Francesca’s final look at competition rules and why it’s important to follow them

 

This is my third month of looking at competition rules. Click Part 1 and Part 2 to find the previous posts.

For those of us who submit short stories, articles and novels to magazines and publishers, we’re used to putting our details on the document. If a competition asks for the document to be anonymous, and they usually do, make sure you’ve not overlooked the headers and footers. This would incur an instant disqualification. Sometimes separate cover sheets are requested, or your details will go on an online form or on your email.

If a competition has a theme, stick to it. That may sound obvious, but having judged competitions myself,  you’d be surprised how often the theme is ignored. Or it’s so subtle the judge doesn’t realise. Like the time I judged a competition with the theme of ‘Ten’. One story I read was about a football team who lost a player because they were subject to a red card. You might already get it – I didn’t until I told my husband and he pointed out they’d only have ten players left! Yes, too subtle for me, I’m afraid.

The best way I’ve found of making sure I follow all the rules of a competition, is to print them up. I read them several times then underline them if they’re all in one paragraph. As I’m polishing my entry, I go through and tick each off as I’ve achieved it. That way I can be sure I’ve done all I can to prevent my entry being at a disadvantage.

Good luck everyone, and let us know of any competition success

 

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Rolling Competitions:

 Flash 500

Theme: Open

Prize: £300 / £200 / £100

Closing date: Next closing date 30 June 2018

Entry: £5

Details

 

100 Word Mini-Tales Competition

Theme: Open

Prize: £75 / £25

Closing date: Each round closes when 100 entries have been received

Entry: £3 / £5.50 for 2 / £8 for 3

Details

 

June Competitions:

Segora Short Story Competition

Theme: Open.  1,500 – 3,000 words

Prize: £300 / £50 / £30

Closing date: 15 June 2018

Entry: £7

Details

 

Segora Vignette Competition

Theme: Open. 300 words max

Prize: £100

Closing date: 15 June 2018

Entry: £5

Details

 

Segora One-Act Play Competition

Theme: Open. Running time 35 minutes max

Prize: £100

Closing date: 15 June 2018

Entry: £12

Details

 

Impress Prize

Theme: For unpublished authors. 6,000 word sample of manuscript

Prize: Publishing contract plus £500 advance

Closing date: 28 June 2018

Entry: £25

Details

 

Henshaw Short Story Competition

Theme: Open. 2,000 words max

Prize: £100 / £50 / £25

Closing date: 30 June 2018

Entry: £5

Details

 

Wells Festival of Literature Short Story Competition

Theme: Open. 1,000 – 2,000 words

Prize: £750 / £300 / £200

Closing date: 30 June 2018

Entry: £6

Details

 

Wells Festival of Literature Book for Children Competition

Theme: For children 8+ or Young Adult

Prize: £750 / £300 / £200

Closing date: 30 June 2018

Entry: £6

Details

 

The Moth Short Story Prize

Theme: Open. 5,000 words max

Prize: €3,000 / Week long retreat in France plus €250 travel expenses / €1,000

Closing date: 30 June 2018

Entry: €12

Details

 

British Fantasy Society Short Story Competition

Theme: Any kind of fantastical story

Prize: £100 / £50 / £20. Membership of BFS for 1st and 2nd prize

Closing date: 30 June 2018

Entry: £5

Details

 

North Street Book Prize (for self-published books)

Theme: Mainstream / Literary / Genre Fic plus others. Published any year. 150,000 word limit.

Prize: $3,000 plus marketing and consultation for grand prize / Top winner in each category $1,000 plus marketing and consultation / Runner up in each category $250

Closing date: 30 June 2018

Entry: $60 per book

Details

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Francesca Capaldi Burgess has been placed or shortlisted in a number of competitions including Winchester Writers’ Conference, Twyford Writers, Chorley & District Writer’s Circle, Retreat West, Cordelia.net, Meridian Writing, Flash a Famous Phrase, Wells Festival and Writing Magazine. She’s had stories and a serial published in magazines worldwide and in three anthologies, including Diamonds and Pearls and 100 Stories for Haiti  plus a few articles. She is a member of the RNA New Writers’ Scheme and the Society for Women Writers and Journalists. Francesca runs a writing blog along with RNA member Elaine Roberts called Write Minds.

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