Category Archives: competitions

A plea re. the 100-word competition

Hello everyone. If you’re considering entering, or have already entered, my free 100-word competition, please please please:

  • check your word count. Almost every month (and May has turned out not to be an exception with three disqualified already, sadly the only entries by two authors, both of whom I think have included the one-word titles in their word count) I have to disqualify at least one story for being less (usually) or more than the exact 100 words. This word count does not include the title.
  • enter more than once. Often a disqualified story is the only one entered by that author so they are immediately disqualifying themselves from the competition.

SADM 2017 – Day 12 (and 100-word comp results note)

Having failed miserably (too much client editing so not complaining) to do Camp NaNoWriMo this year but wanting to do more writing, I decided within ten seconds of receiving the first of thirty-one emails from Brit Julie (who lives in America but times her emails for us here in Blighty) to do Story A Day May this year. I’d done my first back in 2011 then again in 2012 and finally in 2013, with almost a year’s worth of ‘Fifty 5pm Fictions’ Collections in between.

Unlike all the other stories I’ve mentioned, I’m not going to post them on this blog, sorry about that because I need a stock of short stories to submit to competitions or magazines. The pressure’s then off for me to do one a day, on the day, although I’ll try.

I will let you know how I’m getting on though, and I’ll be posting the prompts, so hope you’ll forgive me but if you want to send me the stories you write (no payment, sorry!), then feel free!

So here we are on Day 12 and if you’d like to join in, today’s prompt is:

You can find the original details at, along with tips on today’s prompt.

How I’m getting on…

Erm. I started day one but nothing thereafter as I’m doing client (paying) work during the week. I was hoping to catch up this past weekend but I was at a bookshop launch all day Saturday then client editing Sunday as having a day off’ (at my mum’s) on Monday and am swamped for the rest of the week. I did however write the plots for the first five stories last night (writing friends and I meet at our local Starbucks – yummy chai latté – every Tuesday night for a two-hour write-in). I’m hoping to catch up with the plots this weekend then have written at least some of the stories by the end of the month, with the idea of spacing out my client editing better from now on, although being self employed, I never say “no” to paying work. Do let me know how you get on though.

Finally, the results of April’s 100-word competition were due to be announced today but I’ve been so swamped with client editing that I’ve not done the judging yet. I’m hoping to get them online tomorrow or Sunday, latest.


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May’s 100-word FREE competition is open… ‘a comic story’

*** PLEASE check your word count (100 words EXcluding title) and submit more than one story to give yourself a better chance of being placed. ***

Hello everyone. Yes, April’s theme of ‘fool’ is now closed but May’s is now open with the theme of ‘comic’, used in any way you like, e.g. a funny story, a story featuring a comic (person or magazine)… however the theme strikes you.

The theme for June is ‘German’ which of course you can start work on but don’t send them to me until June 1st at the earliest.

And remember, you can send up to three stories per month (individually or at the same time). It’s worth doing because some people have missed out because of errors (usually not 100 words exactly) in the only entry they send so they are immediately disqualified. This happened again (with a few stories) in March. <sigh>

Read the rest of this entry »


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Writing Competitions and you… success? near miss? the judge? Let me know!

Hello everyone.

I’d like to know (there is a reason, not just because I’m nosy) whether you have entered any writing competitions (of any type), and have been successful, a runner-up perhaps, or been unsuccessful but have learned from the experience, have advice for other entrants, or maybe you’re a competition judge and have some tips on entering (and funny stories to tell!).

Please complete the form below and I’ll be in touch.


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Wednesday’s Child placed second in the annual NWG members comp

A ‘Woo hoo!’… my story below has been placed second in the Northampton Writers Group annual short story competition. I originally wrote it (almost a year ago) as the first-placed story in my now defunct 500-word competition (where you provided the prompts and I wrote the stories – as close to 500 words as I could get – from my favourite prompts). If you go to you can read the runner-up, ‘Number 18’, as well as see what else I have on offer. So, here is the story with the prompts, supplied by Jane Dutton, below it.

Wednesday’s child

Peering over his John Lennon glasses, Byron Salisbury, of Salisbury, Peech and Talbot, studied the legal documents adorning his leather-topped mahogany desk, then re-read the birth certificate given to him by the young man sitting opposite. “Oh.”

George Foxbury edged forward on the Chesterfield visitors chair. “Oh, Mr Salisbury?”

“There is…” Salisbury scratched his right cheek. “There is a… er, bit of a hitch.”


“Just a small… very small…” Salisbury pinched together his right thumb and first finger then peeled them apart, leaving a miniscule gap. “Nothing that cannot be worked out, I am sure, Mr Foxbury. George.”

“Let me guess…” George sighed. “Grand pa pa Henry’s left all his money to a cat’s home?”

Salisbury shook his head.


Salisbury shook his head again.

“No, a dog’s home. It was Grand ma ma who loved cats.”

Salisbury coughed as he rubbed his hands.

George Foxbury looked from the solicitor, out through the window to the trees thrashing around thanks to Storm Katie, then back at the solicitor via the bland magnolia walls. “I don’t mind how much money he’s left to… whichever… but I’d really like the house.”

Salisbury frowned, pushing his glasses further down his nose. “I’m afraid it says here you inherit all his wealth–”

“Yes!” George clapped his hands and leapt up, grabbing Salisbury’s right hand, shaking it vigorously.

Salisbury cleared his throat then watched George sit as the words “I’m afraid” sank in.

“Afraid of what?” the younger man asked.

“As his… legally proven next of kin, you are to inherit the estate of Henry Foxbury III, late of Foxbury Hall, Bumbington, Oxfordshire.”

“Yes, yes,” George chivvied.

“Yes indeed. You are to inherit the said estate on your eighteenth birthday.”

“Right. The year after next.”

“I’m afraid not.”


“Because legally you are…”

George leaned further forward. “I am…”

“2000… 2016…”

“Sixteen, yes. I’ll be eighteen in two years.”


“What do you mean ‘no’?”

“You were born at the end of February.”


“The very end.”


“The very very end.”

“Yes. So?”

“Have you ever looked at your birth certificate?”

“Not really. Grand ma ma kept it with all the other official paperwork after my parents died… with Grand pa pa Henry’s driving licence, shotgun licences, other guff, you know. She kept them all together, our three, in an envelope marked ‘Birth Certificates’. I just pulled out mine. Checked my name.”

“And you know what year it is this year?”

“Of course. 2016. What’s that go to do with–?”

“A leap year, George. What day do you think you were born on?”

“I’m not sure. I think Grand ma ma said it was a Wednesday. Far to go.”

“Wednesday is full of woe. Let me just check…”

George pursed his lips as the solicitor looked up something on his computer.

“It was a Tuesday, George. Full of grace, and I hope you will be as I explain how this is going to go.”


  • Character name/s: George Foxbury, Henry Foxbury, Mr Salisbury
  • Location: Solicitor’s office
  • Object: Henry’s will
  • Dilemma: George is expecting to inherit on the 18th anniversary of his birth. He was born on February 29th.
  • Character trait / emotion / quirk: Henry is dead. Mr Salisbury rubs his hands frequently and pronounces his words carefully.
  • Colour / shade of colour: Magnolia
  • Other comments: George is sole beneficiary.

Posted by on March 17, 2017 in competitions, short stories, writing


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