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SVS 5: The Bees in Egypt – Middle Grade Fantasy

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 07 February 2018 · 46 views



Category/Genre: MG Adventure/Fantasy

Word count: 40,000


Is your antagonist hot or cold?

Despite the fact that Khufu lives in the blistering heat of the Egyptian desert, an icy cold chill can be felt whenever he’s around. A long-preserved anger has been buried deep in his soul for as long as anyone can remember and it’s showing no sign of thawing.



Dear Sun Vs. Snow Agents,

When 12-year-old Hamish Bee is forced to spend the summer holidays with an eccentric uncle and two annoying younger sisters buzzing around him, he wishes he could fast-forward to the end of the holidays and be done with it. He almost gets his wish when Uncle Alastair introduces them to his latest invention, which he describes as a “virtual reality prototype.” But one teensy-tiny glitch and a Very Bad Decision later, Hamish finds himself with the two smaller Bees in the middle of a swarm of pyramid-builders in Ancient Egypt.

Almost immediately they’re discovered by the young, troubled King Amenhotep, who insists that they join him at his palace. He’s intrigued by their strange clothing, and is just superstitious enough to believe they’ve been sent by a divine force to help him.

If bickering with his mutinous sisters in the desert heat while fretting about the vanished time machine aren’t trying enough, Hamish learns of a shadowy murder plot to overthrow their new royal friend. Hoping to buy time in order to determine who exactly wants Amenhotep dead (and why), the children flee with the King… the sting in the tail being they’ve now become targets by association.

With adversaries hot on their heels, the children must uncover a conspiracy and defeat a nefarious villain who is much closer than they ever imagined. And if they can manage all that, they’ve still got to find a way home or the honey-loving people of Ancient Egypt will be acquiring three extra Bees—forever.


First 250 words:

There’s a particular combination of feelings that only ever happens in the instant you realise you’ve made a Very Bad Decision.

You may have experienced it; the ground no longer appears to be beneath your feet, the blood in your veins is replaced with icy cold liquid, a concrete ball of fear has landed in your stomach, and a high-pitched screaming sound (“Undo it!” “Take it back!” or some variation on that theme) fills your head.

As a result of a very specific recipe of circumstances, Hamish, Bernie, and Callie—otherwise known as the Bee children—were being collectively subjected to that very combination as they hovered between the floor of the laboratory and the ceiling overhead.

To be fair, the day hadn’t started out so oddly. Hamish had returned home from school filled with the type of joy only the last day of term can bring; endless summer days loomed ahead, no classes, no homework, all about to be kicked off with the annual family summer holiday.

He was met at the garden gate by twin glares.

“Holiday’s cancelled,” Bernie said, by way of welcome. She wasn’t the type to elaborate.

Hamish looked to Callie for more detail.

“Aye, it’s true.” Callie took a big breath—a sure sign that it was not going to be a quick explanation.

Hamish leaned against the garden wall in preparation. And that, he would later realise, was precisely the point where it all began to unravel.





SVS 6: Warriors Rising: The Hunt – Middle Grade Urban Fantasy (Ownvoices)

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 07 February 2018 · 47 views



Category/Genre: Upper Middle Grade Urban Fantasy (Ownvoices)

Word count: 68,000


Is your antagonist hot or cold?

I find this question insulting. As I am Mao, the powerful mistress of the last known warrior society on Earth, of course my greatness cannot be encompassed by a vague term such as ‘hot’ or ‘cold’. I have, however, been told that my love for my warrior son burns almost as bright as my hatred for those blood traitor brats, and that I have an unmatched ability for keeping cool in adverse situations—except the ones involving those insufferable blood traitors.



Dear Agents,

In a Chinese warrior society on the outskirts of San Francisco’s chinatown, all thirteen-year-old Faryn Liu wants is to protect her people from demons just as her father once did. Too bad she and her younger brother, Alex, are marked as blood traitors, unworthy of wielding swords because they’re half Chinese. Still, under the watchful eye of their grandfather, the siblings train in secret, hoping to someday prove themselves worthy.

When Faryn sneaks into town to buy medicine for her grandfather, she helps a warrior god save the people from an ancient Chinese demon. Faryn’s bravery activates the magic of a powerful spear, and marks her as a warrior destined for the greatest honor—to guard the ruler of the gods, the Jade Emperor, as a Heavenly General. That is, if she can fulfill a quest to find an island of the immortals before the last day of the Lunar New Year.

Spurred by their grandfather’s dying wishes and hints that their missing father might be on that island, Faryn and Alex set off seeking ultimate honor. As the siblings defeat demons and treacherous gods on the road to glory, they realize their multiracial identity might actually make them the most powerful warriors of all. But the brutality of her god-given power, along with the threat of war between the gods and demons, forces Faryn to question the virtuousness of the gods. Becoming a Heavenly General means fulfilling a multi-generational dream, but at the cost of turning her back on what she knows is right: protecting the people of Earth.

Steeped in Chinese mythology as well as questions of racial identity, WARRIORS RISING: THE HUNT is a 68,000 word standalone Upper Middle Grade Fantasy with series potential, and will appeal to fans of Rick Riordan’s PERCY JACKSON AND THE OLYMPIANS.


First 250 words:

On the eve of the Lunar New Year, the demons invaded.

Golden lions and red dragons danced down the streets. Creatures with the heads of fearsome beasts and the hands and feet of costumed humans. They paraded past squealing children, dancing to the beat of drummers and explosions of firecrackers.

Every corner of San Francisco’s Chinatown lit up with red lanterns hanging from rooftops. Men, women, and children crowded the streets, purchasing dumplings from shouting vendors and exchanging packets of money, hong bao, to ring in the year of the horse.

“Look, sun zi,” said an old woman next to me. She nudged her grandson. “It’s time for the annual parade of the Jade Society warriors.”

My pain-in-the-butt younger brother’s words echoed in my head. Get into town, get our grandfather’s medicine, and get out, Alex had insisted. Yet I couldn’t resist pausing to watch the show. A procession of teenage boys and their fathers, clad in bronze armor from head to foot, marched in two neat rows toward the costumed dragons. Five horses carried riders in the front. Both lines stopped when they met in the middle of the square.

The crowd quieted in the presence of the most powerful men in Chinatown. I mean, these guys were literally on their high horses.

Mr. Wei, the chef who ran the most prosperous restaurant in Chinatown, rode beside his short, trollish-looking son, Yao. Behind Yao was Luhao, a lanky boy with a long, narrow face, permanently fixed in a leer.





SVS 7: The Symptoms of Dying – Middle Grade LGBT Magical Realism

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 07 February 2018 · 45 views



Category/Genre: MG LGBT – Magical Realism

Word count: 41,000


Is your antagonist hot or cold?

Anxiety and depression are never hot or cold—they can be both. Here, though, they’re cold. Always cold, gripping, making sure to tighten their hold on everyone’s hearts and throats. They freeze everyone before people can think or act.



Dear Sun Vs. Snow Agents,

Twelve-year-old Jacob Allen has a secret: he has a crush on his best friend—a boy. At least, it used to be a secret. Now that his family knows, they’ve got plenty to say about how a relationship with another boy could never work. As lecture-induced panic attacks begin to steal away the person he thought he was, Jacob starts keeping an even bigger secret: he’s going to run away from home. He’ll leave any day now. It’ll be easy—not a soul knows about his plans.

Except his cousin, Olivia.

Twelve-year-old Olivia Taylor has been in a coma for almost a year, but she doesn’t know it. As far as she knows, she has spent the last months with an aunt, living in an empty coffee shop. Then she starts hearing the voice of a mysterious boy who’s planning to run away from home—he’s just outside the shop door, but it’s locked, and she can’t find the key. Olivia is desperate to help him. Until the boy tells her terrible things about an accident and a girl stuck in a coma, and then she’s no longer certain she wants to find her way out.

Jacob already feels lost to a family that can’t accept him, and when Olivia’s doctors say that he’ll need to let her go if she doesn’t improve soon, his anxiety climaxes to a crippling point.

To help Jacob, Olivia must open a door that’s been locked for as long as she can remember. She isn’t sure she’s ready to face the real world, but if she doesn’t find the key soon, it’ll be too late to save Jacob…and herself.


First 250 words:

We’re not at the hospital for me, but my back really hurts. A lot. Probably because of the floor.

Most people don’t know this, but after Mom and I close Kustard Kones: Ice Cream Parlor, we make a nest of blankets on the floor and tuck in for the night.

Keeping the parlor alive costs a lot of money and what’s left of it is drained by the hospital bills. Once upon a time, Kustard Kones was a family business. Now everything’s on Mom’s shoulders, because the rest of the family is dead.

Except my cousin—Olivia.

The accident killed my aunt and uncle, and left Olivia in a coma. Because of her, we had to sell our house and start sleeping on the floor. Because of her, it’s bye bye to tons of money every month.

But Mom doesn’t want to turn the machines off, because Olivia’s soul is still there, still alive. I’m not sure I believe in souls, but I don’t want to become a killer.

I hate sleeping on the floor, sure, but I don’t hate Olivia.

Okay, maybe a little. But it’s harder to hate her when we’re at the hospital.

Mijos!” The call comes from the door leading to the patients’ rooms. It’s Nana García. She’s a very short, thin woman who likes to keep her dark hair in a bun. Like, always. Every time I see her, she’s exactly the same—and I’ve seen her plenty of times over the last ten months.




SVS 8: All The Words I Didn’t Say – Young Adult Contemporary

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 07 February 2018 · 161 views



Category/Genre: YA Contemporary

Word count: 71,000


Is your antagonist hot or cold?

We are riddles.

We work in shifty ways, enigmatic. Omnipresent yet sometimes absent, containable yet without substance to hold. We are duplicitous. We go incognito, disguising ourselves as bravery, as anger. We can make our host spit blazing hot nails of words, burning those who stand in her way. And we can freeze her clean through, her outer walls hardening to steely armor—and still, she burns, but with frostbite.

We’re the same and different—pride and fear. So much easier to name us than shake us.



Dear Agents:

United States senator’s daughter Angelica Chavez-Schuyler is hell-bent on two things: proving she’s the best high school debater in the country and protecting her empathetic-to-a-fault sister, Issy. Then Ang meets Alex, the only rival debater who’s ever been able match her wit and intellect. He muddies her focus, eats up her precious time, and argues his way right into her heart.

Making matters worse, Issy’s completely smitten with Alex, too.

When an anonymous but scandalous tweet—the kind that could damage her father’s presidential hopes—goes live, Ang is to blame. Issy, who wants to be the stronger sister for once, covers for Ang, claiming responsibility for the social media misfire. Knocked off balance by Issy’s sacrifice, Ang decides she will repay her debt by giving up the boy she might be in love with. Chin held high, Ang denies her affection for Alex, which gives Issy the space to act upon her interest.

Yet Ang isn’t able to logic away her true feelings. As she watches Issy and Alex’s ascent into cute coupledom, she finds herself living with a bruised heart. In an attempt to erase Alex from her mind, Ang studies harder and practices debate until she’s out of words. She even spite-dates Alex’s debate partner. Yet the more she runs from her emotions, the harder they chase. As the Regional Debate Tournament looms, the only thing standing between Ang and her destiny is Alex. With just one slot for Nationals available, it’s either him or her. Ang knows she must outdebate Alex and vanquish her traitorous feelings for him. If she fails, she loses her dream of Nationals—and risks breaking her fragile sister.

ALL THE WORDS I DIDN’T SAY is a loose retelling of sections of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “Hamilton: The Musical” but with a re-imagined, modern-day Angelica Schuyler at the forefront. It will appeal to readers of Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl with its emphasis on sisters and the dynamics of pride and vulnerability.


First 250 words:

I’m sneaking out of the house tonight. I shouldn’t. If anyone on this big dirty earth is supposed to be a Good Little Girl, it’s yours truly.

Yet even senators’ daughters get itchy for a good time. Maybe even especially senators’ daughters. Being vaulted into the role of Prominent U.S. Senator’s kid is kind of an extraordinary experience. Yet sometimes, I just want life to be ordinary.

Going to a Friday night house party with my sister strikes me as an Intensely Average thing for a seventeen-year-old to do. And I’ve never done it before.

Mom’s long asleep. Peggy—the youngest, brattiest Schuyler sister—is too. Dad isn’t even home; he’s working on a Health Care bill around the clock, sleeping at the office between meetings. As it turns out, it’s easy to get out of our house unnoticed. Put a little vegetable oil on our door hinges early in the day to prevent squeaking later on. Skip that fourth-to-the-last stair, the creaky one. Snag a Peanut Butter Power Ball out of my stash to throw to Rex, our enthusiastic mutt, which soothes his fragile doggie feelings and glues his mouth temporarily shut. Easy.

Rex is technically Issy’s dog. Yet sometimes she forgets to fill his water bowl or give him his Milk-Bone after a successful potty break. I take care of Rex almost as much as I take care of Issy.

Sometimes I forget she’s only a year younger than I am.

The party’s only a few blocks away, so we walk, despite the summer-remnant damp that hangs on long into the night.





SVS 9: The Dragon Hunter – Young Adult Fantasy

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 07 February 2018 · 110 views



Category/Genre: YA Fantasy

Word count: 80,000


Is your antagonist hot or cold? 

King Morden is as cold as liquid hydrogen. He capriciously wields his power with little regard for its effects on his subjects. He destroys families and uses people’s loved ones against them. A master at uncovering people’s weaknesses, he manipulates them to solidify his rule and eliminate threats. While he can be charming in public, he has a sociopath’s ability to slash others down without so much as a shift in his pulse. He understands that fear and control of information can be used to prevent dissent and calculatingly uses both to achieve his ends.



Dear Agent:

When the ship arrives to take bounty hunters to the Luceran Isles, Erina is ready. At sixteen, she’s not a particularly great fighter, nor is she gifted with magical abilities like some of the others. What she does have is a knack for strategy, an affinity for plants, and boundless resolve.

Following her parents’ imprisonment, Erina has spent years preparing to pursue the Dragon with the other hunters. The shape-shifting mage has not proven easy to catch despite the lure of the king’s promise to grant any request from the successful hunter. For ten years, seasoned huntsmen have traveled to the Dragon’s island, and few have returned. Those that have say the evil magic of the island itself surpasses that of its master. They speak of ghosts, demonic creatures, shifting landscapes, and nightmares brought to life.

Erina’s friends warn her that she’s more likely to meet her death on the Isles than slay the Dragon and free her parents. But she believes that finding the Dragon is worth risking her life battling the Island’s horrors and the other hunters. For just as the island isn’t always what it seems, Erina’s endgame is about more than winning her parents’ release. If she succeeds, she could topple an entire monarchy.

The Dragon Hunter will appeal to fans of Tamora Pierce’s Tortall novels and Naomi Novik’s Uprooted.


First 250 words:

I almost missed the most important journey of my life because of a broken lock.

On the morning the Ibis sailed into Davenport, I was stacking books in the depository when a draft blew the door shut. Despair rose within me as I jiggled the handle. It wouldn’t budge. I watched, helplessly, as the sails came into view from the room’s small window.

I surveyed the room. The old wooden stools were too flimsy to use as battering rams. The iron fire poker was too thick to fit between the door and the frame. I envied the mages’ abilities to work up spells to overcome predicaments like this.

After banging the door for half an hour, Mistress Terrell managed to get the lock open from the other side. I ran past the elderly librarian to the wharfs as quickly as I could in my skirts, stopping only as I approached the large crowd assembled on the docks. I took a deep breath before pushing my way through the masses to join the line of men.

At the front of the line, a surly man sat behind a table, barking instructions to the men booking passage. One trunk and one satchel per man. Weapons must be stowed at all times. No refunds if you missed the dawn departure tomorrow.

As he shouted, I prayed that I wasn’t too late to get a spot on the ship. If I missed the cutoff, it’d be a full year before I could try again.

I could not wait another year.




“20 in 2018” Celebrates The Release of YOUR ONE AND ONLY and AMERICAN PANDA

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 06 February 2018 · 77 views


One of the things I’m incredibly happy about is being a part of the Class of 2K18 and supporting my good friends as their book babies make it out into the world.

The Class of 2K18 is a group of 20 talented Young Adult and Middle Grade writers who have their first books releasing in 2018! We’ve come together not only to support one another but also help promote each other’s titles.

My new series, titled “20 in 2018” features a new release from the Class of 2K18 and will include the cover, blurb, and buy links for that debut. At the end of the week, I’ll be giving away that book (or books) as we do have some writers who share a book birthday!

To enter, all you have to do is leave a name and contact info in the comments below by Friday, February 9 at 11 p.m. EST. Email or Twitter handle is just fine! U.S. entries only please. Winner will be announced on Monday, February 12.

Today there are TWO books in the “20 in 2018″ giveaway…


YOUR ONE & ONLY by Adrianne Finlay


Jack is a walking fossil. The only human among a sea of clones. It’s been hundreds of years since humanity died off in the slow plague, leaving the clones behind to carry on human existence. Over time they’ve perfected their genes, moving further away from the imperfections of humanity. But if they really are perfect, why did they create Jack?

While Jack longs for acceptance, Althea-310 struggles with the feeling that she’s different from her sisters. Her fascination with Jack doesn’t help. As Althea and Jack’s connection grows stronger, so does the threat to their lives. What will happen if they do the unthinkable and fall in love?

Now available via Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and IndieBound.


American Panda by Gloria Chao



At seventeen, Mei should be in high school, but skipping fourth grade was part of her parents’ master plan. Now a freshman at MIT, she is on track to fulfill the rest of this predetermined future: become a doctor, marry a preapproved Taiwanese Ivy Leaguer, produce a litter of babies.

With everything her parents have sacrificed to make her cushy life a reality, Mei can’t bring herself to tell them the truth–that she (1) hates germs, (2) falls asleep in biology lectures, and (3) has a crush on her classmate Darren Takahashi, who is decidedly not Taiwanese.

But when Mei reconnects with her brother, Xing, who is estranged from the family for dating the wrong woman, Mei starts to wonder if all the secrets are truly worth it. Can she find a way to be herself, whoever that is, before her web of lies unravels?

Now available via Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and IndieBound.

Want to win a copy of one of these beautiful books? Remember to leave your name and contact info in the comments. Please specify which book you would like. If open to either, please let me know.




“20 in 2018” Celebrates The Release of THE UNICORN QUEST!

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 31 January 2018 · 120 views

One of the things I’m incredibly happy about is being able to be a part of the Class of 2K18 and support my good friends as their book babies make it out into the world.

The Class of 2K18 is a group of 20 talented Young Adult and Middle Grade writers who have their first books releasing in 2018! We’ve come together as a group not only to support one another but also help promote each other’s titles.

My new series, titled “20 in 2018” features a new release from the Class of 2K18 and will include the cover, blurb, and buy links for that debut. At the end of the week, I’ll be giving away that book (or books) as we do have some writers who share a book birthday!

To enter, all you have to do is leave a name and contact info in the comments below by Friday, February 2 at 11 p.m. EST. Email or Twitter handle is just fine! U.S. entries only please. Winner will be announced on Monday, February 5.

So without further ado, here is the next book in the “20 in 2018″ series…


THE UNICORN QUEST by Kamilla Benko



Claire Martinson still worries about her older sister Sophie, who battled a mysterious illness last year. But things are back to normal as they move into Windermere Manor… until the sisters climb a strange ladder in a fireplace and enter the magical land of Arden. 

There, they find a world in turmoil. The four guilds of magic no longer trust each other. The beloved unicorns have gone, and terrible wraiths roam freely. Scared, the girls return home. But when Sophie vanishes, it will take all of Claire’s courage to climb back up the ladder, find her sister, and uncover the unicorns’ greatest secret.


Now available for purchase on AmazonB&N, and IndieBound.

Want to win a copy of this beautiful book? Remember to leave your name and contact info in the comments!


More on the author…


Kamilla Benko spent most of her childhood climbing into wardrobes, trying to step through mirrors, and plotting to run away to an art museum. Now, she visits other worlds as a children’s book editor. Originally from Indiana, she currently lives in New York with her bookshelves, teapot, and hiking boots. For more on Kamilla, follow her on Twitter – @kkbenko.



Hello 2018 TEAM SUN Members!!

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 30 January 2018 · 98 views




I’m very excited to share this post today and welcome a fabulous group of writers to TEAM SUN!

My choices are listed below by category in no particular order. If your entry was not selected, please remember we only had 32 spots for over 200 entries. The talent pool this year was stunning and it was VERY DIFFICULT to make a decision. If you weren’t selected, it is NOT a reflection on the quality of your work.  Please go out and query. Many successful authors were plucked from the slush pile!

After you check out my picks, hop over to Michelle’s blog to see the list for TEAM SNOW!


And now what you’ve been waiting for…Team Sun!!



Bloodstone- Urban Fantasy

The Broken Road – Women’s Fiction

Everything Comes Back To You – Women’s Fiction



The Symptoms of Dying – Magical Realism

Warriors Rising: The Hunt – Urban Fantasy (Ownvoices)

The Bees of Egypt – Magical Realism

Derek Hyde Knows Spooky When He Sees It – Paranormal



Hood – Historical

Dying For Love – Mystery

Only The Brave – Contemporary (Ownvoices)

Dance, Dance, Die – Fantasy (Fairytale Retelling – Ownvoices)

As Much As I Ever Could – Contemporary

Riverborn – Urban Fantasy

A Darker Need – Thriller

All The Words I Didn’t Say – Contemporary

The Dragon Hunter – Fantasy


If you’re part of TEAM SUN, CONGRATS!! Expect an email from your mentor soon. Your mentor will help you fine tune your entry privately. Also, I want to stay in touch with each of my picks, so if we don’t already follow each other on Twitter, let’s fix that. My handle: @atrueblood5

Now for the important part:

Your final revised entry must be back to me no later than Monday, February 5 at 11:00 pm EST. That’s so I have time to format the entries and have them ready to post for the agent round on Thursday, February 8 (please don’t make me hunt you down!) Mail your revised entry to the contest email Sunversussnow (at) yahoo (dot) com. Please use the exact same format.

After that, it will be up to the agents to decide! Congrats and good luck to everyone!

Gooooooo Team Sun!!!



It’s Sun vs. Snow Submission Day!!!

  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 23 January 2018 · 154 views




The submission window for Sun versus Snow opens today at 4:00 pm EST!  The instructions and rules for entry are repeated below.

Act fast. We will only be taking the first 200 ENTRIES! Please do not enter early or your entry will be deleted. You can resend at the proper time if this happens accidentally. Confirmation emails will be sent. If you don’t receive one, don’t resend. We don’t want duplicate entries. Please check with us on Twitter first to confirm your entry did or did not arrive, then you may resend.

There is only ONE, yes that’s right, ONE entry per person allowed. Any attempt to cheat will result in entries being thrown out. This contest is only for finished and polished stories. That means do not send us your NaNoWriMo from November 2017 if they aren’t ready.

Important note: The story can’t have been in the agent round of any other contest in the last three months. This doesn’t mean twitter pitch events with hashtags, but multiple agent blog contests. 



Also, Michelle and I have decided not to accept picture books for this contest. Though we love picture books, Michelle holds special contests just for them. We do accept all MG, YA, NA and Adult genres, excluding erotica. To enter you must be followers of our blogs. Click the “follow” button on my blog. You can find Michelle’s blog here. If following our blogs doesn’t work, follow us on Twitter.


The Format:

Send submission to Sunversussnow (at) yahoo (dot) com. Only one submission per person is allowed. It doesn’t matter if you write under different names or are submitting different manuscripts. You are still one person and get one entry.

Here’s how it should be formatted (yes, include the bolded!) Please use Times New Roman (or equivalent), 12 pt font, single-spaced, and put spaces between paragraphs. No indents or tabs are needed. No worries if your gmail doesn’t have Times New Roman. No worries if the email messes up your format. Yes, we will still read it! 🙂

(Here’s a trick to keep your paragraph spacing: copy and paste your entry into your email and then put in the line spaces. They seem to get lost when you copy and paste. It may look right but sending scrambles the spacing.)

Subject Line: SVS: TITLE, Age Category + Genre

(example: SVS: GRUDGING, Adult Epic Fantasy)


In The Email:

Title: MY FANTASTIC BOOK (yes, caps!)

Genre: YA dystopian Ownvoices (Age category and genre. Add “Ownvoices” here if it applies)

Word Count: XX,XXX (round to the nearest thousand)

Twitter Handle: (Optional so we can contact you. Will not be public.)

Is Your Antagonist Hot or Cold?: 

Describe whether your antagonist is hot or cold. Personalities differ. Does your villain snap easily or are they calm and calculating? (Don’t have an antagonist who is a person–then describe the weather of your setting.)

(Can be in your character’s POV, but doesn’t have to be. 100 words or less.)



Query goes here! Include greeting and main paragraphs. Please leave out bio, closing, and word count + genre sentence. You may include comps if you’d like. There is no word count limit on the query but please aim for 250 – 300 words.

You may include if your story is OwnVoices up in the genre line. We really want diverse and talented writers and striping out the bios sometimes leaves us in the dark.

Remember a query has several paragraphs. Don’t send us a pitch.


First 250 words:

Here are the first 250 words of my manuscript, and I will not end in the middle of a sentence. But I will not go over 257 words. Be reasonable and don’t make us count. Don’t forget to space between paragraphs! No indents!


So that’s it. See you at 4:00 pm Eastern time. Good luck!


Oh, one more thing…



Here are the suggested daily topics. But if you want to make up your own fun games on the hashtag #SunvsSnow then go right ahead! Just keep it clean and inclusive for all.


Jan 23– Submission day! What genre and age category will you/did you enter? Show us a sun or snow picture from your neighborhood.


Jan 24– It’s very important to read new books in your genre to get a sense of pacing and timing as well as style. What book in your genre have you read recently?


Jan 25– Do you get more writing done when there’s sun (summer) or snow (winter)? When are you most productive?


Jan 26– Do you have a word count writing goal for each day or use some other measurement? How do you carve out time to write?


Jan 27– Pantser or plotter or somewhere in between?


Jan 28– Shout out a favorite line from the ms you entered.


Jan 29– If you had to choose one goal for your writing career this year, what would it be?


Jan 30– Beta readers and Critique Partners are important in the writing world. Where did you meet yours so others can check out those places?


Jan 31– Final advice as before picks are announced on how you manage nerves during contests/querying?


Have fun! Mix and mingle! Make friends! Who knows among this group could be a future critique partner!!






  Posted by Amy Trueblood , 16 January 2018 · 149 views




A free pass allows you to skip the slush and become an instant pick. You’ll get to work with a mentor to improve your query and first page (first 250 words). Your entry will be seen by our 21 agents and maybe some ninja agents!

You must do two things to enter:

  • Leave a blog comment on this post and use the rafflecopter to record that you commented. If you aren’t in the rafflecopter, it can’t pick you as the winner. This ensures the winner is random and no bias slips in.
  • Answer this question:

How would your main character handle a day with a 100+degree temperature? Would they wilt in the shade or revel in the heat?

Please be as fun or creative as you can with your reply and try and stay under 200 words.

Use the rafflecopter for additional optional entries and to help spread the word via Twitter.

The free pass will stay open until January 22. 

Thanks and good luck! I hope to see one of you on TEAM SUN!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


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