In my ever-increasing search for publicity as a new writer (and of course some funds to fuel my endeavors) I stumbled across a method that I almost feel silly for having overlooked. Writing contests!! Wooooo!!! Ok maybe they aren’t any less frustrating and occasionally demoralizing as my usual writing schedule BUT the prospect of winning ANY of the prizes I’ve seen up for grabs is super exciting. 🙂
The bonus is that many of these writing contests are looking for either short stories or poetry. No need to kill yourself trying to pump out a huge lengthy piece when many of them seem to be looking for something around the 5000 word mark. The ones I have read about also seem fairly liberal in regards to how many times you may enter AND your content or writing style. This is a not only a great way for a new author to get something published, add to their portfolio, and bump up their credentials, but also a good way to maybe get some valuable feedback. Many of these contests are free to enter however there are some that do have an entry fee. With all my searching I haven’t seen any over the $25 mark which should be manageable to most people, even if you have to limit yourself to the number of contests you enter.
One word of caution I did find while I was reading about them though was to ensure that you are entering contests that are with reputable organizations. With an entry fee of $25 you wouldn’t want your work ending up in the wrong hands with no possibility for a return on your investment. I found a couple of sites that I’ve been exploring that seem to be on the up and up although I of course can give no guarantees as I’m only preparing to enter some of these contests for the first time. I will however let you know how it goes with the ones that I enter.
www.fundsforwriters.com is the first site I visited with not only a free newsletter but tips and tricks on how to increase your chances at earning an income through writing contests. I signed up for this one!
www.canauthors.org was a site I came across while searching out Canadian writing contests specifically (as that’s where I’m based) It seems literally chock full of useful tools for new writers and also included a page dedicated to writing contests. They wont email you directly as a heads up the way Funds For Writers does but absolutely worth spending some time on their site.
Last but not least be sure to head over to www.writeradvice.com. Not only do they have writing contests, they also have manuscript consultations and seem to enjoy spreading the word about whats happening with some new and upcoming authors. Maybe one of us can be the next author they feel the need to brag about? I certainly wouldn’t complain! In any event, I’m off to crank out another 3000 words before retiring for the evening. Good luck, and hopefully I’ll see you at the finish!