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A contest and $10,000? Mystery writers, on your mark…

Okay all you fledgling mystery writers who have desks full of completed manuscripts, opportunity knocks for the best of the best. Time Warner/Mysterious Press (TW/MP) announces their first Sarah Anne Freed Memorial Award for a First Mystery. Straight, noir, police procedural or historical mystery writers only need apply; male or female, amateur or professional detectives only wanted. Leave your international thrillers, true crime or other types of mysteries in the desk.

In memory of Mysterious Press’s “beloved editor” Sarah Anne Freed who died last year, the contest promises to be a real plum for the one who makes the final cut.

This is a hard/soft cover deal. Be sure you read all the rules and know all the details. With a July 1st, 2004 deadline “for receipt of materials,” you don’t have much time to get things moving. Entries will only be accepted between April 1st – July 1st, 2004, so timing is everything.

Now, the entry is interesting: TW/MP wants a letter detailing your work history and a 2-sentence description of the plot; a no-more-than 300 word plot synopsis; and “two CONSECUTIVE chapters of the manuscript.” Do NOT send them a complete manuscript. They will contact you later if your entry is the type of mystery they are seeking and request the completed manuscript then. And do not forget the official form and SASE. The winner will be notified in September (2004) with publication the following September 2005, so they intend to move fast. Go to the Time/Warner Bookmark site and click on “First Novel Contest” for the full details and the official entry form.

…ready, set, go!

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