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Judging Contests

Yesterday, I recieved 7 published books for the Rita contest, the big contest for published romance authors. I wondered why I hadn't received any paranormal books to judge--oh, yeah, I'm entered for the first time ever!!--in the paranormal category! :) But the other two categories that I received are my favorites also, so last night I started reading one and am thoroughly enjoying it. And from the back cover blurbs, I'm going to love every one of them.

Why judge? I judge several contests a year, 3 published and the rest unpublished. I've found great authors that I might not have read if it hadn't been for discovering their works in a pubbed contest. For unpubbed, I hope that I have encouraged them to keep on writing and submitting. I see in both pubbed books and unpubbed manuscripts what works and what doesn't. Which helps me to keep on my toes.

One of my former students bought Heart of the Wolf and analyzed it to see if I had done what I preached in my Happy Hooker's class: Engaging the Reader from Start to Finish. She said I had and loved it. :) I loved it! I never expected my students to check up on me.

I'm back to working on edits to the requested manuscript and then I'm off to work.

Do you judge contests? And if so, why?

Have a super Wednesday! :)

Terry Spear


Heart of the Wolf, Publishers Weekly's BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR, NOR Reader Choice Award for Best Paranormal Romance

Destiny of the Wolf (Mar 1)

The Vampire...In My Dreams, Winning the Highlander's Heart, Deadly Liaisons (Mar 31), Deidre's Secret (Mar)

Winning the Highlander's Heart

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I've never judged contests...

I've always wondered what kind of judge I would be like. Would I be very Paula Abdul like and say: "Wow! You really worked on this piece!" Or would I be like Simon and say: "My God! This is dreck! Why in the world would you submit this?"
I would probably be like you: tell people to keep on keeping on.

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What Kind of Judge Would You Be?

You would be helpful and encouraging! :) Thanks for commenting, Jennifer!

While I was in a judge training session once, a published author said she couldn't give high scores. "Why not?" someone asked. "Because I've never seen anything that was good enough to get perfect scores."

Hmmm, playing God are we???

The key is to encourage. I can't imagine anything worse than discouraging a new writer from ever writing again because of horribly disparaging remarks on a contest. :)

It's all subjective.