“Dear Lucky Agent” Writing Contest

For anyone who has an unpublished manuscript for a novel lying around the house, Chuck Sambuchino & Co. over at “Guide To Literary Agents” are currently running a contest. Writers have until January 23rd to submit the first 150-200 words of the manuscript, which should fall under the category of  “literary fiction”. At least three entries will be selected by the judge,  Lindsey Clemons of the Larsen-Pomada Agency in San Francisco. These entrants will be requested to send the first ten pages of their completed manuscript. The contest opens today and runs until the 23rd of January. Announcements will be made within three weeks of the last day of the contest.

Guide To Literary Agents


is a fun site primarily geared to prospective novelists. They provide numerous interesting articles and interviews with both writers and agent, plus they run frequent “Dear Lucky Agent”  Contests. A lucky agent contest involves the submission of short writing sample that is judged by a prominent literary agent. Each contest is usually centered around a particular genre of writing and winning writers usually receive a partial reading or critique. Other sites that often run similar contests are QueryTracker and Nathan Bransford’s blog.  Though with Nathan, it remains to be seen if he will still sponsor such contests now that he is no longer a literary agent.

And for all of those entering the contest, best of luck.

Night Lights in Montreal


Rainbow Over Portland (Maine)

Rainbow in Portland Maine
Rainbow in Portland Maine

A huge intense rainbow formed today in Portland, Maine during a day that produced some very strange weather, here along the coast of Maine. On a day that saw mostly sunshine mixed with a few very brief periods of intense rain, a gorgeous rainbow formed across the city skyline late in the afternoon. The rainbow was full, but it was too near for me to capture the entire arc on film. It was simply immense in the way that it stretched from one end of the horizon to the other.

Of course there has to be a pot of gold at the other end, and I’m sure that a pot of gold must exist somewhere in the nearby environs just waiting to be found. But so far it has not be that his found any pot of gold.

Sometimes when I try to sell my writing or enter a short story contest, I feel like I am maybe searching for a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. No big bonanza or contract yet, but still the money does roll in at a steady rate and perhaps even now at a slightly better rate than it did at this time last year.

Looking for an agent for my great American novel, now that is something akin to looking for the pot of gold at he end of rainbow. Odds of winning are a bit like winning the lottery, but alas, skill and persistence can effect the odds favorably on your behalf, but it’s still a long shot, no matter how talented and dedicated your are.

Today, I got an e-mail that drove this point home in away that was a little sad and forlorn. I got a letter from a writer who had written a novel and sent out 300 queries and received only three partial requests. However the sad part was that instead of deciding to write another novel, he had decided to set up an online writers collective, where other enterprising writers could join and sell thir work online as e-books or something like that. So far so good except that the price of this privilege was $500 per year. OUCH!!

Funny thing before the rainbow occurred this afternoon, I road my bicycle across a short causeway to an island that is close to my home. It located close to where the pot of gold might have been. I did not find any treasure, but then bring back a picture of some golden-colored leaves. They are everywhere this time of year.