Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Worst Line For A Worst Book Contest

Sometimes it’s refreshing to change things up from the normal things you write as a writer. Especially if you usually write novels, it’s fun to fiddle on a flashfiction piece, craft a short story, jot down some stream of consciousness thoughts, or pen a Haiku or poem. Yesterday I wrote some one-sentence lines that were really fun (even though I should’ve been writing on my new fairy tale retelling novel).

What I did was enter a contest I saw mentioned in the Publisher’s Weekly newsletter. Here are the details:

WHERE: Publisher’s Weekly ShelfTalker article HERE. Just comment to enter!
WHAT: Write not necessarily the world’s worst sentence, but according to the Bulwer-Lytton award description, “…compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels.” Examples are listed in the article, and there is a link to the Bulwer-Lytton site to peruse past winners’ lines.
WHEN: Deadline is Sunday, January 17. Winners announced January 18, 2016.
DETAILS: You can enter in different categories, from picture book to horror to science fiction. I entered more than once, although it did NOT say you could in this article…it said you could on the 2015 Bulwer-Lytton site, though.
PRIZES: ARC books and “rare prizes.” And the thrill of having won, of course.

(Misc./Romance): The minute Kacy’s eyes landed on him like a pair of bottleflies to a cow pie, she pegged him for the kind of bad boy her mother had always warned her about—she saw it in his bedroom-lidded eyes, his dangerous Walmart jeans, and the disdainful haircut that simply screamed “Edward Scissorhands.”

Fantasy: Little known amongst the troubled villagers of Wunce-Upon-a-Thyme, a certain glass-half-empty nerd on the edge of town named Clod the Hopper was at that very moment watering the plants in his master’s recreational herb shop, destined to be The One.

Young Adult: Heart pounding, I stare at the mess that used to be my locker—the lipsticked magnetic mirror, the spilled Skittles, and the books tossed face-down with no regard to their spines—right as Lacey Wunderbar, head cheerleader, struts by with her trio of minions in a sweep of smug, popular-scented air.

(Misc.): The cat knew by the slam of the car door in the driveway that her carnage would soon be discovered, so, scattering litter gravel from between her toes, she leaped to the window seat in order to lounge far from the incriminating (now empty) package of silently thawing lamb chops that had met their untimely demise just a few minutes prior.

Have you ever entered a writing contest before?
Do you think you might give this contest a whirl, if you have time before Sunday?
Have you ever switched up your writing routine, and thrown in some Haiku, a short story, some journaling, or a flashfiction?


  1. Have I ever entered a writing contest... Hah! I have to stay away from those things or they suck me in. This one sounds like a blast though.

  2. Your entries are awesome.

    My entry for any genre: I woke up.

  3. Great entries. No, I've never really entered a writing contest.

  4. Great to stretch yourself Carol. I love writing flash fiction. This sounds like fun! You did enjoy it, right?

  5. Ha ha, these are good entries. I also liked the ones on the link. A dark and stormy night was real? I thought that was some random cliche.

  6. Fun idea for a competition. I like challenging myself to write something different every now and then to keep the creative juices flowing. :-)


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