Way back in the 1980s, when I was a full time mum of a couple of very active toddlers ( now it's my grandchildren holding that spot), I considered learning the art of winning competitions. I'd met someone who was a professional at it, who spent all day long finding places to write to. In those bygone days, all entries had to be sent via the Post Office and took a lot of time. So, let's see what Cathy Bryant recommends in this digital age...
' I've been very lucky.
I've won nineteen writing competitions recently (it was fourteen when the book went to press), and been runner-up in countless others. I've just won $1000, a shirt and a certificate for a poem. I received £300 for a poem that took me a couple of hours to research and another couple of hours to write, and $250 for a single sentence of fiction. For a 100-word story, I was sent a cheque for £350 and a hamper of breakfast goodies. For a single sentence, I won a trip to Rome. Bundles and boxes of books and other prizes have weighed down my postwoman, and the publicity following one of my wins (that publicity including a radio interview to 700,000 people) sent sales of my first book soaring into profit.
Perhaps unsurprisingly I've been asked to judge some competitions and edit a few books too, which has taught me more about the best ways to submit and enter - and the worst.
Yet a few short years ago I won nothing. Not one solitary sizzling sausage.
Of course, my writing has developed over those years - I hope so, anyway! - but it hasn't changed that much. What has made the difference is strategy. Over the years I've learned all sorts of useful info - info that has turned my poems and stories into prizewinners. This book is all about that strategy and information - it contains everything that I wish I'd known years ago, when I used to dream of winning a writing competition, but was never placed.
It happened for me, and if you use all the information in this book then there's a good chance that it can happen for you too.'
How to Win Writing Competitions (and Make Money) does exactly what it says on the tin — multiple award-winning poet, short story writer, novelist and brains behind the popular Comps and Calls website Cathy Bryant explains the techniques and tricks that can be used to build-up a collection of writing awards. And aside from the actual rewards you get, including cash, winning competitions can lead to significant career opportunities. 130 page paperback. ISBN: 978-0-9565819-5-2
'How to Win Writing Competitions (and make money)' is available on Amazon, Ebay, or direct from the publisher here: http://www.puppywolf.co.uk/Puppywolf/Welcome.html
Fantastic advice there, Cathy. Best wishes for your writing future, though it sounds like you've got a big plan for that!