Both The Margaret Reid Poetry Prize for Traditional Verse and the Tom Howard Poetry Contest for Verse in All Styles and Genres, plus The Tom Howard Short Story, Essay & Prose Contest are now open for entries. For this coming year, the prize pool for each of these contests has been increased to $5,350 (including a First Prize of $2,000), yet entry fees remain pegged at $7 for every 25 lines for the Poetry Contests, and $15 for each short story or essay up to 5,000 words in length.
You'll find full details at respectively http://poetrycontests.exactpages.com and http://shortstorycontest.0catch.com Alternative sites are http://www.geocities.com/rastar330 (for traditional poetry), http://www.geocities.com/rastar330/poetry.htm (for poetry in all styles and genres) and http://www.geocities.com/rastar330/prose.htm
As time is running out for the Prose Contest (it closes on March 31), in this Newsletter I will concentrate on this Contest exclusively, other than to say that judging for the 2008 Tom Howard Poetry Contest is now proceeding smoothly and results will be announced on February 15, 2009, as anticipated.
Just a reminder that all subjects and genres are welcome: comic and humorous stories and essays, mystery, science fiction, romance and other genres. Even newspaper and magazine articles and interviews. And even one-act plays. The only restriction is that entries must not exceed 5,000 words. However, one ingenious competitor got around this rule by breaking his 8,000 word short story into TWO parts. There's nothing in the rules to prevent you doing this, but you will need to remember that each part will be judged separately and will need to stand on its own.
Needless to say, the judges are human beings, not robots. We all have our likes and dislikes so it's a good idea to take a look at some of the entries that have won prizes in previous contests.
"Watching Time", our latest anthology of winning prose, has once again almost completely sold out (unless you want to pay ridiculous prices of $75 or more. And would you believe some keen collector just paid $89 for a copy!). The good news is that the wholesaler managed to find a few copies and that Amazon has grabbed them. So once again Amazon (and Amazon alone) has this book on sale for only $12.95. Please click this link:
WATCHING TIME: Anthology of Prizewinning Essays & Short Stories
Another piece of good news concerns the reprinting of "Mr Christian and the Bag Lady", an earlier collection of Tom Howard Prose winners. This particular anthology has been out of print for years. But here it is, now on sale for the first time at Amazon:
Mr Christian and the Bag Lady: An Anthology of Prize-Winning Stories
Finally, and also at Amazon, is a new, expanded edition of my "Write Ways to WIN WRITING CONTESTS". The book has been completely revised, re-written and re-set. Despite all this, and an additional 20 pages of helpful text, the price has been lowered to only $12.50!
Write Ways to WIN WRITING CONTESTS: How To Join the Winners' Circle for Prose and Poetry Awards, NEW EXPANDED EDITION
A happy and prosperous New Year to you all!