Since Monday's submissions for the Secret Agent contest, I've been thinking. Because, though both YA and MG were included this month, there were only 48 entries.
Now, the whole reason Michael developed the lottery system for me was to make it more equitable during the popular runs--and we all know that, in a normal universe, the inclusion of YA and MG spikes the entry numbers pretty quickly.
But not this time. There wasn't even a need for the lottery, since everyone who entered got in.
That makes 48 people very happy! But it makes me go...hmm.
So I'm trying to analyze this. Because, yeah, these contests take time on my end. Not the submission part, since that's blissfully automated. But I do have to go through each entry to fix formatting and check for words-that-need-asterisks. Which is a bit on the tedious side.
Could it be that the MSFV audience no longer supports monthly Secret Agent contests?
Could it be that, with the relatively recent influx of writerly-contests-everywhere-you-look, the pool for Secret Agent contests has become diluted? (I've heard agents complaining that they're getting burned out with all the contests. This is a phenomenon that did not exist when MSFV was first created.)
Or could it be that this was just an off month?
I need to hear from you today. Because I want this blog to be vibrant and relevant and useful to all who come here. And right now, all I can think is, if only 48 people entered a Secret Agent contest that included MG and YA, what's going to happen the next time we have an "adult only" round?
(You may be thinking, Authoress? What's the problem here? 48 people are 48 people! But I'm thinking, if no one was turned away this month, where's our reserve of I'll-try-again for next month?)
(Well, okay. We don't have a Secret Agent contest in June. Which might be good timing, yes?)
Please share your thoughts. These contests are for you. I want them to remain relevant and effective. And I want to see the ranks of our 50+ success stories continue to grow.
Waiting to hear from you!