Thursday, 14 January 2021

All quiet?

This seems to be a very quiet time in terms of responses from magazine editors and other writing news. Probably it always is, but it feels even more so this year. It's a quiet time in the garden too, but I do have some colour to cheer me up. I'm sharing it in the hope it does the same for you.

Womag News

I've had a couple of acceptances from The People's Friend. The stories were submitted in October, but I have others which have been out quite a look longer. I'm guessing they just fitted a particular issue either in terms of length or subject, so jumped the queue a little. That often happens with longer length stories, as fewer of these get submitted and they're always in demand.

Free entry writing competition news

Thanks to Alyson Hilbourne for passing on the link to this competition.  You're asked for up to 500 words on the theme of magic, the best of which will be included in an anthology. Authors of selected work will receive a print copy of the book. 

Another one from Alyson is this short story competition offering £500 in prize money (or the equivalent in your own currency). Anyone over 16 may enter a story of up to 1,000 words describing an imaginary book banquet.

Alyson also gave me the link to this competition from Harper's Bazaar. They're offering a two night stay in a hotel for the best story of up to 2,200 words on the theme of threads. That sound OK until you read the small print. As Alyson points out, you give up worldwide rights in all formats, just by entering. I think it's rather unfair to take rights from the winner, but to do so with all rights is simply appalling.

I received this email from a competition organiser –The Writing Contest, which you posted about on your site, has just wrapped up. It was a huge success, with a total of 3,847 submissions!

We were really impressed by the fantastic work carried out by all the authors and we hope you'll share the post with your audience. We think there's a lot to learn from these expertly crafted blurbs. We've announced the winner and runners up and posted the top 10 blurbs here.

Knowing how many entries there were makes me feel a lot better about not reaching the top ten with my hastily cobbled together attempt. Do you read the winning entries from past competitions? And if so, do you find it useful?

Here's a poetry competition with a $3,500 prize. And here's another – the prize is lower, but I'm pretty certain your odds of winning are far higher.

My News

Some of my short story collections have been reduced to 99p / 99c, and others will be going on sale during the next few weeks. You can find the offers, and all my other books here.


Nicola Martin said...

Congratulations on your short story acceptances, Patsy. Longer length stories do seem to be more in demand. I'm practicing my zen and getting to grips with waiting, especially since most of my submitted stories are on the shorter end. ;)

I do find it strange that competitions would bother with such a rights grab like the one you describe. I can't imagine they're planning on exploiting the rights, so what on earth is the point of taking them? It just breeds ill will.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Congratulations on the acceptances. I imagine the holidays slowed down a lot of places.

Natalie Aguirre said...

Congrats on your articles being accepted. Publishing is always slow and may be slower with the pandemic and holidays.

Kate Blackadder said...

Thanks for all the info, Patsy. I do read the winning entries for comps I've entered - and for comps I haven't but attain to enter like the Costa or the Sunday Times Short Story ...

Fay Knowles said...

Thanks for the info Patsy. And congratulations on your latest successes!

New girl on the block said...

I love those winter flowers - they lift the spirits and make our thoughts turn to spring.

Like you and Nicola I can't understand how a competition can claim all rights for all entries, winners or not. Did somebody say that the same goes for Prima competitions? I'd like to know if that's the case, so that I can avoid them if so.

Another quick question about a previous post - did somebody say there's a new fiction editor at Woman's Weekly.


Marguerite said...

Thank you for all those, Patsy - magic looks good :) Also liked the flowers :)I thought I had seen mention of Harper's Bazaar NOT behaving like its sister magazines - obviously they have slipped back :( Yes, had been looking out for the blurb competition and it finally came, like you - 3847! so wasn't too upset ;)

Charlie said...

Congratulations on your acceptances Patsy and for all the info - it’s very quiet out there must have 20 stories submitted to various magazines and nothing coming back - either way! I just got to be patient and keep writing I guess.

ados123 said...

Incase anyone is looking this is the link the book banquet comp:

Congrats on your short story successes, Patsy. I've also sold a couple to TPF but nothing to anyone else!

Patsy said...

@ Nicola – That's one of my gripes with all these all rights terms / contracts. The companies concerned don't need to take all our rights, and in the case of the competitions won't actually use any rights at all except for those of the winning story. They impose these conditions as it's simpler for them and don't care that it's not fair to the writer.

(Ha! You've set me off again!)

@ Alex – That won't have helped.

@ Natalie – You're right. And more writers competing for fewer fiction slots is another factor.

@ Kate – I hope that pays off and you win one of the biggies!

@ Fay – thank you!

@ New Girl – Yes, Prima take all rights on all entries, whether they're published or not.

And yes, there's a new fiction editor at Woman's Weekly. Andrew Shaw. I've contacted him to ask if he'll share his requirements so I can post them here, but haven't yet had a reply. I'll pass on anything I do learn.

@ Marguerite – I too thought they'd dropped this unfair rule for a previous competition, but it's back again now.

@ Charlie – That's pretty much all we can do.

@ Alyson – Ooops re the link. I've put the right one in now – thanks for pointing it out.

Anonymous said...

Well done on your acceptances, Patsy. Been very quiet here except for two sales to TPF and two to My Weekly, in the past few months for which I am grateful. Doing far more reading than writing, I'm afraid! Good wishes Kate Hogan.

Patsy said...

@ Kate – Reading is important!