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‘How To’ win yourself £200!

July 23rd, 2010

This year’s Writers Bureau annual Poetry and Short Story Competition closed a couple of weeks ago and we’ve been preparing the entries ready to send off to the adjudicators (Alison Chisholm – poetry and Iain Pattison – short stories ).  I can’t help looking through a fair selection and I’m always amazed by the quality of some of them.  There really are some talented writers out there! By the same token, there are some absolute ‘stinkers’ – boring, badly written and lacking any kind of plot.  You’re lucky – you only get to read the best ones on our website.  We should have them posted there, for your delectation, by mid-September.

But this did make me think about an article I read recently.  When you enter a competition, always check what ‘rights’ the organisers are demanding (and by sending your entry you tacitly agree to their terms).  All we ask is that winners allow us to use their entries on our website and in Freelance Market News for up to two years.  The copyright remains with the writer and there are no restrictions on where else the material can be offered.

But this isn’t the case with all competitions.  Apparently, some are demanding full use of any entries – whether they are winners or not – which can mean a very cheap way of providing copy for their websites or publications.  So, before you enter, always make sure that there is nothing you object to or find exploitative in the rules.

And still on the subject of competitions, I’ve just received an email from How To Books. They’re currently looking for new writers and running a competition in July where the writer of the best article will receive £200 on top of any other earnings the article makes. More information can be found on the How To site.

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