The Beacon Unpublished CHALLENGE IS ON

I’ve had a lot of contemplation lately on just exactly what I am doing. At first I called myself an aspiring writer. I’ve gone through the phase of…. I’ll be a writer someday. Okay well I’m writing so obviously I am a writer. At one point I somehow thought it sounded more ego boosting to say I’m a pre-published writer. Then I realized that might mean that I actually had a “contract” waiting for it to work through the system to BE published. So that didn’t work. Here I am. I write therefore I am a writer.

If you have decided you are a writer too take this as the challenge. ENTER the BEACON UNPUBLISHED writing contest. I have to tell you three years ago….no one on the planet had ever read a word I had written. I had just almost completed a full length fiction manuscript and NO ONE HAD READ a word I’d written. I say it twice for emphasis folks. I took the first 30 pages and entered the Beacon unpublished. Call me crazy, I know. However, as BAD as that manuscript was. And honey, it was BAAADDDDD. The judges comments were kind and given objectively and they made me feel good about what I was doing while pointing out some obvious ways I could improve the work. It was the most educational experience of my writing career. So the challenge is on. Enter the Beacon. Yes, maybe you would want SOMEONE to read your entry before you submit it. I don’t recommend the cold turkey approach I used. But, at the time…that was me.

Last year I entered the Beacon Unpublished and made the final round. So from scores in the 70’s to the 90’s in one year. Hummm maybe this year I could actually win? We’ll see. But you won’t know unless you enter! The best part is for a relatively new writer you have wonderful critique comments on your work. If you are a more experienced writer then check out who the final round of judges are. You could get your work in front of some pretty impressive people. There is something for everyone. Below are the deets.

DEADLINE APPROACHING – The First Coast Romance Writers 2010 Unpublished Beacon Contest closes for entries at MIDNIGHT, OCTOBER 8.

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All electronic contest open to ALL WRITERS who have not been contracted for novel-length publication in the last 3 years, RWA membership is NOT required.

Judges first 30 pages (with optional synopsis) of an unpublished manuscript.

Cost: $25 – $35, Deadline for entry is October 8, 2010.

Each entry will be judged by a published author and a trained judge, with detailed comments on the ms and a simplified score sheet. Our final round judges include an editor AND an agent for each category.

Finalists will have the opportunity to revise before entries are submitted to final round judges.

Final Round Judges:

Chick Lit / Women’s Fiction / Mainstream – (E) Mercedes Fernandez, Kensington; (A) Weronika Janczuk, D4OE Literary Agency

Young Adult – (E) Debra Dixon, Belle Books; (A) Sara Crowe, Harvey Klinger Agency

Historical / Regency Romance– (E) Sally Williamson, Harlequin Mills & Boon; (A) Amy Boggs, Donald Maass Literary Agency

Single Title Contemporary Romance – (E) Georgia Woods, Samhain; (A) Elaine English, Elaine P. English Literary

Contemporary Series Romance– (E) Rhonda Penders, The Wild Rose Press; (A) Michelle Grajkowski, 3 Seas Literary Agency

Romantic Suspense – (E) Tessa Woodward, Harper Collins Publishers; (A) Paige Wheeler, Folio Literary Agency

Fantasy, Futuristic, Paranormal Romance – (E) Leis Pederson, Penguin / Berkley; (A) TBA

Erotic Romance – (E) Raelene Gorlinski, Ellora’s Cave; (A) Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary Agency

Inspirational Romance – (E) Elizabeth Mazer, Steeple Hill; (A) Pam Strickler, Pam Strickler Author Management

For more information, visit or email .

Thank you to

10 responses to “The Beacon Unpublished CHALLENGE IS ON

  1. It’s ON. I’m so there. 🙂


  2. With the cat story? Tell me more. You can’t leave me hanging like this~

  3. rerrrrowwww. You go girl. The clock is ticking

  4. Okay. 45 minutes ago the Beacon Unpublish Contest Closed. So who made it in under the deadline.

    I did… who else come on confess so we can all hold our breath until November 20th… and pretend like we aren’t

  5. Meeee!!!! I did, I did! I can’t believe I’ve actually entered another contest considering I’ve only ever entered 2, was a finalist in one of them and I’ve been seriously writing for over 5 years. It’s been 2 years and I’m officially a nervous wreck already. 8\

    Miss Eden, has it really been that long ago since you entered your first manuscript? I’m really sick of this time-flying thing. I was one of your judges and I could see the promise in your writing. You were no different than the rest of us. We all thought our first work was the most awesome thing ever written. We’ve come a long way, baby!

  6. Yikes! It’s actually been 4 years since I’ve entered a contest! Stupid time marching on…I don’t want to grow old!

  7. Yes Lis’Anne this will be my third Beacon contest. I started writing four years ago when I had Cancer. I found the chapter just over three years ago. I know the judging at the time was anonymous but you and the other judges were so kind to me. They encouraged me to learn and keep trying for which I am very grateful.

    Good Luck. I know Maddie entered a historical and I assume you did also. Fingers crossed for all of us.

  8. I did it twice! Entered, that is.

  9. Ah, those early days of contest entries…. I sort of miss that naivete. But on the other hand, I like to think my writing has greaty improved since then : )

    Good luck, all!