Posts Tagged ‘contest’

April 13, 2010

Contests

No comments

It appears that “Operation Snag Mike Brad” was solidly in the middle of the pack. All but one of my scores was in the 6 range. The last one was a 5.7.

I’m happy with that. At least no one hated it. I was half afraid that I’d get a 2 or 3.

According to the letter that included my scores, I scored an overall 30.5. Anything below 33 was in the bottom half.

I don’t pretend to understand standard deviation (whatever that is!). But I’d rather look at it like this: If a 9 is the top score, and my scores were 6s, I’m not doing all that badly.

So I didn’t final. There’s always next year. With the judge’s comments I’ll be getting back from the Orange Rose contest, I should be able to improve “Blind Date Bride” before the GH judges see it.

I’ll probably revisit this topic again, once I’ve had time to process what happened. Right now, I’m tired. Think I’ll head to bed.

***

I didn’t head to bed. Instead I went home and typed up today’s handwritten pages, then played online. I found this very helpful article on another blog.

March 27, 2010

Synopses

No comments

Nothing like a little disappointment — or a lot — to make you realize you need to work harder.

Today, I spent some time before work trying to come up with a synopsis for next year’s GH entry, which I want to enter in a contest with an April 10 deadline.

More later.

March 25, 2010

Contests

4 comments

My heart picked up speed when I checked the caller ID and saw a number I didn’t recognize. It raced a little faster when I flipped open the phone.

“Hello?”

No, it wasn’t someone from the Golden Heart committee calling to tell me I’d finaled. It was Sean, from GoDaddy.com wanting to know what my plans were for my domain name.

On the advice of some of the Ruby Slippered sisters, Golden Heart class of 2009, I registered my domain name — arlenehittle.com — and set up an introductory Web page.

I figured that way, if I was named a finalist, I’d be one step ahead. 😉

Now it’s nearly dinnertime, and I’m pretty sure all the calls have gone out. That means it’s not happening for me this year.

As the Boyfriend pointed out, this is the first year I’ve entered … and although I’ve been writing since I was in second grade (seriously pursuing romantic fiction since 1999), I’ve only started putting myself out there in the past six or so months.

Still, I’m disappointed. I so wanted that phone to ring its “unidentified caller” tone — and hear someone other than Sean on the other end, congratulating me on being a GH finalist.

Last night, the Boyfriend said something to the effect of, “It’s great that you expect to win.”

Sure, logically, I knew it was a long shot. But I also worked hard on that entry, polishing it until (I thought) it was perfect.

And my gut tells me I should have won … After all, I’m a writer. I know how to get my point across and I can tell a great story.

GH finalists’ manuscripts score are the top 10 percent. That’s 90 percent … “A” territory. Every paper I wrote in high school and college earned me an “A.” Why should this be any different?

So yes, I’m disappointed … down in the dumps … wanting to be anywhere but where I am at the moment, warming my chair at work (until midnight tonight. Ugh.)

However, I want to give a hearty congrats to all those of you who did final this year. My own NARWA chapter has a finalist, in the Historical category. Congratulations, Alison Atwater!

And I’m giving all you 2010 finalists fair warning: Next year, I’m coming for you with not one but two GH entries. (I started edits on the first one today, when I was trying not to stare obsessively at the phone, willing it to ring.)

Watch out!

February 12, 2010

Contests, OSNB, Stories

No comments

Based on the contest feedback I got on “Operation Snag Mike Brad” today, there’s no way in hell it’s going to final in the Golden Heart.

Guess that means I don’t have to worry about coming up with $425 to pay for Nationals, eh?

I got scores back from a contest I entered right before I sent everything off for the GH. One judge gave me an 80 out of 100. The other two? 60 and 57.

I can buy 60’s assertion that there may not be enough conflict to sustain the story. (She should have seen it BEFORE I beefed up the conflict in one of my rewrites!)

However, I find 57’s comment that I don’t know how to use punctuation insulting. It reminds me of my freshman year of college when my World Cultures prof (who taught art history) tried to tell me I couldn’t write an essay.

I know punctuation, darn it. I’m a freakin’ copy editor for God’s sake. I may not do old-school punctuation, but what I do is perfectly acceptable in journalism. And I should think that if my punctuation was that darn bad, someone else would have pointed it out to me when they were proofing my GH entry for me.

Nary a peep, though. So I’m inclined to write that one off as ravings.

Guess I should be thankful that all my scores were at least a 2 (shows promise but needs improvement).

I’m sure I’ll be able to look back at the scores with more detachment later, so I can get more out of them. Next week … maybe next month … Right now, however, I’m still smarting.