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Q3 2020 Creative Nonfiction Essay Contest

Fall 2019 Flash Fiction Contest Winners

Q2 2020 Creative Nonfiction Essay Contest

Fall 2019 Flash Fiction Contest Winners


Q1 2020 Creative Nonfiction Essay Contest

Summer 2019 Flash Fiction Contest Winners

Q4 2019 Creative Nonfiction Essay Contest

Spring 2019 Flash Fiction Contest Winners



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If there&rsquo's a book you want to read, but it has&rsquo't been written yet, then you must write it. ~ Toni Morrison

FLASH FICTION CONTEST

    SUMMER FLASH FICTION CONTEST WITH GUEST JUDGE LITERARY AGENT ERICA CHRISTENSEN

Do you need some writing inspiration? Contests are a great way to spark your creativity, and you may even win a prize! Get your best work together and consider entering the WOW! quarterly flash fiction contest with guest judge Erica Christensen, senior literary agent with the Metamorphosis Literary Agency. Stop by the contest page, download the pdf guidelines, and read all about Kaitlyn’s preferences. The Summer Contest is open to all genres of fiction between 250 - 750 words. Only 300 stories are accepted, so enter early to ensure your spot in the contest. Over $1350 in cash prizes. Deadline: August 31, 2020. MORE >>

     

CREATIVE NONFICTION ESSAY CONTEST

    CREATIVE NONFICTION ESSAY CONTEST

WOW! is proud to introduce our newest essay contest! Writers have been asking us to host an essay contest for many years, and we’ve finally listened. The mission of this essay contest is to inspire creative nonfiction and provide well-rewarded recognition to contestants. The contest is open globally; age is of no matter; and entries must be in English. Your story must be true, but the way you tell it is your chance to get creative. We are open to all styles of essay—from personal essay to lyric essay to hybrid essay, and beyond! Word Count: 200 – 1,000 words. Only 300 essays are accepted, so enter early to ensure your spot in the contest. 1st Place: $500. Deadline: July 31, 2020. MORE >>

     

WRITING WORKSHOPS & ONLINE CLASSES

    WOW! WOMEN ON WRITING CLASSROOM

Whether you are looking to boost your income or work on your craft, we know that education is an important part of a writer’s career. That’s why WOW! handpicks qualified instructors and targeted classes that women writers will benefit from. All of the courses operate online and are taught one-on-one with the instructor and in a workshop. The flexibility of the platform allows students to complete assignments on their own time and work at their own pace in the comfort of their own home. Visit the classroom page and check out our current line up of workshops: creative nonfiction writing, personal essay, memoir, fiction writing, writing for children, screenwriting, playwriting, ghostwriting, freelance writing, blogging, author platform, independent publishing, poetry writing, copy editing, travel writing and more. MORE >>

     

FEATURED ARTICLES

  1. LESSONS FROM A SELF-TAUGHT WRITER: INTERVIEW WITH NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR MARY MONROE

Fifteen years between the publishing of her widely received and acclaimed first novel, The Upper Room, and her second novel, Mary endured the loss of her agent and fifteen years of rejection. Ms. Monroe did not give up. Rather, she listened to critical analysis of her writing and used it as fuel to create a personal writing education plan. Margaret Y. Buapim-West sits down with Mary and chats about the craft of writing. MORE >>

     
  2. WRITING THE FICTION SERIES

Following a series can become a relentless obsession and it’s the hallmark of why readers read series, why writers write them, and why publishers publish them. The mania is spreading. So, how do you get started? Whether you’ve been pondering starting your own or you’ve finished a first book and don't want to let go, there are a lot of things to work out when writing a fiction series. MORE >>

     
  3. STRADDLING TWO WORLDS OF CRIME AND MYSTERY WRITING

Frankie Y. Bailey knows crime. She’s a professor in the School of Criminal Justice at the University at Albany and has written both nonfiction and fictional crime and mystery books. Her first published book was the scholarly, Out of the Woodpile: Black Characters in Crime and Detective Fiction, and her mystery novels feature Southern-born crime historian, Lizzie Stuart, in five books, beginning with Death’s Favorite Child. Frankie’s two near-future police procedurals feature Albany police detective, Hannah McCabe in The Red Queen Dies and What the Fly Saw (Minotaur Books). WOW interviews Frankie about crafting her characters, writing police procedurals and whodunits, plotting and pantsing, her surprisingly easy road to publication, her work with Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime, and her biggest writing influences. MORE >>

     
  4. HOW TO WRITE A NONFICTION BOOK PROPOSAL

A well-crafted proposal can be the difference between a yes and a no thank you. It is a strategically composed document that sells your book idea, and you as an expert to potential agents or publishers. When done effectively, they will sing your praises and offer you a contract. Here are the sections you need to include in your proposal. MORE >>

     
  5. UNEARTHING PRECIOUS IDEAS: LITERARY AGENT REGINA BROOKS

Regina Brooks is the founder and president of Serendipity Literary Agency LLC in Brooklyn, New York. A boutique literary agency, Serendipity represents a diverse list of authors and illustrators in adult and young adult fiction, nonfiction, and children’s literature. Kathy Higgs-Coulthard caught up with Regina over a cup of tea at the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators’ winter conference to discuss storytelling in young adult literature and memoir. MORE >>

     
  6. HOW TO BUILD YOUR AUTHOR PLATFORM BEFORE YOU ARE PUBLISHED

Building your author platform is not as scary as it sounds. It is also not as complex. Sure, there are a number of bells and whistles that go along with creating the platform that is going to help sell your book, but all the pieces end up fitting together like that of a puzzle. And before you know it, you are staring at an effective online presence made specifically for you. In this article, Jenna Faccenda chats with authors Suzanne Palmieri, Liz Schulte, Sabrina York, Grace Burrowes, Joanna Penn, as well as marketing experts Cassie Drumm and Penny Sansevieri, who share their best tips on building an author platform MORE >>

     
  7. HOW TO WRITE YOUR FIRST DRAFT IN 4 WEEKS

I wrote the first draft of my historical novel in sixteen days. You read that correctly—sixteen days. My experimental novel was written in about three weeks. Both were released in 2018. Though I am intensely proud of this accomplishment, I’m not telling you this to brag. I’m telling you that you can do this, too. Here’s how. MORE >>

     
  8. HOW TO WRITE FOR MAGAZINES THAT AREN’t IN YOUR DEMOGRAPHICS

Pitching and writing for a publication when you are among their target audience makes a writer’s job easier. We can mine our own personal and professional experiences, even when we are penning a reported piece, ideas ranging from where we worked, our relationships with family members and friends, our hobbies, romantic lives. Unfortunately, we can’t just rely on our age, gender, occupation, or interests to pay the bills. MORE >>

     
  9. HOW TO INCREASE YOUR WRITING PRODUCTIVITY

Spanish romance writer Corin Tellado wrote over 4,000 books, American writer Lauran Bosworth Paine—over 1,000 books of Western fiction, and English romance writer Kathleen Lindsay—over 900 books. What amazing productivity, diligence, and dedication! Can every writer do this? Probably not. We all have different talents, life circumstances, and writing goals. However, I believe that all writers could and should improve their productivity to accomplish more. Here’s how. MORE >>

     
  10. SEEKING THE SOUL OF THE STORY: HISTORICAL FICTION IN VERSE

YA historical fiction in verse seems to be on the rise. Last year, two novels in verse made it on Publisher’s Weekly Top YA list. What is it about poetry that allows it to traverse the boundaries of genre? Join Women on Writing for a conversation with Marilyn Nelson, Stephanie Hemphill, and Melanie Crowder, three YA authors who find poetry to be the perfect tool to bring history alive for YA audiences. MORE >>

     
  11. ERICA DAWSON AND THE POWER OF TURNING FEAR INTO POETRY

Poet Erica Dawson has taken the poetry world by storm with her three award-winning and passionate books of poetry: When Rap Spoke Straight to God (Tin House, 2018), winner of the 2018 Florida Book Awards Gold Medal for Poetry; The Small Blades Hurt (Measure Press, 2014), winner of the 2016 Poets’ Prize; and Big-Eyed Afraid (Waywiser Press, 2007), winner of the 2006 Anthony Hecht Prize. Erica spent a spell discussing her writing rituals and how opening herself up as a writer helped raise her work to new heights. MORE >>

     
  12. SWITCH IT UP! LITERARY MAGAZINES SEEKING UNUSUAL AND UNCOMMON STORIES

A promising relationship gone bad. The joys and challenges of parenthood. Triumph over a difficult childhood. Many stories center around themes like these—with characters acting out and working through emotional situations and events. While these stories are definitely poignant and universal, there are plenty of other topics worth exploring in your writing. Along those lines, numerous literary magazines actively solicit writing on specific, distinct topics, encouraging writers to spread their wings by tackling diverse subject matter. MORE >>

     
  13. WHEN YOUR FREELANCE WRITING CLIENT SAYS GOODBYE (AND HOW TO BOUNCE BACK AND LAND MORE WRITING WORK)

Breaking up hurts, especially when your better half is a steady writing client. You had a good thing going! Why did it have to end? Unless you made a really terrible mistake, losing a long-term client isn't usually about you. It's about them. Here's how to bounce back from a break-up and land more writing work. MORE >>

     
  14. TALES FROM THE TRENCHES: MILLIONAIRE DAYDRAMS

I used to daydream, and say that I would be a millionaire by forty, hoping that the laws of attraction would bring it to fruition. My 40th birthday came, and I had nothing but a broken heart, some of my clothes, my laptop computer, important documents, and that book bag with my pages, wondering if it would ever become a book. Nonetheless, I pulled those crumpled pages from that bag and typed out those words to create chapter after chapter. The chapters in my life also began to unfold. By Cortina Jackson. MORE >>

     
  15. HOW SPECULATIVE MEMOIR OFFERS EXPLORATION: INTERVIEW WITH SOPHIA SAMATAR

“Who hasn’t wondered: am I a monster, or is this what it means to be a person?” This is the question that burns through Monster Portraits, a question that is explored, teased, and unwound but never finds resolution in Sofia Samatar’s hybrid blend of fantasy and memoir. Sofia agreed to share her thoughts on Monster Portraits as a genre-bending speculative memoir, and how she approaches taboos and challenges and stays true to her artistic vision. MORE >>

     
  16. THE MORAL OF THE MINISKIRT: WRITING SHORT BLOG POSTS

A major misconception for many scribes is when we use fewer words, we are somehow providing less. We are “skimping” on what we give to our audience, and doing so cheats them. Not true. Not always. Award-winning blogger Jennifer Brown Banks shows you how to “portion control” without starving your readers. MORE >>

     
  17. HOW TO WRITE FICTION THAT KEEPS READERS UP AT NIGHT

Obviously, I don’t want anyone to lose sleep—or their job—because of my work, but I do want to keep readers turning the page. I accomplish this in my genre fiction by building a dynamic plot with engaging characters in the drafting process. Then during revision, I sprinkle in the details that make my story pop on the page. Checking for these three important elements (plot, characters, and details) over the course of my writing process ensures that I keep readers’ attention. By paranormal author Camille Faye. MORE >>

     
  18. HOW TO TWIST LIKE AGATHA CHRISTIE

I love Agatha Christie and Golden Age mysteries; and since I started writing a murder mystery myself, I’ve been trying to work out how Agatha did it (or dunnit?!). I’ve had to act like a detective and look carefully at her novels to find clues. So now, I decided I’d share with you how to write a Christie-like plot twist. Learn Agatha Christie’s plot devices and why her twists are so memorable, including “Everybody Dunnit,” “Misdirection,” “Setting and Confinement,” “Stately Homes,” “Transportation,” and more. By Louise Tondeur.  MORE >>

     
  19. WINTER 2020 FLASH FICTION WINNERS

The results are in! After careful deliberation our honorable guest judge, literary agent Marlo Berliner with the Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency, has made her final decisions. Read the winning stories of the 750 words or less Winter 2020 Flash Fiction Competition. MORE >>

     
  20. Q2 2020 CREATIVE NONFICTION ESSAY CONTEST WINNERS

Check out the results of our latest essay contest! Read the winning essays of the 1,000 words or less Q2 2020 Essay Competition. MORE >>

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Lessons from a Self-Taught Writer: Interview with NYT Bestselling Author Mary Monroe
Writing the Fiction Series
Interview with Literary Agent Regina Brooks
How to Write a Nonfiction Book Proposal
Straddling the Worlds of Crime and Mystery Writing
How to Write Your First Draft in 4 Weeks
Historical Fiction in Verse
Writing Short Blog Posts
Poet Erica Dawson
How to Build Your Platform Before You Are Published
Tales from the Trenches
How to Increase Your Writing Productivity
Literary Journals Seeking Uncommon Stories
When Your Freelance Client Says Goodbye
Speculative Memoir
How to Write Fiction That Keeps Readers Up at Night
How to Write for Magazines That Aren’t in Your Demographics
Three Types of Lyric Poetry to Fire Up Your Writing Practice
How to Get a Literary Agent
How to Twist Like Agatha Christie
An Author’s Guide to Book Bloggers
 
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