Sunday, July 12, 2009

This morning I discovered

This morning I discovered that I use the word "perhaps" far too much in my writing. So I deleted all of them.

This morning I discovered that I could write the ending to a story whose middle I didn't know, and then the ending became another story, something that wasn't and now is.

This morning I discovered that the middle of a story whose beginning and end I have only needed to be one line, and it tied them up and there it was, done.

This morning was a good morning. Last night I said "First thing, I'm going to take my coffee and my laptop and go into my study", and this morning I did that, for the first time, straight down into the cellar. Now I can go back up again, a good morning.

Writers' service announcement:

I found this great blog, Mira's List, where Mira lists Grants, Fellowships and Residencies for Artists, Writers and Musicians, updated very regularly. What a gem! (Am rather intrigued by the 6-month residency in France that she just posted: "Short story projects are preferred but not essential." How often do you read that, gentle reader?!)

Also - Upcoming Deadlines - always good to get entries in early:
(Inspired by Teresa, I have added a list to the right of the places I have submitted to that I am waiting to hear back from. Makes me feel busy.)

Aug 1st: Bellevue Literary review competition, 5000 words, writing related to themes of health, healing, illness, the mind, and the body. Prizes: $1000 Goldenberg Prize for Fiction, $1000 Carter V. Cooper Memorial Prize for Nonfiction $1000 Marica and Jan Vilcek Prize for Poetry. Postal and online entry. Fee $15, for extra $5 you receive subscription to their excellent magazine. Open to international entrants.

Aug 7th: Manchester Fiction Prize, 5000 word short story, unpublished and not entered for any other competition. First prize £10,000. Postal and online entry. Fee £15, payable online. Open to international entrants.

Aug 1st-31st: Norton Hint Fiction, 25 word stories. I wrote about this here.

Aug 15th: Flatman Crooked competition, Judged by the wondrous Aimee Bender, 7000 word short story. 1st place receives $1000.00 and publication in the final anthology of ‘08/’09 season. Top 10 finalists will also be published in the final anthology and get special recognition on the website. Fee $15, payable online. Open to international entrants.

Aug 31st: Juked Fiction and Poetry Prizes. Any length short story; up to 5 poems, ten pages in total! First prize for each genre: $500 and publication in our upcoming print issue, Juked #7. Fee $15, payable online. Postal or online entry. Open to international entrants.

Sep 30th: PANK magazine 1,001 Awesome words. One of my favourite lit mags is holding its first contest. Any form or formlessness, 1,001 words or less. 1st Place: $750* and publication in PANK 4.
2nd Place: $500* and publication in PANK 4. 3rd Place: $250* and publication in PANK 4. Fee $15 for one entry, $25 for two, every entrant gets a copy of PANK #4, payable online. All entries will be considered for publication in PANK. Online entry. Open to international entrants.

What are you waiting for??


Niki M said...

Wow what a great morning. I also use the words perhaps and maybe way too much, giving lots of alternatives for my characters motivations sometimes (another word I overuse, along with 'felt' 'laughed' 'grinned' and 'winked'. At least I'm getting aware of these little foibles. Thanks for all the links and deadlines. :D

Tania Hershman said...

Hi Niki, it's funny, isn't it, how we don't know we're doing it til after. I had some thought that the overuse of "perhaps" was interesting, stylistically, as I was doing it - and now it is clear that it just dilutes the writing! Ah, "felt", that's a killer. Always putting lines through that in my students' work. But I've never had an overload of winking - I like the sound of your writing ;)

swiss said...

wow! that's a cool site. and france would be cool. would my job let me go? i think not!

7000 words. that's a big short story!

Sarah Salway said...

Thanks so much for this, as always. Brilliant resources and so much to think about .... hmmmm... notice which two words I used so much?!!!!

Tania Hershman said...

Swiss, you should definitely go to France. And yes, 7000 is about 6500 too long for my liking.

Sarah - looking forward to that blog post on which two words you use too much!