June Rodriguez
SUNNY:
Sarah how did the rewrites go on your contest entry?

SARAH:
Good. I just fixed the 4 words I forgot and the two words I needed to combine. After that, I listened to all of you and left it alone! It was a hard to do, but I survived. LOL I have no fingernails left, but the final entry went in Thursday.

JUNE:
When did you say you would hear back about the final results? What did you do to check out the judge?

SARAH:
The top 5 scoring entrants for each category are sent to an editor at Avon. She will select the Grand Prize winner. The final results will be announced in early October. LOL Yes, I admit it. I cyber-researched the editor. My hubby would call it "stalking", but I'm going with calling it "research"! She judges a lot of contests and of the few I saw listed, she doesn't seem to request a lot of MS from contests. That was good to know. I think it helped take some pressure off of me. LOL No need for extra gray hair- my kids give me enough! But I'm very interested in what advice and comments she'll give.


JACKIE:
Good for you Sarah! You will have a knockout story, of that I have no doubt.
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JUNE:
Dori did you get your short story into the Dead Bird contest for Sisters in Crime? When do you find out the results? Can you send your story into more than one contest at a time?

DORI:
I turned it in at August's meeting, which was the deadline for entries. The theme was Death Dines Out. Results will be announced at the October meeting on the 3rd, so not long to wait. I'm not holding my breath though, as this was my first attempt. Even if it doesn't do well, it's a good story so I entered it into two other contests, Writer's Digest Popular Fiction Contest and Narrative Magazine's short story contest. The requirements for submission to those two contests, like others, is that it hasn't been published and hasn't yet won a contest "at the time of submission." By submitting now I avoid the problem of winning with the short story, then not being able to submit it after. That's what happened with my short story One Less Victim. I wrote it for the Writer's Digest Annual Writing Competition (results out in October), but also submitted a shorter version of the story to SEAK's 2009 National Fiction Writing Competition for Lawyers where it took first place, with a nice $1,000 check. However, now I can't submit it to most competitions as it has already placed. Although it's still a go for Writer's Digest since it hadn't been a winner at the time of submission. Now, the next step is to seek publication, since with the SEAK contest I retained publishing rights. I have submitted that story to Narrative Magazine for consideration. In addition, I was asked by the Connecticut Bar Association for rights to publish in their annual report, which was cool.

SUNNY:
Dori, you also have a shot at the Baby Bird. That's for anyone who has entered for the first time. Doesn't exclude you from placing higher, but gives you a second shot at taking home a trophy.

It never matters if it's your first attempt at a story or your 23rd. The playing field always starts out level in any contest you enter.

SARAH:
Wowza, Dori! What a buffet of contests! And then to have the CBA ask for your story in their report, heck, that's worth an instant trip to the dessert bar! LOL Have you ever thought of submitting your Death Dines Outs entry to an e-pub that takes short stories? I think with the romantic element in your story, you could try a romance e-pub.

JUNE:
I agree with Sarah. We will look for other sites for you to enter. It is a great story and the more diverse you are with your entries the more chances you have of multiple wins. A great way to build up your platform.
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SUNNY:
I didn't do much writing this week, or anything else. Instead, Dori and I decided to sit in on the Dave Hawk murder trial.

JUNE:
You guys really sat in on the "HAWK TRIAL" so what can you do with the info from that?

SUNNY:
Dori, being a lawyer, had a different take on the proceedings. I went for "color." My notebook is filled with observations: first impressions of the jury, local attorneys vs. hired guns, how the courtroom artist made witnesses look ghastly. Thank goodness she'll never draw me! The financial stuff was BORING, but hearing Dave's girlfriend and children on the stand was worth getting up early. You know I'm going to fictionalize the heck out of this and do my own take in a future mystery!

DORI:
Being in the courtroom as an attorney is very different than being an observer. Gave me a chance to see things in a different light. I too have pages of notes, with a focus on dialog, reactions, mannerisms, and the court atmosphere. What I wouldn't give though to be in the jury room as they deliberate. The evidence in this case is highly circumstantial with high emotions running in the courtroom. The jury has been charged with a difficult task in this case.

Sitting in the courtroom has already generated a short story idea I'm already pounding away at. Can't wait to bring it to the group.

SARAH:
I was called for Jury Duty and wound up being pulled as a potential juror for that case. I would have loved to sit on the jury or been in the courtroom to watch the events unfold. Unfortunately, I have too many obligations at home to stand on such a time consuming trial. I'm glad you gals can give us the 4-1-1! I can't wait to see what you ladies come up with.

JUNE:
Your first hand information could be a valuable idea spark for me as well. Sex and romance is always at the bottom of everything that we do.



How have you handled rewrites for contests?
Have you been part of a perfect research moment?
Join us at our table again next Monday to see what we have been writing about.
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2 Responses
  1. Hello Gals,

    Just stopping by to see what you've been up to. I think its fantastic that you have found a "niche"...seems like a great group that strives to help one another. Kudos to all of you that have achieved some of your goals with your contest winnings. I wish you all success in the next go-rounds :)
    Ginny


  2. Thanks Ginny. Everyone should have a group like ours. Writing is hard work, and even harder when you go it alone.


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