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Saturday, May 2, 2009

Getting Contest Ready with Carrie

Hello to all the readers out there!

Both Margay and Gracen had free copies of their books to offer you, but my novels still fall under the "wips" category. However, I wanted to offer you something you might appreciate and tried to figure out what that might be. I soon realized that I do have something to offer, an insider's perspective on writing contests. While I will not give away any "trade secrets," I can look at your manuscript and determine if it has all the elements a first round writing contest judge would expect to see.

Still not sure if you want to enter this drawing? Just read through the following list of questions.

1. Do you just "know," your story is great but can't seem to win writing contests?

2. Do you have cold feet about entering your story for contests because you're just not sure how well you'll do?

3. Do you know something is off with your story, but just not sure what?

4. Have you entered contests but have not received helpful or insightful comments from the judges?

5. Have you received comments, used them but want to see if the improvements have helped?

6. Are you just plain curious to see how your work might be judged in a contest?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, this drawing is for you!

To enter drawing, leave a comment. Winner(s) will be selected at random and will be posted on Sunday, so please check back to claim your prize!

[Note: The purpose of this drawing is to provide the winner with critiquing in a format similar to what most writing contests ask from their first round judges. There is no monetary prize nor will manuscript be shown to any editor, agent or publisher.]

I am eager to offer my help to you!

Have a Sparkling Saturday!


6 Moonbeams (comments):

Unknown said...

Contests are something I have never really thought about before, but I can see how they would help not only get your work known about but also provide valuable feed back for your next venture.

A very interesting educational and helpful post.. thank you


J.W. Nicklaus said...

I've got a story I've been working on for a while, and I know where I want it to go, but I can't seem to get the dang map unfolded properly. First it's upside down, then it's backwards . . . this sounds like just the kind of help a person like me could use.

Clarissa Southwick said...

What a great contest. Any writer would be happy to have a pair of fresh eyes on their WIP. I hope you have fun with this too.

Sierra Wolfe said...

Great idea for a contest, Carrie! I wish I had something ready, but unfortunately, mine are all wips at the time being, too. Looks like you've got some eager entrants, though. If you offer this again, hopefully I'll have something ready to enter. Good luck, everyone!

Molly Daniels said...

I've only entered one contest, but have offered samples of my work for scholorships to conferences. Wonder if the same critiquing process applies, since I've never been granted the scholorship???

Carrie said...

Thanks Storyheart - but contests aren't just about feedback. Most writing contests usually end up with an editor or agent judging the final round and in some cases, the winner gets printed, or something to that nature! Congrats on winning the Golden Smoochie today!

Hey J.W. - sometimes knowing where you want the story to go is the problem. What I mean is, you want to go one way, but no matter what you do it will go some other direction because it's not meant to go the way you think it is. You've earned yourself the Cookie Kiss, today, I hope you like peanut butter....

Thanks Gail - I hope so and I plan on having some fun. After all, reading is supposed to be enjoyable!

Sierra, just because you don't have anything finished, doesn't mean you shouldn't enter. Here's why - in most contests, only the first 10 or so pages is actually judged (except for the RITA, I think). Most of the smaller contests suggest that you have an entire manuscript in case your asked for the full one at the end, but I don't believe it's a requirement. It helps to submit early because if something isn't working right or maybe should be different, it might be better to know earlier rather than later....

Hi Molly - If the scholarships are for writing conferences, then yeah, it's a good possibility that the same process applies and it also depends upon those making the decisions, what you're up against and what the submission rules were (did you have to write about something particular?).

In all honestly, this last contest I judged, all the writing was really good, but the issues weren't always with the writing itself, but the organization and character expose. Is that "hook" really where you think it is?

Thanks, we have some contestants, but I hope to see more, so please keep entering!