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KR LaLonde

Contest entry on booksie.com

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While I had originally planned to enter the contest that was finally doable and not expired, I haven't even started it yet because from what I can tell it's due in May. That gives me some time, right? I thought so, except that last week when I went to look at the guidelines again, I saw there were several entries already. 😕 I really wanted to write this piece, because it's supposed to be fairly short and be based on a posted photograph.

 

What do you think I should do? Is it worth pursuing this, or would it probably just be a waste of time and more discouraging than not?

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@KR LaLonde, when it comes down to competitions, the question to ask yourself is why? Why are you entering it? I'm sorry if the following statement is harsh, but if your sole purpose is to win, you probably will be disappointed and discouraged.

 

My approach to competitions now is I write and submit, and see what happens. Doing this helps me in several ways: 

 

1. It forces me to write and edit to a deadline. 

 

2. Every piece I write builds and challenges me as a writer. 

 

3. Submitting work to a competition is nerve-wracking, to say the least. Sometimes it's plain terrifying. But submitting now makes next time easier, and submitting next time makes the time after that easier. Each time you show your work to the world, it can build your confidence. 

 

I hope that my words haven't discouraged you, and I hope that these thoughts help you make a decision. 

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11 minutes ago, Claire Tucker said:

Why are you entering it?

Well, to start with it's good practice. Like you said: Writing to deadlines and etc.

Also, to hopefully improve my writing. And see how anyone will react to what i write.

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32 minutes ago, KR LaLonde said:

Well, to start with it's good practice. Like you said: Writing to deadlines and etc.

Also, to hopefully improve my writing. And see how anyone will react to what i write.

Then go for it :)

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Best shot at winning the contest and working a deadline.

  1. Have it "finished" one month before the deadline. (And "finished" means you've worked on it, put it aside, then reworked it, until you just can't make it any better.)
  2. Then have it critiqued (on here) for 3-5 days. Do not react to the critiques at all other than thank yous and asking for clarity if you don't get something. (You're now at three weeks from deadline.)
  3. Think over the crits for a few days, (making sure to get over the hurt feeling bits), then have it rewritten within one week. (Two weeks from deadline.)
  4. You're choice from here. Either repost for more crits, and then rework one last time a week before deadline, or leave it alone -- totally ignore it -- until there is one week before deadline.
  5. Then look at it with fresh new eyes.
  6. Three days before deadline, take what you have, change the font style and size, study it like you're an English teacher dying to deduct grades for every SPAG error. (Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar.) Seriously, keep count of how many booboos, and every booboo lessens it from an A+ paper to.... Hey, you're fixing the mistakes, but doing this makes you more aware of what kind of mistakes you're prone to do.
  7. Two days before deadline send it in. And, assuming a form that changes the format, read it again and check for SPAG again, because forms can cause typographical SPAG.

Why two days? Because if you wait until the last minute, they'll be a glitch in their program or it will get swamped, and you can't entire through no fault of your own. And, also because logisitically speaking, the last people interviewed for a job, the last words in a setence/paragraph/chapter/book, and the last entries in a contest are always remembered more. No idea why, but it's true.

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5 hours ago, Spaulding said:

(You're now at three weeks from deadline.)

Pardon me?
*glances at calendar and freaks out*

YOU'RE RIGHT!!

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So I only wrote a little bit this morning, but it was over 300 words. Out of a possible 500. It's official: Flash fiction isn't my thing.

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3 hours ago, KR LaLonde said:

Flash fiction isn't my thing

Keep trying. Write the story the way it sounds in your head, and then edit. A story I wrote a couple years back for a competition was originally double the max word count. A few edits and rewrites later and I was able to submit. 

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1 hour ago, suspensewriter said:

300 out 500?   That's good, KR.

Not exactly. The story I have would have to be a lot longer than 500 words.

 

1 hour ago, Claire Tucker said:

Keep trying.

I suppose it's worth continuing. I just had really wanted to enter this contest is all. But I guess continuing and finishing would be the point, right? :)

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Continuing and finishing is the point. But also going through all those revisions to improve the story is the point. And then taking your courage in your hands and submitting it is the point. (Yes, there are lots of points.)

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I had actually forgotten about another contest I wanted to enter. It's too late now. The deadline is in a week, I think. I'd have to write like a dog, edit like a robot, and avoid Facebook and here quite a lot. 😮

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At least this contest only goes up to 12,000 words. I might be able to swing this one. If I start it right now. 😮

Edited by KR LaLonde

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