Blogs by John Howard Reid
7/8/2011 1:40:19 AM
Welcome to Tom Howard Contest News. These Newsletters keep you up to date with the Margaret Reid Prize for Traditional Verse, The Tom Howard Poetry Contest for Verse In All Styles and Genres, and the Tom Howard Short Story, Essay and Prose Contest.
At the moment, only the Tom Howard Poetry Contest remains open. See full details below. This contest will not close until September 30, 2011.
The Short Story Contest will re-open on July 15. Full details in our next Newsletter.
The Margaret Reid Contest will re-open on November 15, 2011. The winning and commended entries for the Contest just closed will be announced on December 15, 2011. Of course, cash winners will be contacted and receive their awards six weeks or so before this date, so please ensure that you let me know if you change your email address.
"What makes a poem (or a story) a potential prizewinning entry?" is easily the question I'm most frequently asked at writers' conferences. I've always maintained that opening and closing lines in a poem or story deserve the writer's closest attention. "Is it worth remembering?" is the engaging opening line in David J. Rothman's "Goodbye to Greenpoint" (number 4 in the anthology SAILING IN THE MIST OF TIME: Award-Winning Poems).
"Nandi sits alone, untended," Sally Odgers writes in "Spinning Pearls" (number 89 in the above anthology).
"It had been easy once," Noble Collins tells us in "Old Hawk" (number 57).
"The day you left, now so long ago," Mari Grana recalls in "Three Sonnets to a Love" (number 24).
A question often makes an effective opening line: "Did you hear the argument / I had with our Today?" Dee C. Konrad asks in "Trouble with Time" (number 51).
Eye-appealing descriptive openings also instantly engage a judge's attention. Take Mimi Moriarty's evocative opening to "Homemade Wine" (number 39): "In autumn when leaves / turn brown, reveal crushed / limbs, then drop like stones / stammering to the ground..."
Of course, as in the examples above, it is sometimes necessary to build your opening sentence over two or three lines. My translation of Jose Silva's "Night", for example, (number 55 in the anthology SAILING IN THE MIST OF TIME: Award-Winning Poems) commences "A night,/ a night full of murmurs and perfumes,/ of the music of wings".
That reminds me that I've yet to mention my new book: A Salute To Spanish Poetry: 100 Masterpieces from Spain & Latin America rendered into English verse
For copyright reasons, I should mention that our anthologies such as "Sailing in the Mist of Time" will NOT be available in Kindle or other electronic editions, but will continue to be sold in traditional print formats only.
This year, the prize pool for the Tom Howard Poetry Contest has been increased to $5,550 (including a First Prize of $3,000). Entry fees have not been raised.
To enter your poems in our current Tom Howard Poetry Contest, you will find full information at http://tomhowardpoetry.bravepages.com OR http://poetrycontests.exactpages.com. And, as said above, although the prize-money has been increased, entry fees do remain at $7 for every 25 lines (or part thereof). Prose poems will be accepted, of course, but due to the extra length of the lines, you should count each line in a prose poem as two lines for entry fee purposes.
Unlike almost all other poetry contests, we impose no limits on the number of lines or number of poems you may submit.
For full details, you can also visit the home page of http://www.winningwriters.com and click on the Tom Howard Poetry Contest at the top of the screen.
As implied above, you'll also find plenty of rousing titles and attention-getting poems in our previous anthologies of winning entries from the Tom Howard Contests such as the anthology from which I quoted above, SAILING IN THE MIST OF TIME: Award-Winning Poems in which (despite Amazon's qualification) no less than 108 (not 50!) award-winning and commended poems are gathered together in a large-format, 196-page book!
Other recommended anthologies are ACROSS THE LONG BRIDGE: An Anthology of Award-Winning Poetry (this is also available in a very attractive hardcover edition) which contains 133 winning and commended entries and TRAVELING: An Anthology of Award-Winning Poetry which contains 58 winners from the Tom Howard Contest, plus 10 additional poems.
Finally, I'd like to recommend my own book, Write Ways to WIN WRITING CONTESTS: How To Join the Winners' Circle for Prose and Poetry Awards, NEW EXPANDED EDITION. If you've been wasting your time and money sending out great stories and magnificent poems to Contests that immediately place them in the reject basket, here's an essential book to help you select the RIGHT CONTESTS to put you in the winners' circle.
For example, there are a number of prestigious Poetry Contests that NEVER award prizes to traditional rhyming verse, even though they imply in their rules that such forms are acceptable.
And yes, you can peruse and buy a Kindle edition by clicking this link: Write Ways to WIN WRITING CONTESTS
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