Monday, January 31, 2011

February Secret Agent Early Info

Right on the tail of our last one!  Jumping right in:

Please note: This is NOT the call for submissions! The contest will open NEXT Monday, February 7.

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, February 7, NOON to 2:00 PM EST or 25 entries, WHICHEVER COMES FIRST.
* SUBMISSION WINDOW #2: Monday, February 7, 7:00 to 9:00 PM EST 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 (August-January) 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) 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.)

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

This month's contest will include the following genres:
  • Romance (no SFF or subgenres thereof)
  • YA (no SFF or subgenres thereof)
  • MG (no SFF or subgenres thereof)
Post your questions below!


  1. Just checking - my work is suspense. Does adult commercial include that?

  2. Can I enter if I was in the baker's dozen and got no bids?

  3. Romance is pretty broad - is this open to all subgenres of romance (esp. paranormal and/or sci-fi romance)?

  4. Does YA (no SFF) mean no UF or PR, or just no straight-up sci-fi/high fantasy?
    And thanks!

  5. What's the time website you've recommended in the past, Authoress? Turns out my computer clock is wrong.

  6. What goes in the subject line? Anything?

  7. What if I've revised and rewritten my MS?

    Also, does women's fiction fall in the accepted genres? Thanks!

  8. so the body of the email should look like this: (I'm going to use Richelle Mead as my example :))

    Vampire Academy
    YA paranormal

    And then the first 250 words here? (I figured I probably shouldn't put the actual first 250 words of Richelle's book)

    And if that's correct then the computer won't count the stuff before the excerpt into the 250 word count right? (I'm new to all this :). I would love to see an example of exactly how the email should look like that way we for sure get it right)

    Thank you Authoress, you are seriously awesome!!!!

  9. I checked in earlier when Adult Commercial was one of the genres. Now it's not. What are the genres included?

  10. Okay, guys, sorry for the genre confusion. The Secret Agent tweaked it for me, so I updated.

    No adult commercial this time.

    Romance does NOT include SFF, which means no UF, Para, etc. Historical and the like are fine.

    Subject line: Doesn't matter. Just don't use "RE:" or the bot will reject it.

    Formatting: It should look exactly the way I have it in the guidelines above. My example is precise. ;)

    Time web site: I've used in the past, but someone else recommended something different and I can't remember what it was. :P If anyone knows, please comment!

  11. So contemporary romantic suspense is okay to enter?

  12. Thanks, Authoress. I'll try that one. It's probably closer to the real time than my computer is.

    Wow, with no SFF whatsoever, it MIGHT be easier to get in this time. Those SFF writers have magic we don't have, and always seem to get in. :P

  13. Of COURSE SFF writers have magic. That's why we write SFF! :D

  14. Thanks for the chance at this contest. Looking forward to Monday!

  15. Hi, just found this site and the contests. No SFF this month? Bummer, it's all I write.

    Well then ... good luck to all who enter. :)

  16. Does time-travel romance count as SFF? Other than the short paragraph when she gets sucked back in time, nothing else paranormal happens...

  17. Angela, this is last year's contest; stay tuned for this February's submission guidelines.

  18. oh, oops, sorry! For some reason the archives was auto-opened to 2011 and I saw the link to this. Am embarrassed now...