CAFE: A gathering place. A place of refreshment.

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Monday, September 29, 2008


For the past few months, I’ve spent nearly every writing moment finishing my Genesis entry which was fortunate enough to final in the 2008 ACFW contest. My preliminary scores were good—two very good and one so-so, but it propelled me into action. Top priority—finish the thing in time for the conference. I made it, pinging out at 72,000 words. Then the awards ceremony, and truthfully, I thought it could go either way. I wanted to win (the competitor in me), but if I didn’t, then I could live with that (not my time, other entries were better written or more compelling to the judges).

But, I did win. Gloriously. Took my bow. Brought home the trophy (okay, it was a plaque, but beautiful nonetheless) and basked in the victory. For almost a week.


Big breath.

I got my scores from the finals judge. Let’s just say, I have work to do.

Two things come immediately to mind:
1) Getting the opinions of two editors is extremely valuable. They gave of their time to read my entry (and four others) and rated my writing on twenty different points. This is a tremendous spectrum of information that I can use once I’ve brushed myself off and picked up my manuscript for revisions.

2) Winning is not the ultimate goal in a contest. Becoming a better writer is. I’ve put my work out there to be evaluated by others, subjected myself to the critical eye of fellow writers, and yes, even editors. Their opinions matter if I’m going to improve my craft.

And just in case you’re wondering, I had a Café Americano with my Humble Pie. I’ve printed off my manuscript and dug into the rewrites. I’ll let you know how it goes.

On another note, I’ve been tagged to write Seven Random Things about myself. I recall doing this a few months ago, so I guess it’s come around again. As usual, I’m not tagging anyone, but if you’d like to keep this thing going around the world and don’t want the wrath of the wrinkle fairy to assault you in your dreams, you can pick it up and run with it.

Seven Random Things About Me:
1) I saw Mama Mia (the movie) this summer—Loved it! Love the music. Love the drama.
2) I do not like cantaloupe.
3) Or squash.
4) My favorite color is animal print, but I am also partial to red.
5) I have delivered kittens, puppies, and human babies. Human mamas yell louder.
6) I have seen kittens, puppies, and humans take their last breath. They’ve all made me cry.
7) My Redeemer lives. And that makes my heart soar!

Blessings to you all.


Erica Vetsch said...

I hear you! I got one set of scores back and they were diametrically opposite. Nothing like a slice of humble pie to get your head out of the clouds. :)

Patti Shene said...

Great post, Carla. I think anyone who has finaled in the Genesis (or any other contest) has been there. Good reminder for me, though, since it's been a while!

Georgiana said...

I hear ya! I don't care for the flavor of humble pie, but I know it's good to eat--like veggies =)