Monday, November 1, 2010

Novel Contest for VA Writers

I’m stealing this article about a novel contest for Virginia writers from the James River Writers’ newsletter:

Got manuscript?
The 2011 Best Unpublished Novel Contest from James River Writers and Richmond magazine.

by Ellen Brown

In 2007, James River Writers joined forces with Richmond magazine to unearth the best unpublished novel in the Commonwealth. We suspected there were a few dusty old manuscripts sitting around waiting for the chance to be discovered. We were right. And then some.

The first Best Unpublished Novel, or "BUN" contest, and the second and third ones that followed in 2008 and 2009 were rousing successes. Aspiring authors across the state bombarded us with manuscripts. Not only were writers given a chance to bring attention to their work, the money raised by submission fees went to good use supporting JRW's student writing contests. Perhaps most exciting, one 2008 finalist, Kit Wilkinson, found a publisher for her entry and is now looking forward to publication of her second novel.

Now is the time to polish that manuscript you've toiled away on and enter the fourth BUN contest. Here are the details you need to know to enter.

Prizes for Top Three Finalists: First prize: $500, publication of an excerpt in Richmond magazine, a ticket to the 2011 James River Writers conference, and feedback on the manuscript. The two other finalists will each receive $200. Winners will be announced in spring 2011.

Entry fee: $25. Checks should be made out to James River Writers.

How to Submit: Send your entry fee and the first 50 pages of your previously unsubmitted manuscript (full manuscript requested if entry passes first round of judging) by Dec. 15, 2010 (postmark deadline) to:

Richmond Magazine, Best Unpublished Novel Contest 2011, 2201 W. Broad St., Suite 105, Richmond, VA 23220

Rules of the road: Each submission must have a cover sheet with the author's name, contact information and the novel's title. Include email, snail mail address, and phone. The author's name can appear only on this cover sheet, not on any other pages. Manuscripts will be disqualified if submitted with authors' names or other identifying information on any page other than the cover sheet.

Each page of the manuscript must have the title in the upper left corner, page numbers in the upper right, double-spaced, one-inch margins, Times New Roman or Arial font, size 12. This is a fiction contest. Richmond magazine and JRW employees and board members cannot enter.

To submit an entry, the author must be a resident of Virginia, a student at a Virginia college or university, or a member of JRW. An excerpt from the winning manuscript will be published in the July 2011 issue of Richmond magazine. Submissions will be returned only if accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed envelope (optional).


DC-area author Leslie Pietrzyk explores the creative process and all things literary.