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Entry Day for the Make It Golden Contest 2015

pen**update:

The 2015 contest is now closed to entries.

Thanks to everyone who entered!! Remember to check back ASAP on Monday, September 28 to see if you’re a finalist!!**

 

Welcome to the SIXTH Annual MAKE IT GOLDEN Contest!!

The MAKE IT GOLDEN contest is designed for unpublished authors who are polishing up their entries for RWA’s Golden Heart Contest. We all know how important a strong opening is in grabbing the attention of Golden Heart judges, and this contest is a great chance to test yours out!

Check out the finalists from 2014’s contest, 2013’s contest , 2012’s contest here, 2011 here, and 2010 here.

Between now and 11:59 today, just post your romance manuscript’s first fifty words (with the word ENTRY in all caps at the top), and you’re in the running to win one of our prizes:

GRAND PRIZE: the Rubies pay your $35 Golden Heart entry fee! 

SECOND PLACE: a $20 Amazon gift card

ruby journalTHIRD PLACE: a Ruby Slipper blank journal (pictured left).

And, of course, huge heapings of glory for all three!!

Anyone eligible to enter the 2016 Golden Heart (see RWA’s rules here) is eligible to enter (except Rubies, of course), and the best part is, there’s no entry fee. It’s COMPLETELY FREE to enter, but only the FIRST ONE HUNDRED ENTRIES CAN QUALIFY, so don’t delay!

OFFICIAL RULES — PLEASE READ CAREFULLY:

  • Finalists and winners from previous years are welcome to enter again, BUT ALL ENTRIES MUST BE NEW!
  • We will only accept a maximum of 100 entries, first come, first served.
  • Due to the entry cap, a maximum of TWO entries per person will be accepted for this year’s contest. This means even if you are planning on entering more than one manuscript in the Golden Heart, or write under multiple pen names, you will have to choose a maximum of two manuscripts you want to enter.
  • Starting at 12:01 a.m. on September 22nd (that’s right now!), entrants will post the opening of their manuscript, 50 words MAXIMUM, in the comments box. Start by typing the word ENTRY in all caps so we don’t miss it. Also, find a good cut-off point: please don’t leave us hanging in the middle of a sentence! Just don’t go over 50 words.
  • The word ENTRY does NOT count towards your 50 word limit. This is just so we can identify it as an ‘official’ entry.
  • Any entries that violate any of these rules (i.e., goes over the 50 word limit, is one of three or more entries from the same person, is not from a romance manuscript, is an entry from a previous year, is an entry from someone not eligible for RWA’s Golden Heart Contest, or is posted after 11:59 p.m. on September 22) will result in the entry being disqualified.

Ten finalists will be listed on the blog at 12:01 a.m. EST on Monday, September 28. ENTRANTS SHOULD CHECK THE RUBY BLOG AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE ON SEPTEMBER 28 TO FIND OUT IF THEY ARE FINALISTS. It is entirely the entrant’s responsibility to check the blog to see if she or he is a finalist.

The ten chosen finalists will have the rest of the day, until 12:01 a.m. September 29 (in other words, 24 hours), to post an expanded entry, starting with that exact same fabulous 50-word opening, and continuing with the next consecutive lines up to a MAXIMUM TOTAL of 250 words. (Really, a maximum of 250. Any more than that, and we have to disqualify the entry. We will also disqualify your entry if it’s not posted by 12:01 a.m. on September 29.) Again, type ENTRY in caps at the top and post your expanded entry.

The three winners will be announced on the blog on Thursday, October 1.

START POSTING THOSE ENTRIES!!!! We’re looking forward to reading them!!

(image courtesy of kangshutters / FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

 

60 responses to “Entry Day for the Make It Golden Contest 2015”

  1. Jenn Windrow says:

    ENTRY

    Holy Hades in the Underworld. Today was my all-eyes-on-me, who-is-she-wearing trip down the aisle. A day that was all about the dress, all about the joining of two hearts, but most of all…today was all about the bride. Me. Gia Adler. The lucky woman who snagged San Diego’s most eligible bachelor.

    3+

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  2. Melonie says:

    ENTRY

    Three weeks ago Cassie Crow left Chicago armed with an empty passport and a full box of condoms. Now she traced a finger over the rainbow of inked lines, the once blank pages testament to her travels.

    Her passport was no longer empty.

    The condom box, unfortunately, was still full.

    5+

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  3. Elisa Beatty says:

    Love these so far!! Keep ’em coming!!

    0
  4. Chelly Pike says:

    ENTRY

    “How the hell am I supposed to collect my favor if I can’t find you?” Quinn said, her voice a tight whisper, her flashlight cutting a wide slice of landscape from the moon-silvered dark.

    She inched forward, cringing at the crunch and pop of the leaf litter.

    2+

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  5. Seana Kelly says:

    ENTRY

    Meg watched Carmen check her watch again. “Don’t worry. We’re not waiting for all of them.”
    “I don’t know why you’re nervous. What could they say that would be so bad?” Carmen, Meg’s best friend, slid a beer in front of her. “Drink. Alcohol makes everything better.”

    4+

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  6. Janet says:

    ENTRY

    With only the fierce marble eagle judging me from a cupola on top of the courthouse dome, I bent forward and readjusted my cleavage. Thanks to a padded bra and a wrap shirt with a deep v, the girls achieved maximum perkiness. Tonight called for a different sort of bait.

    2+

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  7. Seana Kelly says:

    ENTRY

    “You really are a moron, aren’t you?” Hunter barely glanced at his brother Chase before turning back to the gamine beauty walking out of the airport towards them.
    “What? You don’t think she’s hot?” Chase stood a little taller and smiled, dimples flashing.
    Hunter rolled his eyes. “Save it.”

    4+

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  8. ENTRY
    Sebastian looked up from his reader and out the window. “Back to the main program complex again.” He sighed. He enjoyed training the younger boys at the boy’s camp but it felt good to be back home. He felt stiff from sitting for so long and he wanted to stretch.

    2+

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  9. Abby Sharpe says:

    Ooh, it’s the most wonderful time of the year! <3

    0
  10. C R Grissom says:

    ENTRY:

    “Why do men call them blow jobs? It’s not like the penis is a balloon. You don’t actually blow into it so who thought that up as a metaphor for going down on someone?”

    I’m watching my best friend spit-take soda while mentally thanking Skype since it kept me dry.

    4+

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  11. Tracy Brody says:

    ENTRY

    The heaviness in AJ’s soul eclipsed the weight of the casket and lifeless body of Master Sergeant Hal Boswell. If he hadn’t been the one to discover Hal, pressed his own fingers to the cold flesh in hopes of finding a pulse, he might not have accepted the reality.

    2+
  12. ENTRY

    “You wound a perm rod around a man’s what?” Detective Romero stood in the middle of the Mediterranean-styled salon, hand on his gun hip, stunning blue eyes piercing me with a look that said now he’d heard everything.

    My name is Valentine Beaumont. Presently, I wasn’t sure what to say.

    4+

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  13. ENTRY

    Max licked powder off a Friar Tuck’s jelly donut. “What was wrong with her?” He watched me slash a red mark through the name of the interviewee who’d just traipsed out the door. “You don’t like stylists who wear leather shorts and latex T-shirts?”

    This was how my day began.

    4+

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  14. Victoria says:

    ENTRY

    Back home, they say that a guy who won’t make the first move is about as useful as a match that won’t light.

    Ryan McAllister is most definitely an unlit match.

    Today, he’s two rows in front of me, just to the left—ideal placement for checking him out.

    5+

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  15. Adrienne Trent says:

    ENTRY:

    “I know the contract said dead or alive, Kane, but did you really have to cut off his head?”

    Kane Ashwanti scowled down the alley. Decapitation wasn’t Plan A, but after four hours in that god-awful nightclub chasing his prey, payback was a bitch and its name was Plan B.

    5+

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  16. I love this time of year! These entries are great. It’s going to be a really tough competition!

    0
  17. Kali says:

    ENTRY
    Waking up in the middle of a pitched battle never stopped being miserable. Not again, I’ve been taking my medication. Rho threw herself to the ground as an explosion rocked the ground. She squeezed her eyes shut and tried to force herself to shift again. Gun shots made her flinch.

    3+

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  18. Yikes. Please disqualify me. I thought only past winners and finalists weren’t allowed to enter the same titles again. Didn’t realize that applied to everyone.

    Sorry! And good luck to everyone.

    Arlene ~

    0
  19. Bonnie Staring says:

    ENTRY

    Being best friends with Tish Barr is a lot like sitting in the fourth row at the movies. Things get blurry around the edges as everything you experience—even if you don’t have anything to do with it—happens in a huge way.

    3+

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  20. KT Cady says:

    ENTRY

    Haven breathed softly, but the leaves still moved. She could hope the huge alien warrior attributed the slight stirring to the natural wind. What little there was, her brain groaned. She needed a stronger breeze if she was going to stay hidden much longer.

    He was bigger than the others.

    6+

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  21. KT Cady says:

    ENTRY

    “I told you once before I don’t respond well to threats.” Ella leveled her rifle. “Take your men and leave now.” Her voice didn’t waver, but her insides quivered.

    Kracken’s eyes narrowed slightly, watching as the small woman pointed her weapon at a particularly favorite part of his anatomy.

    6+

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  22. Kate says:

    ENTRY

    Eli wandered the aisles of the ancient exhibit housed in the London Museum. Row after row of cryonic suspension units dating back to the invasion of Earth.
    Three hundred and sixteen in all.
    Artists with talents too great to risk ruination in the ensuing horrors.

    1+

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  23. Kay Keppler says:

    ENTRY

    On her lunch break three days after she was put on unpaid leave from the CIA, Phoebe Renfrew sat in the shade of the Clark County building in Las Vegas, bit into her peanut butter sandwich, and booted up her laptop.

    1+

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  24. Melanie B says:

    ENTRY

    The instant Anna walked onto Centre Court’s velvety grass she realized her mistake.

    She’d believed spending the better part of nine months picking up gin and tonics instead of a racquet wouldn’t matter, that phoning it in at a few second tier tournaments would be enough.

    But this was Wimbledon.

    2+

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  25. April Alieda says:

    The day that refused to end just kept on giving. When Amber entered the aging commuter plane, the smell of stale peanuts and well-worn upholstery assaulted her senses. At least she didn’t have to sit between Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum like her flight the day before.

    1+

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  26. Janet says:

    ENTRY

    I held the hissing cat by the scruff, avoiding the swipe of diminutive claws, and ratcheted the silvered zip-strip around the calico-colored paw and through the truck’s armrest. As soon as silver touched fur, the cat morphed into a teenager.
    Still just as hissy-pissy but now? Also naked.

    1+

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  27. April Alieda says:

    ENTRY

    The day that refused to end just kept on giving. When Amber entered the aging commuter plane, the smell of stale peanuts and well-worn upholstery assaulted her senses. At least she didn’t have to sit between Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum like her flight the day before.

    2+

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  28. ENTRY

    Not just no, but hell, no.

    Georgia O’Keefe Blackmon stared through the windshield of her Honda Civic at the swath of Kentucky bluegrass fronting Seth McCall’s mansion. In the middle of the grassy sward, a pair of verdigris dolphins barfed water into a shallow marble basin.

    Keefe rolled her eyes.

    2+

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  29. Catherine Rull says:

    ENTRY
    “Don’t come closer!” the teenager screamed as if the hospital staff weren’t just a few feet away from her. She had a wild look in her eyes, the tip of a broken ball-point pen tube against her carotid artery. Her pulse visibly beat against the jagged edge.

    1+

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  30. Elisa Beatty says:

    Wow!!! Fabulous openers, everybody!! You’re going to make our choice very difficult, once again!

    The contest is now closed to entries.

    To everyone who entered: remember to check back ASAP on Monday, September 28 to see if you’re a finalist!!

    1+
  31. Greta says:

    Great entries! Good luck, everyone.

    1+

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