Friday, July 31, 2009

August Contest Update


But where is here? Have you accomplished your goals and strategies for the year? That year is fading fast. The 2010 Golden Heart is upon us.

Good news! To celebrate the Seekerville birthday month in October we will hold our own Book In a Week Challenge. It's not about page count, it is all about personal best. All you have to do is show up. Details to come, but mark your calendars to clear the decks from October 5-10. We'll give you a chance to sign up in September. The prize vault will be open if you dare to accept the challenge.

Today the prize vault is open and we have a copy of Camy Tang's, Steeple Hill Love Inspired Suspense, Deadly Intent to giveaway to one visitor, and one surprise book gift. So be sure to say hi and let us know what's going on in your contest life. Winners will be announced Saturday in the Weekend Edition.

As you check out these contest opportunities, note how many are now allowing published authors to enter. The competition just got tougher.

Published Contests:

2009 Laurel Wreath Contest
. Deadline August 31st.
*Books must have a copyright date of 2008. Electronic books appearing for the first time in print in 2008 are also eligible for entry.
Categories for entry:
* Short Contemporary (50,000 to 70,000 words)
* Long Contemporary (over 70,000 words)
* Romantic Suspense
* Historical / Regency
* Romantic Elements
* Paranormal / Time Travel / Fantasy/ Futuristic

Unpublished Contests:

Heart to Heart. Electronic only. Deadline August 15. Entries will be accepted in four categories in digital format only. The top three finalists in each category will have their entries read by three final judges: a print editor, an e-pub editor, and an agent. Submission is the first 15 pages. Each entry will be judged by four first—round judges, one of whom is a published author. The lowest score received is dropped and the three highest scores are averaged to constitute a final score.

* Paranormal
Agent: Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary Agency
Print Editor: Esi Sogah, Avon Books
ePub Editor: Raelene Gorlinsky, Cerridwen Press/li>
* Contemporary
Agent: Elaine English, Elaine P. English, PLLC
Print Editor: Shauna Summers, Bantam-Dell
ePub Editor: Bethany Morgan, Samhain Publishing
* Historical
Agent: Barbara Poelle, Irene Goodman Literary Agency
Print Editor: Deb Werksman, Sourcebooks
ePub Editor: Patricia Tanner, Wild Rose Press
* Erotica
Agent: Roberta Brown, Brown Literary Agency
Print Editor: Susan Swinwood, Harlequin Spice
ePub Editor: Theresa Stevens, Red Sage

The Golden Pen. Contest Opens June 1. Entries must be emailed to the appropriate Category Coordinator. Payment and entry form also must be received by Contest Coordinator no later than August 15, 2009. Entry shall include a synopsis plus manuscript pages, together totaling not more than 55 pages.

Each entry will have three first-round judges, including at least one published author, one Golden Heart finalist, and one PRO. The lowest of the three scores will be dropped, giving entrants a final total from their two highest scores. If you final in any category, you will have the opportunity, FOR ONE WEEK ONLY, to edit your manuscript based on the preliminary comments, before your manuscript is sent to the final judges.

  • Series Contemporary Romance: Susan Litman, Editor, Harlequin
  • Single Title: Jennifer Enderlin, Executive Editor, St. Martin's Press
  • Historical: Allison Brandau, Assistant Editor, Berkley
  • Paranormal: Kerry Donovan, Associate Editor, NAL
  • Romantic Suspense: Megan McKeever, Associate Editor, Pocket Books
  • Inspirational: Melissa Endlich, Senior Editor, Steeple Hill
  • Young Adult: Regina Griffin, Executive Editor, Egmont USA
  • Novel with Strong Romantic Elements:Valerie Gray, Executive Editor, Mira

While the e-deadline is August 15. This contest has a limit on entries (150) and you can reserve your spot by sending in your entry form now and your entry later. BTW, our own Glynna Kaye sold directly from an editor request, when she won the inspy category of this contest in 2008.

Hot Prospects Contest. Note: This contest is open to Published and Unpublished authors. Deadline September 1. Added bonus besides a great line up of editor/agent judges: GRAND PRIZE: The winner can choose between a book trailer, static banner and active banner from Bella Entertainment for the book of their choice (a $300.00 value) or $100.00 USD. Contest is open to electronic and traditional mail entries. Entry includes a synopsis and the first 25 pages.

Categories and Final Round Judges:

1) Historical/Regency:Editor-TBA/Agent - Paige Wheeler, agent, Folio Literary Manag

2) Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal:Editor- Leah Hultenschmidt, Editor, Dorchester Publishing/Agent - Michelle Grajkowski, 3 Seas Literary Agency

3) Romantic Suspense:Editor - Deb Werksman, editor, Sourcebooks/Agent - JL Stermer, agent, Donald Maass Literary Agency

4) Contemporary Long/Single Title:Katherine N. Pelz, Edit. Ass.Berkley Publishing Group/
Sharene Martin-Brown, Author Representative, Wylie- Merrick Literary Agency

5) Series Contemporary:Editor - Johanna Raisanen, Harlequin Enterprises/ Editor - Leanne Morgena, Senior Editor, the Wild Rose Press

6) Erotica: Editor - Theresa Stevens, editor, Red Sage Publishing/Editor - Kelli Collins, editor-in-chief, Ellora's Cave

Southern Heat. Open to Published and Unpublished authors. Another bang for your buck contest with editor and agent final judges. E deadline is September 1. FIRST 10 PAGES plus a 5-page max double-spaced SYNOPSIS.

Young Adult (including all YA sub-genres like paranormal/fantasy -- not strictly "romance") (Sarah Shumway, Senior Ed. HarperCollins and Jennifer Schober, Spencerhill Associates)

Paranormal (Leah Hultenschmidt, Dorchester and Laurie McLean, Larsen-Pomada Agency)
Historical (Amanda Bergeron, Avon/HarperCollins and Susannah Taylor, Richard Henshaw Group)

Contemporary Single Title (Margo Lipschultz, HQN and Tina Wexler, ICM)

Contemporary Series (Wanda Ottewell, Senior Ed. Harlequin SuperRomance and Melissa Jeglinski, The Knight Agency)

Romantic Suspense (Deb Werksman, Sourcebooks and Firebrand Literary Agency)

Inspirational (Melissa Endlich, Harlequin Steeple Hill and Agent TBA)

Where The Magic Begins. E deadline Sept 1. Published authors may enter any category in which they have not been published in the last three years. Entry includes 25 pages of manuscript and a one-page synopsis (unjudged). NEW THIS YEAR: Each entry will receive three scores from three different first round judges, then the low score will be dropped. A second round of judging will be held in the case of a tie.

DARK PARANORMAL — LaToya Smith, Hachette Books

EROTIC ROMANCE — Kathryn Lye, Harlequin

HISTORICAL — Leis Pedersen, Berkley

LIGHT PARANORMAL — Kate Seaver, Berkley

ROMANTIC SUSPENSE — Diana Ventimiglia, Silhouette

SENSUAL CONTEMPORARY — Krista Stroever, Silhouette

SINGLE TITLE — Heather Osborn , Tor

SWEET CONTEMPORARY — Emily Rodmell, Steeple Hill

Finally A Bride. Note this contest led to Ruth Logan Herne's first sale! E deadline is September 4. First pages of your manuscript - total entry no longer than 30 pages. Proof of eligibility required upon demand. (First Place Winner) in each category will receive a lovely engraved knife and cake server, suitable for cutting the cake in celebration of THE CALL. In addition, any book that is published as a result of this contest will receive a free entry into the National Readers' Choice Award the first year of eligibility.

  • Traditional/Inspirational: Melissa Endlich -- Steeple Hill/Nicola Martinez - White Rose Publishing
  • Series Contemporary: Patience Smith -- Silhouette/Wanda Ottewell -- Harlequin
  • Romantic Suspense: Charles Griemsman -- Silhouette/Alex Logan -- Grand Central Publishing
  • Historical/ Regency: Deb Werksman -- Casablanca Sourcebooks/Chris Keeslar -- Dorchester
  • Paranormal/Time-Travel/Futuristic/Fantasy:Leah Hultenschmidt -- Dorchester/Margo Lipschultz -- HQN
  • Mainstream with Romantic Elements:Keyren Gerlach -- HQN/Megan McKeever -- Pocket
  • Young Adult:Anne Bensson -- St. Martin's/Leah Wilson - BenBella Books

Gateway to the Best. Deadline September 11. Electronic entry includes the first 25 pages. Each entry will be judged by three experienced judges with the lowest of the three scores dropped from the final tabulation.The Grand Prize Winner will receive US $100, a full reading and critique of her entire manuscript by a MORWA Published Author, a certificate, and a "Gateway to the Best Grand Prize Winner" electronic banner announcing the win for the author’s website."

Historical - Esi Sogah, Avon
Contemporary Series - Laura Barth, Harlequin
Paranormal - LaToya Smith, Grand Central
Single Title - TBA
Suspense - TBA
It is unfortunate that this contest does not have all the judges lined up; however, I added it because the final prizes are very exciting. ( Cash is always a plus!)

Just for Fun:

Scribeophile Computer Love Contest

Do you love writing science fiction? Then get your word processors ready for the Computer Love Contest! Write a science fiction short story (under 3000 words) featuring the theme “Computer Love.” Find a way to combine that warmest and fuzziest emotion, love, with something cool and mechanical, and the rest is up to you! 1st prize is a $100 gift card, and entries are due Sept. 30. Entry is free.

Only In A Woman's World. The Inspire Us At “Only In A Woman's World” Promotion is open only to legal residents of any of the fifty (50) United States or the District of Columbia, who are 18 years of age or older at the time of entry. Contest ends at 10:00:00 a.m. CT on August 17, 2009. Your story should speak to women, describing a situation that would happen “Only in a woman's world”. Your story may be in a standard script/screenplay format or in narrative form. The judges must be able to identify the following in your story: who, what, when, where, and why . Your Contest Entry must contain a minimum of 100 characters and no more than 2000 characters. Web site will only accept a story containing up to 2000 characters. Winner's Contest Entry will be adapted into a Webisode. Winner will receive a trip for himself/herself and his/her guest to New York to attend the recording session for the Webisode. Trip includes round-trip air transportation , double-occupancy hotel accommodations for three (3) nights, spa treatment for winner and guest (valued at $250.00 per person), New York tourist activity(ies), $500.00 spending money, and a basket of Sponsor's products in hotel room.

Become a fan of Only in a Woman's World on Facebook.

Our last bit of fun is the Breyer's Dreamy Hollywood Sweepstakes, only because they mention GWW (Gone With The Wind), which everyone knows is Seeker Julie Lessman's favorite book. The contest ends September 30.

But wait. There's more...

Breyer's has given Seekerville an opportunity to be in a scene with Julie's favorite GWW leading man, Rhett Butler.

Go know you want to do it!

Check it out here.

That's all the fun you get this month. Good luck and keep your eye on the calendar.

Oh, and don't forget to review the July Contest Update for contests that are still open.



    White Expresso Nights, DazBog, coffee hot and ready to fuel.

    May the muse be with you today!!

    Friday, Friday. Friday is my favorite day, cha cha cha.

  2. Okay. I should be working (the paying job) but I think I'll mess with some photos and see if I can be in a scene with Rhett. It's better than being one of those Christmas elves like I was last winter.

    Thanks Tina for the contest update. Is Ruthy out of the running for the FAB this year? so the rest of us have a chance?

    Well, I'll worry about that. . . tomorrow

  3. LOL, yeah we knocked Ruthy off the island, so now we get a chance at the gold doubloons.

  4. Oooo! I for sure wants to enter a couple of those contests. I love seekerville for making the contest search so easy! you gals are the best.:)

  5. Good mornin'
    Not a coffee drinker, but I'm bringing some homemade hot chocolate with whipped cream and chocolate syrup. Mmmm, I feel better already.

    The Golden Pen contest was on last months list, Tina and it has been extended to August 15. I'm entering it and they have a smaller entry number than gals who are interestd, it might be a good choice.

    And a scene with Rhett - count me IN! Woohoo! Now I'm off to play a pirate ship game with my 11 y.o.

    My son asks, "What's a pirate's favorite letter?"

  6. OMIGOSH, Tina, I'm a goner ... I vowed not to enter any more contests this year except the Rita, but no, you had to go and throw down the gauntlet with the Breyer's chance to star with Rhett Butler contest! Now I ask you -- was that kind?

    As usual, thanks for the wonderful job on contest updates, sweetie. Gotta go practice my lines ... after all, tomorrow is another day.


  7. What's going on with in my contest life? Um, nothing. I haven't entered a contest in forever, and I hardly think about it until you do these updates, Tina, then I want to enter. It is so tempting...

  8. Thanks for the contest updates! I have to get my first chapters polished to enter in a couple of them.

  9. LOL--Gooood Morning Tina~~Great post!!

    I LOVE the DREAMY contest. The challenge will be finding a non-smiling picture. I've been searching my brain to try and recall one but am not having any success. I will though. That is just too tempting not to enter.

    Thanks for all the good information...

  10. Good morning Seekerville!!!!

    Tina, yes. Coffee. Food is good, too. Let's see...


    Oh my stars, Alice Clary and the crew at Finally a Bride did a great job with this!!! Their initial judges were wonderful and Melissa Endlich and Rebecca Germany, last year's final judges... Marvelous.

    Of course they're marvelous!

    Melissa grabbed my book!!!


    I love my cake server. Love it!!! I brought you all chocolate cake with homemade buttercream frosting drizzled with fudge frosting because there's no such thing as too much chocolate.


    The whole published and unpubbed contests. I'm still in (and thanks for the kudos about contests but you only hear about the ones I finaled in. I firmly shut my mouth about the ones where I crashed and burned!!! The list is long and somewhat embarrassing.)

    But I'm still out there in a couple of contests because the dates worked for one (Melissa's call came after the deadline) and the other one allows pubbed authors in a different genre, and I hadn't sent them an inspy so we'll see.

    I used to think that you should drop out if you got the call, but because this is a different genre, I let it ride.

    Contests are subjective. Tough. Brutal sometimes.

    But so is crashing and burning with editors when you're published, being rejected, being sent back to the drawing board.

    So contests toughen us up. They 'womanize' us. They make us strong.

    And Mel, we all take time off from contests, dollface. When I sent my entries to FAB, I hadn't entered an inspy contest since I Went Down In Infamy in the GH the previous year...

    Four manuscripts, different genres.

    Four annihilations.

    Talk about embarrassing! I didn't brag that up, let me tell you!

    Oy vey.

    But I had two versions of a final in a contemp contest and sent the inspy into FAB because Melissa had just taken over at SH AND Tina is part of OKRWA and I'd do just about anything for Tina.

    Including fixing her plumbing when I come to Denver. Bringing my pipe wrench,darling.


    So I entered spur of the moment.

    And that's what ended up in a sale.

    God love Melissa, I'm still not sure she knew what she was getting herself into.

    Pray for her.

    Smiling here.

    So grab some cake with the COOL SERVER and chat it up.

    It's contest update in Seekerville.

    And hey, Deb, your contest sig line reads like a Who's Who of contest finals.

    Wonderful. Wonderful.


  11. Wow so many contests for writers! I'll certainly know where to look if I ever decide to settle down and write something!

    Julie, I think you should totally go for the chance to star with Rhett Butler! Breyers ice cream AND Rhett Butler...what more could a girl ask for?!

  12. Thanks for the update, Tina.

    I haven't entered my romance novel WIP in a contest because I can't seem to get the "dreaded" synopsis written.

    BUT I did enter a short story in the WOW! Women on Writing contest. I was brave that day and paid extra for a criique too! So, hopefully it won't be all bad.


  13. I entered three contest this year. While the results stung, they did show that readers (other than my BFF who knew the previous versions) were left drifting in the dark.

    So I overhauled the opening (twice) and sent it out again.

    I think I did this backwards, though. I should have started last summer with it and worked my way up to the Genesis.

    I also queried and sent a requested short story to an e-pub and was rejected. That one hurt.

    I'm making my goal of sending something out every month (except July b/c of having dairy cows at the county fair for a whole week!)

    Results overall have hurt but have been useful. What doesn't kill me makes me stronger.

    Good cake and coffee makes up for it, though :-)

  14. Rose, good for you!!! I have procrastinated on WOW!

    Ann, you are right. Contests are just part of preparing you and me for the real subjective world of readers.

  15. Thanks for the update on contests. I need to go check a couple out since I think my current ms might fit the mold.

    Be brave. Take the plunge. Get the feedback. Grow. Repeat.

    Here's still crossing my fingers for the Genesis results. (So, do I get a chance at Camy's book?)

  16. Oh Ann,
    You have a great attitude about this.
    I've learned so much this year from contest critques...and though they hurt, it was good advice.

    How else will we learn, right? AND most of the people who reviewed my work were trying to help me. Keeping that perspective took some of the sting out...not all, but some ;-)

  17. Awesome contest update, Tina. Thanks a bunch. I have never entered a contest *gulp*. My manuscript is usually too long for the ones accepting fulls. However, I see there are those that accept the first few pages/chapters...tempting, tempting...

    Friday is my favorite day, too. Especially when that Friday happens to be pay day. Cha, cha, CHA!


    Julie, I think you should totally go for the chance to star with Rhett Butler! Breyers ice cream AND Rhett Butler...what more could a girl ask for?!

    Indeed, Steelergirl ... what? (Except a win for Pittsburgh, maybe? :)
    Happy weekend!


  19. Hey you are all in the book/s drawing.

    Remember you can't have an editor ask for the full if you don't get that puppy out into the world.

  20. Tina,
    I just had an editor ask for a full manuscript last night and I'm SCARED, EXCITED, NERVOUS, HYSTERICAL...all at once.

    Why oh Why did I increase my workload at the university for this semester. What was I smoking?!? ;-)

    Actually, I was feeling the pains of a downturned economy and wanted relief, but this news makes me want to back up just so I can have time to devote to writing. God will work it out.

    Are those normal responses to this? I've never had it happen so am I overreacting, probably - I have a tendency to.

  21. I didn't read the details but isn't Rhett Butler dead?

    Soooooooooo zombie movie?

  22. I'm totally in favor of Julie winning the starring role in a zombie movie.

    Only fitting, it would seem.


    And Pepper.


    If no one ever asks for a full, no one ever gets published.

    If P, then Q.

    You go, girl!

    And when life hands you too much to do, you just...

    Do it.


    Because whining is so very unattractive.

    You can scowl all you want inside... I'm okay with that. :)

    How exciting!


    Stop shilly-shallying. Do it.

    (but buy Kleenex just in case, Toots.)

    Oh mylanta, we still go through tissues, don't we girls? Nobody cries alone in my presence, ladies!

    And gentlemen.

    (nodding to the occasional gentleman caller in Seekerville)

    And who mentioned synopses in contests????? Eee gads, I do my level best to stay away from the things. It's a whole different style of writing, more like tech writing and we tend to wax poetic.

    Or purple.

    Anyway, find contests without synopses and/or unjudged synopses.

    Having said that, I'm judging for a lovely contest right now that judges the synopsis.

    Oh my stars, I think I'm a fairly decent judge by this point (thank God and don't ask some of my entries because they're still in recovery) but I'm not a fan of judging a synopsis.

    If you cover the basis/basics with me, you're in. Seriously.

    Heaven help those people who get a synopsis judge who thinks it matters.

    Great writing will catch an editor/agent's eye. If they want things changed, they'll let you know.


    My word verification is somewhat indecent. Mr. Google, shame on you!


  23. I think that all 15 Seekers would say your response is NORMALLLL.

    This is why God made chocolate.

    Will be praying for you kiddo.


  24. Tina & Ruthy,
    Thanks. I was afraid I might have gone a bit over the top there on my last comment. I'm still wiggin' out a bit, but I'll get over it. Tomorrow's bathroom cleaning day - and if that's not a reality-kick, I don't know what else could be :-)

    And Ruthy, thanks for being the 'mom voice' in my head that reminds me to just do it. Hmm, there's that voice of reason again ;-)

    Okay, I'm off to revise.