Romance Writers of Australia runs a number of contests each year. I usually enter Little Gems, The First Kiss and High Five.
My short story made the Little Gems Topaz anthology last year, and I’m hoping for success in the 2011 contest, which closed on February 4. The added incentive for entering this year was the introduction of cash prizes for the first three place getters.
First Kiss is self explanatory. It’s the scene where the heroine and hero first lock lips. It can be no longer than 1500 words and must be accompanied by a 25-line explanation, so the judges can understand the context.
In 2010, my First Kiss entry placed 17th out of 43. The 2011 comp closed last Friday, so it will be at least a month before the results are known. Now I’ve put it out there, I hope I sneak up a few more places on the leader board.
As for this year’s High Five contest, it’s all over. My entry finished in 19th place out of 76 entries. I would’ve tied for 18th had I not screwed up my formatting, which led to the deduction of one point. (I had to share that – vanity).
The final big RWAustralia comp of the year is the Valerie Parv Award, where entrants are required to submit 12,500 words of their completed ms. Unfortunately, I’m not ready for this one because I’ve fluffed around and haven’t got my act together with my latest wip.
The comps are good fun and, for me, they’re an exercise in self discipline. When The First Kiss results are announced and I receive the judges’ feedback, I’ll be able to re-slot my already seriously edited scene back into my ms with all the rough edges ironed out.
The waiting game has begun.