Sunday, May 14, 2017

BSSWC: A Brief Survey

The judges are working on evaluating and critiquing the entries for the Brno Short Story Writing Contest. The winners will be announced in early to mid-June.

In the meantime, we would like to get some opinions from entrants, people who ran out of time to enter, and anybody slightly interested in the BSSWC. If you could spare a few minutes we would be grateful for your responses. This is completely voluntary, but it would help us a lot as we try to determine how this contest can move into the future.

The best way to answer all of the questions would be to cut and paste them into an email. Then send the email to because it is the permanent address for the Brno Writers Group; the contest-specific emails will soon be discontinued.

If you are an entrant, an email with a similar survey that included a few extra points was sent to the email address you provided with your entry. If you did not receive it, send a note to .

A The Future
• We want the Brno Short Story Writing Contest to be an annual contest. There are several options that we are considering.
— Would you be interested in entering the contest again next year?

• Splitting the contest.
— Do you think this area has enough creative people who would support multiple categories of creative writing contests, for example a General English contest, a Czech contest, a High School English contest, a High School Czech, etc.? 

— Are there any other versions that would work (e.g., a poetry contest, a comics contest, a painting contest, a fantasy contest)?

— Would you be interested in volunteering to be an organizer for one of the contest categories, or otherwise be involved with this contest (e.g., publicity help, spreading the word, etc.)?

• Topic. “Brno” was good for Year No. 1, but we need another topic for next year.
— What would you suggest as a topic for next year?

• Timeline. The first-year schedule was the announcement of the contest on Feb. 1 and the deadline for entries on April 30.
— Does this basic timeline make sense or would you suggest another?

B Money. 
The 2017 contest was made possible by a grant from the Brno Expats Centre. It is unclear if another Expats grant will be made available, but even if it was, we would want to allow someone else to take advantage of the program. Unfortunately, a future contest needs money for the prize pool.

• Donations.
— Do you know of a company that would be willing to donate money in exchange for having a logo on the contest poster and website, mentions in all releases, and a connection to a highly motivated group of creative locals?

• Entry Fee. In no way do the contest organizers imagine changing this contest into a money-making enterprise. The 2017 Brno Short Story Writing Contest was a free contest and this is likely why it attracted so many entries. It is, however, unusual to have a free contest because of the time demands placed upon jurors and organizers. Most contests have an entry free or a reading fee.
— Would you have been willing to pay 50kc, 100kc, 200kc, for entering this contest?

— Do you think the contest goal — to get people to be creative and write a short story — would be irrevocably compromised by adding an entry fee?

C Do you have any other comments, suggestions, or criticisms that you would like to offer?

D Brno Writers Group
• This contest was basically a long-form advertisement for the Brno Writers Group. The contest administrator and several jury members want to improve their own writing, and the best way to do so is to have more members to provide motivation and critiques.
— Are you interested in joining the Brno Writers Group?

— Would you be able to meet once a month? Or more?

— What would be the best day and time for you?

• The next meeting will be in mid- to late June in order to capitalize on the popularity of this contest. The exact date, time, and location will reflect the answers to the questions above and be announced soon.

 Thank you very much for your time. We want to make this a long-term success, and your input and will help us move forward.

Again, is the permanent address for the Brno Writers Group.

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