Contest: Pimp My Hook!
**THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED**
The winners have been posted here, along with instructions on how to send your manuscripts. All crits have been posted in the comments to this entry. Thanks to everyone who entered! You all rock!
#editortips are off for this week, because I have so much to get done by Friday I'll be living on No Doz, propping my eyelids open with toothpicks, and threatening to bite my husband if he even thinks about turning the television on when I'm trying to work. But to make up for it, I'm holding a contest:
Pimp My Hook!
Your hook can make or break your story; without a good hook, readers may never feel fully invested. But that perfect hook, that opening line that creates real reader engagement and immerses them in the story, can make sure you grab readers and never let go.
So what is Pimp My Hook? It's like Pimp My Ride - only instead of tricking out your dull, drab car, we take your lackluster hook and rev it up until it really roars. And there'll be a chance for five winners to get a full manuscript request!
Here's how the contest works:
1. The contest is open to the first 50 qualifying entrants only. After that, contest entries will close and any entries after will be deleted.
2. Entrants should post their title, name, genre, wordcount, targeted Entangled line, and the first 100 words of their completed manuscript in the comments of this entry.
3. Once we've reached 50 entries, I'll review each entry and post a critique of the opening hook in reply to the comment, along with a pimped-up version of it that I've revised to demonstrate how you can make your hook more effective.
4. I'll pick the top 5 entries, post the winners, and request their full manuscripts.
Questions? Confusion? Oh god, the world is spinning upside down? Never fear, Q&A is here! (Shut up, I'm hyper today.)
When does the contest end? When we get 50 entries. That may take a day, or may take a week.
When will you be critiquing the entries? With luck, next week.
What counts as a "qualifying entrant?" Someone who posts an entry following the guidelines above. If you post your first five pages or leave out any of the required information, you'll be disqualified.
But what if 100 words stops me mid-sentence? Then either finish the sentence, or scale back to the end of the previous sentence. It's all right if you're over or under 100 words by a few. Just don't paste your first 250 words. Or your first 250,000.
But my manuscript's not done! Sorry, the contest is only open to entrants with completed manuscripts.
What if an Entangled editor already has my full manuscript? Then that manuscript is disqualified from entry into the contest, to keep things fair. It's not fair if you win a full request from the contest when we already have the manuscript.
What if an Entangled editor has one full manuscript, but I have a second I'd like to enter? Go right ahead! That's perfectly okay.
Can I enter more than one manuscript? Nope.
So...even if I don't win, I get a crit and a mini workshopping? Yep.
I write New Adult. Where does that fit? Let's call it Entangled Teen for now.
My manuscript isn't on your wishlist. Can I enter anyway? You bet your sweet ass, as long as the story falls somewhere within Entangled Publishing's submission guidelines. While my wishlist has things I'd like to see, I'm open to falling in love wtih any great story no matter where it falls on the many genre fiction spectrums.
If my hook is picked as one of the top five, does that mean I get a publishing contract? No. But it means I'll ask to read your manuscript, and if I love it, I may make an offer.
My comment won't show up! Don't panic. Grab your towel. Don't double post. Akismet is a hungry, hungry beast, but I check the spam filter several times daily, and I'll fish your entry out in short order. It'll show up in the proper order, too, so don't worry about losing your place in the 50.
Crap! I made a mistake and need to fix my entry! Repost it, and make sure you note it's a repost so I can delete the incorrect one.
Any other questions? Feel free to ask; you can post in comments here, but I'd prefer if you hit me up on Twitter as @smoulderingsea so I can keep the entry tally in this post clean.
Good luck, and happy hooki - okay, I'm not finishing that.