The Ruby Slippered Sisterhood just celebrated our TENTH blog birthday!!

This coming Thursday, September 26, in keeping with Ruby tradition, we’ll be opening our 10th Annual MAKE IT GOLDEN CONTEST, and giving our not-yet-published writing friends a chance to shine (plus have a chance to earn prizes!!)

The MAKE IT GOLDEN contest was originally designed for authors polishing up their entries for RWA’s Golden Heart Contest–the contest that brought the Ruby Sisters together when we were finalists in 2009.

Sadly, RWA’s Board made the decision to suspend the Golden Heart after this year, and the Rubies debated whether or not to suspend MAKE IT GOLDEN as well. After much thought, we decided that stories are ALWAYS going to need golden openings, so we’re continuing the contest for 2019!!

We’ve had a good track record, with lots of Make It Golden finalists (often multiple finalists per year) going on to final in and even win the Golden Heart, including Janet Walden-West, Lisa Heartman, M. Kassel, Jeanne Estridge, Greta MacEachern, Eileen Emerson, Caroline Bradley, and Jeanine Englert, just to name a few! Some are now published and topping the bestseller lists (2011 Finalist Tracy Brogan, we’re looking at you!). Check out the finalists from 2018’s contest, 2017’s contest2016’s contest, 2015’s contest,    2014’s contest, 2013’s contest , 2012’s contest here, 2011 here, and 2010 here.

Finalists and winners from previous years are welcome to enter again, BUT YOU MUST STILL BE AN UNPUBLISHED AUTHOR, AND ALL ENTRIES MUST BE NEW TO THE MAKE IT GOLDEN CONTEST!! Maximum of THREE entries per person. (Even if you use more than one pen name.)

TOP PRIZE will be a $50 Amazon gift card.

Second place will win a $20 Amazon gift card.

Third place will win a $15 Starbucks card.

The best part is, entering the contest is completely FREE!!

All you need to do to enter is follow the official rules, below:


Official Rules of the MAKE IT GOLDEN CONTEST (read carefully!!):

Starting at 12:01 a.m. EST on Thursday, September 26, we will accept the first fifty eligible entries submitted for the contest, each containing up to the FIRST FIFTY WORDS of the entrant’s romance manuscript.


Submit your entry via the “comment” box on the blog, typing in the word ENTRY in all caps at the top so we won’t miss it.

There is no entry fee.

We will close to entries at 11:59 p.m. Pacific time the same day (to give our West Coast friends plenty of time to enter). Entries will be disqualified if any of the following are true: the entry goes over the 50 word maximum; the entry is posted after 11:59 p.m. Pacific time; the entry was submitted in a previous year; the entrant posts more than three entries (even if posted under more than one name); the entrant is found to be an already published author).

The Ruby Sisters will read the entries and choose ten finalists.

Ten finalists will be listed on the blog at 12:01 a.m. EST on Thursday Oct 3. ENTRANTS SHOULD CHECK THE RUBY BLOG AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE ON THURSDAY OCTOBER 3 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. Pacific time at the very start of October 4 (in other words, a total of 27 hours), to post an expanded entry, starting with those very same fabulous opening words (unchanged), 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.) Again, type ENTRY in caps and post the expanded entry.

The three winners will be announced on the blog on Thursday October 10.



THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 26: Starting at 12:01 a.m. Eastern time and ending at the next midnight Pacific time, we will accept the first FIFTY eligible entries for the contest.

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 3: Ten finalists will be announced on the Ruby blog at 12:01 a.m. EST. THOSE FINALISTS HAVE 27 HOURS (until 12:01 a.m. Pacific time on OCTOBER 4) TO POST EXPANDED ENTRIES!!




3 responses to “MAKE IT GOLDEN 2019 Contest RULES!!”

  1. Ladies,
    I’m THRILLED you’re keeping this tradition alive–it’s like a bit of the Golden Heart lives on.

    I’ll be over here with coffee, cheering on a new round of romance writers.

  2. rebecca challoner says:

    The sun sizzled high in the sky and heated the sandstone floor to uncomfortable temperatures, making me ache for actual shoes rather than the tats and rags that I wore on my feet. Not a single cloud passed to give any respite, so I lurked in the shadows to escape.


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