Fanfare! Literary agency Jenny Brown Associates launches Debut Prize for writers aged 50 and over

I dont know who has to hear this today-but

Neuroscience of scene

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E G Logan

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Excerpt from today's The Bookseller.
Longer version, possibly firewalled, at Login


Edinburgh-based literary agency Jenny Brown Associates (JBA) announced details of the prize at the London Book Fair [this week]. "Submissions will open in May (the first 5,000 words, plus synopsis), with the shortlist following in July and the winner announced at the Edinburgh International Book Festival on 26th August.

"JBA is looking for entries from genres it already publishes, such as reading group fiction, historical fiction and crime, and says there is the possibility of broadening out the subjects as the prize grows.

"Everyone shortlisted will receive one-to-one mentoring and the winner will pocket £1,000, the choice of a course at Moniack Mhor Creative Writing Centre near Inverness and, of course, the possibility of representation."
 
Excerpt from today's The Bookseller.
Longer version, possibly firewalled, at Login


Edinburgh-based literary agency Jenny Brown Associates (JBA) announced details of the prize at the London Book Fair [this week]. "Submissions will open in May (the first 5,000 words, plus synopsis), with the shortlist following in July and the winner announced at the Edinburgh International Book Festival on 26th August.

"JBA is looking for entries from genres it already publishes, such as reading group fiction, historical fiction and crime, and says there is the possibility of broadening out the subjects as the prize grows.

"Everyone shortlisted will receive one-to-one mentoring and the winner will pocket £1,000, the choice of a course at Moniack Mhor Creative Writing Centre near Inverness and, of course, the possibility of representation."
After lots of toing and froing (and massive rewriting), I finally decided to give it a go but realised just now that I don't qualify because I'm not a British resident. UGH!!!
 
After lots of toing and froing (and massive rewriting), I finally decided to give it a go but realised just now that I don't qualify because I'm not a British resident. UGH!!!
Angry Chicken GIF by happydog
 
I don't qualify because I'm not a British resident.
Agreed. I could be economical with the actualite, but that seems like getting off on the wrong foot for the whole thing. Also, when I discovered the mentoring bit was a residential course in Inverness-shire, rather than online...
 
I would fit (yikes on the age part) and have a novel I could dig out, but ....

I'm not actually sure why agencies do this kind of thing. Why put a criteria up once a year, and sell it as a "special" chance? Why single out ANY author group (gender, age, colour ... shoe size)? Don't they look at the works of the over 50s the rest of the year??

The thing is, if during this "special" over 50's women month, a 25 yo bloke sent them exactly what they're looking for via the normal channels, they'd jump at it disregarding age and gender. They wouldn't turn down a chance of making dosh if they spotted a talent who doesn't fit that criteria, so why bother having a criteria. I'm sure in truth, they're looking at everyone, all the time. They want to see the whole pool of talent, not just a specific group. That's the way they make money. Then again, maybe that's what the publishers want: specific author groups.

The mentoring thing is nice of course.

@Rachel Caldecott, simply send yours when the 'special' month is over (because then, your location magically won't matter anymore :D .)

Why can't it be about stories. Good stories. Good stories by anyone and everyone. For anyone and everyone. It shouldn't be about who we are and what group we fit, but about the books we write.
 
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I would fit (yikes on the age part) and have a novel I could dig out, but ....

I'm not actually sure why agencies do this kind of thing. Why put a criteria up once a year, and sell it as a "special" chance? Why single out ANY author group (gender, age, colour ... shoe size)? Don't they look at the works of the over 50s the rest of the year??

The thing is, if during this "special" over 50's women month, a 25 yo bloke sent them exactly what they're looking for via the normal channels, they'd jump at it disregarding age and gender. They wouldn't turn down a chance of making dosh if they spotted a talent who doesn't fit that criteria, so why bother having a criteria. I'm sure in truth, they're looking at everyone, all the time. They want to see the whole pool of talent, not just a specific group. That's the way they make money. Then again, maybe that's what the publishers want: specific author groups.

The mentoring thing is nice of course.

@Rachel Caldecott, simply send yours when the 'special' month is over (because then, your location magically won't matter anymore :D .)

Why can't it be about stories. Good stories. Good stories by anyone and everyone. For anyone and everyone. It shouldn't be about who we are and what group we fit, but about the books we write.
This began with a simple feeler on their part. It was picked up by the Guardian, NYT etc. They werent even sure what the criteria or prize was when I first read about it. I think the UK residency thing is because they just got so much interest. Agreed the prize is a bit meh. The real prize-and they know it- is the winner will be the recipient of all that buzz they generated for the agency for free.
 
The real prize-and they know it- is the winner will be the recipient of all that buzz
Agree. Fab for the winner. And the winner gets £1000. (Makes you wonder where that money is coming from, or who sponsored that.) I wouldn't mind a win. I have chocolate to buy. I wish all who submit good luck. It is a good opportunity for a writer.

I've seen this kind of thing from other agencies, and always question who benefits how from our dreams. Of course there's the buzz for the agency. Also it's advertising for the course provider / mentor. I tend to suspect there's a money trail behind most things. Both agency and course provider have a business to run, and a collaboration like that might be profitable. And of course, an author or two wins too.

Still, it's great for the winner and 1k would buy a lot of choc. I'm sure it's worth entering. I have entered things like that in the past and will continue to, but when I do, it never quite sits right for me.

I once came third in something slightly different. The price: £250 off a writing course affiliated to that agent. Not much of a price. It reminded me of those rejection letters which are accompanied with the contact details for an editor.
 
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Damn and blast. If only this were 2024. I'd enter but stipulate they'd have to agree to pay my transport costs to and from Inverness.

Anyhoo, I've made a forward note in my diary for next year to remind myself not to forget about it.

Now what's this all about again?
 
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I dont know who has to hear this today-but

Neuroscience of scene

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