Monday, January 4, 2010

Let's Kick Off 2010

I've got to ask:

Are you saying, "Two thousand ten"? Or "Twenty ten?"

I'm opting for "twenty ten." Nobody said, "One thousand, nine hundred ten" back then. Or "Nineteen hundred seventy-two" when Nixon was elected.

Just sayin'.

Though, there IS that silly little rhyme:

Columbus sailed the ocean blue
In fourteen hundred ninety-two.

Surely that was for the sake of meter, though.

Anyway, a blessed and prosperous New Year to all! And we're jumping right in with our first Secret Agent Contest of Twenty-Ten, with submissions opening a week from today.


* Submissions will be open for 24 hours or until 50 eligible entries have been received, WHICHEVER COMES FIRST.
* Submissions received before the contest opens will be disqualified.
* 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 (June-November) will not be accepted.
* You may submit A DIFFERENT MANUSCRIPT if you've participated in any of the 2009 Secret Agent contests.
* Only ONE ENTRY per person per contest. If you send more than one, your subsequent entry(ies) will be deleted.
* 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:


(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 facelesswords(at) They DO NOT GO to my authoressmail address. Those of you who are subscribed to this blog via email will note the latter address as the "from." If you use this address for the contest, I WILL NOT SEE YOUR SUBMISSION.

This month's contest will include the following genres:

Middle Grade fiction, all genres
Young Adult fiction, all genres

***EDITED TO ADD: Submissions will open on Monday, January 11 at 12:00 PM EST.***

(Yes, yes, I know. There's going to be a mad rush. No one will feel the pain as keenly as I!)

Pop your questions into the comment box.


  1. Ooooooo. I'm excited. I'll have to have fast fingers, but even a sharper memory to enter!

  2. Yes, yes, yes. YA hooray! So even if I don't make it in, I still have my favorite genre to crit.

    Thanks, Authoress, for doing this.

  3. Twenty ten! My WIP needs another round with my crit partners before it is worthy. Good luck to those who enter!

  4. Twenty ten here too ... although what do we write now .. it used to be /09 ... does /10 make sense?

    One quick question on Secret Agent.
    "This month's contest will include the following genres:
    Middle Grade fiction, all genres
    Young Adult fiction, all genres"

    Are you prefering ONLY those or is it all genres?

  5. I was too late for the last Secret Agent contest, so I'm psyched and ready for this one!

  6. maybe i'm just missing it, but what time does the contest start accepting subs?

  7. I'm saying Twenty Ten. But last year I did say Two Thousand and Nine. So I guess I'd be justified in saying Two Thousand and Ten.

    Just sent my contest submission. How fun!

  8. Steena, what I mean is all genres of YA and MG. No adult fiction this round.

    And oh, I forgot to post the actual opening time for submissions; will do that now! o_O

  9. I say 20-10, just like you're supposed to. :P

  10. You mean noon, right? I always get those 12:00 times all screwed up.

  11. YAY!! I'll be hovering over a send button next week...

  12. Twenty-ten.

    You're either trying to kill me or give me a reason to work my rear end off for a week, aren't you?

    I will choose to believe the latter. Hint Taken. *grin*


    P.S. Ditto, on the well wishes.

  13. Very exciting! I have it written in my daytimer and ready to go!

  14. My computer clock is a bit slow, but I don't want to be late. How nit picky will you be about disqualifying early entrances? For example, would a submission be disqualified if it were 30 seconds early?

  15. 2010.
    Finger poised, ms finished, ready to, I'm afraid of heights. I'll make my sister hit the button.
    Good luck everyone.

  16. Thanks for the awesome contest. I hope I am not meeting with a client at work when it starts so I can get mine in before you get 50 entries.

  17. Can I submit a MS that was submitted (and didn't win) during the first half of 2009? One of your guidelines mentions the past 6 months and the other the full year.
    Thanks for the contest!

  18. Joanna --

    It's 6 months if you entered and 1 year if you were a winner. So you're good to go. =)

  19. So even if I don't make it in, I still have my favorite genre to crit.

    Work from home India