Saturday, July 4, 2015

New Agent 2015 Formatting

So here we go again! Time for my latest mini-contest! Once again I'm putting something together just for new agents. As a welcome to the neighborhood type of contest.

Newer agents are another source of new potential, and they are eagerly on the lookout for clients. We want to roll out the red carpet and welcome them. This contest celebrates new agents with a different sort of fireworks. The fireworks of requests!

I’m assembling a collection of new agents, both those from established agencies and those on their own. My team of experts will patrol the entries and choose their four favorites. Then I'll help them settle on some group picks until we have 30 entries. Then all will be posted on my blog for the inspection of the agents.

Please if you’ve made an agent round in another contest in the last six months, such as Query Kombat, refrain from entering and give others a chance. Though if you have a new, fresh manuscript, that’s absolutely fine to enter.

This contest will take MG, YA, NA, and Adult of all genres. No non-fiction or picture books.

The submission window will open July 15th at noon and will close at 8 pm Eastern time. There will be email confirmation. Selected picks will be revealed as soon as we are ready, and a short revision period will be allowed with the Team Experts. The agent round will be July 27th-29th.

In order to enter the contest you MUST follow formatting guidelines, and submit during the contest window. All entries that follow those guidelines will be considered.

Entries will be sent to: NewAgentContestJuly (at) gmail (dot) com

Formatting guidelines:

Font: Times New Roman, 12pt, single-spaced with spaces between each paragraph. No indents. (If you can’t get Times New Roman in your email, use whatever is closest. Formatting problems will not eliminate you from contention but missing pieces of an entry will.)

Subject line of the Email: Title: Age Category and Genre. Do not skip this step or your entry will be deleted. (ex. Pygmy Hazards: MG Humor) You need both an age category and a genre.

Inside the body of the email (with examples):

Name: Michelle Hauck
Email address:

Title: Pygmy Hazards
Word count: 34,000
Genre: MG Humor


Tom, the classroom hamster, wants to escape from the h-e double hockey sticks otherwise known as school. His old military pet shop days didn't include playing house or being sentenced to a boot camp of never-ending show ‘n tell, math facts rap, and story time. But he’s learned a lot behind the bars of his cage. For example, if you want to keep breathing, never trust a pygmy who has earned the nickname Squeezer. Somehow he has to get away before the pygmies dress him as Strawberry Shortcake again or worse.

When a “subspatoot” fills in, Tom sees his chance to put Operation Escape the Pygmies into action. He makes a run for the border, hamster style. Bad news. The principal says Tom is a distraction to learning and better off flushed. The way out is turned into a battlefield of snapping mousetraps, sticky snares, and poisoned pellets.

Tom seems doomed until the friendless Squeezer lends an over-excited hand. She quickly goes from supervillain to super sidekick. Now, the greatest obstacle to his freedom may be Tom’s soft spot for this lonely pygmy.

(Only include the meat of your query. No bio. No Comps. No Dear, and No sincerely. Just the good stuff. Queries may be up to 350 words, but 250 is preferred.)

Please, please, please enter the spaces between paragraphs manually after you copy and paste. Those suckers tend to get lost and then we get a big blob of text.

First 250 words:

First 250 words. Don't include the chapter title, they eat up words. And please, don't stop in the middle of a sentence. 255 words are fine. 260 are too much!

Also, no indentations. Indentations are evil. Put line spaces between paragraphs please!

All queries submitted are FINAL. There will be no chance to revise unless the entry is chosen. Please read, reread, and rereread your submission before you hit send. You have time to polish your work. Get someone else to read for typos. Competition will be fierce.

In order to enter the contest, you MUST follow all five Team Experts and the contest host (me) on twitter. (If you're not on twiter, then you should be. You're missing out.) 

And you must follow the host’s blog. That means clicking on the "join this site" button in my sidebar. Also signing up for my newsletter counts.

Agents and My Team of Experts will be revealed soon. (As of now we have 8 9 10 11 agents!


  1. can you enter more than one ms?

  2. I've been trying to subscribe to your Newsletter and 3x already the verification email hasn't arrived (checked spam folder). What do I do? :( I wanna do this contest.

    1. I don't believe there is one. The confirmation email is only for when you enter on Wednesday. :-)

  3. I forgot to ask! Is Pygmy Hazards a real book? It looks adorable!

    1. Thanks! It's actually the MG ms I got my agent with. It's a real story.

  4. I'm confused, I admit it. What email address do I send this query to?

    1. The email is but it doesn't open until noon on July 15th.

    2. AAAAAAH! I've never done this before! Where do I find the #newagents to follow? My entry is all ready to send!

    3. Okay, I figured it out. Submitted my query. Hope y'all are having fun reading and finding some good stuff.

  5. I finally think I can enter one of your contest!! I am excite! So it opens noon Eastern time correct? Are yall limiting the number of total entries or just accepting whatever is sent in during those 8 hours?

    1. We are staying open until 8 pm, come what may. ;-)

    2. Good luck wading through all the entries - I remember the "hit 200 in less than an hour" one lol