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Hello everyone, we have exciting news - Fangs Fur and Fey is hosting its first contest!
For those of you who've seen Miss Snark's Crap-O-Meter or Lit Agent X's GOT HOOK? extravaganza, you'll have an idea of the format. Writers are invited to submit up to a 300 word 'hook' to us describing your novel. What's a hook? Consider it a movie trailer for your book. It's a brief description meant to entice and interest someone into wanting to read your novel. A hook does NOT list every character, subplot or setting detail - that's a synopsis, and we don't want those. You also don't need to list your book's title or word count. Just list the genre, your name and email address (these will not count toward your total word tally) and then go right to your hook. That 300 max word count will be strictly enforced, too - anything over it won't be eligible. 
We will be able to accept up to 180 hooks on a first-come, first serve basis. Start sending in hooks on Friday, April 13th (if you REALLY want to be first, you can do it as early as 12:01 am Friday the 13th, EASTERN standard time) and then we will close submissions on Sunday, April 15th at midnight - or until we get 180 hooks, whichever comes first. DO NOT POST HOOKS HERE. Email hooks to fangsfurandfey@yahoo.com
All 180 hooks will be critiqued by our volunteer judges, members of Fangs, Fur and Fey (see below for list of judges). Now, though we love Miss Snark, these critiques will not be in her famous "WTF?" style, but will be overviews of what did or didn't work for the hook and why. The critiqued hooks will be posted online at FFF on Monday, April 23rd. The author's name and email address will NOT be made public. Instead, each hook will listed by number, and each author will be informed of their number when we receive his/her submission. Furthermore, the name of the particular judge who critiqued your hook will also not be listed, privately or publicly. Only the judges' comments, the hook, and the hook number will be posted. Due to size, most hooks and comments will be under a cut - we don't want to receive hate mail by clogging up everyone's Friend pages with an extremely long Hook contest post.
Watchers will also be invited to offer comments on what did/didn't work for them on hooks, BUT NO FLAMING, PEOPLE! This is supposed to be helpful, informative and fun, not rude, cruel or insulting. Any abusive comments will be deleted as fast as we see them.
You may be wondering, how can we call this a contest if there isn't a prize? Well, aside from the feedback given by the judges and your own peers, don't worry, we do have a prize! Out of those 180 hooks, judges will choose the best 12 to advance to the next round. Those writers will have thru Thursday, April 26th, to turn in the first 5 pages of their novel (double-spaced), also emailed to fangsfurandfey@yahoo.comThese pages will be critiqued by our judges and posted online Sunday, May 6th in the same manner as the hooks. Out of those 12, judges will choose the best one overall. The final winner will then be announced on Thursday, May 9th and he/she will receive...
Rachel Vater raleva31  at Lowenstein-Yost has agreed to critique and offer feedback (NOT posted online at FFF, but directly to the writer) of the author's first three chapters/50 double-spaced pages of their manuscript, plus their synopsis, if desired. Since most authors very much want a professional agent's take on their novel, we think this is a prize that will really benefit the winning participant.
And here are some things you may be wondering:
1) What if my novel isn't finished? Can I still enter the contest?
A: Yes, but you DO need to have at least the first three chapters or 50 pages (double-spaced) completed in case you're the lucky winner.
2) But what if I don't want my hook/first five pages posted online for other people to see?
A: Then don't enter. Sorry, but as anyone who's seen the Crap-O-Meter or Got Hook contest knows, it's extremely helpful for writers to see common mistakes/pitfalls or what works in hooks and pages. This is a contest with the goal of making everyone who enters it better at writing their hooks/initial pages...and everyone who watches as well.
3) What if Rachel's rejected my query letter before? Does that make me ineligible?
A: Nope. This is a clean slate all the way around.
4) Okay, but what if she's already read and rejected my partial before, can I still enter?
A: If you've revised since then, yes, you can. If it's the EXACT same first 3 chapters/50 pages Rachel's seen before and already given you comments on...then no. That isn't fair to everyone else else who enters, because then she'll just be repeating herself.
5) Suppose I win and Rachel really likes my first 3 chapter/50 pages, will she request more?
A: That's up to her. If she want to see a full manuscript after doing her part in this contest, she's welcome to do so, but Fangs, Fur and Fey would have nothing to do with that. It would be solely at her discretion and she is under no obligation to request more.
6) What is Rachel does request my full manuscript, but for whatever reason, I don't want to send it to her?
A: Same principle applies. You're under no obligation to send her more either. If she offers and you choose to accept or decline that offer, Fangs Fur and Fey would have nothing to do with it. We're guaranteeing one person a critique of their first three caps/50 pages from Rachel - anything above and beyond that would be between your and her.
7) What if you don't get 180 entries into this contest? Will it be canceled?
A: No, we'll move ahead with however many entries we do get. Since this is our first contest, we really don't know what the response will be. But we know SOMEONE will win no matter how many entries we get.
8) What genres are you accepting for this contest? Any exclusions?
A: These are the genres we're accepting hooks from:
Urban Fantasy - adult and YA
Young Adult Fiction
Paranormal romance 
Sci-Fi and Fantasy 
These are the genres Excluded:
Childrens/Middle Grade
True Crime
Literary fiction
9) Can I request a particular judge for my hook/pages?
A: No. Hooks and pages will be assigned a number and randomly handed out to judges. In the interest of fairness and with the knowledge that some of us may have online friends entering this contest, the writer's identity will stripped from the hook when it's assigned. If a judge happens to recognizes a friend's hook/pages from their content, again in the interest of fairness, they will forward it to another judge.  
10) Why don't we get to know who judged our hooks/pages?
A: Because that's not what this contest is about. We're looking to help writers improve, not finger-point about which judge didn't like what hook and then get personally upset with he/she over it.
11) Why do you people have the right to judge us, anyway? You're not agents or editors.
A: No, we're not. But we all have one thing in common: we're all published/contracted authors, and therefore we've all gotten out of the slush pile at one point. Are we the most qualified people in the world to judge? No, but this isn't a perfect world and we're hosting this contest to offer help and advice, not pretend we know absolutely everything about hooks and initial pages.   
That said, if you don't want our feedback, we won't be offended if you don't enter. We just wanted to do something to give back to the not-yet-published writers. We have a vested interest in seeing more writers succeed (we like reading good books), so if we can help, that would please us.
12) Are you going to have another Hook contest again?
A: We don't know. Let's get through this one first :)

If you have any questions, ask away!

**Side Note: Due to an immediate surge in requests for membership with Fangs, Fur and Fey (which is flattering :), we'd like to remind everyone to read our profile and decide if you should request to be a Member or a Watcher. We don't want to hurt anyone's feelings by rejecting their membership if they hit 'Member' when they meant to hit 'Watcher'. If  you hit  'Member' before by mistake, just go back and click 'Watcher' and we'll take care of the rest. Thanks!**


( 62 comments — Leave a comment )
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Apr. 5th, 2007 01:35 pm (UTC)
Huh, neat idea. I'll look forward to seeing it play out!

Can I suggest the possibility of spreading the results out across a couple of days? 180 hooks is a helluva lot to read all in one sitting. Obviously, you can bookmark and come back to it, but just the idea is kind of daunting me, even so.
Apr. 5th, 2007 01:49 pm (UTC)
Depending on how it turns out, we may separate by category or perhaps post in bunches (1-25, 26-50, etc).
(no subject) - buymeaclue - Apr. 5th, 2007 01:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 5th, 2007 02:27 pm (UTC)
I love the idea! Thanks guys.
The moving on to new levels keeps the interest there over a long time ( just don't burn yourselves out) and the prize! My eyes bugged out and I sputtered my morning coffee everywhere - Very Cool.
Rachel Vater is obviously one, wonderful and patient agent.
Apr. 5th, 2007 03:26 pm (UTC)
Re: WoW
Yes, Rachel's great to have offered herself as our prize :) The contest should be a lot of fun!
Apr. 5th, 2007 03:24 pm (UTC)
Hi, I was wondering if this was restricted to people living in America, or can people living elsewhere enter as well.
Apr. 5th, 2007 04:24 pm (UTC)
Typing as a Brit, I would like to second this question.
(no subject) - fff_contest - Apr. 5th, 2007 04:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - tybalt_quin - Apr. 5th, 2007 04:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - fff_contest - Apr. 5th, 2007 05:11 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - tybalt_quin - Apr. 5th, 2007 05:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - fff_contest - Apr. 5th, 2007 04:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - fff_contest - Apr. 5th, 2007 05:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 5th, 2007 04:30 pm (UTC)
We just wanted to do something to give back to the not-yet-published writers.

Is this contest open to writers who have been published? Having never written a novel hook before, I would very much appreciate having one critiqued.
Apr. 5th, 2007 05:13 pm (UTC)
Okay, just checked. Previously pubbed okay, BUT contestants can't have an agent because the prize is an agent critique.
Apr. 5th, 2007 06:54 pm (UTC)
I am just wondering about legal stuff- are you just claiming non-exclisuve rights to publish hooks?
Apr. 5th, 2007 07:27 pm (UTC)
We aren't *publishing* anything. There is no exchange of monies or ownership claimed. You aren't surrendering any of your rights. We are only commenting on and posting hooks/pages publicly on our site, which is what an author agrees to let us do when he/she sends in their hook/pages, but the hooks and pages ALWAYS remain the sole property of the author.
Apr. 5th, 2007 06:57 pm (UTC)
Hi! :3 Questions ahead, do our first three chapters have to be 50 pages or is that just another option if one doesn't have three chapters or their three chapters are huge?

Also, can one recieve help from an outside source for the hook writing? Not as in like someone else writes it but someone else you know edits or gives imput?

Also, would Supernatural fiction be counted as accepted? I question for the story I'm writing, it's not straight horror it does have paranormal and urban fantasy setting in it.
Apr. 5th, 2007 07:30 pm (UTC)
No, they don't have to be 50 pages, they can be less. The 50 page cutoff was only for authors who have extremely long chapters, and therefore the first three could have meant 100 pages :)

Dark fantasy/supernatural is fine. Just no traditional horror.
Apr. 5th, 2007 09:57 pm (UTC)
I have a fussy, pedantic question (and if it's already covered somewhere and I missed it, please disregard). What timezone are you using?

(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - lady_blew_away - Apr. 5th, 2007 11:52 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - fff_contest - Apr. 6th, 2007 04:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 6th, 2007 03:48 am (UTC)
What about timezone
Question, 12 AM New York time? What time zone are we talking about? I live in Utah and 12 NY time is 10 my time.
Thanks for this wonderful chance!


Annabelle's scribe
Apr. 6th, 2007 04:13 pm (UTC)
Re: What about timezone
I've amended the post to reflect that it will be Eastern time zone.
Re: What about timezone - (Anonymous) - Apr. 6th, 2007 06:02 pm (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 6th, 2007 06:16 am (UTC)
may be a stupid question, but what's the difference between hard (not accepted) and light (accepted) Fantasy? Mostly I hear about hard/light sci-fi.
Apr. 6th, 2007 04:15 pm (UTC)
There's been some confusion over that, so we took the words "light" and "hard" off, but the intention was to convey that overtly technical, need-three-PhD's-to-understand-the-first-five-pages type of SciFi/Fantasy was excluded.
Apr. 6th, 2007 12:18 pm (UTC)
Hook Contest Question
Would Historical Fantasy be an acceptable genre to submit to the contest?
Apr. 6th, 2007 04:13 pm (UTC)
Re: Hook Contest Question
Apr. 6th, 2007 12:27 pm (UTC)
Contest Question
Submission date starts April 13 - what part of the world is that? See, I'm in Australia, where it's about 10 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time. Should I send it April 13 my time, or April 13 other time... and how far behind are you, may I ask?

Thanks, and have a lovely day! :-)

Apr. 6th, 2007 04:18 pm (UTC)
Re: Contest Question
Post has been amended to reflect that the contest starts Friday April 13,th 12:01 am Eastern Standard time zone for the United States.

I don't know what time that would be in Australia, sorry :)
Apr. 6th, 2007 06:19 pm (UTC)
is thriller an accepted genre?
Apr. 7th, 2007 12:51 am (UTC)
Re: genre
Yes, thriller is fine.
Apr. 7th, 2007 02:51 am (UTC)
How about YA fantasy (not urban)? And thank you all for doing this, I can't wait to read opinions of what works and what doesn't for various hooks.
Apr. 7th, 2007 02:00 pm (UTC)
YA fantasy is fine.
Apr. 7th, 2007 02:45 pm (UTC)
Amanada Marrone Link
This link doesn't work. The address shows:


It works better as:

Apr. 7th, 2007 05:28 pm (UTC)
Re: Amanada Marrone Link
Thanks, fixed it!
Apr. 7th, 2007 05:26 pm (UTC)
accepted 'hooks'
i'd love to enter this (or try, for I have no hook yet, alas) but would a werewolf book set in about the 1500's be acceptable? (there are cities in it ;))


Apr. 7th, 2007 05:29 pm (UTC)
Re: accepted 'hooks'
Yes, that would fall under Fantasy and be fine. Start working on your hook! :)
Re: accepted 'hooks' - mekkavandexter - Apr. 7th, 2007 05:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
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( 62 comments — Leave a comment )


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