L. E. Daniels and C. Sawyer have judged many short story competitions and seen patterns in what makes stories wobble, and what makes them dance. When you enter competitions you’re pitting yourself against a legion of other writers who are largely just as talented and passionate as yourself. In Winning Short Story Competitions, Daniels and Sawyer detail the difference between the winners and the well-populated layer of the field that score around the 8/10 mark for their work. Long- or short-listing, or better yet, winning, competitions endorses that you have the skills and talent of a career writer. Nothing beats seeing your work published.