Inkshares All-Genre Competition
Inkshares is pleased to announce its first ever all-genre contest which launches November 7th, 2020. The purpose of the contest is to discover debut storytellers with incredible stories. The contest will run the gamut of story-type regardless of length, fact, or fiction.
“The reality is that the world needs story more than ever to be entertained, to be educated, to be moved. As we get ready for a brighter 2021, we want to end a downbeat 2020 on the most upbeat thing we do at Inkshares: greenlighting great books for publication, global licensing, and development in television and film across all genres,” says Inkshares CEO Adam Gomolin. “All of us at Inkshares feel tremendously lucky to have such an incredible community of writers to draw from, and we look forward to welcoming more into the fold during this process.” The winners of the contest will be published by Inkshares with the winning projects represented for TV/Film as well.
The contest will run from November 7th, 2020 through February 28th, 2021, and unlike prior contests where pre-orders were used to determine the winners, the top three books will be determined through a combination of community engagement, our proprietary technology, Story Machine, and independent evaluation by the Inkshares Story Board. Phase one of the contest will come to a close at 12 p.m. PST on December 20, 2020 with the top contestants announced on February 28th, 2021. Inkshares will evaluate all submissions for publishing and representation, even if they didn’t make the finals and announce additional winners throughout the first half of the year, completing selections by July 1st, 2021.
great thing about Inkshares is the way in which they foster new
writers, often believing in works that might have trouble getting
through the usual tangle of gatekeepers in more mainstream publishing,”
said Christopher Huang, author of A Gentleman’s Murder, which
published in 2018 and is in development for television at Endeavor
Content. “And then they keep pushing and supporting well after most
other people would have lost interest and moved on to the next big
thing. Without them, I would not be anywhere close to where I am today.”
This year was not what we expected. A pandemic and global economic collapse, followed by large-scale protests aimed at social justice, followed by the most devastating wildfires in human memory. Like many companies, we’ve had to delay many things this year. With so many bookstore closures, we’ve opted to delay the publication of many books. And with production halted in Hollywood, we’ve also seen production on our shows and films slow. But through all this, we’ve been heartened to see so much exceptional writing on Inkshares, as writers do what writers do: process the world and their experiences through words. We are excited to see these experiences manifest themselves in this contest.
“The Inkshares experience isn't just about getting a book out there," said J-F. Dubeau. "It’s about working with a passionate team who is invested in the success of your story. That begins as a novel here in North America, but stretches into international licensing and TV and film. Inkshares has allowed A God in the Shed to find fertile ground in Hollywood beyond any of my expectations."
What is the purpose of this contest?
2020 was not what we expected. A pandemic and global economic collapse, followed by large-scale protests aimed at social justice, followed by the most devastating wildfires in human memory. Like many companies, we’ve had to delay many things this year. With so many bookstore closures, we’ve opted to delay the publication of many books. And with production halted in Hollywood, we’ve also seen production on our shows and films slow. But in all this, we’ve been heartened to see so much exceptional writing on Inkshares, as writers do what writers do: process the world and their experiences through words.
The reality is that the world needs story more than ever: to be entertained, to be educated, to be moved. As we get ready for a brighter 2021, we wanted to end a downbeat 2020 on the most upbeat thing we do at Inkshares: green-lighting great books or publication, global licensing, and development in television and film. This contest will be open to all genres including nonfiction. We have every expectation that across all genres, entrants will go on to major reviews, tens of thousands (or more) of units sold, and deals with the biggest studios and networks.
How do I enter the contest?
Any writer with a manuscript (partial or finished) can enter the contest by first creating a draft project on Inkshares, which includes your pitch, logline, working title, genre, fiction or non-fiction and short story or novel designation. If you aren’t familiar with any of these requested elements, the website will walk you through the process. Once you click the “Share Your Story” button, it will be live, searchable, and shareable on Inkshares.com. From that point, you can easily upload chapters for potential readers, as well as craft an “About” page where you can introduce yourself and your project. When you’re ready, you can hit the “Share Your Story”” button at the top right of your project page, which will automatically enter you into the contest—just make sure that you’ve selected the appropriate description of your project (genre, etc.) in order to connect you with the right reader communities. From there, you can begin interacting with the community and building a following on Inkshares.
Does Inkshares still use Pre-Orders to select winners?
Inkshares will not use pre-ordered books to determine the winner of the contest. We will still consider pre-orders as one of the many dimensions we use to evaluate when choosing the winners. We are simply looking for the best stories, and we’ll look to all community indicators as our team makes that determination.
If you would like to enter a project that already exists on the site, you can do so by navigating to your project page, clicking “Edit Page” in the top right corner, then using the drop-down menu under the description to choose 2020 Manuscript Contest.
The contest officially starts on October 15th, 2020, and only projects that are shared on or after that date will be eligible for the contest.
How are the winners of the contest determined?
Projects will be selected in two phases: phase one will be determined through a combination of nominations and general community engagement. Those engagements will be assessed by Story Machine, our analytics module which determines that all of the engagements aren’t just from Mom. Phase Two will move to an independent evaluation by the Inkshares Story Board made up of our talented editorial team and a select number of past published writers. Phase one of the contest will come to a close at 12 p.m. PST on December 20, 2020 with the top contestants announced at that time On February 28th, 2021, the top projects as determined by the Inkshares Story Board will be announced. Inkshares will evaluate all submissions for publishing and representation, even if they didn’t make the finals.. Inkshares will announce the additional winners throughout the first half of the year, completing selections by July 1st, 2021.
selection will receive the same editorial, production, distribution,
and marketing support as any Inkshares project, including distribution
into independent bookstores as well as Amazon, Apple, and Barnes &
Noble. Each project will also receive representation in foreign rights
as well as film and television.
What are Nominations?
Nominations are a limited number of votes given to our verified author community to help develop an advanced layer of editorial insight to foster a more critical level of discovery and determine commercial viability; these nominations are anonymous to those outside of this group.
What constitutes “community engagement”?
An engagement is a comment, a unique reader, a like, a share, a chapter read or a nomination.
What is a Qualified Engagement?
Qualified engagements are determined by Story Machine and weigh certain types of engagements, specific community and submission metrics differently to aid in editorial selection.
What if I’ve already published elsewhere, but I want to participate?
If your book has been published elsewhere and you don’t retain the rights required to be granted under our Publishing Terms, you are not eligible for the contest. If you self-published and retain the rights, you may enter the contest.
What if my book isn’t finished?
While we’ve found that more content helps a book receive more attention, the manuscript doesn’t have to be complete for you to participate. You simply need to build your project page and upload a chapter or a few to get started.
Should I have my friends and family use multiple accounts to engage with my project?
No. Story Machine ™ is designed to spot what can only be constituted as “cheating,” and as detailed in our Terms of Service: “The purpose of Inkshares is to highlight broad reader interest in specific works. Accordingly, please do not ‘game’ the system. As an author, don’t pre-order your own book or encourage others to order copies of your book through multiple accounts. As a reader or purchaser, don’t create multiple accounts so as to order more copies of any title. Do not engage in any scheme or exchange of promises that would lead to the ordering of a book in a manner not reflective of genuine interest in the writing.”
We understand that these campaigns can be stressful and
everyone wants to do their part to help. In order for Inkshares to stay
true to its mission of publishing stories that readers truly want, the
best way to help is to get out there and tell readers why a book is
I’ve participated in previous contests, either as an author or reader. I’d like to know: how can I help with this one?
We’re delighted you asked! The most helpful thing you can do is to explore new projects throughout the length of the contest, offer feedback and reviews on projects that catch your eye, and refer the books you love to others within your community. While many authors won’t get selected for publication, there’s still tremendous value in building up a readership and community on Inkshares. You can be an integral part of that.
Can I submit a book project with multiple authors to the contest?
While we love collaboration between authors, books with more than two authors are not eligible for submission. If you have questions about whether your project is eligible, please email email@example.com.