I have now entered two writing contests, Silicon Valley Chapter RWA GOTCHA contest and the Golden Acorn Excellence in Writing contest. Both are excellent contests to enter. However, I’m sad to say, I didn’t final in either one. But I did receive some excellent feedback from my judges.
One piece of feedback I wanted to receive from any of the judges was the fact I didn’t suck as a writer. I didn’t expect any of the judges to say exactly those words. I’m sure the wording they would have used would have been a little more tactful. I did want one of them to use the word talent in their feedback, just once. That’s not too much to ask. Give me something to hang on to so I know all of the work, sweat, effort, time and money I have put into trying to become a published author isn’t in vain. I will actually have a shot at seeing my name in print. I am happy to report I received that one word I was looking for. I was told they see a talent in me. Somehow that judge, J104, who read the first three chapters of my story, could see a talent in me. This judge has become my new best friend and I don’t even know their name. I have taken those words and etched them in my memory.
Your friends and family can tell you they like your story. They can tell you they love your story. But there is something impartial, something empowering about a total stranger whose job it was to read those first three chapters, judge it and give you honest, constructive feedback and they tell you they see a talent in you. My desire to write has been renewed. I look forward to rewriting my story and making changes the judges felt where needed. I will take to heart the examples and suggestions given me and learn from them. When I am finished and feel my story is the best it can possibly be, I will hopefully find an agent, publish my story and it will be your turn to critique. I can’t wait for you to read it.