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hester
01-10-2010, 07:48 PM
Just received notification of the above contest from CreateSpace. There's some interesting changes from prior contests; there will be prizewinners in both Adult and Young Adult categories and you can enter either unpublished or self-published works. Top prize is $15,000 advance and a contract with Penguin USA. The entry period is from 1/25/10 through 2/7/10 and the winners will be announced in June.

Check out this link for more info: www.createspace.com/abna (http://www.createspace.com/abna).

Good luck!

blacbird
01-15-2010, 03:53 AM
From the website:


ELIGIBILITY. You are eligible to enter the Contest if you are at least 13 years old at time of entry and a legal resident of one of the following countries: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada (excluding the Province of Québec), China, Denmark, Finland, Germany, India, Ireland, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Romania, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, the United States (the 50 states and D.C.), or the United Kingdom.

Québec????

caw

Lauretta
01-15-2010, 03:59 AM
Just noticed that people from Italy, France or Spain can't enter the contest either... I guess it is because of the language...

PastMidnight
01-15-2010, 04:52 AM
No, the way I understand it, it has to do with legal restrictions of those countries.

blacbird
01-16-2010, 08:43 AM
That list of eligible "countries" is effing bizarre. The only South American or Central American nation from which residents are eligible is Argentina. Puerto Rico and Guam apparently do not qualify. Nor do Russia, Poland, Slovenia, Greece, Bulgaria, Jamaica, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Iceland, Hungary, Israel . . . but you're good to go if you live in China.

???

caw

blacbird
01-16-2010, 08:57 AM
For clarification other than geographical, rules from the site:


Beginning January 25, 2010 through February 7th, 2010 you can enter your unpublished or self-published English-language novel into the General Fiction category, or the new Young Adult Fiction category. The contest will then proceed through four phases of judging:

First Round: Amazon editors will review a 300 word Pitch of each entry. The top 1000 entries in each category (2000 total entries) will move on to the second round.

Second Round: The field will be narrowed to 250 entries in each category (500 total entries) by Amazon top customer reviewers from ratings of a 5000 word excerpt.

Quarterfinals: Publishers Weekly reviewers will read the full manuscript of each quarterfinalist, and based on their review scores, the top 50 in each category (100 total entries) will move on to the Semifinals.

Semifinals: Penguin USA editors will read the full manuscript and review all accompanying data for each semifinalist and will then select three finalists in each category (six total finalists).

Finals: Amazon customers will vote on the three finalists in each category resulting in two grand prize winners.

The bolded is obviously the operative part. Everything, EVERYTHING, EVERYTHING, as in every, all, the total package, depends on the single domino of a 300-word "pitch". You don't pass that membrane, it don't matter two dog farts in a blizzard what your actual written manuscript is, it ain't getting read.

So, at the get-go, forget your writing, think about selling ShamWows, because in the initial step, that's what this contest is about. But if you call in the next twenty minutes, because we can't do this all day . . .

This "contest" seems to be modeled on "American Idol", and will have predictably similar results: The "winners" will be all trendy superficial glitz, forgettable in a month. Who wants to bet that the successful entries won't involve vampires and elves and dragons and wizards?

caw

gothicangel
01-16-2010, 11:58 PM
I don't see why.

A 300 word pitch sounds pretty much like a query letter to me. THEN an agent/editor will want to see the MSS.

blacbird
01-17-2010, 12:19 AM
Then they should have titled it the "Amazon Breakthrough Pitch Award 2010".

caw

BenPanced
01-17-2010, 05:54 AM
This "contest" seems to be modeled on "American Idol", and will have predictably similar results: The "winners" will be all trendy superficial glitz, forgettable in a month. Who wants to bet that the successful entries won't involve vampires and elves and dragons and wizards?
2008 and 2009's winners have nary a fantastical element to them.

But, yeah, the popular vote aspect gets stuck in my craw.

PastMidnight
01-17-2010, 07:32 AM
The voting doesn't come into play until it's narrowed to three finalists, based on judging of pitch, excerpt and full manuscript. Which, really, isn't too different from the process of being judged on a query, partial and full.

Anarchic Q
01-17-2010, 07:44 AM
Yeah, I'm not seeing the issue with the "pitch" here. Half of any job is pitching yourself.
It's just a query basically.

blacbird
01-17-2010, 09:04 AM
The voting doesn't come into play until it's narrowed to three finalists, based on judging of pitch, excerpt and full manuscript. Which, really, isn't too different from the process of being judged on a query, partial and full.

Yeah, I understand fully how query submission works (or doesn't). But I've entered "novel" contests, done pretty well in a couple associated with major national writer's conferences, and never ever ever ever ever ever ever ever did they start out judging a "pitch". They, like, wanted to judge a . . . novel, or a significant chunk of one.

caw

Anarchic Q
01-17-2010, 01:59 PM
So, would you have had the same reaction if they used the words "query", "partial" and "full" rather than "pitch", "excerpt" and "full"?

kaitie
01-17-2010, 05:28 PM
2008 and 2009's winners have nary a fantastical element to them.

But, yeah, the popular vote aspect gets stuck in my craw.

What gets me is the non-negotiable contract. I'm thinking if you're good enough to beat ten thousand people in a contest, then you are certainly beyond good enough to find an agent and a publishing contract in the traditional way. And if you're really that good, you'll probably end up with a better contract as well.

It just makes me nervous because the first thing that I was ever taught at a writing conference I went to ages ago was, "Do not ever under any circumstance take the first contract offered." They said that publishers know and expect negotiation to take place and will make the contract as advantageous for them as possible. I'm not trying to paint publishers as big evil baddies or anything, just saying that if your book is really that good (and one out of 10,000 is amazing), you'd probably be able to do just as well if not better with an agent going through the traditional route.

blacbird
01-18-2010, 12:19 AM
So, would you have had the same reaction if they used the words "query", "partial" and "full" rather than "pitch", "excerpt" and "full"?

Yes. For exactly the same reason. At step one, it isn't a "novel" contest. It's a pitch (or if you prefer, query) contest. I'm tempted, just for grins, to concoct some pitches for non-existent novels, to see if I can make one work.

caw

thothguard51
01-18-2010, 02:30 AM
The contest is nothing more than a popularity contest. Most of the contestants beg their friends and family to vote during the first round. The second round with the Amazon reviewers is a bit more fair, but even these reviewers are suspect. The contest has very little to do with the writing, as the past contest have proven...

icerose
01-18-2010, 07:10 PM
Yes. For exactly the same reason. At step one, it isn't a "novel" contest. It's a pitch (or if you prefer, query) contest. I'm tempted, just for grins, to concoct some pitches for non-existent novels, to see if I can make one work.

caw

You have to submit everything when you enter. You can't simply enter a pitch and hope to get to the second round. You need your pitch, your first chapter, first three chapters, and your entire manuscript.

The voting is in two parts. Stage 2 is the Amazon reviewers which is a load of crock imo, and the final stage being the votes for the finalists, which is also a crock.

Fantasy has NEVER won. Neither has Sci-fi. Romance and thrillers have been the only finalists that have made it in this contest. The feedback is horrible, more of a summary of your book and stars of how they rated it. One of the people I got last year hated fantasy, and yet got my submission anyway.

Anyone who has won it in the past has become a best seller and has done rather well. If you win it's not a shabby way to kick off your career.

Mr. Anonymous
01-19-2010, 06:47 AM
The contest is nothing more than a popularity contest. Most of the contestants beg their friends and family to vote during the first round. The second round with the Amazon reviewers is a bit more fair, but even these reviewers are suspect. The contest has very little to do with the writing, as the past contest have proven...

I believe you may be thinking of a different contest. There is no voting in the first round.

icerose
01-19-2010, 07:10 PM
I believe you may be thinking of a different contest. There is no voting in the first round.

It's how the very first one worked. It has evolved since then. The first one was horrible. They had driveby negative reviewers who would give everyone but two people 1 star and their little buddies 5 stars. It was disgusting. Now the popularity only comes in round two and final, which still turns my stomach. If they're going to do popularity votes, stick to the final round.

wilhem spihntingle
01-19-2010, 09:49 PM
If you won (hypothetically) can you back out if you wanted to, or does Amazon own your work because you entered and won? Haven't looked at all the fine print yet.

Lyra
01-19-2010, 11:07 PM
Well I’m entering.

The chances are better than they look. Only 6,500 entered last year, and there is not only less enthusiasm this time, but the change in categories makes it MUCH more viable for me with a YA novel.

As for the contract, I’d almost sell my first born for a contract with Penguin. Maybe I’m being particularly English here? I believe I AM that good. And I have an agent. But I still haven’t managed to sell this book despite lots of positive feedback.

The voting seemed to count for very little last year, more of a way of drumming up interest than anything.

Ø If you won (hypothetically) can you back out if you wanted to, or does Amazon own your work because you entered and won?

You’re committed to a contract with Penguin. Amazon doesn’t own anything.

But I’m happy if people think it’s below them. It only increases my chances :-)

Cathy C
01-20-2010, 08:17 PM
I'm still digesting this part of the rules:


In addition, to the extent that any moral rights (for example, the right to attribution and the right to integrity) apply, you waive (and to the extent that these rights may not be waived, agree irrevocably not to assert) your moral rights in your Entry for purposes of this Contest, including, without limitation, our use of excerpts from your Entry in connection with this Contest.

I sort of like my right of attribution when my work is displayed as advertisement. Not sure what I think about that.

cscarlet
01-20-2010, 10:05 PM
I guess it depends on what you'd be happy with for your "breakthrough novel."

If the thought of getting published with Penguin (regardless of whatever crap contract you get) appeals to you, then it's a great contest to enter. You have to figure at least then you have a book published by a major publisher and can negotiate on future deals. And, depending on how well they play it, you will get some added buzz by default. But I do understand the flip side, where you'd have to assume that if you're good enough to win the contest, you're good enough to get an agent and a contract on your own with them anyway.

I'm curious to hear more about how the careers of past winners are doing, in light of my first point. I have to admit I find it intriguing. I'd consider entering if I thought my work was going to be anywhere near polished by Feb. 7th.

hester
01-20-2010, 10:31 PM
Even if you don't win, there's a good chance you'll be offered a contract if you make it to the top ten (or top five, or however many they're doing this year for the finalist round). Several of the 2008 finalists received publishing contracts, and I would imagine that the same applies for some of the 2009 finalists (didn't enter in 2009, so no firsthand knowledge there).

Lyra
01-20-2010, 10:46 PM
I believe that the waiver of rights thing is because in the initial stages your entry is anonymous. Attribution would destroy that.


If the thought of getting published with Penguin (regardless of whatever crap contract you get)

From curiosity alone, what is it that you find objectionable about the Penguin contract? (Wondering if I missed something scary.)

I finished the book I'm entering just before last year's deadline and made the quarter finals. Since then it's been floating around and I've gathered some very nice rejections. Perhaps I'm a little impatient, but this has a chance of making the difference.

If people know that they can get a better deal, then obviously they'd be fools not to take that path. However, here and now, the chances of my selling a novel for more than a minimal advance are very low. And I have a track record with several books out under my own name, just not fiction. If nothing happens then I've lost nothing.


I'm curious to hear more about how the careers of past winners are doing, in light of my first point.

It's probably too early to tell. Last year's winner is due to be published this summer. However, some non winners have managed to get published since they entered and believe that it made a difference.

cscarlet
01-20-2010, 10:58 PM
Since then it's been floating around and I've gathered some very nice rejections.

Another interesting point, is that an entrant could theoretically use this as a real-world scenario to see where their work is "falling short" so to speak. For example, if you get past the "pitch" part, you can make a loose assumption that your pitch is holding its own. If you flop at the "first few pages" part, then you might want to consider re-working your beginning, because it's likely weaker than they'd prefer. Likewise, if you pass that and flop on the "full read," you can make a loose assumption that there's something "just not good enough" about the full package, and that means you may want to reach out to a few more beta readers with a keen eye to seeing exactly where that "full package" it falling short.

So, even if you don't make it to the end, it could theoretically be a great editing tool.

Does anyone see any downsides to that theory?

blacbird
01-20-2010, 11:55 PM
Another interesting point, is that an entrant could theoretically use this as a real-world scenario to see where their work is "falling short" so to speak. For example, if you get past the "pitch" part, you can make a loose assumption that your pitch is holding its own. If you flop at the "first few pages" part, then you might want to consider re-working your beginning, because it's likely weaker than they'd prefer. Likewise, if you pass that and flop on the "full read," you can make a loose assumption that there's something "just not good enough" about the full package, and that means you may want to reach out to a few more beta readers with a keen eye to seeing exactly where that "full package" it falling short.

So, even if you don't make it to the end, it could theoretically be a great editing tool.

Does anyone see any downsides to that theory?

Yeah:


if you get past the "pitch" part

caw

cscarlet
01-21-2010, 12:09 AM
Touché :)

Lyra
01-21-2010, 12:54 AM
Another interesting point, is that an entrant could theoretically use this as a real-world scenario

A lot of people did last year. The comments I got led to a complete rework of the opening. Granted, I might have got there anyway, but probably not as quickly.

blacbird
01-22-2010, 01:14 PM
Okay, off the comments made here, what does anyone see as the difference between a "pitch" and a "query". It really never occurred to me that a "pitch", in the context of this contest, would be similar to a query to an agent. I keep getting this image of a "pitch" being a kind of high-concept spiel. For Amazon, is this true, or not?

caw

Lyra
01-22-2010, 01:28 PM
I don't see any difference at all - in fact, my pitch IS my query. Amazon's simply using a more proactive term.

What did you mean by "high concept spiel"?

blacbird
01-22-2010, 01:33 PM
I don't see any difference at all - in fact, my pitch IS my query. Amazon's simply using a more proactive term.

What did you mean by "high concept spiel"?

The kind of thing we hear about in Hollywood, where movie ideas get sold on clever sound-bytes, things like "Noir zombies in space!"

caw

BenPanced
01-22-2010, 06:09 PM
In the pitch, you pretty much have to give the elements of a query - short synopsis, word count, title, etc. - but you also have to go on to describe who you expect your audience to be and why, and what sets it apart from everybody else, selling it at an extra level that really isn't used/expected for fiction. In a query to an agent, you're asking "please read my book". In the pitch, you're saying "you need to read my book and here's why". The proverbial "here's the steak, sell me the sizzle".

PastMidnight
01-22-2010, 09:30 PM
They're really not all that different. My pitch is my query, minus the "I'm querying you because..." paragraph. It worked for me last year. Although the description of the pitch in the contest rules suggest that you include more market comparisons and description of audience than a regular query, a read-through of winning pitches from last year really didn't show that. People who followed the suggestions in the rules to the letter often ended up being booted, while those who just submitted their usual query without the "Dear Agent" made it past the first round.

PastMidnight
01-22-2010, 09:33 PM
Now the popularity only comes in round two and final, which still turns my stomach. If they're going to do popularity votes, stick to the final round.

Not quite sure what you mean by this. The second round is based on two reviews from assigned Amazon reviewers (it's still unclear if these are going to be Vine Reviewers, like last year). None of the reviews Amazon customers leave on your page come into play at all. There will only be voting when it comes down to the top six.

icerose
01-23-2010, 03:10 AM
Not quite sure what you mean by this. The second round is based on two reviews from assigned Amazon reviewers (it's still unclear if these are going to be Vine Reviewers, like last year). None of the reviews Amazon customers leave on your page come into play at all. There will only be voting when it comes down to the top six.

That's right. Forgot that they were assigned reviewers. Thanks for bringing that up.

Julie Worth
01-25-2010, 09:54 PM
Another interesting point, is that an entrant could theoretically use this as a real-world scenario to see where their work is "falling short" so to speak. For example, if you get past the "pitch" part, you can make a loose assumption that your pitch is holding its own. ...Does anyone see any downsides to that theory?


The major downside is that 1000 out of at most 5000 entries in each catageory are going forward. That's like getting a request for a partial, and no agent requests 20% partials. It's probably more like 2%. So if you get past this first hurdle, it doesn't mean much, but if you get rejected, that means your pitch is really really terrible.

AuburnAssassin
01-26-2010, 09:01 PM
I noticed that the rules state that the novel may not contain any sexually explicit scenes or pornography. Where's the line there? Many of today's mainstream romances might be disqualified by that standard. Am I reading it correctly or this truly the intent...to keep it PG-13? Is that just code for no erotica?

Cathy C
01-26-2010, 11:03 PM
Erotica is normally sexually explicit. So yes, I'd say it's excluded from the contest. As for romance, I'd say it's a case by case situation. I would think a sweet romance, inspie romance or romantic comedy would have a better time with the judges than something suited for the Spice line.

gothicangel
01-27-2010, 01:06 AM
http://www.thebookseller.com/news/110572-amazon-to-publish-original-manuscripts.html

Julie Worth
01-27-2010, 02:18 AM
I noticed that the rules state that the novel may not contain any sexually explicit scenes or pornography. Where's the line there? Many of today's mainstream romances might be disqualified by that standard. Am I reading it correctly or this truly the intent...to keep it PG-13? Is that just code for no erotica?


Are you reading this correctly? No. They actually say:

"We reserve the right, in our sole discretion, to disqualify your Entry from the Contest if the Entry (x) contains obscene, offensive, pornographic or sexually explicit material, (y) is libelous, disparaging, includes inappropriate content, or (z) does not comply with these Official Rules."

So it's not a blanket prohibition, it's just legal boilerplate giving them the option.

AuburnAssassin
01-27-2010, 03:01 AM
Are you reading this correctly? No. They actually say:

"We reserve the right, in our sole discretion, to disqualify your Entry from the Contest if the Entry (x) contains obscene, offensive, pornographic or sexually explicit material, (y) is libelous, disparaging, includes inappropriate content, or (z) does not comply with these Official Rules."

So it's not a blanket prohibition, it's just legal boilerplate giving them the option.

Does the exact wording of the rule matter to the point of my question? I don't think so. Kind of like if the rules said, "no blue eyed entrants" vs. "we may disqualify your entry if we find you have blue eyes." If I have blue eyes, I'm not going to enter so I just need to know, do I have blue eyes or not? "What" is deemed too sexually explicit or pornographic? Is there a publishing industry definition someone can point me to?

My novel is a romantic suspense with sex scenes. Are there certain words I'm shouldn't use? Am I supposed to fade to black, use euphemisms? Cathy's likening it to sweet Harlequins vs. Spice Harlequins makes sense but is that what Amazon is using?

PastMidnight
01-27-2010, 08:49 AM
Well, it doesn't cost you anything to enter, so there's really not much to lose if it turns out to be a little too much for them. :) I had sex in the novel I entered last year and it didn't hurt it at all.

Best of luck if you decide to enter!

gothicangel
01-27-2010, 03:33 PM
[QUOTE=PastMidnight;4567398] I had sex in the novel I entered last year and it didn't hurt it at all. [QUOTE]

The novel or the sex? :D

PastMidnight
01-27-2010, 09:22 PM
;)

AuburnAssassin
01-27-2010, 09:29 PM
LOL @ gothicangel This thread has taken a decidedly naught turn. heh-heh. Love it.

Thanks, PastMidnight. Still, it probably wouldn't hurt to do a bit of censoring before submitting...at least to ABNA.

Julie Worth
01-27-2010, 10:46 PM
"What" is deemed too sexually explicit or pornographic? Is there a publishing industry definition someone can point me to?

Of course not. And they say "in our sole discretion," which means you're not going to find any other authority on it.

kafeinuhai
02-07-2010, 09:53 PM
I'm entering again this year... all things being equal, I had a lot of fun doing it in 2009!

And I do agree, it was a great editing tool. I sent off a ms that was nowhere near ready (much to my chagrin, and I had no idea of that fact at the time), but my pitch/query got me into the quarterfinals. And the PW reviews, however... um... *damning*... turned out to be right on. It helped me pinpoint some real problems in my writing, and I was able to shiney-up the ms I submitted as a result. Not only that, I found myself some new critique partners on the boards.

So all in all, I really think of it as a win-win situation.

RJK
02-13-2010, 09:28 PM
I was told by a beta that, to keep the sex PG-13 there should be no mention of bodily fluids, and no explicit names for the genitals or parts thereof.
I don't know where she got the rule but it sounded like good guidelines to follow.

Julie Worth
02-15-2010, 04:08 PM
I was told by a beta that, to keep the sex PG-13 there should be no mention of bodily fluids, and no explicit names for the genitals or parts thereof.

Deny them the precious bodily fluids, eh?

JulieHowe
02-16-2010, 01:12 AM
I was told by a beta that, to keep the sex PG-13 there should be no mention of bodily fluids, and no explicit names for the genitals or parts thereof.
I don't know where she got the rule but it sounded like good guidelines to follow.

Eek. It's probably better my novel wasn't finished in time to enter the contest. My characters' behavior would make Harold Robbins blush.

Matera the Mad
02-16-2010, 07:55 AM
Hmm, is "womanhole" an explicit name? :D

MarthaT
02-16-2010, 07:31 PM
Hmm, is "womanhole" an explicit name? :D

I wouldn't think so, since I've never heard it. :ROFL:

AuburnAssassin
02-16-2010, 09:39 PM
Hmm, is "womanhole" an explicit name? :D

No but it sure is silly. :roll:

AuburnAssassin
02-16-2010, 09:40 PM
My characters' behavior would make Harold Robbins blush.

Goody! Please advise when published. heh-heh.

blacbird
02-25-2010, 11:21 PM
Isn't today the day the first round of selections are to be announced? Anybody hear anything?

caw

kafeinuhai
02-25-2010, 11:25 PM
I think it is... there's a thread up on the Amazon boards keeping watch. Apparently last year they didn't send out the email notifying those who made it into the next round until 7:00 or 8:00 pm. :-(

Wah! I just wanna know. I do hate teh waiting.

Julie Worth
02-26-2010, 01:34 AM
Wah! I just wanna know. I do hate teh waiting.

Don't worry about it. If you move on, you'll just have to wait again. And again, and again.

scottishpunk
02-26-2010, 01:40 AM
I'm also waiting for that email to come. Hopefully sooner rather than later.

scottishpunk
02-26-2010, 03:04 AM
I made it! Hooray!

Mr. Anonymous
02-26-2010, 03:34 AM
Didn't get an email yet but I found myself on the list. :)

kafeinuhai
02-26-2010, 03:55 AM
Yay! I made it in, too. (But still no email, either). Now for the scary part, when they actually look at my writing. *eek*

...And I guess there is more waiting. Till the end of March? Forever?

I think I am may have to try and use this opportunity of waiting-annoyedness to attempt to finish another book. Anybody in? Like, Nanowrimo, The Prequel? (Or perhaps this competition has driven me totally insane.)

chris41336
02-26-2010, 03:59 AM
I made the first cut! That's great, it was a pitch which was heavily modified by you guys here.

But I'm not sure that I will make it further than that. The version of the MS that I sent in wasn't as polished as it should have been, and I'm very upset about it =(. But at least I can take solace in the fact that my pitch was good.

blacbird
02-26-2010, 04:51 AM
Where's the list?

caw

Julie Worth
02-26-2010, 04:57 AM
General Fiction List (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/books/ABNA/General_Fiction_2nd_Round_entries_2010.pdf)

YA Fiction List (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/books/ABNA/Young_Adult_2nd_Round_entries.pdf)

Lyra
02-26-2010, 05:31 AM
I'm in too :-)

raburrell
02-26-2010, 05:36 AM
ditto :)

blacbird
02-26-2010, 06:20 AM
Nonditto. Didn't make it off Square Zero.

caw

Mr. Anonymous
02-26-2010, 06:54 AM
Nonditto. Didn't make it off Square Zero.

caw

Whatever they're on, I wish I had some.

Seriously, I entered the same exact book last year with (in my opinion) a far superior pitch and I didn't get past the first round. This year, I did a bunch of things that you learn in QLH to AVOID AVOID AVOID (because I noticed a lot of the people who got through last approached the pitch much differently) and I got through. I guess what works for agents doesn't work for non-agents.

EDIT: If you entered under a pen-name, check for your real name. Originally I looked for my pen name, couldn't find it, and figured I'd been eliminated, but then I searched for my real name and it was there.

kaitie
02-26-2010, 12:21 PM
Question...how is "A novel of the Life of Edgar Allen Poe" not nonfiction? Or would it be something where a person basically fictionalized a real person's life? Just curious and uncertain as to how this works.

Katrina S. Forest
02-26-2010, 02:40 PM
I would think it'd be historical fiction, which would allow you to take some liberties with the facts that you wouldn't be able to take with nonfiction.

Renee Collins
02-26-2010, 10:40 PM
I'm in. :)

And I'm glad we have a month to wait. Last year they announced both round cuts at the same time. So I had about two seconds to enjoy making it through the first round before finding out that I didn't make it into the next.

kafeinuhai
02-26-2010, 10:47 PM
Hey, at least our chances have all improved. 500 of the 1000 are moving forward, right? So we've gone from a 1 in 5 chance for the first round down to a 1 in 2...

right??

(I am bad at math, so I really shouldn't even be thinking about this)

Renee Collins
02-27-2010, 01:09 AM
Hey, at least our chances have all improved. 500 of the 1000 are moving forward, right? So we've gone from a 1 in 5 chance for the first round down to a 1 in 2...

right??

(I am bad at math, so I really shouldn't even be thinking about this)

Well, actually I think they pick the 500 from 2000. (There were 1000 in each category: General and YA.) So it's 250 from 1000. That's a 25% chance (1 in 4). Not too bad, I say. :)

Good luck to all who qualified!

Julie Worth
02-27-2010, 02:48 AM
Well, actually I think they pick the 500 from 2000. (There were 1000 in each category: General and YA.) So it's 250 from 1000. That's a 25% chance (1 in 4). Not too bad, I say. :)

Good luck to all who qualified!

Yeah, it's balanced at each stage, with a 3 to 1 to a 5 to 1 reduction. The exception is the finalist stage, when it's a draconian 100 to 6 reduction.

kafeinuhai
02-27-2010, 03:06 AM
Well, actually I think they pick the 500 from 2000. (There were 1000 in each category: General and YA.) So it's 250 from 1000. That's a 25% chance (1 in 4). Not too bad, I say. :)

Good luck to all who qualified!

Oop, here I thought they took 500 from each category. This does change the odds a bit, I guess!

Although, seriously, I probably shouldn't be thinking about odds. I should be thinking something productive, like "how can I use this to improve my query/ms??"

Oh, hmm. Maybe I will think about odds...

JulieHowe
02-27-2010, 06:52 AM
Good luck to all who entered this contest. :)

icerose
02-28-2010, 07:22 PM
Yep, good luck. I wasn't anywhere near ready to enter, so I didn't this year.

Matera the Mad
03-02-2010, 10:05 AM
I am now convinced that it's a total crapshoot. A friend with a rather limp pitch made it in YA. My severely polished and beta-approved paragraphs flunked out. :ROFL:

I'm kind of relieved to be off the hook and free to go agent-hunting.

Renee Collins
03-03-2010, 01:00 AM
I am now convinced that it's a total crapshoot. A friend with a rather limp pitch made it in YA. My severely polished and beta-approved paragraphs flunked out. :ROFL:

I'm kind of relieved to be off the hook and free to go agent-hunting.
Was your pitch YA?

kafeinuhai
03-03-2010, 04:01 AM
I am now convinced that it's a total crapshoot. A friend with a rather limp pitch made it in YA. My severely polished and beta-approved paragraphs flunked out. :ROFL:

I'm kind of relieved to be off the hook and free to go agent-hunting.

Hmm... so if you entered, you can't go agent-hunting while your work is in the running?

It looked to me like the only stipulations regarding publishing were that you couldn't sell your ms to another publisher until after you were booted and/or 30 days after the contest ended if you were a finalist. I think it also said something about granting Penguin the right to up-bid another offer if you got one within 30 days of the contest's close date (which is kind of a happy fantasy for me, anyway).

Although... I could have missed something, or read the rules incorrectly. I never did end up going to law school. ;-)

I am wayward and agent-less, so I figured I'd keep hunting. I mean, on the off chance I actually DO land an agent, I can always withdraw my entry... right?

(BTW@materathemad; my pitch was YA and I'm pretty sure that group wasn't full as it didn't close until the official end date. Maybe the competition is just a whole lot stiffer in the general lit dept., and your friend--and myself!--got some wayward good luck.)

Julie Worth
03-03-2010, 06:24 AM
I am now convinced that it's a total crapshoot. A friend with a rather limp pitch made it in YA. My severely polished and beta-approved paragraphs flunked out. :ROFL:

I'm kind of relieved to be off the hook and free to go agent-hunting.

My guess is that YA only had half the entries, so the only way to get 1000 out of 2500 would be to pass quite a few lousy pitches.

Thedrellum
03-03-2010, 09:32 PM
I'm late to this thread, but I made it through with my YA pitch, which was my agent query minus my word count, author comparisons, and title. (I figured the title was included in my entry, so I didn't need to put it in again.)

Renee Collins
03-05-2010, 09:48 AM
My guess is that YA only had half the entries, so the only way to get 1000 out of 2500 would be to pass quite a few lousy pitches.

Yeah, that's my feeling too. Reading through some of the titles that made the cut helped me come to this conclusion. I mean, I guess you can't judge a book by it's title . . . but there are some pretty weird/dumb sounding ones in there.

Well, here's hoping that makes it easier to get into the next round! :)

kafeinuhai
03-15-2010, 09:52 PM
Hi everybody,

I just ran across this link; its one of the Vine Reviewers from ABNA 2010 talking about the process; their experience, etc. It's pretty interesting; he/she mentions how some great stuff gets cut and does address the whole "crappy pitch/great excerpt" vs. "great pitch/crappy excerpt" thing:

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/2770406/amazon_breakthrough_novel_award_abna_pg2.html?cat= 38

It's interesting, regardless. Here's wishing everyone luck in the next round!

Julie Worth
03-17-2010, 12:05 AM
Another Vine reviewer posted this comment about the group of excerpts she was given: I was more impressed by the quality of the good YA excerpts overall vs those in the the general fiction category- luck of the draw I guess!

So just because there were fewer YA entries doesn't mean the competition isn't going to be stiff.

scottishpunk
03-24-2010, 01:47 AM
Today is the big day, or one of them anyhow. Good luck to the rest of you who entered.

icerose
03-24-2010, 02:04 AM
Those of you who have entered, good luck with the cut!!

raburrell
03-24-2010, 06:01 AM
Results have just been posted :)
Best wishes to everyone who's entered!
I'm happy

JulieHowe
03-24-2010, 06:42 AM
Fingers crossed for all of you. Please post back when you find out how you placed. :)

Horseshoes
03-24-2010, 08:25 AM
OK, J. We don't know how we placed, but know we made the most recent cut (which knocked off 75% of the survivors of the last cut). Today's top 250 of each category (either YA or general fiction--I'm in gen fic for the 3rd time) wait another month to see if we made the Top 100 (I did the first year, but last year only made the top 500).

scottishpunk
03-24-2010, 08:58 AM
I made it I made it I made it!

megoblocks
03-24-2010, 04:52 PM
Quarterfinals baby!

Death and Taxes (zombie satire)
http://www.amazon.com/Death-and-Taxes-ebook/dp/B003CV7V4M

raburrell
03-24-2010, 05:25 PM
Congrats, mego, scottishpunk, and Horseshoes! Hope you're all happy with the reviews you got & good luck in the next round :)
here's mine:
An Affair in Echoes - R.A. Burrell (http://www.amazon.com/An-Affair-in-Echoes-ebook/dp/B003CV7UCK/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=digital-text&qid=1269436856&sr=8-3)

megoblocks
03-24-2010, 05:50 PM
I'll be happier when I see my name on the Semifinals, but this is certainly a fine start :)

JulieHowe
03-24-2010, 09:28 PM
Congratulations. :)

Renee Collins
03-24-2010, 10:31 PM
I'm out. Alas. :)

But a big congrats to all who made it through!

scottishpunk
03-24-2010, 11:17 PM
You can check out my entry here. Good luck to everyone on the rest of the contest and congratulations on having made it this far!

http://www.amazon.com/Pantheon-ebook/dp/B003CV7T08/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269457445&sr=1-3

jjacobs
03-25-2010, 09:33 AM
It has been some time since I've posted on AW, but I saw this thread and thought I would share my excerpt with you.

Aqua Veneficus (http://www.amazon.com/Aqua-Veneficus-ebook/dp/B003CV7R6E/ref=sr_1_26?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269490295&sr=1-26)

Congratulations to the rest of you who made the cut!

chris41336
03-26-2010, 06:50 AM
I made it to the quarterfinals! I didn't think I'd even make it this far. But hey, I'm happy!

Here's a link to my excerpt, if you are interested:

http://www.amazon.com/Mind-Corps-ebook/dp/B003CV7VBA/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269571798&sr=1-2

kafeinuhai
03-27-2010, 05:59 AM
I'm out, ah well. :(

But congratulations everybody else!! Those of you that made it though should certainly keep sharing your links. I can get up there and post some reviews (don't worry, I'll only share the good stuff ;-)). I would be so excited to see an AW-er win!!

Best of luck everybody who's in!!

intjkate
03-27-2010, 04:52 PM
I'd like to share my link too. I didn't expect to make it through, but I did and I'm thrilled. Mine is in the YA. It's called WHEN A ME-OK SINGS.

Kate

http://www.amazon.com/When-Me-ok-Sings-Breakthrough-ebook/dp/B003CV7S18/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=digital-text&qid=1269692664&sr=8-1

ChristinaM
03-27-2010, 10:09 PM
Yay! I made it too. It is YA Fantasy. Here is the link:

http://www.amazon.com/Arrow-of-the-Mist-ebook/dp/B003CV7SZY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=digital-text&qid=1269465294&sr=1-1

brainstorm77
03-28-2010, 02:47 PM
Good luck to you all.

raburrell
04-01-2010, 06:12 AM
Hopefully emails have gone out, but 2nd round feedback should now be available on your Cr3at3spac3 profile.

Happy with the results?

hester
04-01-2010, 06:06 PM
I'm actually thrilled-I got two really positive reviews. Didn't make the quarters, but that's okay-I was terrified that they'd say something like "what irredemiable crap!" ;)

hester
04-01-2010, 06:35 PM
Yikes, just headed over to the ABNA boards to see what was going on-it's gettin' scary over there :(

jennifer williams
04-01-2010, 07:15 PM
I was overall happy with my reviews (didn't make it past the second round though). Am a bit unhappy though cause one complaint my reviewer had was mainly about the spacing in the excerpt. I checked it as I submitted it and it was fine but she/he(the reviewer) said that there was no spacing at all and made it very hard to read...Since my other review was glowing (although not very detailed) I hope the formatting wasn't a major factor :Shrug:

Although I'm not as annoyed as the people at the ABNA boards lol just can't help wondering a bit.

kafeinuhai
04-01-2010, 09:39 PM
Just checked my reviews, too... overall, I was really happy. I didn't make the quarters so I was kind of expecting "this sucks." :)

One review was really well thought-out; it had a lot of good constructive criticism and was generally pretty positive. They definitely read it carefully and pointed out some useful stuff. The second review just said "I would read more," which, HEY, I guess is at least something...

intjkate
04-07-2010, 03:55 PM
I was super happy with my reviews (and made it to the quarterfinals).

Last year I entered and didn't make it through to the second round, so this is pretty exciting for me.

Julie Worth
04-07-2010, 04:09 PM
I was overall happy with my reviews (didn't make it past the second round though). Am a bit unhappy though cause one complaint my reviewer had was mainly about the spacing in the excerpt. I checked it as I submitted it and it was fine but she/he(the reviewer) said that there was no spacing at all and made it very hard to read...Since my other review was glowing (although not very detailed) I hope the formatting wasn't a major factor :Shrug:

Although I'm not as annoyed as the people at the ABNA boards lol just can't help wondering a bit.

Most of the excerpts I couldn't read because of the spacing, so I don't know how the Vine reviewers did it. This is a problem that ABNA has had every year, but they continue with their inadequate directions, made worse by know-it-alls who tell people not to worry about the loss of paragraph indents, that Amazon will fix it. My entry was readable as I double spaced the paragraphs. Still, I didn't modify my MS as I assumed they wouldn't use the Createspace preview system for that many words, but now I wonder. Hard enough to read an excerpt without paragraph breaks, but a whole novel?

hester
04-07-2010, 06:19 PM
Good luck intjkate and everyone else who made it to the next round! :)

icerose
04-09-2010, 05:43 PM
Congratulations to those who made it to the next round!

ChristinaM
04-28-2010, 06:32 AM
Yippee! Made it to the YA Semifinals. My feet haven't touched the ground since I got the news ;-)) And I must say, Publishers Weekly has given me a great synopsis to use!

brainstorm77
04-28-2010, 01:51 PM
Congrats to those who moved forward. Best of luck to you all.

intjkate
04-28-2010, 05:32 PM
I didn't make it through to the semi-final round, but I will watch for yours Christina, and the best of luck to you. I am still really happy to have made it as far as I did.

I am pretty excited about getting my reviews, too.

heyjude
04-29-2010, 10:04 PM
Congrats to everyone who pushed through, and to everyone who got good reviews--heck, everyone who was brave enough to submit! :)

JulieHowe
04-30-2010, 02:18 AM
I second the congratulations. :)

thothguard51
04-30-2010, 05:40 AM
And I must say, Publishers Weekly has given me a great synopsis to use!

Well worth the price of admission...

Lyra
05-13-2010, 02:28 AM
Forgot I'd posted here, duh...

Adding my congrats to those who made it through. I didn't, but am not in the least bothered as mine has now found a home anyway :-)