I have been publishing this news somewhat irregularly in the past, but I now intend to standardize on the 1st and 15th of each month. Contributions from readers, such as letters and comments, personal experiences and even gripes, are most welcome. There is, alas no monetary payment, and I do not guarantee to publish all submissions, although each one will be carefully considered.
Both The Margaret Reid Poetry Prize for Traditional Verse and the Tom Howard Poetry Contest for Verse in All Styles and Genres are currently open for entries. This 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. There is no line limit, nor is there any limit to the actual number of entries you may submit. Published poems and poetry that has won prizes in other contests are eligible, as well as original, unpublished verse. However, if you win a prize, you must be able to give Winning Writers permissioin to publish your winning entry on their website.
The $5,350 Tom Howard Short Story, Essay and Prose Contest for 2009 will close on March 31. The prize-money and all other aspects are exactly the same as the poetry contests with just two exceptions. The entry fee is $15 and there is a limit of 5,000 words for each entry. A few contestants have got around this restriction by cutting a longer story into two or three segments. This, of course, is permissible, but bear in mind that each section should be capable of standing alone.
So all three of our 2009 Contests are currently open. 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
All subjects and genres are welcome in all our Contests. But the judges are human beings, not robots, so it's advisable to take a look at some of our previous prize-winning entries:
"Watching Time", our latest anthology of winning prose, has for the third time almost completely sold out. The good news is that the wholesaler managed to find a few copies and that Amazon has purchased 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
For poetry, it would be difficult to go past SAILING IN THE MIST OF TIME. This book is currently "on special" at many bookstores, including Amazon, for only $9.95, which is marvelous value for a large-format, 194-page book containing 106 prize-winning and commended entries from previous Margaret Reid and Tom Howard Poetry Contests. Just click the above link for Amazon.
Here is a letter from Glenn Wasson:
As a postscript to Ronda Bird's writing experience, let me share one of my own. I thought this experience might be encouraging to authors who sometimes give up too soon. As our pedantic scholars are prone to cite, "degustibus non est disputandum." There's no accounting for taste, and one editor's sour reaction to a work may be savory to another.
I may be the only writer in the world to have submitted an article to the Reader's Digest on three separate occasions over a period of several years--always receiving a prompt rejection--and then having the editors of the Digest at a later date request my permission to publish the story.
After the first rejection it was accepted and published in The Christian Science Monitor. Some time later the story was republished in a CSM anthology that included items written by Pulitzer Prize authors. Shortly thereafter, it was "discovered" by the Reader's
Digest and republished with my permission in the May 1990 issue on page 47 under the title, "Wing And A Prayer."
The original version of this story appears in the anthology of my previously published works entitled,"Tales Mark Twain Would Have Loved To Steal." Should anyone be intrested in the book it can be acquired by contacting me at this E-Mail address: GandJWasson.WebTv.net
Finally, a new, expanded edition of my "Write Ways to WIN WRITING CONTESTS" has just been published. 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