Monday, May 13, 2013

Query Kombat is OPEN!!! Submission Guidelines!

CONTEST IS NOW OVER! We got over 200 entries; thank you so much guys! We might make is an annual thing!


WINDOW IS NOW OPEN!! Read below for more details. BUT GUYS, GO. We have had 53 submissions in less than 30 minutes! Get yours in before we reach the max of 225 entries!

For full details on the whole point of this contest, how it'll work, what it is, and more, click here. For a list of the agents participating, click here. For a list of the judges and mentors, click here.

The submission window will open at 11AM EST on Monday, May 13th (that's today!) 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, follow our blogs, 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 characters!

***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):
(YES. Include the words 'Name,' 'Email address,' 'Entry Nickname,' etc., put a colon after them, and BOLD THEM. We want to just copy and paste from the email address with as little hassel as possible :)

Name: SC Author
Email address:

(Neither of the above will be posted -- it is just for us admins to use.)

Entry Nickname: Dumbledore Fan
Title: 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.

(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. NO tabs or anything. Just a simple line break :D)

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. Also, no paragraph breaks or tabs. Just line breaks.)

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! GO GO GO!!

And we are #QueryKombat on Twitter, I'm  SC_Author over there, so drop by and tweet us!


  1. Question: you said we could submit two in one email. The subject should include the genre. But what if the two books are different genres? Should I have the subject be "NICKNAME: Adult Historical Fiction / YA Thriller? Or should I send two emails, with the understanding that the first sent would be the first for the purposes of "we will only consider the second entry if less than 64 entries are received"

    1. Only one email, use the subject line genre for the genre of the book you MOST want in the contest. We will only consider both books if we don't meet our required number of entries :)

  2. This is already getting exciting and I'm not even participating. Good luck to all who enter!

  3. Great line-up of judges. Thanks for this. Aaaagh... I didn't bold where I should bold. Help!

  4. Popping in to say hi! It's been awhile! And look at you, SC. Doing so many awesome things. How fun!

  5. Question: My ms is with an agent that asks for exclusives on requested material. Is it ok to enter query kombat or is that unprofessional?

    1. Sorry, I think the agent might not like that :( If you enter, you have to be open to the possibility of giving your MS to other agents that request :(

    2. Too bad ): I will just cheer everyone else on then!

  6. Hi! Super excited about this challenge. I'm one one of that first 50 something in the first 30 minutes, but I'm not sure it got there. I know you said that confirmations would be sent and I don't know if that's something that I should have gotten already or of if I'm just being impatient. :-) thanks for all you do--this is an awesome kombat opportunity. :-)

  7. Thanks for checking! Hope I don't start of firestorm of "hey did you get mine?" Should change name to paranoidgirl. Ok, will settle down and wait for the fun to begin. :-)

    1. Oh no! It really isn't that much trouble at all.

  8. This sounds really interesting! I'll see if I have time.