So, here's this:
1) go to www.amazon.com/abna
2) download the PDF list of second round entries for your category
3) search for the author name from your submission form and the title of your entry
Look up the name Stephanie Schmidt and BAM you'll see my name. My novel has advanced to round two of the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest.
Okay, now for the real blog.
When writing or submitting always have goals. If you start writing something, are you going to be okay with stopping in the middle to return? Are you aiming for this to be a longer story? A shorter story? Are you open for anything?
When submitting to an agent, what do you want? Will you be satisfied with the asking for a partial? Will you be okay with rejection? Are you shooting for the moon and asking for an agent during your first round of queries?
Now...competitions. Do you want an honorable mention? Are you prepared to not even hit the mark? Are you prepared to win?
Here are my thoughts on life:
Writing--When I start, I allow the story to take me wherever it wants to. If the narrator's voice is strong and I feel a lot of anger or passion behind it, I know I'm in for a little bit of a longer story. Although, if she cuts me off, I'm okay with that too. I can always go back and edit and add more.
Agents--I just went through my first round of queries. Going into it my GOAL was a request for a partial, which I received and am SUPER stoked about. Even if they reject me, it gives me reassurance I have some semblance of an idea as to what the hell I'm doing. It also took out the sting of the rejections I had received, and probably will receive. I met my goal, I can relax a little bit, refocus, and make a bigger goal, the all elusive actual AGENT and FULL request (of course, not in that order!)
Competitions--I recently entered into the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest and my novel has advanced to round two! Out of close to 10,000 (that's what it gets capped at) entries, they selected 1,000 to move onto round two. My name, my work, has moved onto round two.
Here is why I'll get rejected:
Because my manuscript wasn't nearly as polished as it is now. Also, I was rushed for time (deadline was at midnight, I submitted at like 11:55pm, maybe even 11:58pm)...and forgot to de-color my text. (When I had written the novel, each chapter was a different color to help me go back to it/remember what the chapter was about).
BUT--I had a goal, that I would make it onto round two. And I did.
Now it's time to press on, and keep working for that agent!!