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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Writing Contests & Competitions! Winter to Spring 2011



Last year I participated in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Competition or simply ABNA. There are two fiction categories: adult fiction and YA, and the prize is a pub contract, including a $15,000 advance from Penguin—not too shabby! The panelists for the young adult fiction contest are Gayle Forman, journalist and author of the New York Times bestseller If I Stay, literary agent Julie Just of Janklow & Nesbit and Jennifer Besser, Vice President and Publisher, G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers.

It’s a great chance to have lots of readers read and review an excerpt of your work. In fact, it’s also super-fun to download your fellow competitors’ excerpts and review them. You’d think it would get very competitive, but not so much. It becomes more of a great big writing community where everyone is egging each other on. And there are constant threads with lively chatter. Think Nano with a prize. The competition launches on January 24th. Here’s the link: http://www.amazon.com/Breakthrough-Novel-Award-Books/b?ie=UTF8&node=332264011

Another contest already ramping up is “Dear Lucky Agent”, sponsored by Writers Digest. The top three winners get the first 10 pages of their mss read by agent Lindsay Clemons of the Larsen-Pomada Literary Agency in San Francisco. This contest is up and running from January 9th through the 23. They are looking for any literary fiction (no genre fiction). Here are the details on the Guide to Literary Agent blog: http://www.guidetoliteraryagents.com/blog/8th+Dear+Lucky+Agent+Contest+Literary+Fiction.aspx

Have you heard of other good contests for authors of middle-grade and YA fiction? Share them here! What about great winter or spring writing retreats? I’ve attended the SCBWI winter conference in NYC for years. (There’s also a summer one in LA. Lots of fun, with good swimming pools and spas during downtime!) Tell us which retreats take the snowy chill off of you and inspire you to write.

12 comments:

  1. These are great to know about. Annually the "Children's Writer- newsletter of writing and publishing trends" has a contest and this year's is to write a 150 word kindergarten story. due Feb 28, 2011. go to ChildrensWriter.com. For $12 a year, excellent market news and articles as well as contest announcements. Thanks Catherine, for being ahead of the game again! Sheila

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  2. I just signed up for a week long retreat at the Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison's Write on the Lake. I've heard UW-Madison has great programs all around (I'm driving up from IL). Thanks for the tip about the contests!

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  3. Wow, both of these tips sound great!

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  4. I just signed up for my local SCBWI Retreat. It's not until April though. I wish I could go to the NYC conference, but with a little one at home, it's difficult. Thanks for the info on the upcoming contests!

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  5. I wanted to enter the Amazon contest, but my manuscript isn't ready yet. Maybe next time. Good luck.

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  6. The Amazon contest sounds fun and like an awesome networking opportunity. I'm popping over to check it out. Thanks!

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  7. Terrific post I really appreciate the fact that you tell people about these competitions. And Love that the writing community is so helpful! Thanks again!

    <3's and fangs,
    Liz ^_^
    www.vampyrekisses.com

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  8. Oooh! here's another writing contest sponsored by indie punkin house press that a fellow writer, Lauren Hammond, posted on her blog:
    http://laurenhammondnovelist.blogspot.com/2011/01/win-publishing-contract.html
    also check out:
    http:www.punkinhouse.comNovice_Novelist_Contest.htm

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  9. Thanks for the list! I entered ABNA last year...contemplating doing again this year if I can psyche myself up for the stress :)

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  10. Thanks a million for the "Lucky Agent" link! I'm definitely gonna do this one. There's also the James Jones First Novel Fellowship, grand prize 10 K. I know two people who've won this. Deadline is March 1.
    http://www.wilkes.edu/pages/1159.asp

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  11. Thanks, all, for the great tips and links to other contests!

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  12. Thanks for the great post Catherine, I had no idea who the judges on ABNA were until I read this!

    I'll come back and update if I find any competitions not mentioned here :)

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