Thursday, 10 June 2010

Short tips on entering writing competitions

I've just sent out a newsletter for the Flash 500 Competition, but for anyone not on the subscribers list, I thought I'd repeat the information here.

Time is marching on ...

... but there are still three weeks left to get your entry in for this quarter's competition, so if you haven't yet written your prize-winning tale, there's still time to get going. However, before you start writing, or rush to hit the send button if you've already completed your story, here are some hints on how to make the judge sit up and take notice for all the right reasons.

A few tips ...

• Start with a strong opening. Introduce a complicated or interesting situation in the first few paragraphs of your story.

• Make your characters real and read your dialogue aloud until it sounds believable.

• Originality is key. Even if you are using a well-worn theme, a unique spin on it makes it entirely your own.

• The resolution of your story should come as a natural result of the characters’ actions. Make sure the ending doesn’t leave any unintentional loose ends.

• Proofread. Then proofread again. And again. Then just once more for luck.

• Follow the rules. Shouldn’t need to be said, but you’d be amazed at how many entries are disqualified in competitions because people didn’t think the rules applied to them.

Above all, have fun with your writing. If you enjoyed writing your story, the chances are high that the judge will enjoy reading it.

Good luck and if you want to find out more about this competition, follow this link: Flash 500 Competition.