Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Contest Wed Aug 21 2013

Write a Novel in Three Days? Why Not!

3day.jpgMaybe your Labor Day weekend plans have you going out of town for one last hurrah, or lounging on Oak Street Beach, or hunching over your grill, savoring the final greasy aromas of summer. But instead of all that, why not lock yourself in a room and write a novel?

The 3-Day Novel Contest will let you do just that. The contest has been torturing writers since 1977, making them write an entire novel over Labor Day weekend with no editing after the fact and very little preparation ahead of time. Kinda like NaNoWriMo on steroids. If you're one of those writers who needs a kick in the rear and a little competition to get those creative juices flowing, this just might be your jam. Plus there's the added incentive of prizes -- the first prize winner actually gets a book deal with Anvil Press for their unedited, 72-hours-in-the-making novel, and second and third place get cash prizes. Chicago is due for another win... the last time a Chicagoan triumphed in the 3-Day Novel Contest was back in '04, when Megan Austin and Shannon Mullally teamed up to write Love Block. You don't have to submit your novel for consideration, of course, but why not heap the possibility of rejection on top of all that work?

Sound like something you'd be into? Don't dilly-dally... registration is only accepted through August 30th. It'll set you back $50 and can be done online or by "cheque." Gotta love those Canadians.

Image courtesy of Brian Henry's Quick Brown Fox blog.

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Mike / August 21, 2013 2:03 PM

So how will they know the novel submitted was written in three days, as opposed to one that has been worked of for, say, years?

Eden / August 21, 2013 3:22 PM

Sez the website about this very question: "Because writers enter to give their writing skills a serious workout, the honour system has always worked well for the contest. We only publish one title per year, so if someone doesn’t want the 3-Day Novel experience and only wants to get published, they’d have better luck submitting their non-3-Day novel (for free) to any of the thousands of “normal” publishing houses."

Marilyn / August 22, 2013 1:27 PM

If ever there was an exercise in trivializing the art of writing and the meaning of language, it is this. Every 3-day novelist disrespects both, and this event should go the way of the dinosaur.

mike / August 23, 2013 9:18 AM

marilyn manson is correct.

Lara Levitan / August 23, 2013 10:32 AM

Marilyn, when I did NanoWriMo a few years ago, it really helped me to develop a daily writing habit, get over my inner self editor, and finally just do it. I think writing "marathons" like this are, more than anything, a way to challenge and motivate people to do something they've always wanted to do, not so much to write great literature (which most of us can't do in a week a month or even a year)!

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