Colorado Gold Writing Contest

Nabbing this from Karen Duvall

The Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold writing contest is open for submissions.

Those of you who’ve been around a while might know I’m a bit evangelical on the topic of the RMFW. They’re the organization which lit a fire under my ass to get published: I finaled in the contest in 2002 with a (still unfinished) novel called MANIFEST DESTINY, which got me in to talk to my first editor. She was a small press editor and said, in short, “Go to the big boys, you can do better than small press.” (When I told my Del Rey editor this last summer, she perked all up and was like, “Wait, wait, what? What book is this? Have I seen it?” *laughs* I told her no, she’d see it after the Inheritors’ Cycle was done, and she was satisfied. :))

The conference that year was exactly what I needed to come away really prepared to make a career of writing. The next year, almost on a lark, I submitted RIGHT ANGLES TO FAERYLAND, which, to my astonishment, won. Teresa Nielson Hayden was the judging editor that year, and though I couldn’t go to the conference, I met up with her in New York and had talked extensively about writing in general and my writing in specific.

She said two things about the RMFW: one was that my entry for the contest was the first one she’d read, and that she thought, “If they’re all this good, we (the publishers) are really doing something *wrong*, because all these people should be *published*!”

(Three months later I got my first contract.)

She also said the RMFW was the least neurotic group of writers she’d ever met. That may sound like a back-handed compliment, but in fact I think it’s an extremely front-handed one: the RMFW are in fact incredibly lacking in neuroticism, and *extremely* high in “got our shit together and are six kinds of awesome”. They pride themselves on the quality of submissions to their contest, and I personally know at least three people (including myself) who were published after winning or finalling in their contest.

THE QUEEN’S BASTARD is, in fact, dedicated to the RMFW. I met my Del Rey editor, Betsy Mitchell, at the 2005 conference (which I attended in the express hope of meeting her), and sold her two books a few months later. These people, in a very, very real way, have made my career. I cannot say enough nice things about them, and I can’t recommend their contest highly enough.

Anyway, so there’s more about it at the RMFW website or at Karen’s blog, and I really really do recommend considering submitting something to it.

2 Comments


  1. Thanks, Catie. RMFW is the organization that taught me to write and the one I’m really wired into (I’m Veep this year).

    One of the things RMFW started first, and I really like is the Editor/Agent roundtable at our conference. Where you register to read the first few pages of your work before the editor/agent of your choice. It can be nerve wracking, but I think it truly helps people on both sides.

    As for neurotic, we’re a pretty dedicated bunch.

    Robin

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