Golden Braids - Submission Now Closed

First off, what is the Golden Braids Collection?
You possibly already know, but in case you don't, here's the rundown. It's not an anthology. It's not even a series. It's a set of authors who are banding together and publishing their books together at the same time as a means of cross-promotion. And every book will be a retelling of the beloved fairy tale Rapunzel. And your book doesn't actually have to feature a Golden Braid, it merely must be recognizable as Rapunzel.

Is this a contest?
No, it is not really. It is a promotional opportunity with limited slots. I'm more like an agent than a judge.

Okay, so how is that going to work?
Every book in the collection will be a story that was written or worked on as part of the Arista Challenge. Authors interested will send me their stories, and I'll choose 10-15 of them to be released together at the end of November. It will be a five-day event, and I'll assign each author a day when their book will be published and they will set up with every author interview and review that I can scrounge up for them.

Ooh! How do I get in?
(1) Have been writing with us during the Arista Challenge
(2) Send me your story and its pitch according to the guidelines I'm about to give you, and if I think it's a good fit for the presentation I plan to put together, I'll let you know.
(3) Be willing to do further edits, should I ask you to do them, and willing to pay the participation fee.

Is there an entry fee?
Submission is free, but those who participate will be charged $25 to cover marketing and service costs. Please note that you are getting a free GiraffeCrafts critique, which is a $20-30 service, depending on your book's length. If your book gets a paperback edition, I will ask that you send me a copy so that I can show it off like a proud grandma. ;)

What should my submission look like?
It needs to be sent to
The subject line should be "GB - Book Title" and the body should include, in the following order: ~pitch - not blurb, this should be under thirty words, and the briefer the better
~the name you will publish under,
~what edits you have done since receiving feedback from any betas who read it
~1-2 sentences of praise from any beta who read it
~whether or not you have published before, and what form of publication your previous books were
~link to your Amazon and/or Goodreads pages if you are published,
~links to your existing platform (blogs, FB pages, Instagram, etc, to give me an idea of where you stand for marketing)
~whether or not you will need a cover. (I will provide you with a free cover if you don't have one, full-cover if your story's length warrants it - 20,000 words or over. I'm a decent cover designer and will make sure that your story has proper love.)
~Also state what degree of edits you'll be willing to do for me if I do accept it. (I probably won't ask for anything drastic, we have a time crunch, but someone who's more open-minded to change would be a lot easier for me to work with.)
~Attach your story to the email in .doc or .docx format. Fonts and font sizes don't really matter as I will be emailing your book to my kindle for me to read it.
~If you already have a cover, please attach it, too, so that I can make sure that it is in line with the GiraffeCrafts policy.

(What am I looking for in a pitch: Basically, a statement of your book's heart and twist in one or two sentences. This can be a tagline, a logline, or a VERY short blurb, just as long as you use as few words as possible. I have a short attention span and I'm going to be reading a lot of these, so you want to make sure yours stands out.)

What are your judging criteria?
I am one person with a busy schedule. As such, I cannot promise to read every story submitted to me. As I receive the emails, I will skim their first couple hundred words, then send them to my kindle. Once I have finished with the edits that currently have my kindle employed, I will start reading these stories. The order I will read them is going to be based on those couple hundred words, the information I've asked you to include in your email, and how badly I want to read your book based on what I've already seen of it. (So, yes, those of you who were active in the Facebook group+other places do have some priority.)
That said, there really isn't anything that will out of hand rule your story out, short of it containing content that I don't feel comfortable promoting (see my GiraffeCrafts Standard). I am looking for a collection of well-written stories that show the sheer scope and potential of Rapunzel. This means that I'm looking for all genres (except erotica, slash, or extreme horror.) I'm looking for all perspectives on the tale. I need them with magic and without. I want some mash-ups, and I'd like some that are just loose inspired-bys. I'd like to include both established authors and newbies. There is no word limit (though, for time restraint reasons, a 100,000-word epic might not be high on my priority ranking), but your story needs to be at least 5,000 words long - 20,000 words if you have not been published before, as I insist on first-time authors having a substantial debut.
BUT, I want every story that we're releasing to be unique and distinct. I want readers to be able to read the whole collection and come out of it unconvinced that they'd read the same fairy tale ten times in a row.

Deadline to submit?
February 29th. (I'm giving you guys an extra month 'cause we were late in getting this year's Arista Challenge started) So you guys have time to do a little extra polishing, BUT, I will say that the speed with which a story appears in my inbox will be an influence on the order in which I read them.

I have a Rapunzel story but it wasn't written with the Arista Challenge. Can I still submit?
You can ask me. My priority is to the books that were written, but if you have something unique that will round out my collection perfectly, I'm not going to turn it down out of hand. Just know that you'll be charged for the GiraffeCraft Critique ($20 - books under 50K, $25 - books 50K-100K, $30 - books over 100K)

When will you let me know that I've been accepted?
I will send you a GiraffeCrafts critique as soon as I've finished reading your book stating whether or not I want it and what edits it would need if I do. If I don't feel that it is the right fit for this collection, I will give you edit suggestions and some pointers for what you can do for the story to take it to the next level. The collection should be finalized by the end of Indie e-Con in May, so if you haven't heard from me by then, it means that I did not get to your story. Please note that rejection or lack of reading might not necessarily mean that you wrote a bad story - it might simply mean that I had another story that had a similar premise or genre that had intrigued me. The final list will be announced in a Facebook Party the week after Indie e-Con.

Please note that a GiraffeCrafts Critique does focus on what you need to do to improve your story, so please don't send me your story expecting a song of praise to come back. I can and will find something to nitpick on every story. I will find something to praise, but the focus will be on making your story better.

And when will this be releasing?
Somewhere in August, I have not decided on a specific week yet.

Anything else?
I think there was something else that I meant to say, but I've misplaced my thoughts. Feel free to ask questions below. I can't wait to read you guys' lovely stories!


  1. I'm disappointed in myself for not having finished Renewal of Spirit on time (still working on it, mostly adding detail/trying to round out the theme)...

    Saw the FB post on the submissions you've received; can't wait to hear more about those!


Post a Comment

Find this post helpful? Leave a comment and let me know!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular posts from this blog

Introducing: The Arista Challenge

Not a Contemporary - The Trouble with Abductions