Tag Archives: Philadelphia Stories

The Sandy Crimmins National Prize for Poetry: Open for Submissions!

Calling all poets!

As most of you know by now I work for Philadelphia Stories, a literary publication that “has been serving the writing, reading, and art community of the Greater Delaware Valley since 2004.”

Our annual poetry contest, The Sandy Crimmins National Prize for Poetry, is now open for submissions! The deadline is November 15th; first place includes a $1,000 cash award, an invitation to an awards event in Philadelphia, and publication in our Spring 2016 issue!

So pull out all your best work and click here to submit!

Please like, share, submit, and otherwise social-media the crap out of this post. I’d truly appreciate it!

xoxo

Advertisements

8 Comments

Filed under Writing

2015 Marguerite McGlinn Prize for Fiction

Marguerite McGlinn

Marguerite McGlinn

Hello, beautiful writer friends!

As some of you may know, I am Contest Coordinator and Assistant Poetry Editor for a wonderful non-profit publication, Philadelphia Stories Magazine. Each year we are host to a short fiction contest in honor of the late Marguerite McGlinn, a former board member – and dear friend – of those who work for the magazine.

We are now accepting submissions for our 2015 contest, and I encourage all of you to submit! (I am virtually surrounded by some amazingly talented people here, and I’d love if you’d take a chance and enter!) The reading fee is just $12 and includes a one year subscription to Philadelphia Stories. We are accepting short fiction pieces up to 8,000 words.

Click here for more information or if you’re ready to go, click HERE to submit your piece!

And don’t forget to tell all of your writer friends. I’d really appreciate it. 🙂

xo,

Nicole Marie

Leave a comment

Filed under Writing

The Sandy Crimmins National Prize for Poetry

ATTENTION ALL POETS!!

Hello, friends!

As some of you may know, I am Contest Coordinator and – just recently – Assistant Poetry Editor for non-profit literary magazine Philadelphia Stories! I come to you in hopes you will submit to this year’s Sandy Crimmins National Prize for Poetry.

Here’s a little info about Sandy (and a bit about the contest, too!):

Sandy Crimmins’ poem “Spring” appeared in the first issue of Philadelphia Stories in 2004 and she performed at our launch party. She served on the Philadelphia Stories board from 2005 to 2007. In the ten years since we debuted, Sandy’s voice and vision have fundamentally shaped Philadelphia Stories.  Sandy was a poet who performed with musicians, dancers, and fire-eaters, and one of her proudest accomplishments was celebrating the work of her vibrant poetry community. In this spirit, Philadelphia Stories hosts the annual “Sandy Crimmins National Poetry Prize” to celebrate poets of all backgrounds, experience, and styles.

Thanks to the generous support of Sandy’s family, we are proud to offer the following contest prizes:

● The first-place winning poet will receive a $1,000 cash award for an individual poem, an invitation to an awards event in Philadelphia and publication in the Spring issue.
● Three runners up will receive $100 cash awards for individual poems as well as publication in our Spring issue.
● The winning poet and runners up are invited to submit chapbooks to be considered for publication by PS Books.
● All submitted poems may be selected by the editors for publication in our Spring issue.

(All information courtesy of http://www.philadelphiastories.org)

There is a $12 reading fee for every submission, and the deadline is approaching fast! Get yours in by November 15, 2014. All entrants will receive a complimentary one-year subscription to Philadelphia Stories, and there is some seriously good stuff in every issue.

For more information on submission guidelines, please click here.

Or if you’re ready and rearing to go, click HERE to submit!!

And even if you don’t plan to submit…I’d be eternally grateful if you could share this post with every corner of the internet. Tell your mother, tell your brother, tell all your poet friends. We’d really appreciate it.

xoxo,

Nicole Marie

 

8 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized, Writing

Calling All Poets!!

Hello all! Just a friendly reminder that The 2012 Sandy Crimmins National Prize for Poetry will be closing its doors on submissions at midnight tonight!! One lucky poet will receive a $1,000 cash award, an invitation to an awards event in Philadelphia in Spring 2013 and publication in the Spring 2013 issue.

The second place winning poet will receive a $250 cash award and publication in the Spring 2013 issue.

I’m in charge of this gig, and believe me when I say this is an amazing publication run by some seriously amazing people, and I’m lucky to be involved in it all.

Reading fees are $10 for up to five pages of poetry (that could be five one-page poems, or one five-page poem); click here for the rest of the submission guidelines and, of course, to SUBMIT!

And please, share this with as many fellow writers/poets/bloggers as you can before midnight – Philadelphia Stories (and myself) would greatly appreciate it.

[About Sandy Crimmins]
Sandy Crimmins served on the Philadelphia Stories board from 2005
to 2007. Sandy was a poet who performed with musicians, dancers and
fire-eaters at bars, bookstores and festivals.  After earning a master’s
in fine arts from the University of Ohio, Sandy moved to New York and
became a stage manager for several theaters, and, in 1985, married
Joseph Sullivan. Four years later, she earned a master’s in nonprofit
management from the University of Detroit. She, her husband and their
two sons moved to West Mount Airy in 1989, and she began to write poetry
and fiction focused on family issues. Her short stories and poems were
published in a variety of journals, and her book, String Theory, was published by Plan B Press.

2 Comments

Filed under Writing

The Sandy Crimmins National Prize for Poetry 2012

For the past 3 years I have had the honor of serving as Contest Coordinator for the Philadelphia Stories Marguerite McGlinn Prize for Fiction, reading some seriously awesome work; but the best part has always been the look of awe on the winning author’s face as they float around the room for hours at a dinner in their honor, shaking hands and taking photos and smiling until their face hurts.

So obviously I was excited when just a few weeks ago I was asked to also run this year’s Sandy Crimmins National Prize for Poetry contest.

So I won’t keep on blabbin’. The deadline for submissions has been extended to November 15th, and I strongly encourage all lovers of poetry to send in lots and lots of submissions! (Ahem, Edward and Ms. Hastywords! Submit one together and split the prize – or submit your own! I don’t care! Just do iiiiit!!!!! Jim, you should too!)

And to all of the other extremely talented writers I follow: do it. I look forward to reading your submissions. 🙂

Click here for guidelines – and to submit!

 

10 Comments

Filed under Writing

Adam Schwartz – Winner of the 2012 Marguerite McGlinn Prize for Fiction

Hey all! Happy Friday!

I’m off to find a Halloween costume, once and for all….(or else I may strangle someone)…but I wanted to share the video of winner Adam Schwartz’s acceptance speech from the dinner I attended on October 12th. You know, the one that made me cry and all. Such an awesome guy.

Adam Schwartz Excerpt

http://www.philadelphiastories.org

Enjoy!

Leave a comment

Filed under Writing

“It is astounding, how many selves we have.”

So last week, I attended the Philadelphia Stories dinner celebrating our 2012 winner of the Marguerite McGlinn Prize for Fiction! Winning author Adam Schwartz gave an amazing speech that brought quite a few of us to tears. He was so humble, so overwhelmed with gratitude and emotion. Now that is the ultimate rewarding experience for a writer. He talked of how we work our behinds off in solitude, maybe showing our work to a family member or a friend. But for a group of strangers to recognize your work, celebrate it, and throw a dinner in your honor where we hand you a fat check and talk about how great you are for 3 hours?

Yeah, I can only hope I’m in his shoes some day. The choked up part came when he tried to do something as simple as thank his wife for all of those hours he was allowed to “go off and tinker with his story”. He paused for quite a while, gathering himself, and when he started again he wondered out loud why he couldn’t get out a few simple words. The best part was during his moment of silence, when his wife – who was seated somewhere in front of Joe and I – leaned over to a friend and whispered, “this happened at the wedding too”. About 30 seconds later, when Adam started again, he said “this happened at the wedding too”. That’s when I got all teary eyed. The next morning at Push to Publish (where I had the pleasure of spending most of the day talking with Adam about our writing, our jobs, etc.), we agreed it must have been the idea of sharing such a personal emotion with a crowd of people. That was it.

Now seriously, click here to read Adam’s kick-ass short story, “The Rest of the World”.  What a wonderful guy, and (obviously) an extremely talented writer.

Push To Publish 

As I said I’d be doing in my previous post, I whipped out my little pink notebook and spent a lot of time scrawling things down all Saturday afternoon. After bagels and coffee, we gathered into the auditorium on the always beautiful Rosemont College campus (I really suggest looking at pictures of this place, it’s like a mini Hogwarts), to hear keynote speaker (and this year’s final judge to choose Adam’s story) Kevin McIlvoy get us all revved up for the day with an opening speech. I scribbled furiously while this man talked about things I never even imagined. For 30 years he has studied language, recording the voices of men and women 70+ and obsessing over each recording, considering how “several streams pour into each other to make the voice that has developed over the course of a long life”. Kevin said “an old voice has more moments of emptiness that are full”. He made my brain hurt in the best way ever. While I always thought I paid close attention to the way each of my characters speak, McIlvoy pulled me up to a whole other level of thought as a writer of dialogue.

Kevin continued into something I understood immediately: “It’s astounding, how many selves we have. Writing exposes our most secret selves.” As writers, we’re all a little Bipolar, a little Schizophrenic, aren’t we? Morbid, romantic, hilarious, thoughtful. There’s things we can write down or type out that we would never allow out into the world in any other way. It’s a therapeutic release of sorts.

Things got weird again (but in a crazy genius sort of way) when McIlvoy started with the bird calls, and even invited us to join in. But, it served its purpose. He compared the call and song of the Common Yellowthroat to the way a person does something called “think-sounding” (following the sound of one’s thought to the next thought). He spoke of “rhythmic syn-crony” and all sorts of other things that sounded lovely, even if I had to give them a little extra thought. This man certainly has an iron grip on language and voice.

Kevin ended his speech with something every one of us understood as we nodded our heads in agreement: “We are engaged in writing as an act of faith….It takes stamina and courage…We are here because we are believers…[The] artist life is questionable as a career…Be attentive to all [writing] offers you. It will bring more of you to the world.” 

I bought this. Go buy this.

Then came the speed dates. That agent I met with last year that I was hoping to meet with again this year? Yeah, writers tore through her signup sheet like wildfire. So I sadly signed my name under the open times of a few others I was hoping to meet with, and decided I’d have to awkwardly corner her somewhere on campus before the day’s end. But on a positive note, I think my speed dates were all a roaring success! I shoved my Honorable Mention-winning short story, “Sirens Underwater” into the faces of three published writers. Alison Hicks gave me a few very nice compliments, and told me if Glimmer Train gave it a thumbs up, then it has a home somewhere. She then rattled off about ten literary journals I could try, and I struggled to write them all down before my hand cramped up. I thanked her, and moved on to a very nice chick from Apiary, and finally the bad-ass and wonderful Aimee LaBrie, who ran the 8-week writing course I took last winter. We talked, mostly about my story and a little about life in general. She scrawled several helpful notes and comments and question marks on the edges of every paper and I had to be kicked out so the next writer could meet with her.

Then there was lunch. Then workshops about selling genre fiction, the pros and cons of e-publishing, and a Q&A with agents and editors. And somewhere in there, I was able to corner agent lady without too much awkwardness, and she handed me a fresh business card and told me to query her. Score! 

Watch this and you can totally see my head at 0:30 as Aimee pours over my story (with agent lady in the background!).

Happy Friday, everyone! It’s rainy here in Jersey and I tripped up the stairs this morning.

P.S.

Remember that cute little house Joe and I looked at?

Guess who isn’t a property virgin anymore?! Soon, I will write to you via my own bad-ass writing hideaway.

Oh, and this one’s for Le Clown:

Guess who wore her shiny boots?

19 Comments

Filed under Writing

Season of the Writer

That special time of year is again creeping up on us; the vibrant colors, the crisp weather, the delicious warm foods, the pumpkin-flavored-and-scented everything that I so adore. (I also adore the fact that in autumn I can wear my favorite boots every single day until the soles fall off.) It’s my favorite time for inspiration in my writing, and it’s the time for writing conferences!!!

Again this year, as I did last October, I will be attending Push to Publish, a one day writing conference run by Philadelphia Stories, the non-profit magazine I’ve been working for the last three years. Last year I met so many wonderful people, and went home with plenty of inspirational feedback from editors, agents, and fellow writers.

Last year was also when I met the agent who read the first three chapters of my novel and was immediately interested….a huge uplift to my writer’s ego, but something that also made me nervous and excited and anxious all at once. She’d handed me her card and told me she wanted to take a first look as soon as I was finished my first draft.

A year ago. I suck.

Obviously things went on the back-burner, even after I proudly tacked her business card above my mirror as a reminder to stay inspired and write, write, write. It’s not like I was completely lazy in the meantime. I’ve worked on a few short stories – one of which recently received an Honorable Mention – and have returned here and there to that novel that has started to harvest some cobwebs.

But, with Push to Publish quickly approaching, I’ve pulled it back out, dusted it off, and made it a promise: You will be finished, however roughly, by October 13th. That same agent is going to be there and I refuse to show my face without a nice, heavy first draft in my arms. With hard work, it’s doable. So, for now, the short stories have been switched to the back-burner.

Lots to get done today; previews begging for feedback to come.

6 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized, Writing

2012 Marguerite McGlinn Prize for Fiction

ATTENTION ALL OF MY TALENTED WRITER FRIENDS! (And the ones I haven’t made yet!) For the last two years, I have been working for Philadelphia Stories, a non-profit magazine that publishes fiction/poetry/essays/art of the Delaware Valley.

As the magazine’s Fiction Coordinator, I organize and send out stories to a team of readers during our annual Marguerite McGlinn Prize for Fiction contest.

The contest is open to all writers living in – or originally from – the United States. First prize includes $2,000, the winning story in the winter print and online publications of the magazine, and an invitation to an awards dinner in October. The reading fee for each submission is $10; all entrants will receive a one-year subscription to Philadelphia Stories!

The deadline is June 15th, so hurry and get those stories in! We accept previously unpublished works of fiction up to 8,000 words.

I am surrounded by lots of talent here on WordPress, so I would love to see names like Re or Edward Hotspur or Tony Powers (just to name a few) pop up on the submissions list. I could keep going, but there are just too many of you to name! (Fo’real!)

So if you write short stories, please check out the magazine and consider submitting.

Happy Tuesday!

And click here for all of the information you’ll need!

 

1 Comment

Filed under Writing

Completely avoiding the “shame spiral”

"You look like a poet!" It must have been the Molly Ringwald circa 1986 look that got them. (It's definitely the hat.)

I spent my Friday night – in extremely good company – on the beautiful campus of Rosemont University, celebrating the winner of the 2011 Marguerite McGlinn Prize for Fiction, the very humble and very friendly B.G. Firmani. Her story, “To the Garden”, is raw, passionate, and deserves more than one read. So, I highly suggest you become a member of Philadelphia Stories today, snag your copy of the Fall 2011 issue, and read B.G.’s story over and over again. 🙂 (And if you live in Center City or surrounding areas, you can pick up your free copy at these places. But really, become a member. Do it.)

The 2012 contest kicks off in January, so stay tuned. If you’d like to submit a piece to the magazine, go here for details!

OK – enough marketing.

I may have left Ducky at home on Saturday, but my Molly Ringwald hat and I had a fabulous time at the Philadelphia Stories Push to Publish conference, networking and learning the ins and outs from some seriously talented writers.

The keynote speaker for the conference – and also the judge of this year’s fiction contest, who chose B.G.’s winning story – was author Steve Almond. (Is it lame that I feel cool after meeting someone with an entire Wikipedia page devoted to them? Probably. Whatever.) Definitely quirky. Very funny. He wore a gray t-shirt under a plaid button-up, and I’d swear the word “boobs” was printed on that t-shirt. Hm.

He started the day off with a wonderful speech about avoiding the “shame spirals” all writers face, in the times when they think their work sucks more than it has ever sucked before, and there is no reason to go on. After being a New York Time’s Bestseller, he has gone on to self-publish several of his own books, enjoying the more intimate way it reaches his audience. For Almond, it isn’t about the money, something I can relate to and loved hearing from the mouth of another writer. (But if I could make thousands off one book, well duh…) Almond suggested finding “your audience in a natural and organic matter”. He loves the feeling of being the one to place his book in the hands of his reader. Love it!

He went on to talk a bit about the self-publishing experience, and reminded each of us to stay true to ourselves, and decide “the sort of publishing experience you want”. He also signed my copy of his newest book of short stories, God Bless America, as well as a pocket-sized book entitled Letters From People Who Hate Me (in here he scribbled: Make love, not hate mail!).

He is my new hero.

The experience continued with speed dates with editors and agents. In the first round I received extremely helpful feedback on some poetry from an editor at APIARY, a literary magazine in Philadelphia, and I plan on tweaking some things and submitting them. Next, I met with a very, very sweet woman named Rosemary, the editor of Philadelphia Poets Journal. She enjoyed two of my poems, and I am hoping to submit them in June, when the journal resumes accepting submissions.

My last speed date involved the first three chapters of my novel, and while I was under the impression that I was meeting with yet another editor, Liars Club member Don Lafferty informed me that she was, in fact, an agent.

Naturally, I went into panic mode. My novel is measly, definitely not finished and definitely not ready for the big dogs to be looking at it. But, I sat down, shook her hand, handed her my half of a typed page that I called a synopsis along with my three paper-clipped chapters printed on fancy resume paper, and hoped for the best.

I nearly fell off my seat, of course, as I took the card that she handed to me and mechanically tucked it into my folder, and I had already drifted into a different state of mind as I heard the words “powerful writing”, “I never do this”, and “I have a good feeling about you”.

And I’m pretty sure I was in “la-la land” as she told me to email her as soon as I am finished my first draft. Huh? Unreal.

Of course I ran outside and immediately lit a cigarette to calm my flailing nerves, and called my mother (the first person I always call in times like these). But, as I came down from my high, I realized that as wonderful as it was to hear those words, they don’t necessarily mean that she will still want my novel when it’s finished. But – regardless – it was inspiring, and a definite push to finish this baby.

After lunch I attended three sessions: “Writing and Selling Genre Fiction”, “The Joys of Small Presses”, and “Meet the Agents and Editors”, all of which gave me some great information that I scribbled down in my little journal.

I met a pro-golfer/part-time poet and mingled with novelists, flash-fiction enthusiasts, and lovers of historical writing.

I took more away from the conference than I would have ever expected, and certainly avoided any dreaded writing “shame spirals”.

Write on!

2 Comments

Filed under Writing