Great Expectations Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What makes Great Expectations special?
A. We believe in email and stay in touch with our contestants. Each entrant receives:
- Our final round editors will be completing the score sheet, for a more detailed evaluation of your entry.
- an email confirmation when their entry form received,
- an email confirmation when their payment is received,
- notification when packets are returned and mailed to judges,
- notification of their category’s finalists, and
- notification of all winners.
Q. Do finalists get to revise before editors see entries?
A. Yes. All finalists have the opportunity to update their entry and are encouraged to submit a non-judged short synopsis. If a revised entry is not received by the required date, the original entry will be submitted for final round rankings.
Q. Why different category score sheets?
A. We believe that each contest category deserves its own specific score sheet and have developed questions pertaining to individual romance sub-genres. Example score sheets are available year round.
Q. My story does not focus on romance. Can I still enter?
A. We encourage all contestants to take a look at our score sheets. Since we are a Romance Genre writing organization, our contest focuses on romance as part of the story. The decision is ultimately yours, but the critiques from our judges will also focus on romance.
Q. Do you train your first round judges?
A. Informal training is available. We have a judges’ loop where files are available. The loop is also for general Q&A. When a question is asked about a particular genre, we ask published authors within that genre for their opinion and advice.
Q. Is electronic entry only for international participants?
A. Electronic entry is for ALL contestants. The GE no longer has a print option for entries.
Q. Should I send all my files separately?
A. Entries should be attached to the electronic entry form which is automatically sent to the contest coordinator.
Q. How should I title my entry?
A. Save entry with the following file name as an RTF, replacing YourName with the name listed on the entry form and replacing YourManuscriptTitle with the actual title of your personal manuscript:
When receiving 200 titles, it gets rather confusing if they're all labeled: GEentry.rtf
If you do not receive confirmation within three days that we have your file, please EMAIL the coordinator.
Q. My entry is an erotic romance, but there's not a category. Can I still enter?
A. Yes. We have discontinued the erotic romance category, but are accepting all heat levels in all categories. Please refer to the "heat level" instructions when entering.
Q. My entry is a same sex romance, but there's not a category. Can I still enter?
A. Yes. Please take a look at the score sheet to verify that your entry will benefit from our contests. We do try to prepare our judges that "hero" and "heroine" may be the same sex.
Q. Is Great Expectations a first chapter contest, or can I send my prologue and / or part of my second chapter?
A. The Great Expectations contest will accept the first 5,000 words of your manuscript, including the prologue or part of your second chapter. Please make certain your entry ends with a completed sentence and on a great “hook."
Q. I have a 25,000-word manuscript. May I enter it in the Great Expectations contest?
A. The Great Expectations contest does not include a category for projected word counts of less than 40,000 words. No novellas please.
Q. I’m writing a romantic suspense. Which category should I enter (single title or romantic suspense)?
A. If our Romantic Suspense final round editor is from a single title publisher and you're targeting Harlequin/Silhouette, take a look at the Contemporary Series category score sheet and make certain it will benefit you to enter the Contemporary Series category. If not, we encourage you to enter the Romantic Suspense category.
Q. What is RWA®? And do I really have to be a member?
A. No, you do not need to be a member of Romance Writers of America® to enter the Great Expectations Contest. North Texas Romance Writers of America is a chapter of RWA®. For more information on RWA®, visit the national website.
If you have any further questions, please contact the GE Coordinator.