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May 21, 2021

Before You Submit

You have written a fantastic story and you want to submit it to a competition or to be published in an anthology. There are a few things you need to do before you press submit on your story. Remember, don’t submit your first draft, unless the rules specifically say it must be a first draft.

  • Check spelling and grammar – read through your story and check the spelling of every word and your grammar. If you’re not sure, ask for some help from your parents or a teacher. Spell check can be helpful, however it won’t pick up every issue, for example, your and you’re.
  • Word Count – is your story within the word count specified for the competition or anthology? Some will accept up to 10% over the maximum number of words, however many won’t. This is one of the first things that could disqualify your story from being included.
  • Topic – does your story fit with the topic that has been set by the organisers? This is another thing that may get your story disqualified. Check the topic and your story to make sure the organisers will be able to recognise their topic in your story.
  • Rewrite – there may be times you need to rewrite your story, or part of it, to make sure it fits the word count and the topic.
  • Submit your best version – when you are ready to submit your story, make sure it’s the best you can possibly make it. Spend some time to polish your story, read it out loud, get someone else to read it, and make sure that it’s as good as it can be. Competitions are looking for the best story and most anthologies will only do the most minor editing for formatting.

All the best with you story and entering it into competitions and anthologies.

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