A Contest – a Road to Nowhere?

Merry Christmas Eve – have you entered any holiday writing contests or submitted any holiday themed stories?  I haven’t, but I got the most random e-mail from a contest I thought was over about two months ago.  Happy Christmas to me- I finished close to not last.

Contests seem like a great option.  The free ones mean you have no risk, but usually come with little  in the way of bragging rights.  The question is, what can we learn from contests and should we actually pay to enter?

I had the notion that a contest or two would give me the publication credits I needed to put on a query.  Something that might just help me catch the eye of an agent.  Some contests even attract agents for you.  These are great benefits, great opportunities, or so I told myself.  The problem is that most contests won’t tell you where you failed.  They won’t tell you why you didn’t make it past round 1, 2, or 3.  So then what?

I suppose this is where finding a writers group is beneficial.  If you failed to finish in a number of contests take a rest. Try something new.  Branch out.  If you don’t have a group with experienced writers perhaps you should look for groups online.

Contests can be great, but when you don’t know what you are doing wrong in the first place they could just be a waste of money.

I had a short story finish in the top 200-should I be bragging about this or not?  I guess I don’t think it is worth much since I still can’t tell you where I went wrong, other than the typo’s I embarrassingly missed.

Do you contest or not?

The Illuminating Blogger Award

This weekend wasn’t the most productive or the most exciting until I opened my email and saw that I had been nominated for the Illuminating Blogger Award.  I have to say a HUGE thank you to Katherine Checkley – The Intrinsic Writer .  I love her blog for its ‘old school Sundays’, where I learn about books that I desperately need to read.  Of course she shares some great writing information too, such as killing off characters.  You need to go check out her blog!   Thank you Katherine.

So here is a rules recap:

  • The nominee should visit the award site (http://foodstoriesblog.com/illuminating-blogger-award/) and leave a comment indicating that they have been nominated and by whom. (This step is so important because it’s the only way that we can create a blogroll of award winners).
  • Share one random thing about yourself in your blog post.
  • Select at least five other bloggers that you enjoy reading their illuminating, informative posts and nominate them for the award. Many people indicate that they wish they could nominate more so please feel free to nominate all your favorites.


A Random fact:  Hmmm… My downfall in life is Chocolate milk.  If Chocolate milk were considered an addiction I would be president of CA (Chocoholics anonymous.) My addiction, oddly enough, does not actually go into other types of chocolate though.  Oh and at the moment I am stuck eating fajitas without the tortilla – too bad I don’t have Chocolate milk to make that problem improve.

Now to nominate five others:

  1.  Bottled Worder  Great information in terms we can all understand. Lots and lots to learn from.
  2. Prolific Novelista   Great opinions and points – plus who doesn’t love Calico Critters and bad Twilight video’s.
  3. Tab Writer Great writing points and interesting books reviewed. She has a blog roll for industry blogs also.
  4. Fiona J Phillips  Enjoy Tuesday’s Choice Words
  5. Eva Rieder  Thorough – when she has something on the art of writing to say, you get the full take.