Jimmy Donnellan's picture
Jimmy Donnellan February 18, 2015 - 2:08pm

Just trying to weigh whether or not it would be worth the effort to set up a short story competition on my website, so I thought I'd ask what you guys think first.

- No entry fee
- No winning prize 
- Your story could possibly be seen by thousands
- Will provide a link to your blog/website if you have one

We already have a pretty successful Poem of the Week contest but I don't know whether enough people would enter without a prize at the end.

Would you enter?

Max's picture
Max from Texas is reading goosebumps February 19, 2015 - 1:44am

No. Exposure isn't enough incentive to enter a contest or submit to a magazine. Payment is a must. You might get a decent amount of submissions regardless, but they probably won't be very good.

Jimmy Donnellan's picture
Jimmy Donnellan February 19, 2015 - 4:17am

Hmm, I appreciate you being candid. The website isn't earning much so any prize fund would have to be straight out of my moth-plagued wallet.

bjlangley's picture
bjlangley from Cambridgeshire, UK is reading C by Tom McCarthy February 19, 2015 - 5:35am

I disagree with Max. Being able to say that your story won a contest or was shortlisted is a big deal. Yes it's not as significant if there is no prize, and with a new contest only little prestige, but it could still help people get read and get noticed.  

Matt Oddfield's picture
Matt Oddfield from nowhere in particular is reading Embassytown February 19, 2015 - 5:45am

I suppose this is an okay deal for people who already have steady sources of income, writing-related or otherwise. But I personally wouldn't enter. It's not that I'm trying to suck money out of your--or anyone's--pocket. I'm just a college student paying for a life-long medical treatment my insurance company refuses to cover. So yeah.

Getting noticed is great, of course, but you will be at a huge disadvantage when compared to a plethora of contests that offer both exposure and monetary prizes.

Brandon's picture
Brandon from KCMO is reading Made to Break February 19, 2015 - 7:43am

Me personally, I wouldn't enter...and that's nothing against Cultured Vultures. It's because I'm constantly notified about writing competitions and contests on a fairly regular basis that do pay. Most of them don't have an entry fee, and for the ones that do the entry fee is minimal...like $2 or something. Those are the ones that are going to rank higher in my mind.

Jimmy Donnellan's picture
Jimmy Donnellan February 19, 2015 - 8:21am

Thanks for the responses, it's pretty helpful. What would you say the average prize kitty is for a short story winner?

Brandon's picture
Brandon from KCMO is reading Made to Break February 19, 2015 - 8:44am

$50 is a decent payout. You'll at least draw some semi-pro authors that way.

Dwayne's picture
Dwayne from Cincinnati, Ohio (suburbs) is reading books that rotate to often to keep this updated February 23, 2015 - 3:33am

Honestly I'd take someone slightly less seriously if they listed being shortlisted for a non-paying contest in a context that established they thought it was a serious thing.

Jimmy Donnellan's picture
Jimmy Donnellan February 24, 2015 - 5:08am

So I've decided to provide a prize of £25 to the winner at £5 per entry. Would any of you be keen?