Monday, 27 June 2011

Insight into a short story competition

The winners of the Henry Lawson Society of NSW Inc Literary Awards 2011 have been announced.

And the winning story is... *drumroll*

Not mine!

But I'm thrilled that Time and Time Again received a shiny Highly Commended certificate in the open short story section.

The judge’s report is particularly interesting. It states, "judging the short story section of [the] competition proved to be an extremely challenging task, owing to the high standard of many of the entries.” And goes on to explain that each of the shortlisted entries had:

1. An arresting opening,
2. A satisfying conclusion,
3. A clear and consistent narrative voice,
4. A point,
5. Pace and development,
6. Flawless spelling, punctuation and grammar, and,
7. Plenty of show rather than tell

These statements sound eerily like my tutors at VU, proving I do listen in class!

I think I’ll submit Time and Time Again to Meanjin - after a minor edit. :)

Fingers crossed,


Merlene said...

This blog just gets better! Good on you!

Emanuel Cachia said...

Thank you Merlene.

I hope you enjoy following my journey as an emerging writer.

With a lot of hard work, and a little luck, I hope to develop my writing and myself to tell my stories in a more effective and entertaining way.

Watch this space :)


Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this. I have entered a few competitions and wondered how they are judged.

Four entries for zero wins.

Emanuel Cachia said...

You're welcome Anonymous.

Don't let the zero wins get you down. I'm sure your stories are quite good. What matters is that you found the courage to put your work out there.

From what I understand, competitions with a large number of entires often come down to spelling, grammar and punctuation. I pay a lot of attention to each of these. Taking time to read the story aloud often reveals easy mistakes, as does having someone I trust read the story and not looking at it for a few weeks before the final draft.

On the other hand, the stories may have been flawless but there were a number of outstanding entries, or the judges just preferred the other story's subject matter to yours.

I’m quite proud of my shinny Highly Commended certificate and see it as a personal achievement.


Anonymous said...

Exceptional post! I wish i had the writing skills you had. Anyway, thanks for Iyour tough work, please keep it up.

Emanuel Cachia said...

Thanks, Anonymous.

I don't think there is anything special about me or my writing and believe anyone can do what I do.

There's a long way to go until I'm ready to consider myself a great writer, but I can only get better from here.

In the mean time, I'll keep studying, writing short stories and nonfiction, and post on this blog as often as I can.

Good luck with your own work.