Win a Writing Contest This Year

pile of manuscripts

As any writer will confess, with the first day of a new year comes new resolutions to “write more,” “write daily,” “write at least five pages a day,” or “get published this year.”

You’ll never get published if you don’t submit your work. So instead of watching endless episodes of “Breaking Bad,” or all three seasons of Seinfeld’s new Internet series about comedians in cars, try submitting your work on a regular basis.

One way to get published, and to get noticed, is to win or place in a writing contest. There are hundreds of contests every year, and many of them have no entry fee.

Make a resolution to enter one writing contest a month. You might not win, but you will have honed your writing skills. With luck, you may even get some feedback on your story or your writing style.

First things first. Find websites that list writing contests, and create your own writing submission calendar. Be sure to note the pertinent details, such as the deadline and word count.

Read all of the contest guidelines; there could be a theme or keyword you must write. Pay special attention to the submission guidelines. If you don’t follow the guidelines to the letter, your story may be tossed out immediately.

Here is one website that has detailed listings of writing contests coming up in 2014:

(http://writersviews.com/writing-contests.php).

Writer’s View.com compiles and posts an up-to-date listing of writing contests all over the world. The listing is free of charge; the site encourages winners of these contests to notify them so that they can feature the author’s work on their website.

***Bonus: Writer’s Views lists only writing contests that are FREE to enter!

Sneak preview of some of their listings:

Poetry Writing Contest
Springfield Film Festival and Springfield Art Institute have united their prize budgets to offer a writing competition for all levels and all ages to submit their own original poetry about Climate Change for a two round contest … more >>
Satirist Comedy Writing Contest
looking for the next George Carlin, the man referred to as, “a major force in comedy since 1960s and there will be no substitute for his insight, nor his tireless and hilarious attacks on the enfranchised …”, more >>
Love Story Writing Contest
is a contest for romance novelists and new writers who want to try writing about the magic of love and the everlasting love between a couple and their journey into deepest emotional bond that can be experienced … more >>

What are you waiting for? Pick a contest, any contest and enter. There is no fee; you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Photo credit: Huffington Post

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What Scares Stephen King

I’ve sometimes been too scared to read some parts of Stephen King’s books. I was surprised to see him admit in this interview with Andes Dubus, III that there have been two times when he was almost too damn scared to write some of those parts.

The video is more than an hour long, and I encourage you to watch it all, but I won’t keep you in suspense. King admitted that he scared himself towards the end of Pet Sematary and again when he was writing one particular passage in The Shining. “I knew he was going to go up to Room 217, and I knew what he was going to find there….” I don’t know about you, but I remember that part very well; it made the hair stand up on the back of my neck.

He was also asked where his characters went at night when he was trying to sleep. King answered, “I don’t have nightmares. I pass all that along to you readers.”

Note: If you want to skip the introductions, start the video at 6 minutes 15 seconds.