Litopia

We’re delighted you’re here! You’re just a few clicks away from joining the ‘net’s oldest community for writers… and certainly the friendliest. Click the “Register” button to create a free account. See you in the Colony!

Fanfare Not sure how big a deal this is

Fanfare I must commend Nadine Dorries for her novelist's eye

84 Calls for Submissions in August 2022 - Paying Markets

BarbaraUS

Full Member
LV
0
 
I'm a finalist for Best Thriller in the Killer Nashville Claymore Award. I'm feeling excited because: 1) there were apparently 100s of entries for each category, and 2) someone read the first 50 pages and thought ok, something is there, but:
1. It seems they are mostly wanting finalists to be so excited they sign up for their Aug 20 conference in Nashville, TN, and
2. It (again) was my earlier version of the friends boarding the ship in Ushaia, but I've moved on from that opening.
Anyone heard of this contest? It sounds like the judges are legit professionals but I'm a bit jaded at this point and not sure how to process this development.
I'm listed here in the thriller category under an earlier title of "Beneath the Ice." It has apparently been out since July 2, but it wasn't on Twitter and I only found out bc they emailed me on Saturday.
 
Last edited:

James Charles

"The hair of the dog that bit me, Lloyd."
Full Member
LV
0
 
I had a friend who lived there and partcipated. She moved to Tampa (who knows why). In any event, this contest/conference is ligit, but like all the others, you still may or may not end up with an offer of representation or publication after winning and/or participating. It's, as you might surmise, a crap shoot.
 

BarbaraUS

Full Member
LV
0
 
Congrats! Even if nothing comes from it, you're right, someone else sees something. Well done :)
Thank you @RK Capps but I'm so confused.
We've all agreed that opening didn't work. Beta readers also agreed.
So, I now open 5 years earlier with the mom's fall and death (I'm taking out the extra scene with Diana falling) and next chapter the friends are on the boat. Basically, the first several pages in this entry don't exist anymore.
Interestingly, this version (with the boarding and early chat with Carlos) is what got that online publisher's attention too, but she said I should start with a thrill.. which is when I added mom's plunge up front vs as a flashback.

I'm so confused how and what to edit right now for these opening chapters. I want to continue to query..I know it's whatever feels right.. but that doesn't seem to be meshing with what is getting attention.
I think @James Arlington is having similar issues.
 

Hannah F

Full Member
LV
2
 
Awards
1
Thank you @RK Capps but I'm so confused.
We've all agreed that opening didn't work. Beta readers also agreed.
So, I now open 5 years earlier with the mom's fall and death (I'm taking out the extra scene with Diana falling) and next chapter the friends are on the boat. Basically, the first several pages in this entry don't exist anymore.
Interestingly, this version (with the boarding and early chat with Carlos) is what got that online publisher's attention too, but she said I should start with a thrill.. which is when I added mom's plunge up front vs as a flashback.

I'm so confused how and what to edit right now for these opening chapters. I want to continue to query..I know it's whatever feels right.. but that doesn't seem to be meshing with what is getting attention.
I think @James Arlington is having similar issues.
Sometimes, the agent/publisher/judge doesn't think you're starting in the right place, but they love your voice, they love the concept, they feel drawn to your characters. You have had that one feedback which said start with a thrill, and you have. If you like your new opening, go with it. See if this one gets even more attention.

(Erin Morgenstern's The Night Circus was picked up by an agent who said she loved the voice, loved the concept but the whole thing needed rewritten. Luckily, she said she would guide Erin through that process.)
 

RK Capps

Full Member
LV
2
 
Awards
1
Thank you @RK Capps but I'm so confused.
We've all agreed that opening didn't work. Beta readers also agreed.
So, I now open 5 years earlier with the mom's fall and death (I'm taking out the extra scene with Diana falling) and next chapter the friends are on the boat. Basically, the first several pages in this entry don't exist anymore.
Interestingly, this version (with the boarding and early chat with Carlos) is what got that online publisher's attention too, but she said I should start with a thrill.. which is when I added mom's plunge up front vs as a flashback.

I'm so confused how and what to edit right now for these opening chapters. I want to continue to query..I know it's whatever feels right.. but that doesn't seem to be meshing with what is getting attention.
I think @James Arlington is having similar issues.

@James Arlington got great advice here. Maybe that could help?
 

Pamela Jo

Full Member
LV
2
 
Awards
1
Thank you @RK Capps but I'm so confused.
We've all agreed that opening didn't work. Beta readers also agreed.
So, I now open 5 years earlier with the mom's fall and death (I'm taking out the extra scene with Diana falling) and next chapter the friends are on the boat. Basically, the first several pages in this entry don't exist anymore.
Interestingly, this version (with the boarding and early chat with Carlos) is what got that online publisher's attention too, but she said I should start with a thrill.. which is when I added mom's plunge up front vs as a flashback.

I'm so confused how and what to edit right now for these opening chapters. I want to continue to query..I know it's whatever feels right.. but that doesn't seem to be meshing with what is getting attention.
I think @James Arlington is having similar issues.
Openings are like true love. There's never only one true one. Pete says what works, works. It was a well-written opening as far as word-smithing goes, we just saw plot holes coming. You seem wary that the catch is that they want you to pay them for something eventually. It gets wearying knowing that catch is often there. Like being a sheep who knows the shepherd may not be as altruistic as he seems. Sometimes I feel like I'm vacationing in a tourist hell-hole where the goal is to skin me of every cent I have before I leave. I'm surprised someone hasn't come up with a game where you can avatar being a successful writer. Instead of buying clothes and accessories -you buy an agent, editor, and book deals. But give a little happy dance. That's certainly something to put in your cover letter. It'll get you noticed!
 

BarbaraUS

Full Member
LV
0
 
Openings are like true love. There's never only one true one. Pete says what works, works. It was a well-written opening as far as word-smithing goes, we just saw plot holes coming. You seem wary that the catch is that they want you to pay them for something eventually. It gets wearying knowing that catch is often there. Like being a sheep who knows the shepherd may not be as altruistic as he seems. Sometimes I feel like I'm vacationing in a tourist hell-hole where the goal is to skin me of every cent I have before I leave. I'm surprised someone hasn't come up with a game where you can avatar being a successful writer. Instead of buying clothes and accessories -you buy an agent, editor, and book deals. But give a little happy dance. That's certainly something to put in your cover letter. It'll get you noticed!
Ha, lovely prose above @Pamela Jo .. excellent sentiment. You're right. I can add this to my query letter. As @James Arlington noted, it's a legit group that's been around for awhile, so that's good. Thanks for your encouragement. :)
 
Last edited:

BarbaraUS

Full Member
LV
0
 
Sometimes, the agent/publisher/judge doesn't think you're starting in the right place, but they love your voice, they love the concept, they feel drawn to your characters. You have had that one feedback which said start with a thrill, and you have. If you like your new opening, go with it. See if this one gets even more attention.

(Erin Morgenstern's The Night Circus was picked up by an agent who said she loved the voice, loved the concept but the whole thing needed rewritten. Luckily, she said she would guide Erin through that process.)
@Hannah F .. that's a really good way to think about it. I have started putting my novel back together again with my more thrilling first chapter. We shall see where this goes. Thank you for your encouragement. :)
 

Fanfare I must commend Nadine Dorries for her novelist's eye

84 Calls for Submissions in August 2022 - Paying Markets

Top