So, after a little break from writing (a week-ish) I have my sights set on my next project. Completing the challenge I set myself with the anthology has boosted my confidence in terms of how much work I can do, and there's one particular project I've been slowly adding to over the years that I'd like to have a similar sense of completion on. I'm going to head off to a coffee shop in a bit to bash out a plan. I'll let you know how it goes.
In the last week I've come out of my hibernation phase and caught up with friends I've been saying 'No, not just yet... can we meet up in November?' to for quite a while. The month ahead holds several more catching-ups and visitings, which is lovely.
Looking ahead are a few prizes I'd like to enter (if I have time around working on the project I mentioned up there). I won't be going for the first one, the essay-writing one, but it sounds interesting. Fish is a well established and well respected prize, though I know the high entry fee is off-putting to a lot of writers. And for those citizens of a Commonwealth country, the free-to-enter Commonwealth prize is very appealing. Mslexia is still one of my Holy Grails - I'm pretty sure I will be entering their call for memoir writing - I have something lined up that might work.
And so - here they are in more detail: the writing prizes that have caught my eye, all closing in the next month.
The Financial Times and The Bodley Head Essay Prize
Non-fiction essays up to 3500 words written by writers under 35years
Free to enter
£1000 1st prize, plus mentoring session
Closes 18th November
From the website: "We are looking for a dynamic, authoritative and lively essay of no more
than 3500 words on a topic of your choice. It can be journalistic, it
can be a case study; it can be wide-ranging or minutely focused. In
keeping with the ethos of both sponsors, it can address any topic – from
finance to history, from current affairs to a scientific discovery. We
are not looking for a particular subject; we're simply looking for
The Fish Short Story Prize
For short stories up to 5000 words
e20 / e22 entry fee (online/postal)
e3000 1st prize (includes e1000 for travel expenses to attend award ceremony), 2nd prize: retreat at Anam Cara, 3rd prize: e300
Closes 30th November
The Commonwealth Writers 2013 Short Story Prize
For short stories 2000-5000 words from citizens of a Commonwealth country
£5000 overall prize, £1000 for winner in each region
Closes 4th December
Mslexia New Writing: Memoir
Up to 2200 words, from female writers
Free to enter (though postal entries only)
Best entries chosen by the guest judge will be published in the magazine
Closes December 10th
Good luck if you enter any of these - and with any projects you have on the go. I'm away now for my early morning coffee, write and plan. I do like my days off from my day job(s). Enjoy your day.