I’ve entered writing contests…and wonder about the entire process.
It turns out, the judges are not paid. They’re volunteers who can be anyone from an editor to a reader–at times not even a reader of your genre. The entire process can be really biased.
At the same time, for a very small fee, you get several readers who will tell you honestly what they think of your writing–with a breakdown. It’s incredibly valuable.
If you’re considering entering one or are simply curious, check out this amazing post by a judge herself, Fae Rowen. She also wrote this other one on the same subject: Writing contests: heaven or hell.
If you have entered and your head is still spinning from a nasty comment, you can check out this insightful post by Inky Tavern on reviews and how biased they are. Though her post isn’t about contests, the concept applies to contests just as well.
If you’ve never heard of them, here’s the biggest one of them all: The Golden Heart Award by RWA and a little one I entered in Canada: The Romance Writers of Toronto: The Catherine Contest.