I’m helping to judge a writing contest for beginning writers for the American Christian Fiction Writers, and it’s reminding me why I love what I do.
I’ve got five entries to judge, and they’re each really different and surprising. These entries have already been through one round of judging, so they’ve been preselected to be the cream of the crop, and I have to say, I’m impressed. None of these writers has been published before, but with a little work, any of them could be. It’s good to read great writing, but more than that, it’s fun to be on the hunt for gems.
There are a lot of writers out there, and a lot of manuscripts to be read, but with each new one I start, I still get a little thrill. Each book is a new opportunity. Maybe this will be the one that changes the way I think about something, or tells a story that I can’t forget, or shows me a character who I want to get to know.
It’s fun for me to dig in to the manuscripts, but the real reason I like it is that I know it helps writers who are just starting out. Hopefully, the feedback I give will help them improve, and even eventually get published. Maybe I’ll get to edit these writers some day! What a joy.
The winners to the contest will be announced at the American Christian Fiction Writers conference in Denver this September. If you’re interested in writing fiction, this is a great place to start. Maybe I’ll see you there!
Beth Adams is the creator and editor of GUIDEPOSTS’ Home to Heather Creek fiction series.