Monday, January 5, 2015

January Secret Agent Early Info

Please note: This is NOT the call for submissions! The contest will open next Monday, January 12.

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES (please read carefully):

*There are TWO WAYS to enter: a) via email to authoress.submissions(at) OR via web form at
*THIS WILL BE A LOTTERY: The submission window will be open from NOON to 6:00 PM EDT, after which the bot will randomly select 50 entries.
* 2 alternates will also be accepted, for a total of 52 entries.
* 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 EITHER OF THE LAST 2 SECRET AGENT CONTESTS (July or September) 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 WON A CONTEST WITHIN THE PAST 12 MONTHS (i.e., offered any kind of prize from a Secret Agent or were one of the 60 entries in the Baker's Dozen Agent Auction), 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

GO HERE to submit via our web form.

If you choose to submit via email, 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 lottery number.
* Submissions go to authoress.submissions(at) They DO NOT GO to my facelesswords address. Or any other address.
*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:

Young Adult (all genres)
New Adult (all genres)
Adult Romance

Good luck!


  1. I haz a sad for us MG writers, but good luck to everyone else out there! :)

  2. Will we be rejected if our entry has 256 words?

  3. Hi, have just submitted, but haven't received a confirmation email yet. Is that normal?? Shall I be worried? Thanks in advance! :)

  4. Anon-- yes. The word count is set at 255.

    louisaklein -- check your spam folder!

  5. Hi, you mention that we have to add our screen name. I'm not sure what mine is. Should we just our name? Thanks and thank you for this opportunity.

  6. Anon -- Your screen name is whatever name you choose to use when you leave comments here. "Anonymous", however, doesn't count. ;)

  7. Just trying to change "identity" on here.

  8. Can't wait! What a great opportunity!

  9. Anyone else notice the format was off when you submitted? It could very well be my silly computer! :) Good luck!

  10. Just submitted. Thanks for the opportunity!

  11. Hi Sorry but I submitted and followed the instructions but it said I was disqualified? Thanks
    Jocelyn Frentz

  12. My entry was rejected too even though I included everything. Even pasted it from the guidelines. :(

  13. If you are entering via email (and I really do recommend the web form instead), and if your entry is rejected, your rejection email will tell you the reason. It's either because your word count was too high or because it wasn't formatted properly. (You need to have the colon after the TITLE: and GENRE:) Also, cutting and pasting could put invisible "junk" in it that you can't see, but that the bot sees and reads as characters. That is why plain text is your friend!

    You will have an easier time if you use the web form (and if you remember to work in plain text). I'm sorry for your frustration!

  14. I'm having trouble posting comments. Four times, I've posted replies and they disappeared. In trying to figure out the problem, I stupidly used the "anonymous" ID. Sorry. I'm new at using this iMAC. Would you mind re-posting the link to the entries?
    Thank you for providing this WONDERFUL platform for writers!

  15. Hi, Robin! You may want to try a different browser.

    There isn't a "link to the entries". They're all right on the blog here; just scroll down. :)