Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Announcement: Contest to Win a Teen Beta-Reader (No. You Don't Get to Keep Him)


Coming soon (submissions will be due in about a month), Thinking to Inking is bringing you a contest. More specific details (dates, procedures)to follow, but here is the premise:
Un-agented writers, agented writers, and published writers all have the opportunity to “win” a beta reader. These beta readers aren’t just any readers, though. They are, perhaps, even more terrifying than Simon Cowell. They are some of the toughest critics around: a fantastic group of sophomores in the reading intervention class at the high school where I teach (not my students).

The teens will be sifting through your synopses and sample pages to pick a book to read in class. Winners of the book selection game will be posted on the site for all to see who can lure in a very reluctant reader with their enticing premise and voice. Writers will then submit a “full” to the student to read. Students will read and  privately provide feedback to writers on what feels inauthentic, and quite possibly where the reader gave up (these are incredibly reluctant readers – no guarantees that they will finish reading your book).

At the end, students will advocate for/debate which book they think needs to be published most, and we will post the winner on the site so the whole world will know that the winner has reached some of the most unreachable readers.

Put your brave-boots on, writers, and get prepared to wow those who fill these desks…

PS Happy Holidays! I wrote a post a few years back on career histories of some of my favorite poets/authors along the lines of Jen’s inspirational “keep going” post earlier. If you’ve never heard the legend surrounding Frost’s “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy  Evening”, or how David Sedaris got his break you may want to check it out. Oh, and it’s all holiday-themed for your snow-falling pleasure.

PPS If you’re in the holiday spirit and want a cool way to help the world, head over to Nathan Bransford’s blog to learn how to help Heifer International help the world.


  1. Okay, this sounds legitimately cool. I'll be keeping my eye on this one. :)

  2. Thanks, Joseph; we think so too. Stay posted for more fun details. :)