Nope, Wasn’t Close



As I posted before, I received the email informing I didn’t win Writers of the Future the week before they announced the semifinalist. I assumed that because I received the rejection so close to the announcement that I was higher in the running. Soon after announcing the semifinalists, other rankings are posted on the website’s blog. So I waited to see if I qualified for honorable mentions, silver honorable mentions, etc. When the rankings were released, I was a little disappointed to see that I hadn’t even placed.

Being the insane stubborn person I am, I will continuously submit until I win or I break the qualifying criteria. The deadline is September 30th and I am about 10k words into a story that I need to finish then edit the unholy bajeezus out of. I will be focusing on that pretty damn heavily.

What sucks more is that I am curious about why I didn’t even rank, not knowing why is a sticky tedious monster I will have to trudge through. I have received a lot of positive feedback from beta readers, which I know doesn’t necessarily mean something, but some of the feedback was from other writers. So I had assumed it carried some weight. I am learning as I go so I very well could just not know what the hell I’m doing, probably a high possibility. I am curious about the judges critique system, what do they judge by?

I thought I had done a fair amount of research on the contest, but apparently the judges are looking for something more along the lines of action-adventure. The story I submitted wasn’t, it was a coming of age story. The story I am writing is, well it is a revolution of sorts but action adventure.

So one of the finalists is a guy who blogs here on WordPress. I’ve poked around on his blog a bit and he seems like a nice enough guy. He has written about being a finalist and some interesting tidbits surrounding the contest. You can find his blog here, his name is Rahul Kanakia. I threatened him to a knife fight if his story was the one that bumped me out of the running, luckily now I know  that wasn’t the case. I can rest easy knowing I wont be stabbed to death……… over this…… maybe.

An interesting thing I read on his blog the other day was about having to write one million words of crap before starting to write anything of quality. This is an interesting concept, I hadn’t ever heard it until I read it on his blog. If that is the case, I have another 250k words – roughly to go before I am officially a budding beginning writer.

Any who, time to go walk with my future wife and take a shower. Lots to do and little time to do it.

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11 thoughts on “Nope, Wasn’t Close

  1. Hey, at least you live to write another day, right? Yeah, that not knowing is what’s so frustrating. Same thing with querying agents. Unless someone is kind enough to share the why with you, you’re left wondering if it’s something you did or said, or if you smell bad. I’ve heard that before about having to write pages of crap before the good stuff comes through. The way I interpret that is you have to warm up before you truly can preform … think of it as doing some stretches, a jog around the track and then you’re ready to come out of the blocks and kick some author booty.

    Keep your head up. We’re all cheering for you here!

  2. Clint says:

    Hey, you can write better than me. Doesn’t that make you feel better?

  3. R. H. Kanakia says:

    Don’t worry about it. The contest gives out so many honorable mentions that it feels very meritocratic (like no story that is even marginally good will fail to at least get an HM), but really everything is just the opinion of one woman (K.D. Wentworth). Which is fine, it’s just like any other publication. I’ve had plenty of perfectly fine stories get straight rejections from her (including my last two submissions before this one). That doesn’t mean that they were worse than the ones that got HMs, just that they weren’t to KD’s taste.

    • Frank Bishop says:

      I didn’t know one person read all of the stories. That is insane. I was under the impression it was several people going off of a rubric.

      I’m following the Kanakia plan, go until I win or break the qualifying criteria. I have submitted several stories to magazines, we’ll see what happens.

  4. taureanw says:

    Keep your head up! So much of that has to do with the judges taste for material.
    Also getting into a knife fight with Rahul may not make you a better writer, but it won’t make you a worse writer…..if you catch my drift…….if you’re picking up what I’m putting down…..wink……nudge…….

  5. My friend, don’t give up that dream particularly when you have the talent for it. When I read your post, I feel like I write like a 6 grader. Ha, ha, ha. Honestly, it may not be the work itself but the judges preference. I do hope you win soon but for the time being the best critics are your readers. Just like a movie, what the critics say may not coincide with what the audience wants. Thanks for the recent comment. A great morale booster.

  6. Nick says:

    One, I feel bad since you comment frequently on my blog and my young adolescent life means I neglect simple things like replying to fellow bloggers sites.

    Two, you dun writ bettur than I do.

    Three, analyze this other competitor you have, find a weakness, exploit said weakness.

    Four, profit

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