Wednesday, August 28, 2013


Yesterday I heard that two members of the Port Moody Writers' group, who have only one publishing success between, them have been nominated as finalists in the 2013 Federation of BC Writers' Literary Writes contest in the fiction category. There are only three others in the running for the award. Fiction always has the most entrants and demands a strong talent to even reach the top five.

Elizabeth Houlton Schofield (R) and Stefano Mazzega (no photo available) deserve their nominations. They see the world through very different eyes and write prolifically. While Liz and Stef kindly credit the Port Moody Writers' Group with their success, it far from the whole story.

Both have regularly attended our critique group for about two years as newbies, rubbing shoulders with writers of ten and even twenty plus years. Liz and Stef quickly learned the importance of honing their craft and knuckling down to the
less glamorous task of revising their short stories and bringing them back for comment. Both understand that critiquing the work of others helps their own writing and actively engage with their colleagues. They have discovered that professional development is an ongoing task and attend workshops and conferences when possible. They are discovering that writing has a business side too, as well as an online presence. Most of all they practise and practise, revise and revise until their stories are polished to a high gloss. Much hard work as well as talent has paid off for them.

We are all hugely proud of their achievements in such a short time.

The Port Moody Writers' Group has always encouraged writers, when they are ready, to begin submitting their short stories and/or articles to contests, journals, and magazines. This is an important step in becoming a professional writer, especially if a book is a future goal.

Two benefits of contests are:
  • Even if a writer doesn't win or place in a contest, just the nomination as a finalist in a well-known contest is considered an achievement worthy of note. Nominations should be included in a writer's bio for use in query letters, your online presence, promotion, etc. until superseded by a win or a place.
  • Also finalist's submissions are frequently published and begin the development of the writer's portfolio of published work that editors and agents want to see. 
Enhanced by Zemanta