2013 YA Discovery Contest by Serendipity Literary Agency

Serendipity Literary Agency in conjunction with Sourcebooks Inc. is hosting their fifth annual 

Young Adult Novel Discovery Competition.  


No query? No pitch? No problem!

Have a young adult novel—or a YA novel idea—tucked away for a rainy day? Are you putting off pitching your idea simply because you’re not sure how to pitch an agent? No problem! All you have to do is submit the first 250 words of your novel and you can win exposure to editors and a review of your manuscript from one of New York’s TOP young adult literary agents, Regina Brooks.? 




In honor of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo.org)—an international event where aspiring novelists are encouraged to write an entire novel in 30 days—this contest is meant to encourage the aspiring YA author to get started on that novel by offering an incentive for completing the first 250 words. The contest opens November 1st and closes November 31st.




The Grand Prize Winner will have the opportunity to submit an entire manuscript to YA literary agent Regina Brooks AND receive a free, 10-week writing course, courtesy of Gotham Writers' Workshop, plus a collection of gourmet teas from Possibiliteas.co!


The Top Five Entrants (including the Grand Prize winner) will receive a 15-minute, one-on-one pitch session with Regina Brooks, one of New York’s premier literary agents for young adult books. They will also receive commentary on their submissions with editors from Scholastic, Feiwel and Friends, Random House/Penguin, Kensington, Kimani Tru, Candlewick, Bloomsbury, Simon and Schuster, and Sourcebooks. In addition, they will receive a year’s subscription to The Writer magazine! 


First 50 Entrants will receive a copy of Writing Great Books for Young Adults by Regina Brooks


YA literary agent Regina Brooks and her team will read all of the entries and determine the top 20 submissions. These submissions will then be read by Deidre Jones Little Brown, Nicole Raymond Candlewick,Annie Nybo Simon and Schuster, Mercedes Fernandez Kensington, Erica Finkel Abrams Books, Monica Jean Random House/Penguin , Stacey Friedberg Penguin Group, Catherine Laudone Simon and Schuster, Laura Whitaker Bloomsbury,Kendra Levin Viking, Anna Roberto Feiwel and Friends.


These judges will whittle the top 20 down to five, and each of the five winners will be provided commentary on their submissions.


Regina Brooks
YA Novel Discovery Contest: Nov 1 - Nov 30 (closed)
Submission Guidelines

One entry per person; anyone age 14+ can apply. Open to the U.S. & Canada (void where prohibited). Entries for the YA Novel Discovery Contest will be accepted from 12:01am (ET) November 1st, 2013 until 11:59pm November 30th, 2013 (ET). There is a $15 entry fee."

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the judges looking for in a submission? 
A: Entries will be judged based upon creativity, word usage, and the ability to instantly draw a reader into a story. Since the contest is limited to a title and 250 words, each word must be carefully chosen to have the most impact. This simulates the browsing experience of the average book buyer, who reads the title and first paragraph of a book before making a purchasing decision.

Q. Should I copyright or register my pitch before I enter the competition? 
A: This is not necessary as the submission is just a portion of your completed manuscript. Both the agent and the participating editors are established professionals in the industry and place a high value on the confidentiality of submissions.

Q. Do I forfeit any rights by entering this competition, or if I win the competition? 
A. No, you as the writer retain ALL the rights to your work. Note: Never enter a contest that requires you sign over your rights if you win unless you have had an entertainment attorney review the documents first.

Q: Can I enter more than one submission to the contest?
A: No. Only one entry per writer will be accepted. If more than one entry is submitted, only the first entry will be judged and the others discarded.

Q: How can I confirm that my entry was received? 
A: You will receive an email confirmation once your entry is received and processed for judging.

Q. When will the winners and finalists be announced?
A. Winners will be selected by February 6, 2014. An email will be sent to all entrants on February 21, 2014 announcing the winners.

Q. Do you accept entries from writers outside the USA and Canada? 
A. Yes. Contest is open to writers 14 years of age and older. This Contest is governed exclusively by the laws of the United States. All federal, state and local laws and regulations apply. Void wherever prohibited or restricted by law.

Q. I accidentally entered the wrong pitch, how can I rectify this problem? 
A. Entries are forwarded to the reading committee for judging as soon as they are submitted, therefore we cannot accept revisions for any entry.

Q: How do I change my contact information if my email, mailing address, or phone number changes?
A: You may change your contact information by sending your name, email address, mailing address, and phone number to Office[at]Write[dot]org. No changes to your entry are permitted after submission.

Q. Is there a specific genre that has a better chance of winning? 
A. No, we do not separate out or in any other way distinguish submitted entries based on genre.

Q. Can I submit a pitch that is an adaptation of a novel, movie, or another book? 
A. You may submit an adaptation only if you are certain you have all the rights to do the adaptation. If you are not sure, we highly recommend that you consult with an attorney before doing so. Regardless of whether you submit to our competition or not, if you do an adaptation without all rights assigned to you, you are asking for legal problems down the road.

Q: Who is judging the entries?
A: YA literary agent Regina Brooks and a select group of readers will read all of the entries and determine the top 20 submissions. These submissions will then be read by an editor from five different publishing houses. These judges will whittle the top 20 down to five, and each of the five winners will be provided commentary on their submissions and receive a one-year subscription to The Writer magazine. Regina Brooks will select one winner from among the top five to have the opportunity to submit an entire manuscript for her review and to receive a free 10-week Gotham Writers' Workshop class, offered online or in NYC.

Q: Do you provide notes or feedback to writers?
A: Unfortunately, we do not provide notes or feedback due to the large number of entries we receive.

Q. When will winners be announced?
A. Close to February 6, 2014.