I'm torn about this competition. It's very expensive to enter, but it's judged by actual readers. You know, the kind of people who actually buy books. It's also only open to MA students past and present, so narrows the pool down BUT to a very educated pool. The prize is publication, simple. Since Mslexia still haven't dashed my hoped but are taking more time to judge Borrowed Time, I'm in two minds as to whether put it in. Basically, they send round your fist bit and a short synopsis, then if the readers shortlist it, you provide the rest of the book. In theory. The best thing about it is that it's made me look at Borrowed Time again, put the scenes on pretty coloured cards in truly gruesome handwriting (we don't get many reasons to write with a pen, do we? I'm glad I haven't got any exams coming up). Now I'm moving them all around.
My supervisor on the MA questioned having the opening scene led by a basically secondary character. It's not the strongest, most compelling scene in the book but I had a real problem with timeline. I'm putting the stronger scene back at the beginning and I'm just going to have to radically revise the timeline to fit. The very essence of the Hookline comp is the idea of a compelling beginning - a brilliant first line that you just have to follow up. Since the deadline is...(checks calendar, has internal conversation of WTF, where did January go?)...Tuesday, I'd better get on with it.