With the guys at #SunvsSnow in the middle of reading the entries and #adpit still three weeks off, I thought this would be an ideal time to post and update.
There’s a special Easter tradition throughout central and northern Croatia – making Easter Nests. On the afternoon or eve of Easter Saturday children go out into the garden and collect leaves, grass, twigs, flowers and then make a “nest” for the Easter Bunny – that’s where he places his Easter-Egg-Presents. The children go to bed that eve wondering if the Easter Bunny will like or love their nest, because the best nest gets the best and biggest eggs!
How does it work?
The pitch will consist of a 35-word pitch, an answer to a question and the first 300*-words of your manuscript.
*please read all the rules below as Picture Books will only be submitting the first 100-words
On April 1st the pitch submission window will be open to all groups, PB, MG, YA, NA & Adult and all genres except Erotica.
24-yours later, our Slush Bilbies will start combing through the submissions, picking the top 100-120.
But we don’t want to miss anyone, so I and the Nest Bloggers (explained below) will also be searching the pitches to make sure no GEMS have been missed.
There will nine blogger *nest sites* and on each nest site, each Blogger (Called Nest Bloggers) will pick their top eight best pitches. THAT’S 72 SUBMISSIONS FOLKS, so everyone has a really good chance to have their work put before an agent.
Once up, the Secret Bunny Agents will place their chocolate treats in the #NestPitch(s) they like the most. Remember, the best nest gets the biggest and best eggs! So make your #NestPitch as perfect as possible.
Who are the Secret Bunny Agents I hear you ask. Naturally, our Secret Bunny Agents will be in disguise until after Easter Sunday, everyone knows Easter Bunnies are seriously secretive. However, we will give you some hints – just for the fun of it. The Secret Bunny Agents will be in disguise, each wearing a different coloured fur coats but we will let on what each Easter Bunny prefers, because lets face it, guessing is fun.
But wait, what’s a Bilby?
In Australia we have this really cute little animal with big ears that’s endangered. Every Easter you can buy chocolate Easter Bilbies. So, in honour of a very cute animal that is rarely seen, we named our Slush Readers BILBIES
Before the end of the month we will be letting everyone know who the Nest Bloggers and the Slush Bilbies are, so stay tuned. Oh, and there’s going to be one or two surprises too!
The Agents participating will also be listed, but at a later date. We have several agents already “signed up” but as I’m sure everyone can appreciate, some agents need time to sort out if other commitments will prevent them from participating.
For now, here are the Conditions of Entry & Rules:
Conditions of Entry:
(i) Subject line must say: #NestPitch Contest Submission (nothing else)
(ii) The submission will include a 35-word #Pitch plus the first 300 words of the manuscript. NOTE: #Pitch MUST NOT be more than 35-words, hyphenated words count as one-word
(iii) Entries must answer this question in one sentence, max 15-words in the sentence: If my Main Character were an Easter Egg, what flavour would he be & why. Be creative and keep it in the MC’s voice, remember, this is another opportunity to advance your MC
(iv) Entries must be embedded within email (no attachments) with following:
- a. Name: YOUR NAME
- b. Title: TITLE OF MANUSCRIPT
- c. Genre: Category/Genre of Manuscript (i.e. NA Romance)
- d. Word-Count (to the nearest 1000)
- e. PITCH: 35-word (max) log-line
- Answer to qu.:
- First 300-words of your manuscript. If the 300th word falls in the middle of a sentence, go to the end of the sentence.
- For Picture-book submissions please only submit 100-words. If the 100th word falls in the middle of a sentence, got to the end of the sentence.
(v) Your #Pitch should be Times New Roman 12pt. 1.5 Spaced, one space between paragraphs, no paragraph indentions.
(vi) Authors can submit up to TWO manuscripts, we are all aware many writers have more than one MS, so we’re making it easier.
- By Manuscript we mean FINISHED WORK not WIP’s
- Length of MS should (ideally) follow industry standards for your genre – if in doubt refer below: Helpful Guides: Novel Word Count.
(vii) Early and Late Entries will be deleted (follow the rules/time-line)
(viii) Pen Names are OK as long as they are not something stupid like Ms. Sexed Up; no one wants to write, “Dear Sexed Up…” (not for this anyway, what you do in your own time…)
(ix) Any entries with paedophilia, bestiality, necrophilia, racism (unless in context such as a story set in 1960’s with theme being racism), or similar, and will be automatically removed.
(x) GLBT or Alternative lifestyle greatly encouraged 🙂
(i) This competition is open to Picture-Book, MG, YA, NA and Adult submissions, (Its chocolate who doesn’t deserve chocolate!) and all genre’s except Erotica. Though steam and spice in romance can be nice, we aren’t looking for straight erotica, if in doubt ask a question via Twitter or leave a comment here.
(ii) Competition entry will be open for 24 hours allowing everyone plenty of time to enter. The time-line will be based on NY Eastern Standard Time (Australian EST will also be published for those entering from the far side of the pond).
(iii) Submissions must follow “Conditions of Entry” guidelines.
(iv) All requests (QL, Synopsis, Pages) must be in Times Roman 12pt.
(v) Requested Query Letters = 1.5 spacing & in body of the email.
(vi) Requested Synopsis = 1.5 spacing & in body of the email.
(vii) Requested Pages = as attachment Word.doc with contact details, numbered pages and Double Spaced.**
(viii) Subject line for requested material must contain the following: #NestPitch Request & Name of Manuscript.
(ix) Emails and attached pages must have Author’s contact details.
(x) Requests to be sent within 48-hours of competition close.
(xi) Any Agent who doesn’t receive requested material by midnight Easter Tuesday, will contact the organiser(s) who will then email the author requesting they re-send, together with attached original email.
(xii) ** Double Spaced means total pages double-spaced. E.G, request for 10 pages = 10 Double Spaced Pages not 10 pages that are then double-spaced.
(xiii) NOTE: This #pitch comp is for UNPUBLISHED manuscripts only. If your manuscript is published, or large extracts (over 1000-words) have been published, then that manuscript is void. By published we mean:
- Traditional Publishing, either alone or part of an anthology.
- Self-publishing, both hard copy & e-publishing
- Vanity Press (even if only for family/friends)
- Blog/website published, including extracts, anything over 1000-words
- Any other format/medium considered publishing.
(xiv) One final VERY IMPORTANT rule. If your MS has been featured in another #Pitch in the last twelve months (you can have entered, but can’t have been a finalist), #Pitchmadness, #PitAd, #TrickorTreat or any other not listed, it is ineligible. Twelve months means 1 April 2013 to 31 March 2014. Featured means on any of the host blogger sites for agents and all others to read.
So, just to recap:
The Pitch window will be open for 24 hours, thereby allowing everyone, regardless of where you live in the world, time to prepare and submit a pitch.
The Pitch will be made up of three parts.
(i) a 35-word pitch
(ii) answer to a question (in your main characters voice)
(iii) the first 300-words of your manuscript*
(iv) *for PB it will be the first 100-words
Pitches will be sent to the #nestpitch email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Once the window is closed, the Slush Bilbies will work through the slush & pick their top 100-120 nests. The Nest Bloggers will also be looking through all the nests, to make sure nothing slips by them.
<Bonus> Because it’s nice to know, the Nests 73-75 who just missed out on getting through will be sent their scorecards. This will not only tell them they are on the right track but should help indicate where their pitch or story was weakest.
Oh! and we’ll be introducing the NEST BLOGGERS too!
Check out the previous post, it has some additional info plus a list, with links, of several other #pitch competitions
Stay tuned to discover more.
Helpful Guides: Novel Word Count:
Although we are not going to eliminate anyone who does not match the below, we recommend you try to follow as closely as possible the suggested word-count. The to – from word-count is a guide only and takes into consideration genre variations (for example fantasy genre novels tend to be on the longer side)
ADULT: 70,000 – 120,000
NEW ADULT : 60, 000 – 100,000
YOUNG ADULT: 50,000 – 80,000
MIDDLE GRADE: 25,000 – 45,000
PICTURE-BOOK: Varies depending on age group however, 400-1000 words is a standard guide