Lucky old me was recently invited to provide feedback to YA writers as part of a contest. The C1blitz, ran by Freshly Squeezed Reads, invited upcoming writers of YA fiction to submit the first chapter of their novels, not necessarily complete, to receive feedback from teen readers, peers and industry professionals. Over the course of a few weeks, this is exactly what happened. Each reviewer was assigned a certain number of random, and importantly at this stage, anonymous chapters that they read and commented on, rating them one to five stars, and offering their thoughts regarding both the negative and positive aspects of the work. And then, once the incredibly hardworking peeps behind the scenes worked through the comments to ensure all were suitable, they were revealed.
Although every writer who entered ‘won’ in some way, because we all know feedback is the most precious gift a writer can receive on their work, the chapters that received the highest number of top starred reviews were crowned winners. There were those rated highest amongst the industry pros, peers and teens. Each winner received line edits by a professional editor (me!) and will have their work sent to Lucas Alexander Whitley Ltd – a big literary agency in the UK!