Saturday, July 7, 2012

4 July First Five Pages Workshop with Mentors Sarah Ockler and Becca Puglisi Starts Today

9:30 pm -- Sorry for the late notification. The workshop is full and all accepted entries have been notified. Thanks!


Note: I will be gone until late this evening so will be unable to notify successful entries until then or possibly tomorrow. I will try to post a note on the site when the workshop is full. If you do not see a note on this post that the workshop is full, please assume it is still open.



Our July 1st Five Pages Workshops will open to submissions today. We will accept the first five middle grade or young adult manuscripts received by email starting at noon.

We are very fortunate to have two guest mentors this month, Sarah Ockler and Becca Puglisi. They will look at the first draft of the submitted entries and tell you what they see in those first five pages with respect to your voice, plot, characters, setting, pacing and writing in general. If appropriate, they'll try to help you pull your hook forward and strengthen your voice and structure. After that, you'll have the opportunity to resubmit a new draft each week to get additional feedback so that you continue to work toward the strongest possible start to your WIP. You'll also get feedback and comments from your peers throughout the month.

This is a great opportunity for anyone who has a manuscript in the works or in revision stages, but workshops like this aren't for the feint of heart. By entering, you are committing to participating all month. You will get a variety of input, and while it should all be constructive, it will not all be positive. Please plan on being professional and committed to submitting all the revisions, otherwise do not take a slot that could be taken by someone eager to do the work.

Here are the rules:

1. Manuscripts must be middle grade or young adult.
2. Manuscripts do not need to be completed, but must be your own, original work.
3. Send us the first five pages, with each page approximately 250 words, max 1250 words.
4. Send your entries at noon today, or as close to noon as possible. We will take the first five entries that meet ALL the proper formatting requirements.
5. Do NOT send any synopsis or summary information.
6. Do include your name and genre at the top.
    Author: XXX
    Genre: XXX
    Title: (Optional)

7. Send the entry in RTF format IN THE BODY OF THE EMAIL. Single spaced, with a blank line between paragraphs. 
    No email attachments. 
    No double spaces.
    No paragraph indents.
    No accidental carriage returns at the end of every line.
    No paragraphs that run together because you didn't leave a blank line in between.  
8. Be prepared to receive honest, constructive feedback every week.
9. Be prepared to provide honest, constructive feedback to each of your fellow workshop participants in a kind and courteous manner each week.
10. Send the revised version of the manuscript back to us in the proper format (see items six and seven) no later than midnight every Sunday night until the end of the workshop.

That's it. Simple, right? Unfortunately, we simply do not have time to reformat entries, so please be sure to follow all the above formatting rules every week.

If you are ready to participate, send your emails at noon (Eastern Time) today to kidlit at writeedge dot com.

Happy reading and writing,

Martina and Lisa

About Sarah Ockler

Sarah Ockler is the bestselling author of Bittersweet, Fixing Delilah and the critically acclaimed Twenty Boy Summer, a YALSA Teens' Top Ten nominee and IndieNext List pick. She is a championship cupcake eater, coffee drinker, night person, and bookworm. When she’s not writing or reading, Sarah enjoys taking pictures, hugging trees, and road-tripping through the country with her husband, Alex. Visit her website or find her on Twitter or Facebook.

About Becca Puglisi

Becca is a YA writer who lives in south Florida and, ironically, hates the weather. During hurricane season, you can find her cursing the heat, stalking Jim Cantore, and adding to her stash of emergency supplies. She is one half of the dynamic duo behind the fabulous blog, THE BOOKSHELF MUSE, and one of the co-authors of the must-have book for writers, THE EMOTION THESAURUS.


  1. Once again, you've gotten awesome mentors to sign up for this!

  2. Thanks, Jess! I can't wait to read the entries.

  3. The great post on your blog, it really gives me an insight on this topic.

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