Reality TV producers have exhausted singers, dancers, drag performers, potters, tailors and beautiful young people hoping to find love. Now, it seems, the spotlight has fallen on the writers. This week, a call appeared on social media for contestants to apply to take part in the pilot of a new show called America’s Next Great Author (ANGA).
Billed as “the breakthrough reality show for writers,” ANGA will give its contestants one minute to pitch their novels to a panel of judges that includes New York Times bestselling author Jason Reynolds, Fox5 TV presenter Angie Goff and screenwriter and actress Marga Gomez.
Those lucky enough to win the rounds, which will be held in cities across the United States, will advance to the “bootcamp” stage of the Writers Retreat.
The six finalists, locked together for a month, will face “live” challenges as they attempt to write an entire novel in 30 days. The winning novelist will be crowned America’s Next Great Author.
Best-selling author and Newberry Medal winner Kwame Alexander presents the show and is listed as an executive producer. In a promotional video posted on the show’s Twitter feed, Alexander said it would be “the first reality show for writers produced by writers. This is your chance, if you write the great American novel or the great memoir masterpiece or something like that, this is your chance to get published.
The show aims to attract a wide range of applicants: “America’s Next Great Author is dedicated to including writers who don’t normally sit at the mainstream publishing table,” reads the mission statement on its website. . “Candidates don’t need to be graduates of elite MFA programs that essentially guarantee an open door to the book industry. The series will feature writers from communities and cultures across America who will bring their unique voices to readers and the world of literature.
However, it’s not yet clear what the ultimate prize will be, although Alexander seemed to hint on the promotional video that it might include a publishing deal.
Currently, ANGA is accepting applications to participate in the filming of the pilot show in San Francisco. It offers contestants the chance to ‘walk away with real-world advice from professionals in the publishing industry’ and, for the winner of this pilot round, $2,500 (£2,116).