Friday, 14 March 2014

Sheila - Read The Rules!

Image Provided by Duncan Hull - Flicker Commons
Today’s inspirational quote from my book of  “Mottos for Success”, (a Christmas gift from a friend) is: There is always something to be thankful for. This is particularly apt as for the last two months, I have been especially thankful for two members of our group (you know who you are girls) who have given up their time to do two fantastic edits of competition entries.

        Today, 14 March, was the deadline for the latest competition I decided to enter.  By Tuesday evening, 11 March, even after hours of rewriting, I found that my word count was still too high.  This was because I had not remembered the entry requirements properly and my original word count started off much too high. Note to self, print out entry rules and keep them by the computer.
     Anyway, by the time I realised my mistake, I was exhausted with the piece and couldn’t see where I could get rid of at least another three hundred words. So, I sent the final version to my two editor friends to show them at least what their first edit had produced, but with regrets that I couldn’t send the piece as the word count was wrong etc.

      Imagine my astonishment when the following morning, a severely edited piece came back, word count correct, with the instruction to enter it. Him indoors couldn’t believe it, but then said, “Well, I suppose that’s what you do in writing groups, support each other.” I told him that a lot don’t, but that the Phoenix is special. Even so, I couldn’t believe that someone had gone to so much trouble. So, yes, thankful for the unselfish members of our group who take pleasure in helping others to succeed and who believe in you when you don’t believe in yourself.

     The piece finally went off on Wednesday morning, but not before I’d spent a traumatised hour, trying to negotiate the website and method of payment. There didn’t seem to be an alternative way of submitting an entry, which makes me think that there could be any number of people out there, really good writers,  who could be well capable of winning, but aren’t computer literate.  Ummm a rather specious form of pre-selection!

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