Positive exposure or professional suicide?

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Re: Positive exposure or professional suicide?

Post by Watcher55 » June 4th, 2011, 5:58 pm

polymath wrote:L. Ron Hubbard's Writers and Illustrators of the Future contest is the top of the market in Science Fiction and Fantasy and Dark fantasy entrées. And highly competitive. Word has it they receive about 2,500 narrative entries per quarter year. It's an international venue for unpublished writers and illustrators to test their mettle against the best up and coming unpublished fantastic fiction writers and illustrators. Winning, placing, or showing in the contest is the best positive exposure a fantastic fiction writer or illustrator can get, bar none.

Three writer winners per quarter, first place $1,000, second place $750, third place $500. The four first place quarterly winners are then eligible for the $5,000 grand annual prize. All are published in an annual mass market paperback anthology. There's a week long intensive writing workshop and an awards ceremony for the quarterly winners, where the annual grand prize winner is announced. Travel and lodging expenses paid by the nonprofit contest administrator, Author Services, for winners. Galaxy Press is the parent publisher of Author Services, both wholy owned by the Church of Scientology. Above board contest and no proselytizing for contest entrants or winners that I've heard about, though the Church has come up against a few hiccups in the past.

Contest rules, Submission guidelines;

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Thanks for the tip. I do want to enter contests; I just haven't started looking for them yet, but this has to be one of the best. No entry fee. No extra flim flam about publication rights and contracts. This is a definite target. I wonder if anyone knows of some kind of contest database.

I'm also considering Analog, Asimov's Science Fiction and Fantasy and Science Fiction.

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Re: Positive exposure or professional suicide?

Post by polymath » June 4th, 2011, 6:10 pm

I don't know of any comprehensive contest database. Though Doutrope tracks reputable digests which also from time to time have contests. 3,400-plus digest listings, which gives a pretty accurate metric of the short work marketplace. They don't include too many literary journals, of which there are probably as many.


Ralan.com currently lists 22 contests, also a recommended digest index site.

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Adam Heine
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Re: Positive exposure or professional suicide?

Post by Adam Heine » June 5th, 2011, 2:13 am

I did this exact thing. I wrote a short story set in the same world as my work-in-progress, got it published, and mentioned in the bio there about the connection. Now, it's entirely possible that my current lack of an agent is due to that short story being up there, but based on the feedback I've gotten (both on the story and the novel), I doubt it.

The way I see it, getting anything published is a good thing, and you should do it--especially if we're talking about pro-rate markets (which you are). There's no guarantee the story or the novel will get published, so you might as well try with both and not worry about one affecting the other.

If the story gets published, it's a great credit for your query. I think most agents are smart enough to know that the novel you're querying them with today is better than the story that was published a year ago, or at least they'll be willing to give it that chance by reading the sample pages for themselves. And, like polymath has said, a professional short story credit is good exposure for you, the author.

I say go for it. The thing you're afraid of requires getting published AND an agent reading the short story AND the agent hating the story so much they pay no attention to your query. The likelihood of all that is, in my opinion, so small as to be negligible.

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Re: Positive exposure or professional suicide?

Post by ClaudeNougat » June 5th, 2011, 11:26 am

Positive exposure as long as the stuff posted out there is good...if not, professional suicide!

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