Wednesday, May 20, 2020

The 2020 IWSG Anthology Contest and Some Reasons Why You Should Consider Entering It. Part 2

It's hard to believe that this year's
Insecure Writer's Support Group Anthology,
Voyagers:  The Third Ghost,
has been out for over a week now.

The excitement of having a story
in the anthology has not gotten old
for this author!  

This year's
IWSG Anthology Contest
is well under way.
Science Fiction is the genre,
and Dark Matter is the theme.

Last week five Voyagers authors shared some reasons why IWSG members
should consider entering the contest this year.  Today the rest are sharing their

Consider These Reasons ...

Rebecca M. Douglass
"A World of Trouble"

Why You Should Enter
I think writers should be trying to get their short fiction published whenever and wherever they can! The effort to submit teaches discipline (writing on a deadline and to specific requirements) and will push you to polish your work thoroughly.

Rebecca is the author of the delightful Ninja Librarian books, as well as a picture book for outdoor families, a mystery series for the parents, and her middle-grade fantasy, Halitor the Hero.  After more than seventeen years working at the library, she has retired still without learning all the secrets of the Ninja Librarian.

Roland Clarke
"Feathered Fire"

Why You Should Enter
I hesitated over entering the 2019 IWSG Anthology contest, but thanks to the Ninja Captain, I persevered. Don’t waver. Keep writing and entering. As Ray Bradbury said, “If you write a hundred short stories and they're all bad, that doesn't mean you've failed. You fail only if you stop writing.”

After diverse careers, Roland Clarke was an equestrian journalist and green activist when chronic illness hastened retirement.  But he hasn't stopped exploring rabbit holes and writing - mainly mysteries and alternative history.

Charles Kowalski
"Simon Grey and the Yamamba"

Why You Should Enter
My story featured two characters from my novel, Simon Grey and the March of a Hundred Ghosts. It was fun to spin a new adventure in Simon and Oyuki's magical version of old Japan, and the anthology seemed like a good way to get these characters in front of new eyes and hopefully whet readers' appetites for more. It certainly worked with me as I read the stories by my fellow contributors. I know at least one of them featured characters from an existing series, and joining Bubba and Squirt on their quest for pizza in Pompeii made me want to read about the other times and places they've visited with the help of their magic shovel! If you're an established writer looking to entice new readers, putting a sample of your work in an anthology like this one is a good way to go about it.

Charles Kowalski has published the full story of Simon, Oyuki and their adventures through haunted Japan in Simon Grey and the March of a Hundred Ghosts.  In addition to to middle-grade fantasy, Charles' thrillers for adults, Mind Virus and The Devil’s Sonhave won prizes and nominations including the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers' Colorado Gold Award, the Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award, and the Adventure Writers Grandmaster Award.

L.T. Ward
"Return to Cahokia"

Why You Should Enter
Why should you enter an anthology contest? The better question to ask yourself is why wouldn't you? When you enter a contest, the only risk you're taking is that your work might not be accepted into that particular anthology. This is intimidating as you sit at your computer, preparing to hit that 'Send' button. But once you do, you've taken the step to make your next submission attempt easier on yourself. Each step forward is forward. Besides, your piece might be chosen, and that win is incredible.

LT hails from the Land of Corn, otherwise known as Central Illinois, where weather inspires her literary works. When not writing speculative fiction shorts and novels, she spends her days raising a brood of plague monsters (a.k.a. her children) as well as satisfying her never-ending thirst for knowledge through reading, meeting people, and first-hand life experiences.

Louise MacBeath Barbour
"Dare Double Dare"

Why You Should Enter
If I hadn't taken the risk of entering the 2019 IWSG Anthology Contest, I would not have a story published in the United States today.  The sight of seeing my story in a book was one of the biggest thrills of my life.  It gave me such a burst of confidence and motivation, but that was just the beginning.

As an author featured in Voyagers, I had the opportunity to work with an experienced editor and publisher.  In essence, I had a mentor guiding me through the publication process from my earliest edits to promoting the book. This experience was invaluable to me as a newbie author.  I had a safety net and was protected from making beginner mistakes during the process.  And I learned so much!  

When I entered the contest, I had no expectation of winning.  I had to summon the courage to hit "Send," and I beat the deadline by a mere two hours.  I was shocked when I learned that I had won and would be included in Voyagers. Sometimes you just have to take a risk and go for it!  And in doing so  you might fulfill a dream and learn a whole lot in the process.  

Born in Nova Scotia and raised throughout eastern Canada, Louise is a writer and blogger who now lives in Colorado.  She writes fiction and nonfiction with the encouragement of her supportive husband.  "Dare Double Dare" is her first middle grade story.

Take a Chance!  Go for it!  
Here are the details for the 2020 IWSG Anthology Contest:
Guidelines and rules: 

Word count: 4500-6000

Genre: Science Fiction

Theme: Dark Matter

Submissions accepted: May 6 - September 2, 2020

How to enter:
Send your polished, formatted (double-spaced, no footers or headers), previously unpublished story to admin @ before the deadline passes. Please include your full contact details, your social links, and if you are part of the Blogging, Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter IWSG group.

The IWSG admins will create a shortlist of the best stories. The shortlist will then be sent to our official judges:  Dan Koboldt, Lynda R. Young, Colleen Oefelein, Damien Larkin, Ion Newcombe, Julie Gwinn, and David Powers King.

The winning stories will be edited and published by Dancing Lemur Press"
imprint Freedom Fox Press next year in the IWSG anthology. Authors will
receive royalties on books sold, both print and eBook. The top story will
have the honor of giving the anthology its title. Please see their website for
general guidelines on the types of stories they publish.

Coming on Wednesday, May 27, 2020 . . .
Next week five of the authors in Voyagers and IWSG founder Alex J. Cavanaugh will share writing tips for this year's contestants.

Till next time ~
Fundy Blue

Reviews of Voyagers: The Third Ghost:

1. Check out a review by author Beverly Stowe McClure at Goodreads. Beverly has just
published her latest teen novel Gabe's Guardian Angel.

2. Here's another by a teen named Julia who reviews YA books, middle grade, and adult books
at her blog Pages for Thoughts.

3. Roland Clarke's Bookshelf Review at his website Writing Wings features Voyagers:  
The Third Ghost.

Interviews with Authors:

1. Yvonne Ventresca with Stacy Horan at The Bookshop at the End of the Internet

2.  Sherry Ellis with June McCrary Jacobs at Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic 

3. Roland Clarke with Laura Wolfe at The Sustainable Writer

Blog Features:

1. Voyager Authors with Mason Canyon at Thoughts in Progress (Part 1)

2. Voyager Authors with Mason Canyon at Thoughts in Progress (Part 2)


1. May and June - Stormdance Publications

2. At various times - IWSG Instagram

3. Wednesday, June 9 and 11, 2020 . . . A great opportunity to learn about promoting your book! Diane, the publisher of our IWSG anthologies, will be hosting two webinars: June 9th: How to Promote Your Book Now Part 1 Cost: $10.00 US dollars June 11th: How to Promote Your Book Now Part 2 Cost: $10.00 US dollarsEllis
Register at:   &

You can order a copy of
VOYAGERS: The Third Ghost 
at the links below.

Print 9781939844729 $13.95
EBook 9781939844736 $4.99

Juvenile Fiction - Historical / Action & Adventure /
Fantasy & Magic


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

All great reasons to enter! What's the worst that could happen? Who cares - what's the best that could happen?

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Anthologies are great exposure, both for the established author to promote other titles and for new authors to start gaining an audience.

Fundy Blue said...

Definitely the best happened for me, Alex!

Fundy Blue said...

This has been an awesome experience, Diane!

Sherry Ellis said...

All great reasons to enter! It's funny that Charles mentioned wanting to read more Bubba and Squirt adventures. I want to read more Simon Grey adventures! Hopefully we've both enticed new readers to check out our other books.

Fundy Blue said...

I hope so, Sherry! This is a great way to get the word out about other books written by our authors!

Roland Clarke said...

More great reasons for entering. As a waverer, who missed the anthology contest for my genre, I'm grateful for all this encouragement to keep submitting. 'Dark Matter' might be perplexing, but it's a worthwhile challenge.

Fundy Blue said...

Yes, Roland, we have to shut out the negativity and go for it! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘