Monday, June 14, 2010

Submit Your Short Story!

If you're waiting to get published and don't know how to get there, the best way is to submit a short story or essay into a contest. The easiest way to get started is to search "writing contest" on Google. The best contests to enter are ones with no initial entry fee. That way, if you don't win anything, you won't feel like you lost money. Choose your contest carefully! If you pick one that is geared toward a subject you have little or no aptitude for, there's a good likelihood that you won't win. Also contests with prizes that motivate you are also good choices. If you are motivated, you'll write as well as you possibly can.

I've entered my short stories into contests and magazines many times, and have won. Winning contests is wonderful! You will feel confident, and you'll believe that you really can write well!

There is the possibility that you will lose a contest. Finding out that you haven't won is painful and one of the most discouraging things that can happen to a writer. It's like being told that you can't write well at all. What must be understood is that there are hundreds of entries, and yours may not have met the criteria exactly. It doesn't mean that you wrote poorly, it means you didn't write what the judges wanted.

When your short story is rejected, don't give up. Submit your work to other contests, and maybe you'll be lucky.

Some tips on submitting your short story are:
  • Make your first sentence capture the judges. I read in a writing book that judges read the first sentence, and either consider it or toss it.
  • Keep the judges interested all the way through your short.
  • Follow the rules! This rule is critical.
  • If you write a cover letter, don't bribe or beg the judges to publish your work.
    Be polite.
Good luck!

1 comment:

The Blue Pencil said...

Just wanted to tell everyone that a quick way to enter a contest right now is to enter my "A Day to Remember" writing contest. Just click the page at the top of the screen. The deadline is July 31st, 2010.