Auction?

Authoress said...

Yep!

Bron said...

Great, thanks! The BDAA was an amazing experience, but I'm keen to get agent feedback on my first page if possible.

Chantee Hale said...

Yea! I'm spreading the word!

Emily Lavin Leverett said...

This is so cool! I'm glad I found it!

danielle weiler said...

Ok this is a stupid question but has to be asked. Are the time zones you're referring to in Australia or USA?

Authoress said...

There are no stupid questions! "EDT" means Eastern Daylight Time, which is the time zone of New York City.

Tatiana said...

..I'm glad that you already said that there are no stupid questions... Do we post our entry here, or send it as an email? And if it's by email, who do we send it to? (I'm new, sorry!)

Tatiana said...

Oh, I found the contest email info- ignore the questions :P

Heidi said...

This is exciting! Thanks for giving us all a shot!

Cecilia Dominic said...

Locked & loaded to go at noon! I'm excited! Even better, it helped me tighten up the opening a bit.

CD

Alison Miller said...

Ready to go too. Thanks for the opportunity!

Anonymous said...

How long does it take to receive the confirmation email after submitting?

Emily Lavin Leverett said...

Mine got booted for being too long... my word program said that it was 245 words, but the response I got said it was 264. (There wasn't any signature either). Was the username, etc. included in the word count? I want to sub it for the 6:00 one, but I want to know what I did wrong.

Thanks!

Authoress said...

Screen name, etc., is NOT included in word count. You must use plain text, because many word processor/email combos add invisible junk that the bot reads as words. That is what happened to yours.

To be 100 percent sure, type it directly into the email instead of cut-and-pasting.

Jade said...

Ah, same problem for me. Thanks! I'll type it all up this time! :)

danielle weiler said...

grr this is so frustrating!

danielle weiler said...

I typed it all up in the email, made sure it was 250 words, but each time I send the bot changes the word count and makes it more??????

Anonymous said...

I was just wondering how long it generally takes to get a confirmation?

Authoress said...

Danielle, the bot isn't adding anything. It's your word processor and your email client. What email are you using? I suggest gmail.

Anon, it's anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes. Lately, we've been having trouble with hotmail, aol, and msn accounts. I'm actually concerned that we might've somehow landed on some blacklists. I strongly recommend gmail accounts for these contests.

Anonymous said...

I sent my entry at 12:00 on the dot today. My message shows as sent from my live account, but I received no confirmation. Does this mean I'm not going to be considered or that I'm not able to receive a confirmation?

-Anon 12:10

Anonymous said...

Since I didn't get a response, I hastily opened a gmail account and resent the entry after reading your post. LOL.. hope this is okay. I got confirmed as an alternate, but seeing as it was unclear that certain accounts do not work as well as others is there a chance that I can make it in?

-Anon 12:10

-Anon 12:10

Authoress said...

Anon, I have no idea what happened to your first one. The bot always sends responses, so either your first entry was never received or your response is in your spam box.

The alternates are used only if one of the 50 is deemed ineligible, or asks to be removed prior to the start of the contest on Wednesday.

The good news is that we are going to be moving to an online submission form later this year. Which will eliminate the entire email problem. :)

Anonymous said...

Well that stinks. It's not in the spam folder, but it definitely shows it as sent. Hmmm... I wish I would have know about the email client situation earlier.

It feels weird hoping that someone else's entry is deemed ineligible...

Thanks for the reply :)

danielle weiler said...

I do use gmail - and as I said, I resubmitted 3 times and each time the bot told me a different word count. The response was instant in my email box saying it had been rejected because of the word count. I sent it literally a minute after 7am this morning my time (Perth, WA). Does this mean my submission hasn't been accepted?

Authoress said...

Anon -- You're allowed to secretly wish that. ;)

Danielle -- I'm sorry for your frustration. If you did not receive a congratulations email with a post number, then your entry was not accepted. The bot reads invisible characters (created by cutting-and-pasting from Word to certain email clients), and unless you've sent a plain text email (and not cut-and-paste from a rich text document), there is the chance that will happen. If you DID send a plain text email with the text typed by hand into the email and you still had a bad word count, then I'm not sure what happened. I know hotmail adds a signature that you can't get rid of, and that will screw up the word count. Other than that, I just don't know.

DEMETRA BRODSKY said...

I made it in the batch as #4 this time by using gmail and typing it in. What happens next?