The 1000 Words To Win An Editor Contest

1st Prize

  1. Full manuscript critique (not a line edit, max 100,000 words)
  2. Edit & critique of your first 5 pages
  3. Critique of your query Letter

2nd Prize

  1. Edit & critique of your first 5 pages
  2. Critique of your query Letter

3rd Prize

  1. Critique of your query Letter

4th-6th Place

  1. Critique of your next Twitter Author pitch (#SFFpit, #DVpit, #pitmad, etc; No more than 280 characters).


Contest will run from 2019-08-01 through 2019-08-31 London/UK Time

Winner Will Be Announced

No Later than 2019-09-21

Contest Judges

Michele Sagan - Editor, Author & Prize Source

Robert D. McAdams - Author & Contest Sponsor

DB Carter - Author & Esteemed Guest Judge & All-Around Good Egg

What We Want

A very short (AKA micro-fiction) Science Fiction or Fantasy or Thriller story, or a story from any genre (non-horror, non-graphic violence, see below) that makes us laugh.

What We Don't Want

Horror or Graphic violence (including, but not limited to, rape, torture, sadism, wanton and extreme violence, gore, human suffering, etc.) -- please keep any violence down to levels you would be comfortable showing to an average twelve year old child. (Yes, we realize that's subjective.) Racism, bigotry, trolling or other harassing behavior are also unwanted. Not even for fun. Not even as a "joke". No.

Who Should Enter

Authors who have a fully completed manuscript would gain the most from entering and winning the contest, as Michele cannot edit what hasn't been written. If you only have chapter one and a query letter done, and you manage to win 1st prize, even though you were aiming for 2nd prize, you'll only have a year to finish your manuscript before your prize must be redeemed or expire (and really you'd only have about 11 months, as Michele may need a month to edit a full manuscript).

Who Can Enter

Anyone may enter (so long as it is legal to do so in your place of residence). The only people who cannot enter (and win) are the judges and their immediate family members.

How To Enter

Submit your contest story entry in one of three ways: on the contest page on Michele's website (, or as a comment to the official contest blog post on Robert's blog, or on Twitter using the hashtag #Michelestips

Rules & Contest Entry Submission Guidelines


Contest is sponsored and paid for by Robert D. McAdams, and will be operated under the laws and jurisdiction of the State of California in the United States of America. No purchase is necessary (or possible) to enter. Anyone (aside from the judges and their immediate family members) is eligible to enter, provided they follow the rules. Odds of winning will depend on the number of entries received and the quality of the writing as judged by the contest judges. Winners will be selected based on the personal and professional tastes of the judges. Each judge will be able to vote for their top 20, then top 10, then top 6 then top 3 in multiple voting rounds, until all prizes have been assigned. Prizes are services and have no retail value and may not be redeemed for cash. 1st prize's full manuscript critique is for 100,000 words or less (+/- 100 ~words). Any word count above 100k would need to be negotiated privately between the winner and Michele at her standard manuscript critique rates. Prize winners will be notified via Twitter or E-mail (depending on how the contestant submitted their entry -- a valid e-mail or Twitter handle is required in order to be notified of a prize win). Any prize awarded must be redeemed within one year of the date the winner is notified, or it is null and void. Michele & Robert will attempt to notify a prize winner 3 times over the span of 6 days (once every 2 days) -- if the winner cannot be reached (does not respond, or their contact information is unusable) then that winner's prize will be canceled and given to the next winner in sequence (1st goes to 2nd, 2nd to 3rd, etc.). Authors may not request a specific turn-around time for their editing prize, edits will be completed as Michele is able to schedule them -- any badgering or harassing of Michele to hurry or place a higher priority on a prize winner is cause for that prize to be canceled after one warning is given by Michele -- that being said, Michele will make every effort to get the edits back to the authors who win the prizes as fast as she is able. Any prize winner who is disqualified will have their prize stripped from them and awarded down to the next winner in sequence (e.g. if the 2nd place winner is disqualified, 3rd place becomes the second place winner, and 4th place becomes the 3rd place winner, etc.) Prize winners consent to having their names and Twitter handles published in the list of winners (which will be posted to these rules pages, and on the official blog posts for the contest, and on Twitter), and to having their winning story published on Michele and/or Robert's websites, as well as Twitter and possibly other social media platforms as well. Stories submitted remain the property of the authors who submit them.