By: Darynda Jones
I’m here today to talk to you about writing/literary contests and, more specifically, should you write for them? In other words, should you write your opening pages to fit what contests are looking for? What are the pros and cons of doing such a thing? Let’s find out.
Should you write specifically for contests?
Okay, admittedly ‘should’ is a strong word. You certainly ‘can’ write specifically for contests, meaning you construct your entry for the sole purpose of finaling in and winning contests, and quite frankly, I don’t think it’s a bad idea at all as long as you keep a couple of key points in mind.
The hard truth…
First, the odds are against your selling a manuscript to New York on the first 20 pages alone. Unless you’re already published and have some decent sales under your belt, this simply doesn’t happen. So, while you may polish your first 20 pages until they shine with a blinding brilliance, you’d better be able to back that up in the other 330 pages. Agents and editors will know the instant your manuscript starts to fall apart, and they will know why. They’ve seen it thousands of times, so you won’t fool them, I promise.
Second, there is a strong desire to work and rework our beginnings, especially if your goal is to win contests, polishing them until they glow, and then going back and reworking them again. In other words, we fall into the rabbit hole—and habit—of starting a manuscript, then another, and another, and never completing any of them. You do not want to do that. You are never going to sell if you don’t, as Cherry Adair would say, FINISH THE DAMN BOOK!
The pros of writing for contests…
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Read the full article HERE!
If you missed my writing & marketing tweets and retweets yesterday, here they are again:
- 3 Ways Creative Writing Shakes Your Complacency | Creative Writing with the Crimson League http://ow.ly/wwOQD
- About ‘Marketing to Writers’ | Elizabeth Spann Craig http://ow.ly/wwSaE
- Cheat Sheets for Writing Body Language: http://ow.ly/wl9KR @Writers_Write RT @elizabethscraig:
- What Does ‘Women’s Fiction’ Mean? | Beyond The Margins http://ow.ly/wwSXz
- 8 Things Most People Don't Know About Amazon's Bestsellers Rank (Sales Rank) http://ow.ly/wwTBb
- Fiction University: Four Questions to Ask to Make Your Scenes Pop http://ow.ly/wwTJS
- Can authors get smarter with Amazon keywords and categories? Start here! | Nail Your Novel http://ow.ly/wwUwx
- What Is Considered Previously Published Writing? - Writer's Relief, Inc. http://ow.ly/wwURQ
- 7 Things Your Fiction Fans Want to Hear You Say by Jason Kong — The Book Designer http://ow.ly/wwV2C
- 16 Resources to Generate Leads With Social Media | Social Media Examiner http://ow.ly/wwV8K
- Finding Readers Week: Corinne Talks Commenting, Engagement, and Are Forums Right For Your Blog? : @ProBlogger http://ow.ly/wwVdF
- It Just Got Even More Expensive To Make Your Book “Visible” | The Passive Voice | http://ow.ly/wwVlf
- Should you Write Specifically for Contests? by Darynda Jones | Romance University http://ow.ly/wwVAC
- Return On A Share: How Content Shared On Social Media Can Influence Consumers - infographic http://ow.ly/wwVHW
- The Wrong Reasons to Write | Goins, Writer http://ow.ly/wx6nX