Thursday, December 17, 2009

Take the Contest or Leave It?

I've recently entered a writing contest for the first time, written a short story but then didn't submit it to another contest (for various reasons), and have been thinking about the value of those excitement-making but perhaps unsubstantiated pursuits called WRITING CONTESTS.

As timely as ever, Nathan Bransford approaches this topic and has some good advice.

For me, I've decided to use writing contests as a way to motivate myself to work on specific topics, themes, or even formats. Why not? But like Bransford suggests, read the fine print.

How about you? Have you ever entered a writing contest? Any winners? Why did you do it?


Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Hi, Winter. I had a third place in a flash fiction contest, won a few bucks and felt good about it. But the issue is whether you want to send a story to magazines, because a lot don't do reprints.
And the even bigger issue is contests for novels. I was thinking about Amazon and Delacorte but after reading Nathan's blog and some comments from Kristin Nelson, I think not.
I've also decided I'm not so willing to pay the entry fees that so many contests have.

Winter Hansen said...

Congratulations on your win Tricia! But I agree about novels. It's a big risk to throw a one at a contest where you may be giving up a lot of control.

I ended up not entering the short story contest because I'd already benefited so much from using it as a deadline to accomplish some hardcore editing. Winning wasn't an issue anymore.