Round 4 Results COMPLETE: Goal 4 deadline set


New Entrants and those of you who have received Round 4 results, you may begin to submit now for Round 5.  Have no idea how to play? Read the rules here and come back.

Want Round 5 to play out? 

Our next fundraising goal is now set at $800 by  Saturday, 8/25 11:59pm CST. Help us get there by clicking on this link and donating!

Round 5 Deadline is expected to be Sunday 8/26/12,  11:59pm CST.  This gives you most of the weekend to relax (or stress out, if you prefer to play the game that way).

Round *4* ended at 8/23 11:59pm CST.  Anything submitted after that through Round 5 deadline will be in Round 5.

Tell your buddies, get everyone you know involved (even peeps who don’t write or love pets. Your aunt, Grandma Wilson …)  This goal will be challenging, but think of all those furry lives you’ll save.

Now here’s your well-earned treat!

Who would like to be eligible to have a client referral from Kissy to Jen Rofe of Andrea Brown Literary Agency, one of the best children’s lit agencies in the world?  Anyone?

Well, show us what you got!  Keep playing the game, and you never know, your work may be paw-selected by Kissy for Jen to have a second peek.  You many know that the agents at ABLA work as a team, so even if your work may not be right for Jen, she could refer you to another agent.

Now keep in mind that Jen will not give your work special treatment just because you happen to know her client’s pooch. Your work has to be right for her. You must be able to deliver the goods that she’s looking for. Kissy can only take a guess as to what that is, but he’ll do his best to highlight some of the most promising submissions to her.  Think of Kissy as Jen’s first reader.  If he gives it a tail wag, Jen will make sure she looks at it in case Kissy has found that teeny bone in the haystack!

All work submitted to RLGL to date and after will be considered for referral.  You must be selected though,so don’t go contacting Ms. Rofe saying the dog sent you.  The referral has to come from the pup himself (and we promise, we’ll ask you for permission first before we tell Jen.) We hope this stokes many of you on to keep trying with RLGL. Don’t give up. Remember, this game is a lot like the real world out there. Expect lots of rejection and keep a thick skin. All you’re trying to do is write, revise, and find that perfect match!

Good luck!  Yipppp-eeee!

Round 4 Results are COMPLETE. If you do not see an X in your row,  it is likely you …

1) titled your emailed incorrectly (e.g. missing page number, did not include the  assigned # after page 1).

2) sent it to the wrong email address.

3) sent your submission after the deadline.

Pardon the pooch but please make sure you help us read and record your submission correctly.  Because of the high volume, we can no longer spend the time to find emails, look up numbers, or try to figure out which page you are on.  If you made one of these errors, no worries.  Correct the mistake and it will be considered in Round 4.

Never want to miss another free-tique game again? Please make sure you are signed up for the free-tique email list for future games like RLGL!
Want to personally fund Kissy’s kibble? Consider having a paid critique instead.


0 YA X At this stage, I feel like it’s dragging. Three pages in and I don’t know very much about what’s going on and what is about to take place.  Tighten the pacing.
4 MG X* Okay, this is it, if still nothing happens in the next page, Kissy is pointing the paw.  It’s a shame because we like the writing.
6 YA
9 YA X There just wasn’t enough here to make these 4 pages memorable.  I feel like the writing is promising but the execution of a story opening needs some work. Also, this still reads MG to me so be mindful of a mismatch.
10 PB X In the end, this lacked the oomph that would give this picture book higher market value. The other concern was how to execute the illos without throwing the reader off completely.  But I think this could be reworked into something quite sellable if turned into a bigger concept story.
12 YA X* Watch how you depict hot-boy.  Try not to make it so obvious that he’s hot-boy.  It begins to feel a bit cliché.
13 YA X The way this is developing into an emergency feels so uneven. I’d rework this a bit more and come in with opening pages that are more tightly written.  There’s merit to the elements and details  you have here, so keep at it!
15 MG X
26 CB X* There’s promising writing but the story is stalled to discuss something that doesn’t seem absolutely pivotal to the story.  Hmmm… One more page, then we might have to call it quits.
29 PB
38 MG X* Pacing is dragging. Let’s get on with it.  Feel like the next thing should have happened by now.
40 MG
42 CB X* At this point, I’m not getting a larger sense of what this story is really about. Like what the main characters want for themselves and how the obstacles get in the way of that.  Raise the stakes. Make this more evident in the opening.
43 YA X In the end, I just couldn’t stay engaged.  Partly because the way this begins doesn’t have quite enough in there in the live scene to make it feel distinct enough and memorable. Then once we go to flashback, I am wondering why I need to care about this character. What makes her in page 1-2-3 someone I can really root for?
44 YA
50 YA X* Was a bit surprised where this went and I’m confused. I’ll read on to see if the next part clears it up, but I’m concerend I don’t have enough to go on here to really involve myself in the story and root for whatever the MC wants (which is unclear)
54 YA X I’m enjoying the edginess of this story, I’m hoping I get a better sense of what the MC wants for herself soon, versus DOESN’T want for herself. I need something to root for.
57 CB X* Felt like we could have gotten to the inciting event much quicker. Watch your pacing, especially in a chapter book.
60 MG X Set the scene a bit better as they are traveling.  Hard to picture before they arrive.
61 YA
62 MG X Now here’s the part that makes me empathize with this girl but is it too jekyl and hyde from the pages before? I’d like to see a better blend of both the good and the bad at the same time, versus changing channels.
64 YA X* This scene feels a bit rushed. Set the scene better, having trouble picturing things.
67 MG X Make srure you show more of what’s going on outside as they feel what’s happening.  It’s coming a little late. Intersperse the visual details.
68 YA X* Pace is dragging dragging dragging. The writing shows promise but there’s some serious snipping that needs to be done to get this story off the ground.  Kissy’s paw is twitching.
72 YA
73 MG X This felt a bit too scattered in 4 pages.  And I still have no idea what this book might be about. I have some guesses about the general concept, but no solid footing in the story itself.  I lost patience, so try to find a different way to open this book.
200 PB X Still enjoy the charm/mystery of this text. Let’s see where this goes.
204 PB
207 PB
213 MG
216 PB
217 CB
220 MG X* Still some shaky spots with the timing of details but the premise is intriguing…
222 MG  X*  The humor is fabulous. The writing adept. But what’s the story? I have no idea and I really need to know what this book might be about. I feel like this story may need to start in a different place. It’s as if I’m reading the writer’s warm-up to the story, possibly.
224 MG X
225 MG X This is just so weird and fun, I have to keep reading to find out what happens.
226 MG  X*  Not sure where this is headed.  Feels like something should have happened already.  Hmm…
228 YA X* This work feels more like MG than YA. Also the execution feels a bit reversed. Wasn’t expecting this to be high fantasy so provides those hints earlier.  I’ll read on to see where this goes…
232 PB
233 PB X This one left me feeling on the fence. There’s a quiet/matter-of-fact quality, extremely kid-like voice that I enjoy, and there’s this hopeful counterpart, too.  I enjoyed the anticipation as well. But in the end I wondered if this was big enough in concept to work. Could this be more universal? So that every child could see themselves reflected in the story? More poignant in some way?
235 YA X* I’m losing some patience with the MC. What does she want? Not, what does she NOT want? I feel like I should have some idea of this so I know what I’m rooting for- the positive thing. It’s feeling a touch too much on the side of negative, gloomy, whiny.
236 PB X In the end, I was a bit disappointed. I see lots of potential with the wit and charm and skill of the writing, but in the end I still needed to understand what the market value of this book would be as a picture book.
237 MG X
239 MG X
240 YA  X*  This took an unexpected twist and I’m not sure in a good way. Perhaps set up the unusual detail earlier in your opening so that I’m not taken off guard. Also by this many pages, I should have a better sense of what this story might be about.
243 MG X* I like how kid-like and realistic the MC is, but I’m  trying to get a better sense of what this story is about. It’s not about a simple playground game, it’s larger than that.  But I still have no clue what that might be.  It won’t be long before I lose patience.
302 PB X You’ve got an interesting idea here but the execution does not feel strong enough as as picture book text.  See Revision 9-1-1 articles on PBs on
303 PB X* Ultimately, the repetitiveness of the story got in the way of building an exciting story arc. Build upward, not around and around and around. I also felt like there weren’t enough hooks in this premise , as written, to make it feel like there’s enough to support a picture book.
304 YA
306 PB
307 MG
310 PB X This turned out to be different than I thought it would be.    The concept feels like it falls short of a strong picture book concept.  I’m looking for more universality, relatability in the concept from a kiddo POV.  While I get the storyline, how many kids experience this similar problem?  It seems a bit narrow as a concept…perhaps go in more of a direction of a great friendship between the two  gone awry… Tighten the writing as well. See Revision 9-1-1 for PB articles on
311 MG X* This is starting out with backstory and I find myself wanting to know current story first. I hope we get to current story soon or I’m not sure why I need to be reading this bit now. I want to know what the current conflict might be about.
313 YA X* The premise and the voice reads very upper middle grade. I would seriously consider aging down the character and some of the content (swear words, etc) so you’re market is broader as a middle grade novel.
314 MG
316 PB X Feel that this premise/concept has great potential but there are some key components missing that would make this a stronger picture book.  Universality of feeling and connection with the child reader. Fun is great. But Fun with a greater connection to the child reader is better.   I need a  so-what.
319 PB
324 PB X There’s talent in the writing but this did not feel like a fully-baked PB to me, and as I said, I had trouble with a concept mismatch.  But I have no doubt you could pull off something longer and more complex. It’d be a shame not to see more of this sort of writing in a longer-format kind of work
400 CB X* Feeling like this premise is a bit narrow for a standalone chapter book. I’ll read the next to see where this goes…
401 PB X Charming, a bit wordy though. Tighten.
402 PB X The premise is good, it’s the execution that doesn’t feel strong enough. A bit too “everyday” ish versus unique and eye-catching.  Consider keeping the premise but making this character-driven.
403 PB X Could not connect with the premise.  Hard to picture how these illustrations might look without it feeling awkward or a bit too quirky.
404 PB X The premise felt  narrow and the telling is a bit everyday-ish.  Think of “bigger”, pizzazier ways to turn this concept into a winner.
405 PB X This is written like it’s meant to be in a longer format. Really nice ideas in here, consider expanding the characters into a longer young MG novel format, with the child having a major hand in the relatives business.
406 PB X* Like the educational hook and the marketable element.  This is written in a fashion that feels a bit too obvious though.  (Check out Piggies in a Pumpkin Patch that demonstrates the same concept for a younger audience without it feeling lesson-like.)
407 PB X* A bit wordy but intriguing premise, I want to see where this goes….
408 PB X Wanted to get more excited by the premise, but couldn’t connect with it.  In this many words, I would also expect the story to have moved much further than it had.  Tighten.  Go for snappier execution.
409 ER X As a higher-level ER, the writing needed a bit more sparkle. Liveliness. Strengthen the humor if possible. The idea is interesting.  See other fiction Level 4 Easy to Reads to get a sense of the energy of these shorter stories.
410 ER X* As a beginning ER, this has potential but I feel it’s missing a really important ingredient.  More charm!  Keep the text simple but infuse as much charm as possible.  Make this feel more character-driven, versus so everydayish for the main-character.
411 PB X* There are things in this opening that feel  unnecessary for the story. I’d love to see this culled down to the biggest points. Concerned it doesn’t read with as much zippiness and sparkle as it could.  I’m curious to see where this goes though
412 PB X* On the fence with this one. Curious to see where this goes, but the writing style still feels a bit too unstructured for a picture book text.
413 PB X There’s an idea to this that I really like, but the execution doesn’t feel strong enough to me. “Like, here are a bunch of cute thoughts, and now let’s end it. Ta-da!”Try approaching this as a character-driven story, or a concept book with a stronger story arc.
414 BB X As a board book, this felt a bit off the mark writing-wise.  Build a story with your concept. Even if it might be a small one. This felt repetitive with each page turn. Offer something new besides a switch in animal.


8 thoughts on “Round 4 Results COMPLETE: Goal 4 deadline set

  1. Cynth for some reason my round 3 didn’t go through. I saw your explanation and double checked the email, the title #, P.3 etc and the time I sent it. I didn’t find any mistakes so I sent it in again for round 4. Is there any other reason that I may have made a mistake with? Since I didn’t change anything if something was wrong it’s wrong again for round 4.

  2. Hello. I think I submitted my work for round 4 on time but didn’t see results for it. (72). Is this a mistake on my part?

    Also, thank you so much for taking the time to offer guidance.

  3. If you’re entering for the first time, but it’s already round 5, do you still only send in the first 125 words?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.