Thursday, February 24, 2011

Go Leonard!

I'm happy to report that my novel, "Leonard the Great: Dragon Friend," made it through to the second round of the 2011 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. The next tier of winners will be announced on 3/22.

For the first level, roughly 10000 authors (5000 general fiction, 5000 YA fiction) were judged on the quality of their novel's 300 word "pitch" -- a short summation authors might use to generate interest in their manuscript from agents or publishers. Out of those, 1000 per category were chosen to move on to the second round.

For the next round, our 3k-5k word excerpts will be judged by a mysterious group known as Vine Reviewers. After that, the full manuscripts are critiqued by assorted experts all the way through to the finals. The Grand Prize includes cash and a publishing contract with Penguin. (cue drooling)

Is it a long shot? Ohhhhh yes! But I'm realistic about the odds and, all in all, it's a very cool thing to get this far. I'm thrilled my pitch was judged worthy of advancement and hope my little novel continues on to the upper levels of the contest.

Positive thoughts, prayers, and finger-crossing will be cheerfully accepted.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

How to Get a Writing Agent for TV/Film/Animation

In this recent post, television comedy great Ken Levine responds to the most common question he's asked, "How do you get an agent?" Some of the tips are just for fun (date Anne Hathaway) but there's some good practical stuff, too. Such as:

"Of course, connecting with an agent means nothing if you don’t have the goods. Most agencies want three writing samples – two current show specs and original material like a pilot, play, or screenplay. If you are lucky enough to have an agent consider your scripts, make sure they’re the very best work you’ve ever written. Sometimes you only get one chance."
Go over and check out the full post for some professional-grade insight into what can be one of the more challenging aspects to having a career as a working writer.