Thursday, June 15, 2006

Book Contest Updates

If you're a novelist or short story writer looking for contests that lead to publication and other prizes (including cash) you'll want to streamline your search with our e-book directory of literary contests for book-length fiction. It's just been updated, with much more detail to each listing. Download your free preview with sample listings--and tips for contest entrants--here.

I hadn't updated this e-book since December, so several links had changed and some contests had to be removed, too. Notably, two contests previously run by Lewis-Clark Press had to be taken out.

When I checked in with the editor at Lewis-Clark (LC) Press (I had to e-mail her because the press does not appear to have a Web site--sometimes a bad sign in itself if only because it signals an antiquated approach to marketing) about the Lewis-Clark Discovery Award and the Lewis-Clark Expedition Award, I was surprised to hear back that the press is no longer running any contests. I was even more surprised to discover that the Press will now read submissions year-round--for a $10 fee.

The press calls this a "no-risk fee," because they promise to refund the fee if they select your manuscript for publication, and they'll send you one of their past titles if they don't. But somehow, I don't think this is going to sit well with many members of the literary community, however honest the intent behind it.

I have to admit I'm leery about it myself, especially now that I've done a little more research and discovered an article that reveals how unhappy one LC contest winner was with her published book. Apparently Billie Travalini's work was published with a number of typographical flaws. Only 500 copies were issued, and the book was not available on Amazon.com.

So, of course, I've removed the LC Contests from our e-book. And I can't see myself submitting my own work to that press, especially for a fee....

By the way, the e-book also includes a list of additional resources to consult for contest guidance. What I've learned about Billie Travalini's experience makes me especially glad I've included a link to Laura Backes's article on "How to Tell if a New or Small Press is Legitimate." Though the article is targeted to children's writing/publishing, its wisdom transfers easily to the market for grown-ups, too.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I went to amazon.com and found Travalini's book. Your information is incorrect.

Anonymous said...

Bloodsisters (Discovery Prize Series) (Paperback)
by Billie Travalini (Author)
(2 customer reviews)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



www.amazon.com


Availability: Available from these sellers.






3 used & new available from $12.00

ERIKA DREIFUS said...

Thanks for your post (which, for other readers' clarification, was made in January 2007, more than six months after my initial one).

Unfortunately my original source (an article linked within my post from delawareonline.com) no longer appears to be working. But I did go to amazon.com to revisit it.

If you return to that amazon.com page yourself, you'll see that the book "is only available from third-party sellers" (two of the three copies listed seem to be "extras" at LCPress itself). The book is not available as in-print books typically are for direct order from amazon.com. I don't know if this was the case already back in June.

Thanks again for the post.