Greetings potential recruits. There are only days left before we launch the H.E.L.M. Initiative. For those needing a refresher, here are the dates and times for entry into each phase of the program:
10/4/2014 — RECRUITMENT: From 12:00 am until 11:59 pmEastern Time all recruits will send in a 35 word pitch for their completed and POLISHED manuscript. One manuscript per entrant. All genres are welcomed in age categories Middle Grade and up.
10/6/2014 — BASIC TRAINING: From 12:00 am until 11:59 pm eastern, send in the first 250 words of the SAME completed and polished manuscript. In order to participate in Basic Training you have to have entered Recruitment.
10/9/2014 — COMBAT DRILLS: From12:00 amuntil 11:59 pm eastern,send in the revised 35 word pitch AND first 250 words from the SAME completed and polished manuscript from the previous rounds. You will need to have entered both previous rounds to take part in this round. Captains will make selections from entries received during Combat Drills.
10/13/2014 — Suit Up!: The Squad Captains will post their chosen recruits on their blogs for the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, who will have two days to make their requests. Agent requests will be moderated and will NOT be visible until after 5:00 pm easter time 10/14/2014.
TO SUBMIT DURING ALL ROUNDS, EMAIL ENTRIES TO:
PitchSlamContest (at) gmail (dot) com
Please type Pitch Slam: TITLE into the subject line for each round.
***Any entries received before or after the submission times will be deleted unread.***
Official H.E.L.M. regulations dictate in relation to the first 250 words of the manuscript: do not stop in the middle of a sentence. Continue to 255 words if necessary. There is no extension for pitches.
Entries must be single spaced with one line between paragraphs and NO indentations. To avoid format complications, we recommend entrants do NOT copy and paste directly from the document into the email message. Instead, paste it into a new document, clear all of the formatting, then apply the mentioned requirements.
Name: Real name (Writing as such-and-such if you are utilizing a secret identity)
Genre: This includes both age category and genre. Fiction is not a genre. YA/MG etc on its own is not a genre. Please pick ONE genre and possibly a sub-genre. Adult Paranormal Romance is a proper genre. YA Sci-Fi Horror is a proper genre. MG Magical Realism Paranormal Romance Horror is not a genre. An easy way to do this is ask yourself, if my book was in a store, what would the sign on the shelf say?
Title: Your story
Word Count: xx,000. Round to the nearest thousandth.
Hero: The hero or heroine your protagonist best relates to and why.
Pitch and/or 250: During Recruitment it will be pitch only. During Basic Training it will be the first 250 only. During Combat Drill it will be both together with pitch followed by 250.
Failure to comply with H.E.L.M. regulations will result in–
Signal disruption detected.
Switching to secure server connection.
Security countermeasures engaged.
H.E.L.M. signal successfully intercepted Sir, per your request.
Transmission holding strong.
Countermeasures. Puh, I’ll counter your countermeasures…
Thank you, Jarvis.
A pleasure, Sir.
All right, now that I’ve saved you from the hum-drummery, let’s skip the paperwork and get down to the good stuff because a: I’m bored to tears on your behalf, and b: The More You Know.
So you got the gist of it, when to enter, where to send it, what to send, good. While I love throwing monkey wrenches into Fury’s espionage clockworks, I figured it would be more fun–and hilariously inappropriate–if I manage to corrupt, er, convince his rookies to do it for me. Instead of going in and plucking the information from the S.H.I.E.L.D. mainframe, I invite you to join me in cyber anarchy by posting tidbits of your classified entries for all to see. On Twitter! Because, why the hell not.
That being said, there is a method to my madness, and my type of anarchy does have some order. Here it is:
Monday 10/6 – #Superpower: Does your hero or heroine have a super ability? Like an mechanized suit of asskicking-awesome. If so, what. If not, if they could choose an ability, what would it be?
Tuesday 10/7 – #Weakness: Kinda like the superpower thing, but the opposite. And there is no “if not,” everyone has a weakness. It could be kryptonite, it could be Krispy Kreme doughnuts.
Speaking from experience, Sir?
Wednesday 10/8 – #PlayingFavorites: Who’s your main character’s favorite hero? *cough*IronMan*cough*. Or who’s their favorite villain. And why. You can throw your personal favorites in as well.
Thursday 10/9 – #WeaponOfChoice: How does our main character bring the pain? Swords, wands, light sabers, switchblades, their bare hands, their rapier wit, lengthy monologues that bore their enemies to death, whatever they use to do their heroing. You can post for the villains too.
Friday 10/10 – #WhichIsCooler: War Machine or Iron Patriot. Because I told him so.
The weekend will be some kind of crazy free-for-all. What? I did say anarchy.
That should be plenty to keep us all duly entertained, and Fury on his toes trying to bottleneck the flow of information. If I come up with anything else we can do to be a pain in Nick’s neck, I’ll pass it along.
Take it away, Jarvis.
Very good, Sir. Releasing H.E.L.M. communications transmission in 3…