Friday, June 13, 2008

Better Sex Erotic Fiction Contest - Update

Monday June 16th Update

Penny's Pleasure won week 3 in the closest voting so far 45% to 43%.

Submission Problems Resolving
We received several stories over the weekend and are in the process of sending confirmations. Some stories came to our alternate address and some came to siiweb@bettersex.com or msmith@bettersex.com. It appears that some writers ISPs were blocking our return receipts. This is not an uncommon problem with our URL. Please be sure to check your "spam" folders if you have not received a receipt from us. You should receive a receipt from msmith@bettersex.com within 48 hours (72 hours over the weekends).

Vote for Week 4 Stories
Monday morning poll problems are resolved. Votes cast before 12:30 on Monday will need to be recast. Here are Week 4 Better Sex Erotic Fiction Contest stories:

A. Temple of Venus by Anna Bookner
B. Deadly Kiss by Sirena Stoneburgh
C. Snow White and the Vampire by Annie Kerns

Use the links above to vote for your favorite or Better Sex Erotic Fiction Contest Stories use that link to our summary page with all three stories.

Submit stories to msmith@bettersex.com.

Friday June 13th Note

What should you do if you've sent in a submission, but haven't received a response in two weeks? Does some overflow problem exist that I should be aware of? Has anyone else noticed a total absence of contact like I have? I see new stories posted, I see entries being awarded winning slots, but I haven't even been informed as to whether or not my story has been received.... Any advice or insight?
Got this anonymous note on our blog today. Several writers have had trouble getting their stories to us. If you have not received a note from me (Martin) msmith@bettersex.com saying we have your story then we do not have your story. Every story we know about receives a note from me. Several authors have had to try several times and we are not sure why. As an alternative, you may use my personal email address martinsellingzoe @ aol.com (just remember to take the spaces out).

If you have heard from us that we have your story then the next thing to look for is feedback on whether we will or will not use your story. Right now we are only two weeks out, so there are many stories to be selected. The fact that you've not received a second note from us does not mean your story will not be in the contest.

We've received several hundred stories to date for 33 publication slots, so not all stories will make it to the contest. Our plan is to provide feedback to authors who enter but are not selected, but life is a little crazy right now. Many well written stories may not make it into the contest. I read a great story the other day that, in book form, would work great. As a quick online read it didn't work at all. I left the word count loose because I don't mind 5,000 words of great writing. As a general rule, shoot for 1,500 to 3,000 words. The hardest part of writing is editing, believe me I know the truth of this rule, but in this format stories that exceed 3,000 words have a tough time.

We received a comment that implied our contest is fake. I take comments like that very personally. I am a writer too and created this contest to support other writers. We don't make money from this contest and it is a lot of work. I created the Better Sex Erotic Fiction Contest to support struggling writers, amateur writers and people who want a venue and encouragement. I am sorry that we are having email problems (our internal email system as been off and on for several days), but please know that we created this contest because we love great erotic writing.

Erotic Fiction Writer Comments
I asked writers we've worked with to share comments about their interaction with us and you can read their comments at the link above. Reading what our writers said made me feel like the work was well worth it. As a writer who spends hours of uncompensated time pouring over my work, work that I will be glad to share with anyone interested, I would NEVER NEVER hurt fellow writers. I am using every resource I can muster to help. Please be patient.

Summary
I apologize for current frustrations voiced by some about getting stories to us. If you have not received a receipt, we don't have your story. martinsellingzoe @ aol.com (my personal email) is an alternative email some authors have used successfully. Not all publication slots are filled at this time. It is our intent to provide feedback to everyone, but please be patient.

One final note, if you would like to speed the process please review, sign and fax our limited release along with your story. Fax is 919.732.5393. You may also sign, scan and email the release. One author has mailed it to us at Sinclair Institute, 402 Millstone Street, Hillsborough, NC 27278. When you write for us, you always retain your (c). The limited release allows us to run your story in our contest once for free. Every step after that makes money. How and what we pay is outlined in our Contest Details page.

One final final note, if you submit a story over the weekend, please wait until Monday before panic sets in. I don't check my work emails much on Saturday and Sunday (if I can help it).

One final, final, final note. We've received some GREAT erotic stories already. Your writing is what makes this contest fun.

Thanks,

Martin
msmith @ bettersex.com
martinsellingzoe @ aol.com

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