Thursday, September 6, 2012

Writing Contests

I used to be really high on writing contests. I entered them several times a year. That was five years ago. Since then, I've cut back on entering, even though I won or placed in several. I found I didn't have time to prepare fresh material for each one. I don't like to submit the same material over and over in hopes new judges will love my work.

I still get lots of requests to enter all the time. I dug deeply into several and was surprised at how much each one cost. With the cash prizes very low, I realized many small contests fund their prizes through entry fees. And others use the fees to build their coffers. But when commercial enterprises, read mainly publishing magazines, offer "great" contests and prizes if you pay dearly to get your material read by a judge, well, count me out.

I reduced my participation to three contests a year. I like the groups and think they do good work outside of the contests. Imagine my surprise when one contest chair called me over Labor Day to tell me she just found my 2012 entry.

Just found my entry? I'd all but forgotten I submitted anything, but a check of my records revealed I had indeed submitted three entries. She apologized profusely for losing my entry. Seems she put it aside, had several emergencies and forgot about it.

We ended our call with both of us laughing. Stuff happens. She had the decency to call to apologize. I promised to submit entries again next year. Maybe the same ones. Maybe not. We'll see.

Well, phooey! Those entries were all winners. Better luck next year.

1 comment:

  1. There's so little time to get it all done. They should have given you an honorary something for having you spend your time in vain. I say this jokingly, of course, because, as you note, stuff happens. But, every time I send something off, unless I win or place, I wonder how would I know if they even read it? Especially when you read some of the pieces that capture the big prize. Was it someone's sister? Maybe a trade-off for an unpaid debt? Surely I jest.