Dagger Debate

First off, thanks to everyone who responded with encouragement regarding my agent search. The reply envelopes from my last batch of paper queries are starting to come in and I think I’m back in the read head about it. And speaking of encouragement, I’d suggest everyone read Mike Maclean’s post from Sunday at Murderati about making fans for life through small encouragements.

Now, another thing I’ve been contemplating. Four years ago I was shortlisted for the CWA Debut Dagger for LUNCHBOX HERO and that did some good things for me. Now that I have a new book done, I’m contemplating entering again. The main problem I’m having with it is the cost. While it seems easier to enter these days because they accept email entries and payment by credit card (last time I had to go to the airport to buy a British ten pound note to send with my entry), but the entry fee has almost doubled.

I know I stand a pretty good chance of being nominated again, but I seriously doubt I’d win. There are several benefits to being shortlisted. I got several emails from agents wanting to read the book even though I didn’t actually have the last draft finished when I submitted my entry. That prevented me from sending the book to a bunch of people who were interested and I wonder what other opportunities I missed by not having a completed final draft at the time of my nomination.

Another big reason I’d like to enter again is because I think I’ve been riding that last nomination too long in my bio. It was almost four years ago and for a book that never ended up being published. If I get a nomination this time around and then I sell SCARS, it will be cool to be able to put a CWA DEBUT DAGGER NOMINEE label on the cover or in my bio.

Any thoughts? Anyone else contemplating entering?