…well, not quite. But I do have news. As I received so many entries, and it’s taking me a while to read through them all, I’m splitting the results into two. The results of the 100-word story competition will be announced next Monday and the results of the ‘Treasure’ competition will be revealed the Monday after.
I’m being thoroughly entertained by your wonderful imaginations and where you’re taking me in your stories. However, some writers haven’t given themselves the best chance of winning and sadly, won’t be going onto the short-list. Unfortunately, in some cases, this is for simple reasons rather than it being the story itself or the quality of the writing. So, here are some pointers and essential tips to think about when you enter competitions in the future:
- If you’re given a word limit – stick to it. If your entry is even one word over, it’ll be disqualified. Limits are imposed for a reason.
- If you’re sending your entry by post, make sure you send it off in plenty of time before the closing date. Some competitions will accept an entry that is postmarked with the closing date but check first.
- If there’s an entry fee to pay, pay it at the same time you enter the competition. If you forget and haven’t paid by the time the closing date comes round, your entry won’t be read.
- A lot of competitions still accept postal entries. If you send yours by post, firstly make sure your printer has plenty of ink in it before you print your entry. An entry which is difficult to read, has splodges of ink on, has been chewed by the dog, been used as a napkin while you eat etc will lead the judge to think that you don’t really care about your story. If you don’t, why should he?
- Make sure you read your competition piece through very carefully before you send it. A script full of mistakes won’t win. Sometimes it can be a very simple mistake e.g. changing a character’s name from Maud to Mildred half-way through, or opening a story in the present tense and then switching to the past towards the end. We’ve all done it at one time or another in our writing lives, so set your entry aside for a few days and then read it through with fresh eyes.
- If there are set rules, give them one last going over before you send your entry in. It’s so easy to miss something.