Writing life

Contests, Conferences, & Catch-ups

It’s been way too long since I blogged, but it’s not because I haven’t had anything going on to write about. It’s because I’ve had so much going on that I haven’t had time to stop and write about it! Here’s the quick rundown, and I’ll aim to get back on track wtih regular posts.

Contests: I entered my work-in-progress in three contests this spring —  which was a big step up from only entering one, like I’ve done the past few years. The two new ones were sponsored by RWA chapters, which means they had some different criteria and were more focused on the romance beginning right up front. You meet my hero and heroine in the first chapter, but they don’t meet each other until a bit later on. That cost me some points, so is a good thing to remember the next time I’m looking at romance contests. I did get some great feedback and some of the judges were especially complimentary, so I can’t complain.

Conferences: I went to the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference in May and had a fabulous time. Took great classes, made new writer friends, and enjoyed the beautiful Smokey Mountains. What more could I ask? The classes I took were all good, but my favorite had to be a 4-part continuing class with Angela Hunt called “The Sophisticated Novelist.” Not sure how sophisticated I am, but I sure learned a lot!

Catch-ups: When I went to Blue Ridge, my manuscript was just over 31,000 words. The exercises we did through various classes helped me rethink some things and have some new ideas for where things could go for different characters. I really want to keep moving with the story and watch that word count grow, but I decided to start from the beginning and rehash some things instead. Changing bits and pieces affects everything else! And it can be hard to whack some of those words I worked so hard to string together, but I think the story will be much better for it.

Stay tuned …

2 thoughts on “Contests, Conferences, & Catch-ups”

  1. Hi Leigh,
    I just wanted to drop you a line and say how glad I am to have met you. I hope we can encourage one another. I’m out in the middle of nowhere without access to critique groups, so i’m trying to find one online – that’s tricky too 🙂 “When the Whistle Blows” sounds like it would be an interesting read. I think I’m going to try to send something into a contest this summer…time, time…where’s the time? 🙂

    1. Hi, Pepper, I’m with you — I’ll take all the encouragement I can get! I didn’t get nearly as much writing or editing done over the summer as I would’ve liked, but had great fun with the kids and that’s what counts. Now they’re back in school so I hope to squeeze more writing time from the real world work stuff!

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