Recently, I entered a little contest called WRiTEClub. Basically, you anonymously enter a 500 word under a pen name, they vett the entries (there were hundreds this year!) through a panel of judges until there are 30 WRiTERS, and they match those entries up in bouts each day. Today has marked the end of week one, where 10 WRiTERS battle it out in 5 bouts. How do they choose the winner?
They don’t. YOU do.
In order to be declared a winner, people like you need to come onto the site, read the entries and use the comment section to vote (and give a small critique). The entry with the most votes moves on to the next round and so on.
You can tell NO ONE which pen name you are writing under. Sorry. The votes must come simply from love of the writing… something I can appreciate a lot!
Once a bout is announced, they are given ONE WEEK to gather votes. Once the week is up, they are closed and the votes are tallied, declaring the winner. A week is not a long time, and votes are already flucuating so much that it’s really anybody’s game! We need you to vote, to spread the word!
I was lucky enough (and I say lucky because HOLY COW there is some major competition!) to make it through the vetting process. Which one am I? HA! Sorry, can’t tell you. You’ll just have to read and vote! The first round of voting will start closing down this coming Monday. That means you only have three days to make your vote count! In as close of a race as it is right now, your vote could mean winning or losing for any one of the participants!
One thing I did notice is the high-number of dark entries (many of them dealing with children). While this is a huge turn off for many readers, and it can start to get wearing reading one after another of the same theme, please keep in mind that these sort of themes were unintentional. Meaning, none of us could see or know what the other entrants were submitting. We simply sent in what we felt was our best example of writing. Whether you are sick of hearing about werewolves, or traumatized kids, or teen angst romance stories, just keep in mind that it’s supposed to be about the writing. It can get discouraging to know your stuff won’t be liked simply because everyone else ended up doing the same thing without knowing it. That being said, there are no rules or criteria for voting. The vote is ultimately up to your tastes.
On the flipside: To Writers,
Try your best not to let this occurance get to you. The sad truth is that, this is good practice. Think of it as a thickening of the skin for when you are ready to query your work to agents and publishers. More often than not, the agents we vie for have the very same “seen this before, ho hum, ugh why is everyone sending me werewolf vampire love-story thriller novels????” feeling that some of the voters have. It’s not our fault that there are so many themes similar to our own flooding the market– and more often than not, that very fact is going to get your manuscript overlooked– but it does NOT mean that you suck as a writer. Even the best stories can be overlooked simply because the market is flooded with similar genres already. Keep at it! This contest, or any other, does not define you as a writer!