Friday, April 13, 2012

How to use Duotrope as a resource for Writing Competitions

One of the websites that listed as a must-have resource for all writers is  It is really an incredible database of print and online publications.   It's almost like a giant super mall for writers.  Translation- it is overwhelming at first glance.

However, I have been with it for some time now and can definitely say that it is indeed an incredible resource.  I've put together a few of my favorite features that will perhaps help you as you seek out more competitions to enter, or even places to submit writing.  After all getting published is in itself the ultimate writing competition.

1.  Get on the email list.   The Weekly Wire lists New Paying Markets, Non Paying Markets (aka resume builders), Fee-based markets (aka competitions -see picture below), other updates, and Upcoming Deadlines (a great way to organize and prioritize, although the email is only a partial list).

If you find something that interests you, click on it and you'll be taken to an information screen.Which brings me to the next tip.

2.  Take a couple hours and get familiar with all the sites features.  There's a lot the site offers and I don't want this to be a complete tutorial.  Besides, they say you learn more by doing, so I'm doing you a favor!  One of my  favorite features is a thing called "Track this"  which comes after any listed deadline.

Do this a few times and you will have a specialized list on your own member page
 You can do the same thing if you are interested in a certain publication but not for their current request for submissions.

3.  Lastly, check the site regularly.   The calendar is always changing.  Sites are coming and going, so be a frequent shopper.

If you already use Duotrope and have a favorite feature or strategy please let me know!

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