A few bits of news from the writing front -- an SCBWI board has a new note from a Blooming Tree editor in search of middle grade stories:
I am now an assistant editor with Blooming Tree Press http://www.bloomingtreepress.com, and I am looking for manuscripts which meet the following criteria:
Contemporary middle grade fiction under 30,000 words with a male main character.
Humor or adventure stories especially wanted.
No historical fiction.
Please send e-mail queries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Include the first chapter in the body of the email (no attached files please).
Please pay attention to the above criteria. I am not interested in girl stories or historical fiction at this time. It is fine if girls are characters in the story, but the MAIN character(s) should be boys. We are trying to round out our list.
If you have other types of manuscripts you are interested in submitting to Blooming Tree Press, please follow the directions under Submissions on our web page. At this time I am ONLY interested in the above.
Kay Pluta, Assistant Editor
Blooming Tree Press
Meanwhile, 2006 looks to be the year of Making Better Writers -- or else. According to the latest Poets & Writers ...
Disappointed with the quality of entries for its First Fiction Award, Winnow Press decided to return the entry fees, postage, and manuscripts to all the writers who entered the contest. (From News & Trends, a feature of Poets & Writers Magazine.)
I imagine the contest participants are bitterly disappointed -- and somewhat humiliated as well! To 'winnow,' however, means to sort the bad from the good, by shaking and wind. If anyone ever does get published by Winnow Press (and will anyone else enter a contest of theirs ever again?) they should be quite, quite honored.
Yes, indeed. Happy New Year.