About six months ago, Kensington Brava announced the Writing with the Stars contest:
In conjunction with RT Book Reviews, Brava is sending out a call to unpublished writers of paranormal, historical and contemporary romance, as well as romantic suspense: We’re looking for a hot debut novel to be published in 2012 under the Brava imprint at Kensington.Kensington made the first cuts in-house and have now posted the names of the ten contest finalists along with the first paragraph and last line from their entries.
In a Dancing With the Stars format, there will be five more rounds--one a month--with a different judge eliminating entries at each round and with readers' votes being included in the decision as well. The judges are: blogger Sarah Wendell of the website Smart Bitches, Trashy Books; literary agents Kristin Nelson, Laura Bradford and Miriam Kriss; and Romantic Times' historical reviewer, Kathe Robin.
The winner will be announced in early April at the Romantic Times convention in Los Angeles.
First Round Judge Sarah Wendell's comments are posted beside each entry. Forget that wimpy Dancing with the Stars. Sarah seems to be channeling American Idol's Simon Cowell instead. The woman takes no prisoners in her assessments.
I'm thrilled to report that Sarah seemed to be the kindest to my good friend and sometimes critique partner Maria Zannini.
I'll admit it; I'm prejudiced. But Sarah isn't.
Do an up-and-coming author a favor and go over to the website here, read the entries and ... if you agree with Sarah and me ... vote for Maria.
If you don't agree with me, vote anyway. Help one of these ten on her way. This round's voting lasts until October 24th.
Thanks. I appreciate it.