For two days fellow newbies and I have been anxiously checking out the New Voices site for the list of all those who nearly made it and who will be contacted after the competition ends, plus I have been waiting for my critique. We all thought we'd find out yesterday and it was after 9pm when I finally gave up. Today I decided NOT to spend the day glued to the computer so went out to play tennis then into town. This sounds more strong willed than I actually am - I could check the site on my phone and did at 5 min intervals. Apologies to the many many people in York I walked into as I stared fixedly at the tiny screen willing my name onto there. Lunch in the library (phone by my side)off to the shops and was trying on a skirt (it looked awful) when there it was. And there I wasn't.
Confession time - I felt numb, then as I walked back to the car I phoned my husband, tears were shed and I told him this was it, I'm giving up. Truthfully right now I feel that way but I know tomorrow I must dust myself off and recover from this - and I have my detailed critique to show me the way.
I was surprised by some of the choices in the Top Ten and have to say the surprise continues. Of course unlike the editors I haven't read all 820 entries but to me there are some glaring omissions and inclusions I just don't understand, either in terms of plot or writing (sounds petty I know but if I can't be honest here were can I - and it's just a few). I did write a list of all the chapters that I was surprised didn't get through first time and NONE were on the second list. So if you do get a chance to get onto the New Voices site here are the chapters I strongly recommend:
True Love Sucks by Xandra James
Infatuation & Injustice by Janet Dobbs
Cougar Mum & Cub Dad by Cara Cooper
Back for Good by Susan Watkins
In the Duke's Bed by Miranda Liasson
Shakespeare's Secret by Dana Fisher
Duel for Love by Kathryn Beresford
Sequins and Secrets by Joanne Pibworth