Wednesday, 19 October 2011


Hi all,
Well the New Voices competition is in it's second phase. Twenty one entries were chosen out of one thousand and ninety. Pretty impressive work by the editors I think. I was not among that glorious twenty one, but I'm totally good with that. I wasn't even overly disappointed, I'm not sure I'm a Mills and Boon girl, but it doesn't mean I'm going to give up! I didn't get one negative comment. I was given good constructive criticism by wannabes like myself as well as Mills and Boon authors. And to be perfectly honest, I'm really thrilled with that. I've met and conversed with many wonderful new people all of whom are in the same boat as myself, but just in different locations, some newer than me (I haven't even been at this a year) others have been writing for much longer.

Towards the end of the first phase I heard of another competition aimed at Breathless Press. This was a 'Pitch Your First Page'. Basically I did a bit of quick editing with my first story 'Feral' to give it a quicker start, and copy and pasted to Let's Talk Romance Blog (The lovely April Dawn who posted the competition is an author with Breathless Press). There were only ten entries in all, but I came third! I was pretty chuffed about this for two reasons 1) I thought there was only going to be one winner. 2) It was the first thing I'd ever written! Oh the prize was getting the full manuscript in front of an editor. I don't know how I'll go with this, because just in case you hadn't heard, it was the FIRST THING I'VE EVER WRITTEN. And what I mean by that is, I knew nothing! I didn't know stories had to have both internal and external conflict, I didn't even know what that meant?! I just sat down and wrote a ten thousand word eleven thousand five hundred word story about shapeshifters, gypsies, and magic. Was it good?! I hope so, I liked it. Serenity Woods thought it/I had enough potential to critique it for me, and she's still talking to me so can't have been all bad. ;-) So within a few weeks I've entered two competitions after thinking I never would have done that. I have to admit I'm really proud of myself. And thankful for the wonderful support I've had from friends and family.

And as for New Voices... I've come out the other side of this competition with a (slightly) better understanding of what it takes to write a Mills and Boon romance, and a bunch of truly lovely facebook friends. Ooh I also managed to win a Mills and Boon Goody Bag which I'm rather excited about (though I don't have it yet?).  I think that's a pretty great pay off for three thousand words ;-)  X M


Anonymous said...

Hi Mel,


Great news about coming third with Breathless :-)

You've got the right attitude and you'll get there, I'm sure!

Michelle Ford said...

Great article Mel. Good to see you have come third in a comp. Yay. :)

Alexandra said...

Congratulations in coming third Mel!

Mel Jolley said...

Thanks Doris, Michelle and Alexandra :). It was an unexpected buzz. I jumped around the house. I hate to think what I'll be like WHEN I get the call! (Positive thoughts, positive thoughts lol)Though when that time comes I'll probably be 90 and end up needing a hip replacement! hehe (Can't do positive, without self-deprecating ;))

Serenity Woods said...

Well done on placing in the comp! Feral is a great story and you thoroughly deserve it!

Mel Jolley said...

Thanks Serenity, your thoughts/guidance are always appreciated. X M