WV Writers Contest F.A.Q.#18

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing Competitions.  To see all of the questions, please click HERE.

QUESTION:  I have an entry which is ready and I would like to send it off.  However, I think I may want to enter one or two other categories once I have a chance to polish my entries a little more.  On the entry form it says "Only one entry form per person is necessary."  But what if I send entries at different times before the contest deadline?  Should I include a separate entry form for each mailing, or just attach a note to subsequent entries saying that I have already filled out an entry form with my first submission?

ANSWER:  You may send a separate entry form for any additional submissions sent later.  It's basically one form per packet of entries.  The "one entry form per person" thing is mainly to indicate that it doesn't have to be one form per entry within a given submission shipment.  You can always send more later with a separate form.  And since you are also able to enter via email attachment, you can always send a second email with a new form later.

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q.#17

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing Competitions.  To see all of the questions, please click HERE.

QUESTION: Should the one-page synopsis be more like the "teaser" summaries that explain what a book is about without spoiling the ending or should it try to tell as much as possible about how the story ends?

ANSWER:  No.  In fact a synopsis should definitely spoil the ending.  One of the frequent things we have had to do in the past is communicate with writers to ask for more detailed synopses to be sent because the one submitted did not give the full story of the manuscript in question.

For a synopsis you need to describe the entire plot of the book, in thumbnail form, in one page.  The judge has to be able to see the overall arc of the book's plot, which will help them see how the excerpt submission fits into that picture.  So spoil away!

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q.#16

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing Competitions.  To see all of the questions, please click HERE.

QUESTIONFor Book Length Prose, I know that the cover page must have the title, category and word count on it, but should the narrative also begin on the cover page or on the second page? Should any other "front matter" be included, such as dedications or attributions for quotations from public domain sources? Is the title and other front matter included in the word count? (My first chapter happens to be just under 5,000 words.)

ANSWER:  Cover pages and front matter are not necessary, though they do not count against you either.  Our judges mainly need the writing itself, as that is what is being judged.  Our standard formatting is to just put the category and word count at the top of the first page, leaving the title for just above the beginning of the text.  We would not encourage including dedications or attributions.  They just eat into your word limit and are not necessary to the judging process.

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q. #15

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing CompetitionsTo see all of the questions, please click HERE.

QUESTION:  Regarding the Social Change (Pearl S. Buck Award), would it be appropriate to include a photo I took with a story?

ANSWER:  A photo would probably be fine to include provided it does not include images that could lead the judge to be able to identify you the author. So you should definitely not appear within it, nor, probably should anyone in your family. Chances aren't high that the judge would know anyone, but because the contest is blindly judged we like to remove all possibilities of that happening.

 

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q.#14

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing Competitions.  To see all of the questions, please click HERE.

QUESTION: Should manuscripts be stapled or paper-clipped?

ANSWER:  Both are acceptable, though stapling the entry pages together and affixing the entry form and check with a paperclip is preferred.  Stapled entry pages reduce the risk of any pages getting lost in the shuffle.  If we feel like a manuscript needs a staple, we'll add one at no charge.  But we don't go so extreme as to discard entries that lack a staple or paperclip.  We just add them where they're needed.

Of course, the best way to avoid any staple or paperclip issues is to submit your entries online.

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q.#13

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing Competitions.  To see all of the questions, please click HERE

QUESTION:  Am I correct that only the Book-Length category considers works over 5,000 words? I wasn't sure if the other categories consider 5,000 word excerpts of longer works?

ANSWER:  Yes Book Length is the only category that accepts works of over 5,000 words, but the specifics is that it accepts a 7,500 word excerpt with a 1 page synopsis.  The work itself may be 90,000 words, but we can only receive a 7,500 word excerpt for the contest, plus the synopsis of the entire story.

As to whether the other categories will accept 5000 word excerpts of longer work, the spirit of the contest is that the works for all prose categories, unless otherwise specified, should fit within the 5000 word limit.

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q.#12

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing Competitions. To see all of the questions, please click HERE

QUESTION:  I always wrestle with the blurb, "a work will be considered published." If I had a story picked up for a literary anthology e-book, is that considered published? I seriously doubt they sold (or gave away) 1,000 copies.   Also, if I had a story picked up for an on-line journal is that considered published? There's soooo many these days.

ANSWER:  According to the rules of the contest (found on the entry form), in both of the instances you mention the work would be considered published. Mainly because even online publication is considered publication depending on the potential number of views a work might get.  Even with low circulation numbers for a given work, WVW has no way to verify those numbers.   Same for self-published books. They may not have 1000 in sales, but, again, WVW has no way to verify that.  If a self-published book or ebook is available on Amazon then there is an international potential for over 1000 people to have seen it.

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q.#11

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing Competitions.  To see all of the questions, please click HERE.

QUESTION:  If I write something for the contest am I able to look for somewhere to publish it before or afterward?

ANSWER:   As long as the piece was not published prior to January 2, 2020 you're welcome to submit it and immediately seek publication for it elsewhere.

 

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q. #10

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing CompetitionsTo see all of the questions, please click HERE.

QUESTION:  I just received the information about the New Mountain Voices writing contest.  Can homeschool children participate?

ANSWER:  Absolutely.  We like home school as well as away-from-home school.

WV Writers Contest F.A.Q. #9

Continuing the series of Frequently Asked Questions about the West Virginia Writers, Inc., Annual Writing CompetitionsTo see all of the questions, please click HERE.

QUESTION:  Your contest rules state that entries should be stapled or paperclipped. With the stage play category, which accepts up to a 30-page sample. Are writers able to submit a script that's conventionally bound, using metal brads to fasten three-hole-punched pages at top and bottom? Please let me know if the readers have a preference.

ANSWER:  The binding you write of would be just fine.  The WVW contest rules used to be real picky about the binding on stage plays and screenplays, but larger manuscripts definitely need a bit more to them than a staple or a paperclip.  (In 2013, we received a full length screenplay sandwiched between two 8.5" x 11" planks of plywood and that clued us in to what might have caused binding problems in the past.  These days, brads or a slim clear document holder are happily accepted.