BONUS—Fiction contest score sheet

I mentioned in my Facebook Live (where I cleared up some questions about the Path to Publication) that judging contests is a great way to improve your own writing. And that I would share a typical judging form so you can use it to evaluate your work-in-progress.

Here you go!

Note that this applies specifically to fiction, and possibly memoir depending on how you're telling that story.

It doesn't work as well for non-fiction or self-help books, though there are some elements that you could adapt - like grabbing the reader from the outset, pacing of the content, and so on.

The video is 100% optional. In it I explain what judges are specifically looking for in each of the sections of the scoresheet.

I also mentioned a few books that really helped me move my first draft to one that I was happy to share with readers.

(These are affiliate links so if you do buy one, I'll get a few cents).

HOOKED: Write fiction that grabs readers at page one and never lets them go by Les Edgerton

The First Five Pages: A Writer's Guide to Staying Out of the Rejection Pile by Noah Lukeman

GMC: Goal, Motivation and Conflict: The Building Blocks of Good Fiction by Debra Dixon (appears to be out-of-print, but digital version is available)