Thursday, 3 November 2016

A Small Success...

When I first got back into writing, after a very long break, my first published pieces were letters to my local newspaper. It's a good way to start as it teaches you to be concise and use the most effective words for the subject matter.

In fact the first ever piece I had published, as a young teenager, was a letter in one of the early music magazines - when it was still a newspaper version.

Friends on Facebook will already know about this, but I have a small writing success this month; I have a letter in the December issue of Writing Magazine.

December 2016 issue
The Letters to the Editor page is always popular, and you know how writers like to get into discussions about issues that are important to them...

I was sharing some insights into entry fees and restrictions in writing competitions.

A reader in the November edition had voiced concerns about these issues, and as I'm involved with a national short story competition I thought there were probably newer writers who had similar concerns, so I put fingers to keyboard.

Obviously each competition organisation has their own rules and entry fees, but there are some elements all are faced with, and I concentrated on those.

My letter
When there's so much to say and the maximum word count is 250 words, I did have to do a number of edits to still say what I wanted to and keep within that maximum number.

There are some very interesting articles in this edition, so you may want to purchase a copy when you're next at the newsagents.Or you can buy a digital copy.

I have to write a 200 word story for next weeks competition at the writers' club on the theme of 'Lost', so I'll really have to get the red pen out for that.

And as my letter was about competitions, if you know anyone who is a new or developing writer, the details of the 2017 Nottingham Writers' Club, National Short Story Competition, are now up on the club's website, here.

I also got a sneaky peep at the new website design today. It's not quite completed yet, but it's looking good...


  1. You're right that every word counts when writing letters and yours is very well written and informative.
    Good luck with the 200 word story too!

    1. Thanks, Teresa.

      Surprising how much editing is needed even on a letter.

  2. Congratulations on the letter, Carol. I'll watch out for that. Good luck with the flash fiction. Don't forget - that's also 250 words.

    1. Thanks, Keith.

      Glad you reminded me it was 250 not 200. :D

  3. Well done, Carol! It's an excellent letter.

  4. Letters are always a good way to start - well done on your success, Carol. I have my copy but haven't had a chance to read it yet!

  5. I have my copy but haven't read it all yet. Although I don't enter competitions (only judge them) it sounds like a very interesting article, Carol.

  6. Thanks Wendy. I don't think some entrants are aware of the costs involved in many competitions.

  7. Hi Carol, had to ring Writers News up and see why they hadn't sent me a copy this month...
    Looks like it got lost in the post, anyhow I have a copy now, and agree, it's a very good letter.
    Hope you managed to write your 200 word story for the group? I love a bit of flash fiction.

  8. Thanks Maria. I had the lost in post problem earlier this year, but glad you got your replacement copy.

    Fortunately Keith reminded me it was 250 words, and I did finally come up with a story. :) But it just couldn't compete with Keith's winning story.


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