Friday, May 10, 2013

Query Kombat is ALMOST HERE! (Also, Judging Details)

Submissions for Query Kombat will start on Monday, May 13th and that’s, like, no time at all! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

But you guys will need a refresher of the submissions guidelines and format and stuff. So read below!!!

Entries sent before the submission window  opens (read on for more details) will be deleted unopened. Entries that don’t follow the guidelines will also be deleted.

Confirmation emails will be sent to ensure we got your submission and it didn’t end up in Hogwarts (although how awesome would that be).

The three judges, Mike, Michelle, and I have very different tastes so we'll get an awesome diversity of selections into the contest :DD REMEMBER! We have agents participating in this contest (10 of them!) that represent all of the age categories except PB (MG, YA, NA, and Adult), so we'll have an awesome rainbow of a contest :)

Fun prize-winning stuff!

If your query and first 250 words are chosen, by us, for the Query Kombat contest, there will be up to eleven judges going through the rounds. (The very same cool judges we boasted about last week.) As the contest is a March Madness type deal, the judges will vote "Yes" or "No" for your query to advance into the next round (your query will be pitted up, randomly, against another query in your age group).

Kontestants get to invent amazing nicknames, so naturally the judges want one, too! So our judges will be commenting and voting as their dual-personality self. To recognize our wonderful judges and know the vote is legit here is a list of the names they’ve chosen:


Who is who? That would be telling, but perhaps you can figure them out. Yes. We are teases.

Commenting on the entries is allowed and encouraged! Cheer everyone on! The first comment in each post, however, will be by either Michelle, Mike, or I, and it will be the comment to which the judges will reply and cast their votes (it'll make it easier for us to count up votes). Non-judges cannot reply to this comment XD

Now, onward to the fine and gory details:

The below is just another overview of the contest for those who missed the details before.

The tournament is open only to unagented writers seeking representation. Your manuscript must be complete, polished, and ready to submit. Submissions for MG, YA, NA, and Adult works will be accepted. No picture books or non-fiction.

For full details, click here.

The submission window will open at 11AM EST on Monday, May 13th and close at 11AM Friday, May 17th OR WHEN WE RECEIVE 225 ENTRIES. You may submit entries for two manuscripts (in the same email) but we will only consider the second entry if less than 64 entries are received. (64 is the number of entries that will actually get into the contest.) Kontestants will be revealed May 24th and the tournament will kick off on May 28th on Michelle’s blog.

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. In the event that we receive more than the available spots, hosts (that's Mike, Michelle, and I!) will be assigned a group of queries and pick the best of their group. We will also select a few alternates. Sixty-four queries will enter into the tournament.

Send entries to: QueryKombat (at) yahoo (dot) com

Formatting guidelines:

Times New Roman, 12pt font, single-spaced with spaces between each paragraph. No indents or tabs. PLEASE.

Subject line of the Email: A short, unique nickname for your entry [colon] your genre (audience included). Do not skip this step or your entry will be deleted. Example:

Dumbledore Fan: YA Fantasy

For the nickname, make it as unique as possible so that there are no duplicates. These will be the names used in the tournament brackets and post headings so keep it PG-13 and try to have it relate to your story in some way. Nicknames are limited to 25

***The four Free Pass winners should include “Free Pass” before their nickname in the subject line to ensure their spot.

In the body of the email (bold where bold):

Name: SC Author
Email address:
(Neither of the above will be posted -- it is just for us admins to use.)

Entry Nickname: Dumbledore FanTitle: Dumbledore to the Rescue!
Word count: 77,000
Genre: YA Fantasy


Dumbledore rocks. He really does. So when he uses the Resurrection Stone to talk to Victor Hugo, Dumbledore didn't expect what was coming next.

Jean Valjean was a wizard! He was the previous owner of the Elder Wand, and in order to find out why his wand is malfunctioning, Dumbledore must use the Time-Turner to go back in time and find out just what happened to the wand when Jean Valjean was its owner.

But there's a catch: on the Time-Turner. Since it's a necklace-type thing. So it has a catch. And Dumbledore must open the catch before he can wear the Time-Turner and save the day.

(Would you believe it, I just cranked that query out! I like it better than my actual query, to be honest....)

(Only include the meat of your query. No bio. Queries may be up to 350 words, but 250 is strongly preferred. Names and emails address of Kontestants will not be posted.)

First 250 words:

(Don't include the chapter title and please, don't stop in the middle of a sentence. You can go over/under a few words to make it end at a sentence, but don't abuse this power.)

Simple, huh?
All queries submitted are FINAL. We will not edit them in any way, shape, or form. Please read, reread, and rereread your submission before you hit send. Unless you make it into the third round, you will not have another opportunity to edit your query or first 250 words. You have several days to polish your work. Take advantage of it.

Competition will be fierce. You are going up against the best in your age group! (We're trying to get the brackets set up so each bracket is a different age group, but that all depends on the numbers of entries and stuff. Fingers crossed!)

Put on your thick skin and get those submissions—Ready! Set! Go on Monday, May 13!

AND. YOU GUYS. This contest has knocked this post (Why 50 Shades of Grey is a Bestseller) out from the top slot on my 'Popular Posts' widget over on the right of this blog. That post has been number one for almost a year now. That's kind of insane!


  1. Not insane - popular because it's a great idea!

  2. I love that someone's nickname is Interrobang, only the best punctuation ever.