In my quest to keep on writing, I searched for writing contests here on WordPresss, not just on the internet in general, as I’ve done before. That’s how I found Short Tale Shrew.
This site hosted a writing contest this Spring — one hundred words on the theme, rebirth. From their post about the contest and its rules: “In keeping with the spirit of spring, all microfiction stories must be based loosely on the idea of “rebirth.” This could entail a literal rebirth, a spiritual one, or simply “rebirth” as a metaphorical concept. We don’t have any additional stipulations for content: simply incorporate the idea of rebirth in your story somehow.” The entry fee was $5.00, the prize was $50.00. Here’s a link to the winner and a runner-up that caught the judge’s imagination.
I entered the contest with this story that I shared on Words One Hundred after it lost. I see where the judges went with this, and I now have another answer to my question about realism and flash. To stretch as a writer and work harder on telling newer, more compelling stories, I need to focus on melding the two to my satisfaction. And I think I can — if I can remember this concept while I’m actually writing and editing.
Another lesson learned. Readers have to find some thrill, something to excite them in my work, and no one can put it there but me.
And no more entry fees for me. Can’t afford them. I have two more stories out (one without a fee and one with), and that fee and this one to STS were a good faith wager on myself with a few unexpected dollars saved this month. I’ll let you know how the next one goes. They extended the entry deadline to May 25th, which made my hustle to get it in by the original April 18th deadline seem weird. I dread the very idea of an extra month spent waiting, but my daughter actually likes that story and thinks it’s fun (?!!), which bodes well for it having been ready to go without the extra time to work on it. My fingers are crossed.