Top 5 Resources for Contests and Submissions

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In my last post, I mentioned how important submitting  work on a regular basis is to writers. So, it’s only fair I share with you some of my favorite resources for the most up-to-date lists..

 My top 5 sites:

1) Duotrope: No longer free, this service now requires a paid membership. A 30-day free trial is available; after that, the cost is $5/month.

  1. The database lists thousands of markets tailored to your work and/or genre; including, fiction, non-fiction, or poetry.
  2. They offer a plethora of data on every site regarding, acceptance rates, turn around time, payment, unknown to extremely challenging markets, and other statistics.
  3. Provide a calendar of upcoming themed contests.
  4. And, track of all your submissions.

2) Every Writer’s Resource:

  1. On the home page, you will find listings for all types of literary magazines.
  2. Magazine profiles include the year founded, preferred genre,  guidelines, response time, paid or non-paying market, and names of editors.
  3. For quick reference, check out the current and updated list in the sidebar.
  4. You can search by name, category, theme, call for submissions, or print.

3) Flash Fiction Chronicles:

  1. Markets are listed according to word count restrictions;  from as little as 50-100 words  to 1500.
  2. Provides a brief summary of the magazine with links to view current issues, site guidelines and read editor interviews; one of the most informative aspects offered.
  3. Under the Resources tab, you can find additional contests list.

4) New Pages

  1. Your guide to news, literary magazines, agents, and contests.
  2. Call for submissions include, fiction, non-fiction, essay, poetry, and art.
  3. Additional resources for writers is also available.

5)  Funds for Writers

  1. Holly Clark provides a list of contests and freelance markets in every mewsletter.
  2. Information includes deadlines, the cost to enter, paid or non-paid markets, and a synopsis of the competition.
  3.  All contests listed have been researched for credibility.
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Photo courtesy of google and http://www.southwestwriters.com

I hope you will explore these sites, make a list and begin submitting. I’d love to hear what you think, and about your successes. So, drop me a line.

Happy writing and good luck on your submissions.

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Submit or Not to Submit

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In the last several days, three friends have recommended writing contests to me. Intrigued I began the process of reviewing  each site,  contests details, and the guidelines. Hour’s later after reading back issues and making a list of deadlines, I’m exhausted. Submitting is hard and time-consuming work.

But life has taught me, the best things come with hard work and perseverance.

Even if your story or essay isn’t accepted, submitting on a regular basis, provides advantages.

What’s in it for you?

  1. Themed contests are like prompts, spurring imagination and the desire to write.
  2. Deadlines help you prioritize time.
  3.  Reading the works of others, introduce you to other writers and genres.
  4.  Many magazines offer feedback and/or a written critique from the judges (a favorite perk of mine.) Who wouldn’t want to receive information which will improve your skill as a writer and likewise, increase your chance of acceptance?
  5.  Practice makes perfect. You gain experience and knowledge with every submission and in the end, you might achieve your goal.
  6.  Provides a venue for others to discover your work.

As you well know, if you follow Duotrope, statistics on acceptance rates for many are dismal. However, when you receive that acceptance letter or email, it’s magic and well worth the time and effort.

A note of Caution When Submitting:

  1. Read and follow the guidelines. A lack of compliance is a frequent complaint from many editors.
  2. Check and double-check spelling and grammar. Read aloud, listen to it on your Kindle, or ask a respected friend for feedback.
  3. Stay within the designated word count. Sounds easy enough, however, sometimes the title counts, sometimes it doesn’t. Knowing which will determine whether your story lands in the consideration or rejection pile.
  4.  Know the basics of the contest. Is there a theme, particular genre, or is the contest open?
  5.  Know whether it’s a blind submission or requires author identification.
  6.  Format according to submission guidelines. The guidelines differ for each magazine or contest.
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Photo courtesy of google & http://www.smartfitbykatemartin.com

So, take the leap. Review the Call for Submissions in the sidebar; check out Duotrope,  Every Writer’s Resource, and The Write Life for their list of current contests.

Remember, no risk, no gain.

Happy writing, submitting, and best of luck!