Many people win writing awards and gain a big cash income year after year. How do they do it They understand what judges of writing competitions look for.
All writing competitions if relatively judged may have strict criteria for assessing entries. Some competitions publish their criteria some do not. But if they dont how do you recognize what judges are on the lookout for
Here are the three most important items that contest judges generally look for in the outset.
Keep in mind- all judges are subjective as are literary agents and publishers readers. A story that wafts one judge into a rhapsody of incoherent joy will leave one more unmoved. That is why a respectable contest will have a points method in place.
A method is necessary – not a lot in detecting an outright winner the quality of an outstanding entry typically speaks for itself but in making fine judgements between say the winner of a 3rd prize along with a runner-up prize. Contest It also minimizes the threat of judges disgreeing.
Right here is often a common points system.
A perfect story may possibly possess a total weighting of 30 points. The leading 3 prize winners often score inside the variety of 25-30 points whilst the ten shortlisted winners ordinarily fall into the 20-25 points bracket.
Genuine there exists nonetheless room for individual judgement. Every single judge will award slightly different – from time to time pretty distinct – points in each category. That is why a story that flops in 1 contest may properly go on to win very first prize in an additional. Its also why if you believe your story is beneficial it is best to preserve on submitting – and bettering it
one. How properly does the story reflect the theme genre or author needs from the contest
Not all competitions are themed. If the organizers ask merely for quick fiction of any variety whatsoever this category of evaluation is inapplicable. But beware of a competitors that has no stipulations. Possibly it lacks discrimination in other respects also – Typically the rules for theme genre andor author and so on are obviously stated.
It goes with no saying that you simply should not submit for example an emphatically Christmas story under a summer vacation theme or even a poem playscript or detective mystery to a childrens fiction contest – or perhaps a story to a competition intended to acknowledge Afro-Caribbean writers in the event you cannot by any stretch on the imagination qualify as an Afro-Caribbean.
If it goes devoid of saying why say it Because as a lot of contest organisers will tell you- men and women dont generally study the guidelines. Numerous entries are excluded from writing competitions mainly because they ignored the recommendations.
Total attainable points- 10
2. Does the story engage the reader emotionally all through
Quite a few stories are impressively clever. They dance with ingenuity wit or wordplay. However they usually do not impress the judges. They are intellectual exercises.
The characters in such stories are cardboard or the themes trivial or the narrative tenuous. By the finish the reader no longer cares how the tale will turn out. It will take huge craft skill to produce the reader care about characters and incidents which are wholly imaginary.
Total doable points- 10
three. May be the story authentic in its idea
By all usually means take a familiar plot or theme. There have been just several dozen of them created since the dawn of humanity so you happen to be unlikely to invent a new a single. But do one thing new with them
The jilted lover who plans a cruel revenge on hisher faithless spouse goes right back towards the tale of Medea. But I hear you inquire certainly we could do a twist We may have the jilted lover hide hisher murder victim in a garage freezer – only for the new lover aghast to stumble upon it. Couldnt we Nope. Thats just a re-run of Bluebeards cupboard.
Of course there is absolutely nothing wrong with reprising the theme of Bluebeards cupboard provided you disguise it having a extremely authentic twist
Total doable points- ten
Those are just the best 3 criteria that judges will use. Generally theyve quite a few far more. A additional complicated scheme of criteria may possibly comprise 100 points or extra and search at several other factors.
But if your writing is very good – and also you get just the very first 3 factors ideal each time – you happen to be nicely in your way to winning a 5 figure spare-time earnings from writing awards year just after year. It is a win-win profit scheme Contest

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