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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > April 2017 > WINNING W AYS


There are all kinds of benefits to entering writing competitions, but nothing beats

The boost to your ego and enthusiasm of your first win. Set yourself up for success with advice from WM editor and chief judge, Jonathan Telfe

How do you win writing competitions? It’s easy, you just have to come up with an idea no one else has, and then write it better than they would have done anyway. Now, at this stage, you could be forgiven for stepping away from your WMin disgust, but bear with me a little while. Yes, that flippant instruction I gave is broadly correct, but it’s still frustratingly subjective. Of course, writing isn’t binary. There is no right and wrong. Judges are human. Taste will go a long way to deciding which story would be a winner. And if not quite one judge’s winner is another’s loser, it’s almost certain sure that their shortlists and rankings would be different.

I can’t, of course, tell you what would always win with 100% certainty. I’m even going to avoid telling you my particular tastes, as I am only one judge. Every competition is different; every judge is different; every competition has different requirements or criteria.

But what I can do, and this will reap dividends just as quickly, is help you to avoid losing. And that is something that will get you closer to the finish line in every comp you enter, whoever is judging and whatever the editorial style of the competition.

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WIN!! More than £500,000 of writing prizes in your free Competition Supplement, with information about hundreds of writing competitions for you to enter in 2017 Find out how you can apply the winning formula to your writing: • How to win writing competitions • Short story structure made simple • Reach 'The End' of your novel Also in this issue, read our star interview with bestselling 'Me Before You' author Jojo Moyes on writing romance the modern way, and find out if crowdfunding might be the smart new way to publish your book. • Writers News is 20 packed pages of news you can use, including 30 paying markets and 51 opportunities to get your writing into print. asasaasasasass

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