Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Writing Contests

Currently reading - Flesh Circus by Lilith Saintcrow

How many of you have entered a writing contest? C'mon, don't be bashful. Speak up. I know I have lurkers out there.

One of my critique partners, CC, and I have an ongoing debate concerning the effectiveness of writing contests. And yes, it has become violent at times. (But not so violent, we'd waste perfectly good chocolate martinis by throwing them in each others faces.)

CC actually found her agent and editor through RWA chapter writing contests. Personally, I say good for her, even if she is a contest slut and paid more money for entrance fees than I did on my Hawaiian honeymoon.

CC's POV (and I don't necessarily disagree with her): Yes, getting good feedback is necessary for a newbie. Yes, it put her in front of the house that bought her first single title. Yes, she owes her fabulous career to a multitude of contest wins.

Seriously, one time she took first, second, third and honorable mention in same contest at the same time.

My POV: Contest entries work if you have the time and money. If the agents and editors most suited to work are judging these contests. If your style/voice meets the rigid criteria of a particular contest.

That last one is MY problem with contests. My writing doesn't fit into the nice little romance subgenre niche CC's does. My heroines are more likely to shoot, stab or incinerate the bad guys than to wait to be rescued. So for me, there's no sense wasting my time and money sending entries to be judged by folks who'd be the last ones on the face of the planet to represent me or buy my books.

And that's fine.

Until CC starts nagging me about entering another damn contest. . .

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