10 Things I Learned from Editing Contests
1. Show, don't tell. This goes for the query, too!
2. Voice is gold. The judges want to hear from the characters, not the author.
3. Hook. There should be a hook in the first page. There should be a hook in the query.
4. Avoid info dumps. Queries with too much background, first pages with too much background equal BORING.
5. Industry standard is Times New Roman 12 pt. Learn it, live it, love it!
6. Make sure your idea is unique, and not something already on the NYT Best Seller List.
7. STAKES, STAKES, STAKES! Query and first pages.
8. Use comps (per contest guidelines). This shows you know your market.
9. ALWAYS include age group and genre in the query.
10. DON'T sub something that's not requested.