Submit the first page of your unpublished novel or memoir and win a professional critique of your FULL manuscript — a $500+ VALUE. Our online entry form makes it easy to submit your work. Simply fill in your contact information and paste the first page of your manuscript (up to 300 words) directly into the form. Check out the contest FAQs below entry form.
Deadline: August 31, 2017 at midnight CST.
Do I have to have a completely finished manuscript to enter this contest? (What if my manuscript is almost finished? Half-finished? Just started?)
It is not a requirement that you have a finished draft, but we ask that you have at least 30 pages written. This way, if you win, we will have something to critique! (If you win but you’re not yet finished with the manuscript, you may also elect to push back the date of your critique until after you’ve finished writing the book.)
How should my entry be formatted?
Simply paste the text into the box on our entry form. There is no need to indent your paragraphs. For legibility’s sake, we prefer that you use a hard return between each paragraph. (In other words, please press “enter” or “return” twice so that there is white space between paragraphs.)
How does payment work? Do I need a PayPal account?
No! Certainly not. When you are redirected to the payment screen, just click the button that says “Pay with Debit or Credit Card” (located underneath the PayPal log-in area). From there, you will be prompted to enter your credit card information.
Can I submit my Middle Grade or Young Adult novel?
Yes. Your entry will be judged in the same category as fiction for adults, but knowing your intended audience helps the judges evaluate your submission. Middle Grade and YA submissions typically make up roughly 50% of the fiction category.
Can I submit multiple entries?
Yes, you may. There is no limit on the number of entries you are allowed to submit.
How do I know if my entry has been received? Will you send me a confirmation email?
After you submit your payment, you will see a message in your browser that says, “Thank you! Your entry has been received.” When this message appears, it means the transaction has gone through successfully and we have received your entry. You will also receive an email confirmation from PayPal notifying you that your payment has been received. If you do NOT receive an email confirmation/receipt from PayPal, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
When will the winner/finalists be announced?
We will announce 1 winner and up to 5 finalists in each category by September 30th.
What is the prize?
Winners in each category will receive a professional critique of their FULL manuscript. This is a $500+ value.
If I win, who will critique my full manuscript?
We will choose an editor for you based on the particular genre and subject matter of your book. It will be one of the Yellow Bird Editors listed on the “Our Team” page of this website.
If I win, what can I expect? Just how thorough will this critique be?
The critique will take the form of an in-depth editorial letter to you, usually ranging from 5-10 pages single-spaced. Our manuscript critiques provide comprehensive editorial feedback addressing your manuscript’s strengths, weaknesses, and any specific concerns you have. Sample critiques are available upon request.
Do you accept picture book submissions?
Not for this contest. But we have several talented editors on our team who provide critiques and line editing for picture books. Please fill out our contact form if you’d like one of them to be in touch with you.
Have a question that we haven’t answered here?
Email email@example.com. Good luck!