Monday, June 25, 2012

New Adult Pitch Contest Announcement!

At YAtopia, we’re all about Young Adult lit. But we’re also really excited about this New Adult category that’s been popping up. (Read Sarah’s case for NA here.)

That’s why we’ve invited super literary agent Sara Megibow and the awesome Heather Howland (Managing Editor at Entangled Publishing) to help us host a New Adult Pitch Contest! The rules and details are below.

Please note. To hopefully avoid some confusion: Sara is the literary agent judging the contest. Sarah is the YAtopian moderating the contest.

What is NA?

This post at Writer’s Digest by Kristan Hoffman sums it up nicely. So you should just go ahead and read that. We’ll wait.


UPDATE: Your manuscript must be complete, polished, and ready to query!
At midnight (00:01) on July 10th (EST, like all of our contests here), the official pitch contest post will go up at To enter the contest, you must post the following information as a comment on that post before 11:59 PM on July 10th. The pitch contest will be closed if 100 entries are submitted, no matter what time of day it is. One pitch per person.

  • Your name
  • Your email address
  • Title
  • Genre
  • Word-count
  • 35 word pitch (This is a hard and fast rule. Pitches with 36 or more words will be immediately disqualified)
  • If you spread the word about the contest, include a link (details below)
You do not have to follow our blog to participate – but if you want to be kept in the loop about future pitch contest opportunities, it might be a good idea. ;-)

NOTE: If you are agented, please discuss this contest with your agent before participating - and let us know this along with your submission so Sara will know not to request pages from you.


Sara and Heather will pick their winners and we will post the results within the week. We have no rule that says both Sara and Heather can't request the same manuscript! The number of winners depends entirely on the quality of the pitches! There is no pre-set number of winners so they may request ten pages from one person or they could request fulls from all of you – it’s all up to you!

That is why…

Critique Session

NA Alley, THE blog dedicated to New Adult fiction, is going to help everybody out by hosting a pre-pitch critique session on July 3rd!

On July 3rd, they’ll put up a post (which we’ll link to) where you can post your pitch in the comments and receive feedback from other contestants, as well as YAtopia and NA Alley contributors, and Special Guest Lynn Rush, new adult paranormal romance author! All we ask is that you critique three other pitches.

The judges will NOT be looking at these, so make sure you take this opportunity to make your pitch shine as brightly as possible.

Sara’s Bio

Sara Megibow has been with the Nelson Literary Agency since early 2006. Her first responsibilities included reading the query letters, sample pages and full manuscripts that were submitted for representation. In early 2009, she was promoted to Associate Literary Agent and is now actively accepting submissions of her own. From sexy romance to epic fantasy, Sara has loved reading since picking up her first copy of The Hobbit. Sara has a B.A. in Women’s Studies and a B.A. in American History from Northwestern University. She lives in sunny Boulder with her beat-boxing husband, adorable son and two fuzzy cats.

Read about Sara's submission notes, clients and sales at Publishers Marketplace.
Follow her on twitter @SaraMegibow

More interviews:

Heather's Bio

Award-winning young adult author Heather Howland began editing in the legal, industrial, and technical sectors eight years ago while working as a Production Manager. She has since honed her fiction editing skills as a freelancer and as the former acquisitions editor of a small romance publisher. She now works with popular authors such as USA Today bestseller Cari Quinn, Amy Andrews, and Laura Kaye. A portrait photographer in a former life, Heather’s eye for art lends itself to simplistic, NY-style book covers. In her spare time, Heather hosts craft chats and teaches editing workshops for various organizations, and mentors YA authors through the editing process at Savvy U. She holds a BS in creative writing and psychology, which she channels into her love of dark, romantic fiction. Find her on Twitter at @HeatherHowland.

More interviews:

Spread the Word

There is another prize available only to contestants who spread the word about this contest through their ACTIVE facebook, twitter, or blog. These tweets/posts must include a link back to either this post or the contest post and must be posted before 6pm EST on July 10th, six hours before the contest closes.

If you spread the word and leave a link below your pitch, you will be entered into a random drawing to win a query critique from Sarah Nicolas, who is an intern at Entangled Publishing.

If more than fifty entries are received, two winners will be chosen.


To the comments! 


  1. What a great contest! Thanks for putting this on.

  2. Yay, Yay! Super awesome, YAtopia!!!

  3. Awesome contest! Good luck to all of those entering!! I would, but my novel is finished yet.

  4. Awesome contest! Looking forward to doing the pre-pitch session at NA Alley...and maybe entering myself. :D

  5. Thank you for running this contest, it sounds perfect for me, as I'm in the midst of editing a NA story.

    And thanks to the ladies at NA Alley, and Lynn Rush, for agreeing to critique pitches beforehand.

  6. Woohoo! Excellent, this should be great. Now I just need to figure out how to put things into 35 words. And hope I can get into the contest in time. No pressure. @_@

  7. I love teaming up like this! :D How exciting!

  8. What a super fun opportunity. I'm so glad to be a part of it. New Adult is near and dear to my heart!! I'm looking forward to helping as much as I can!! Write on, my friends!

  9. You guys always have the best contests. Thank you for this one! I wish I had the re-write to one of my projects finished, because it'd be perfect for this contest.

  10. Thanks so much for organising this Sarah! It's one of our best contests yet.

  11. I'm so happy to see NA gathering speed :) I'm a 100% NA author :) Go YAtopia :)

  12. How exciting for us aspiring authors. So many people out there willing to help us with their advice and suggestions. Such generous hearts. Should make everyone who participates thankful. I know I am!
    Thanks to all of you, willing to take the extra time. Much appreciated!

    1. aww thank you! that's so nice. we're excited to do it - we all love watching the excitement when other people achieve their dreams :-)

  13. Does your MS need to be completely finished then, I imagine? Just want to make sure! :)


    1. I'm curious about this as well. I have (very) rough draft finished, but I wouldn't really even call it a draft of the manuscript yet. Still, I'm considering making it more YA in the revision, but I think it would work much better as the NA it currently is. This might help with that decision.

    2. Yes, it should be complete. You shouldn't enter unless you're ready to send your MS to the agent/editor this week to consider for representation/publication.


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  15. Thank you for running this contest, it sounds perfect for me, as I'm in the midst of editing a NA story.
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