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fresh.ink is a new, free way to get connected with beta readers

Our contest is now closed for submissions, but there are two ways you can still get involved.

If you're interested in become a beta reader, download our iPhone or Android mobile apps and apply to read.

If you're looking to connect with beta readers for feedback on your writing, our beta reader platform is free to use!

Should you need our contest terms, we've archived them below.

 

Prizes

There is one 1st place prize per each of the following categories:

fiShort-story — $1,000 Under 7,500 words

fiNovelette — $1,500 From 7,500 to 17,499 words

fiNovella — $2,000 From 17,500 to 39,999 words

fiNovel — $3,000 40,000 words and over

Why We’re Doing It

We’re launching software that connects authors with beta readers to get early feedback on their fiction. This competition is a way for us to launch our service and allow authors to try it out while we’re still in beta mode. Our goal is to give you a chance to share your work with beta readers without having to self-promote. We’re not an agency or publisher, and don’t help you to promote your work to those companies. We’re about connecting you to beta readers - for free.

Our prizes are monetary, we're not a literary agency or publisher and don't offer publishing deals.

Deadline

Submissions are due by December 1st, 2019 at 11:59 PM EST. Winners will be notified on February 3rd, 2020. On that date, the writing in each category with the highest score will win the prize for that category. In the rare instance that more than one piece of work achieves the highest score, prize money will be split equally.

To qualify for scoring and winning:

Work must not have been withdrawn before the end of the contest, on February 3rd, 2020

Work must have at least 10 completed reader ratings.

Fees

It’s free to enter, and we promise there are no hidden costs or follow up solicitations. We don’t charge authors, and we never spam.

Published Work

You're free to submit already-published stories to our contest, we don't require any form of exclusivity.

Self-Promotion

The software is designed to give you real, honest feedback. We match your work with readers for you, which means you won’t be able to self-promote or share your work with family and friends for more points. This way, we can ensure everyone has a fair shot. This isn’t an author popularity contest, it’s all about your writing.

How the Contest Works

fresh.ink is a platform that will connect your writing to highly targeted beta readers for ratings, engagement analytics, and valuable feedback. Our judging process works the same way. Rather than using a small team of editors to decide, we’ll match your work with a subset of readers on our fresh.ink mobile reading app. Each reader will see the title and description of a few dozen contest entries, and can choose one of these entries to begin reading. We measure the following metrics and share them with you:

fiImpressions - how many matched readers saw your title and description

fiOpens - number of readers who opened your piece and began reading

fiCompletions - number of readers who finished your writing

fiRating - average rating out of 10

fiStructured feedback - we also ask readers to complete some beta-reader questions about what they enjoyed, disliked, found confusing etc. This isn’t used in the contest, it’s just for you.

We want to be very transparent, and our scoring formula is a little nuanced, so the fresh.ink author’s dashboard shows a live real-time view of your score and position throughout the contest. Here’s how we calculate the winning scores:

Entrants are scored out of 300:

fiYour average “choose” rate Eg 10% (10 points)

fiYour average completion rate Eg 50% (50 points)

fiYour average rating, multiplied by 10 Eg 8.44 average rating (8.44 * 10 = 84.4 points)

10 + 50 + 84.4 = 144.4 points.

Submissions are due by December 1st, 2019 at 11:59 PM EST. Winners will be notified on February 3rd, 2020. On that date, the writing in each category with the highest score will win the prize for that group. In the rare instance that more than one piece of work achieves the highest score, prize money will be split equally.

To qualify for scoring and winning:

Work must not have been withdrawn before the end of the contest, on February 3rd, 2020

Work must have at least 10 completed reader ratings.

Application Process

We use an application process to ensure high-quality writing for our readers. You’ll be notified as soon as a decision is made. We’ll do our best to provide feedback, but in the cases where we reject work, it’s because we don’t think we’ll have enough readers that are interested in your genre, topic or writing style.

fresh.ink maintains a community of beta readers by ensuring they are consistently matched with high-quality, relevant and unique writing. If we analyze your work and don’t think we can find enough readers to match it to, we’ll not be able to accept your entry. This shouldn’t be taken as a reflection on your writing, but rather a mismatch between fresh.ink’s reader demographics and your target audience.

Fanfiction

Sorry, but we don’t accept fanfiction or other derivative work (unless you own the rights to the original).

Who Can Enter

You must be 18 years or older and own the rights to the work you’re submitting. Although we don't require you to reside in the United States, winners will be paid via ACH bank transfer or check (depending on your preference) in US dollars. Please make sure you can accept at least one of those two options before applying.

Languages

We require all submissions to be in US English at this time. We hope to localize later!

Multiple Submissions

You may submit as many times as you like, as long as each submission is a distinct piece of work. fresh.ink can spot even subtle duplicates!

Rights

fresh.ink makes no claims to any rights over your work, even if you win.

fresh.ink never makes your work searchable (either publicly on search engines such as Google, or within fresh.ink), readers must always be logged in and they can’t see work that they weren’t explicitly matched with. You can also opt in to take full control of who gets access to your work, approve any readers before they can open your story and limit how many readers can read your work. And of course, you can instantly withdraw and delete your work at any time via your fresh.ink dashboard and we’ll stop matching it to new readers, remove it from existing matched readers, and give any readers that are currently reading 90 days to finish before deleting it from their device automatically.

Editing

Our platform converts your story into a mobile friendly format. If our reviewers spot formatting problems or mistakes generated during conversion, they’ll do their best to fix them. However, large formatting issues may result in a rejection. We won't make changes to the story itself.

How Do We Make Money?

This is phase 1 of building our author reader matching platform - we want to change the way authors get feedback and iterate those critical final drafts. Our vision beyond phase 1 involves playing a hand in connecting authors with legitimate, reputable literary agents. But right now we’re heads down on building the best possible feedback platform for authors and readers alike.

Can I Keep the Feedback?

Yes. Any feedback you receive from readers is yours - and it’s valuable stuff!

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