Tag Archives: contest

FLASH FICTION CHALLENGE: The fate of Helga and Wolfgang

Two weeks ago, in one of client Joe McGee’s guest posts on dialogue, he used the following bits of dialogue, as different examples of what dialogue can accomplish:

“Honey, it’s a boy,” said Helga.Helga

“I’m so happy, I could raid a village,” Wolfgang said.

“Good, because we need milk.”


“Are you serious?” said Helga.

“Completely serious.”

“I don’t believe you,” she said.

“I’m serious,” said Wolfgang, “I drank all the milk…and ate their cows.”



“Busy!” He planted his axe in the giant’s foot.

“That’s no excuse,” said Helga.

“No excuse? I’m fighting a giant!”

“And I’m nursing a baby.”


“Milk. Now,” said Helga, slamming the shutters closed.


“So…” said the giant. He looked down at the axe in his foot. “Here we are.”

“Here. We. Are,” said Wolfgang. He smiled up at the massive creature. “Don’t suppose you’d like to help me with my axe? It appears to be stuck.”

“In my foot,” said the giant.

Wolfgang nodded. “Yep.”

“Not particularly,” the giant said. “I’d much rather squash you.”



“Wolfgang” by Joe McGee

But wait! What? That’s it!? What about Wolfgang? What about his axe? What about Helga and that baby? Will Wolfgang get the milk or will the giant squash him? I need to know!

So, that’s NOT it, my friends… YOU are challenged to pen the ending to Joe’s story. Be funny, be epic, be gritty, or romantic. Whatever you do, be creative. The story is yours!

Here are the rules to this FLASH FICTION CHALLENGE (and here, there be PRIZES):

1. You have 1 week to post your entry. The contest closes at 7am on May 1.

2. 650 word max.

3. Only 1 entry per person

4. Please post your entry as a comment to this challenge

5. The judges will be looking for creativity, good dialogue (this did start as a dialogue post after all), and a compelling/satisfying ending to the tale.

6. The judge’s panel consists of: Joe McGee, R.L. Saunders, and M-E Girard. They tell me they cannot be bought, bribed, or otherwise coerced… but wait! Is that bacon? Bacon wrapped in cheese? Joe, step away from the bacon…

8. A first place prize and a runner up will be awarded, with first place winning a first page critique of your manuscript by me and the runner up getting a book on the craft of writing (I’ll make sure it’s something you don’t already have).

9. The winner & runner up will be announced on Wednesday, May 8.

So, have at it! Let’s see what you come up with. The fate of the milk, axe, and our Vikings is in your hands. I can’t wait to see what you come up with.

**If you are one of my clients you can enter for fun but you are not eligible to win one of the prizes.


Filed under Uncategorized

Manuscript Critique Contest! (CLOSED)

Unsurprisingly, Richard Pearson has won the critique! His friend, “Rufus’ Food & Spirits Guide,” will receive a book about writing, as well. Congrats! For everyone else who entered, thank you for becoming a follower. I’ll try to keep you entertained and informed and not whine too much. If you follow me on Twitter, send me a Tweet telling me your favorite book EVER and I’ll pick one more person to get a 5 page critique! This offer is open only from RIGHT THIS MINUTE until Friday, August 31st at noon (EST) for people who entered THIS contest and didn’t win and AREN’T Richard Pearson or one of his friends… The winner will be announced on Twitter. AND NOW THE “SECOND CHANCE” PART IS CLOSED, TOO! (Judy Ratto is our Second Chance winner! Congrats!)

I’m a little bored. End of August doldrums… I’ve got an idea! How about a contest?!

Win a critique of the first 5 pages of your manuscript (fiction only) and a book on writing for a friend!

Here’s how:

  • If you’re a blog follower already, all you have to do is invite one other person to follow. Once they start following, you’ll be entered into the raffle. If you win the raffle, you get the critique and they get the book.
  • The more of your friends that you get to follow, the more times you’re entered into the raffle.
  • Then just post your name and your friend’s name in the comments section down below.
  • If you’re not a blog follower yet, all you have to do is become one and invite one other person to follow. Once they do, you’ll both be entered into the raffle to win manuscript critiques. Again, the more of your friends you invite to follow, the more times you’ll be entered into the raffle. (Make sure to let me know in the comments section that you and your friend are both new followers.)
  • Please make sure to read the FAQs, down below.

Winners will be chosen at random by the extremely reliable scientific method of me writing all the names down on little pieces of paper and putting them into a pasta pot then having my 12 year old son pick a name out of the pot. 🙂

This contest will run from right this minute until Thursday, August 30th at noon (Eastern time). Ready, set, go!

Any questions about rules, etc… please post to comments and I’ll answer by updating the FAQs section.


How do I follow this blog? You have to hit the “e-mail subscription” button in the top left corner. Following me on Twitter is NOT following the blog. Although I’d LOVE for you to follow me on Twitter too!

Can I just post a comment to be entered? No, you have to hit the “e-mail subscription” button in the top left corner! Sheesh! I just said that…

How many friends can I invite (ie. how many times can I enter to win)? Well, I didn’t really specify, so I guess you can invite as many people as you want. But I really want you to invite your author friends, because this blog is mostly for writers and other people who want to get published.  And my Mom and Dad.

Do the 5 pages that you’ll critique have to be from a completed manuscript, or can it be a work in progress? No, it does not have to be a complete manuscript. But it does have to be the first 5 pages. It’s really difficult to critique something from the middle of a manuscript that I know nothing about. Also, if your first 5 pages are a prologue, think about getting rid of it. Most prologues are unnecessary backstory that should be woven into the text of your story.

What books will you be giving as gifts? Seriously? It’s a present! All right… I’ll check with you before I mail it to make sure you don’t have it, ok?


Filed under Uncategorized