The very first slot machine I ever played did not win anything. Even in that disappointing moment I felt the universal sagacity in this. As everyone knows, if you win the first time you’re hooked.
This is why I see all writing contests through a filter of rosy glass, because I won second place in the first one I ever entered. In all fairness the contest was made for me. The Young Adult category only asked for the first chapter to be submitted. And I am excellent at first chapters. I’ve been writing stellar first chapters since middle school. I have more first chapters than stains on my white couch, and I have three kids.
I won a cash prize, one hundred dollars, and a letter that offered congratulations. The letter, which I still have somewhere, says something like, “This contest was formed to encourage unpublished writers to continue in…
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