This is topic Middle 13 Challenge - Discussion in forum Writing Challenges at Hatrack River Writers Workshop.

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Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
Middle 13 Challenge - Anonymous

Really, during the holidays? Well, this one is really easy.

Imagine your story is in a print format and someone flipping through the pages lands somewhere in the middle of your story. Which 13 lines would you hope their eyes land on that would make them want to flip to the beginning and read your story (or book)?

This is not a call for new material. This is a call for 13 lines from the middle of any of your writing projects that you think would make someone want to read the whole thing.


1) 13 lines only. This is a hook challenge, designed to make your readers want to read more!

2) The thirteen lines entered must not be excerpted from the first 500 words of the story.

3) If you are using recurring characters that people here on Hatrack will recognize, please change their names (this goes for the names of places and such if you think they'll be recognizable). This rule will help maintain anonymity.

4) You may submit up to two entries.

5) E-mail your entries to me and I will post them anonymously in the proper thread.

6) Non-entrants are welcome to send me critiques that I will post, but will not be allowed to vote.

Time frames:

Contest Starts NOW

Contest Ends Thursday, December 26th at 11:59pm. PST

Voting will be open from 12noon, Friday, December 27th to 6pm,Thursday, January 2nd. All times are PST.

Scoring system:

5 pts for 1st place votes, 4 pts for 2nd, 3 pts for 3rd.

What's expected of you if you enter:

You are expected to vote for your top 3 favorite entries. If you don't vote, your entry will be disqualified.

Please e-mail me your votes. (Anonymous, remember!?) Put 'Middle 13' in the subject line please.

For fun, give a mention of your favorite title. (Optional)

Crits are optional, but highly valued. (Also anonymous) We are a writer's forum, after all. Feel free to mention in your crit if you're intrigued, i.e. would you read on?

Comments on this thread...entries will be posted BY ME on the other in clumps to avoid suspicion.

[ December 18, 2013, 04:46 PM: Message edited by: genevive42 ]
Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
Someone asked if they can polish their work rather than take it directly as it comes from an in-progress story. The answer is, yes. Please send your story bit in its best possible form, well edited. You want to put your best foot forward.

As a suggestion, an editing pass might include eliminating/reducing mitigating or unnecessary words. Also, clumsy prose can be cleaned-up. Read your piece aloud and see if you stumble over the words. If you stumble, most of you audiences brains will stumble as well.
Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
Oh, and please title your piece. It really helps when voting time rolls around.
Posted by wirelesslibrarian (Member # 9513) on :
What about submitting from a flash piece of, oh, 700 some odd words? Could I consider word 351 the middle?
Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
wirelesslibrarian, yes, that's fine. I believe that's keeping in the spirit of this challenge.

(I got your entry - thanks for submitting.)
Posted by Corin224 (Member # 2513) on :
Sorry guys . . . just logged in for the first time after heading out on vacation. I thought the VOTING was anonymous, not the stories. I haven't ever done an anonymous competition before except on Codex where they anonymize everything for you anyway. I pulled my post off the entries list and I apologize for the quite horrifying faux pas.

Just to try to clear the air . . . There was no offense intended, nor any disrespect of the contest. I wasn't disregarding the rules . . . just misunderstood them even after re-reading them a few times.

And no hard feelings about getting disqualified. My bad all the way. [Smile] It's been so long since I've had time to do one of these I got a bit eager, I guess.

Same to KDW . . . I've been around here long enough I consider myself a veteran of this place, and I hate to be a cause of frustration. Feel free to whack my posts as you see fit in the future if I do something dumb like this again. That's why you're the boss. [Smile]

Best of luck to everybody else though! Don't let my knucklheadedness bring the competition down. I can't wait to see how it goes.

Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
Hey Corin,

I'm much happier to find out it was an accidental posting. Please feel free to submit a different entry or two. Only the entry was disqualified, not you as a person.

Thanks for the explanation. I hope you'll still choose to join us.

Posted by Kathleen Dalton Woodbury (Member # 59) on :
What genevive42 said about you not being disqualified, Corin224. We appreciate your participation and enthusiasm as well as your experience here, so please don't feel that anyone would want to "whack" your posts.

I hope this hasn't been so embarrassing to you that you stay away. It really wasn't all that "horrifying" a faux pas. Apologies from me if you were made to think it was.
Posted by Corin224 (Member # 2513) on :
No worries . . . I didn't take anything personally. I just hate seeing what's supposed to be a fun contest littered with obvious (and understandable) frustration.

I may submit another entry . . . I'm just a wee bit short on time at the moment.

In any case . . . game on! Have fun everybody!
Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
I'm going to post entries at about 7am Friday morning - Pacific Time. If you get your entry into my inbox before then, I'll be sure to include it.
Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
All entries are posted. ANY Hatracker is welcome to critique the entries. Send comments to me as they are anonymous.

Voting is expected of and restricted to those who participated.
Posted by rabirch (Member # 9832) on :
Darn, I wish I'd popped over here sooner. This looks like lots of fun!
Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
rabirch, you can still send me your comments and I'll be happy to include them. Critiquing is open to any Hatrack member.
Posted by genevive42 (Member # 8714) on :
Winners are posted:

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