There’s a new contest coming up over on the blog Cupid’s Literary Connection, called Blind Speed Dating. It’s going to be a huge, multi-stage agent contest with up to 360 participants. Writers will submit their entries in six rounds, one round per week containing 60 manuscripts. From these “bouncers” will select their favourites to go on to the final agent-read round. Even if not selected, though, all 60 manuscripts will be posted on the blog, each to its own blog post, and open to comments/critiques from friendly reviewers.
Entries must be completed manuscripts. The submission guidelines call for your query and first 250 words (as well as basic info like title and genre), plus a donation of $10 which will go toward supporting Cupid’s local library. There are six submission windows, each with their own set of three unique bouncers (including one of my CPs, Maggie Hall!), so you pick the window whose bouncers you think seem like the best fit for your manuscript (ideally).
These sorts of contests can be a lot of fun – not just to enter, but also to browse. There are some really interesting story ideas sometimes, and some great writing. I know some writers will visit these contests and “stalk” manuscripts – when they find one that really appeals to them they’ll contact the author and see if they’d be interested in having another beta reader on it, or even just simply sharing it and allowing them to read it. So if you’re looking for another critique partner/reader, this might also be an avenue worth exploring.
The first entry window opens January 11 at 8pm EST, and these things usually fill up super fast – like in the first few minutes – so if you’re interested, start getting your bits and pieces together now. :) Visit this blog post for more details and rules.