Last week's Marketing Mix tip was how to get published quickly via e-zines. This week another avenue you should consider are writing contests and awards.
Writing contests are very specific in the type and length of submission, and are a great way to begin to hone your skill to fit a specific market and length. Some contests offer a considerable monetary award. Others are beneficial simply for the award factor and provides an opportunity to build your growing writing resume.
There are a multitude of contests available. Below is a very small list to help you get started:
Your local library
Writer's Digest which offers contests for a wide variety of genre's including short stories, poetry, sci-fi, thriller, romance, etc. Contest
Screenplay Festival Contest $1000 Award
James Jones First Novel Fellowship $10,000 fiction award
Golden Kites Award for children's illustrated books $2500 award plus a trip to LA to the SCBWI writer's conference
Amy Writing Awards for articles that have been published in a secular/non-religious publication and must be reinforced by at at least one passage of scripture. $10,000 award for skillful writing that uses biblical principles
Remember, the key is to follow the contest writing guidelines to qualify and craft your piece for the best possibility of success. Some of your articles can be submitted simultaneously to various contests. Others are specific that they will not allow simultaneous submissions. Some require that the article be unpublished. Others require that it has already been published in another venue. The key is to check carefully.
Research until you find the contests that best fit a story you already have or want to write and a deadline that you feel you can achieve.
NOTE: Don't forget to get your piece edited!! Put your best foot forward, pick up your pen and remember to keep your seat in the seat!