Today I had a nice surprise. Writers Forum magazine popped through the letter box and I turned to the ‘flash competition’ which I’d entered, to see the results: and I was the winner! In case you didn’t see it last month, you had to write a restaurant review of no more than 400 words and the editor admitted that, instead of the 100 – 200 entries he usually receives for the flash competition, this time he only had.. wait for it, TEN entries!
I reckon quite a few people were put off by the requirements:
1. You had to go to a restaurant or café, in order to review it.
2. It had to be ‘newsworthy’ – ie: somewhere that had recently re-opened or refurbished. By chance, we were taking my parents out over the Bank Holiday weekend to a restaurant that had just had a 2-year, multi-million pound refurbishment, so that was perfect.
3. And finally, you also had to send the review to a local newspaper! (I sent mine to the Stratford Herald but they haven’t printed it – so far!).
So, there you go. A success. And the £100 I’ve won will go some way towards paying for the meal we had. It’s fun, writing restaurant reviews. I picked up some useful tips on writing mine from this site, if you’re interested.
Writers Forum runs a monthly ‘flash comp’ (so named because you only have a short time to get your entry in. The results are published in the next issue of the magazine). For this month (closing midday on 2nd October), the assignment is: “You wake up in a white room with no visible exit and no idea why you’re there. You have 500 words to escape and reveal what’s going on. Use first person (‘I’), present tense – and be inventive. No mundane twists!”
You could have a lot of fun with that, I think! If you want to enter, get hold of a copy of the magazine. It’s free to enter if you’re a subscriber, otherwise it’s £5.
Mind The Gap!
And finally, on a completely different note, my friends Wendy and Ken are setting off on a 9-month tour of the world (a ‘silver gap year’), THIS FRIDAY, starting in South Africa and including 3 months in a motorhome in Australia. Wow, what an adventure!
They’ve set up a blog and asked me for a few tips, one of which was, of course, tell everyone about your blog and another was, reply to all comments! So, if you want to see what they’re up to – or pass on any pearls of wisdom, if you’ve done anything similar – I’m sure they’d be delighted to hear from you.