Novel Boot Camp: Workshop #1 Submission Form

NBClogoWelcome to the fourth annual Novel Boot Camp! I’m so excited to be back for another year of writing tips and workshops!

If you participated last year, welcome back to another year of Boot Camp! If this is your first time participating, thanks for joining us! Novel Boot Camp is a ton of fun and a great opportunity to get free feedback on your novel.

If you don’t know what Novel Boot Camp is, check out the full schedule.

Today I’m opening up the submission form for the first workshop. I will be posting my feedback in two parts: this Friday (August 4) and next Friday (August 11).

Workshop #1: “I stopped reading when…”


Agents, editors, and readers make lightning fast decisions about what they want to read. This workshop is intended to simulate the querying experience for writers who are hoping to traditionally publish. For those planning to self-publish, this workshop helps demonstrate what readers might think of your novel excerpt when deciding if they want to buy your book.

My hope is that the critiques will help you to avoid mistakes that get submissions deleted by agents and that cause readers to put the book down (or click away from the webpage) without buying.

Want to know what to expect from the critiques? Check out last year’s workshop.

The Critiques

Your name and the title of the novel will not be included in your critique. Novels will be identified by genre only.

My feedback will include the text up to the point that I stopped reading along with a few brief comments about why I didn’t continue.

Because this is a free workshop, I cannot predict how many writers will participate. This means that unfortunately I cannot guarantee everyone will have a chance to participate in every workshop. I will critique your submissions until time prohibits me from continuing. Thanks for understanding!

***Please include spaces between paragraphs as no other formatting will be preserved after you submit the form. Thanks!***

Comment Question: What was the hardest part of writing your first page?

Want to connect with other Novel Boot Camp Participants?


For more writing tips, follow or subscribe:

youtube twitter

52 thoughts on “Novel Boot Camp: Workshop #1 Submission Form

    • Frances says:

      I don’t get the difference between info dumping and a narrative that goes on for pages describing a jungle outpost.

      I read it’s the difference between advancing the story. There are books that are mostly narrative and I don’t see how they are not info-dumping. I’ve been told that my dialog can disgusie info-dumping.

      Taking in info as I can. I have received compliments on my dialog, which is good. The first time I was told that it was expository. I had to look that up.

      Slowly (adverb 🙂 ) improving. 🙂

  1. Janean L. Watkins says:

    The hardest part of writing my first page was figuring out how to introduce my three main characters, while making sense of a backstory, showing what’s at stake, and building a relationship between the reader and my main 3. I’m still unsure my attempt actually worked…

  2. Ravi says:

    Hardest part is choosing how to start and say what I want to say in a simple and interesting way without repeating expressions and boring the reader.

  3. Wendy Christopher says:

    The hardest part was trying to make my protagonist character interesting and engaging to the reader, particularly from a first-person present POv. There’s always a danger of them coming off as self-absorbed in that POV, and since my story starts from a place of confusion for her, all the reader has to go on is how she reacts to her current situation.

  4. huntedwalrus says:

    The most difficult part of my first page was demonstrating my main character’s personality before I’d introduced him. This scene is a slight flash-forward to a major event later. I put it first because chronologically the first time we see my main protagonist is in an uncharacteristic state. I therefore put his first impression as more like what he’ll be normally, then went back and showed how events dragged him along. But with that balance, the full introduction of him had to wait until both sides, the normal ad the atypical, had been shown. That meant I had to give only as much detail as required for the reader to understand the opening scene, but almost nothing beyond that.

  5. Nick Masellis II says:

    The hardest part of writing my first page was showing and not telling. I am a new writer and Fantasy has been my love/favorite genre since HP and LOTR. The scenes that I need to show are difficult for me to not “tell” instead of “show”. But I am working each day on it. :).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s