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WRITERS DIGEST Contest deadlines this next week


Deadlines are approaching quickly for a couple of their biggest competitions. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by—take a chance and send in your best writing today!

Below is from their emailings.

The 79th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition

For 79 years, the Annual Writer’s Digest Competition has rewarded writers just like you for their finest work. We continue the tradition by giving away more than $30,000 in cash and prizes!

GRAND PRIZE: $3,000 cash and a trip to New York City to meet with editors or agents. Writer’s Digest will fly you and a guest to The Big Apple, where you’ll spend three days and two nights in the publishing capital of the world. While you’re there, a Writer’s Digest editor will escort you to meet and share your work with four editors or agents!

Entry Deadline: May 14, 2010.
Add $5 per manuscript or poem to Entry Fee(s) on all entries submitted after May 14. Entries submitted after June 01, 2010, will not be accepted.

Compete and Win in 10 Categories!

• Inspirational Writing (Spiritual/Religious)
• Memoirs/Personal Essay
• Magazine Feature Article
• Genre Short Story (Mystery, Romance, etc.)
• Mainstream/Literary Short Story
• Rhyming Poetry
• Non-rhyming Poetry
• Stage Play
• Television/Movie Script
• Children’s/Young Adult Fiction

Click here for more information or to enter.

The 18th Annual Writer’s Digest International Self-Published Book Awards

Co-sponsored by Book Marketing Works, LLC



Win $3,000 in cash! Gain international exposure for your book! Catch the attention of prospective editors and publishers!

Writer’s Digest is searching for the best self-published books of the past few years. Whether you’re a professional writer, part-time freelancer, or a self-starting student, here’s your chance to enter the only competition exclusively for self-published books!


ONE GRAND PRIZE WINNER will be awarded $3,000 cash and promotion in Writer’s Digest and Publishers Weekly. The editors of Writer’s Digest will endorse and submit 10 copies of the Grand Prize-Winning book to major review houses such as The New York Times and The Washington Post. In addition, Book Marketing Works, LLC will provide a one-year membership in Publishers Marketing Association, guaranteed acceptance in a special-sales catalog providing national representation through 5,000 salespeople selling to non-bookstore markets, guaranteed acceptance by Atlas Books (a top distributor to wholesalers, chains, independents and online retailers) and six hours of book shepherding from Poynter Book Shepherd Ellen Reid.

10 FIRST-PLACE WINNERS will receive $1000 cash and promotion in Writer’s Digest. In addition, Book Marketing Works, LLC will provide a guaranteed review in Midwest Book Review, a one-year membership to Book Central Station, the eBook Beyond the Bookstore, a Publishers Weekly book by Brian Jud and a copy of Grassroots Marketing for Authors and Publishers by Shel Horowitz.

Click here for more information or to enter!

Etymology of the letter ‘x’.


Today I picked the letter “x” from the online etymology dictionary. The list was short, names  -proper nouns and people – and things.

Here’s what it had to say.

  • Most English words beginning in -x- are of Greek origin or modern commercial coinages. East Anglian in the14th showed a tendency to use “x” for initial sh-, sch- (cf. xal for shall), which didn’t catch on but seems an improvement over the current system.
  • As a symbol of a kiss on a letter, etc., it is recorded from 1765.
  • In malt liquor, XX denoted “double quality” and XXX “strongest quality” (1827).
  • Algebraic meaning “unknown quantity” (1660 in Eng.), sometimes said to be from medieval use, originally a crossed -r-, probably from L. radix. Other theories trace it to Arabic, but a more prosaic explanation says Descartes (1637) took x, y, z, the last three letters of the alphabet, for unknowns to correspond to a, b, c, used for known quantities.
  • Used allusively for “unknown person” from 1797, “something unknown” since 1859.
  • As a type of chromosome, attested from 1902.
  • First used 1950 in Britain to designate “films deemed suitable for adults only” adopted in U.S. Nov. 1, 1968.


Xerxes – The Persian king

Xanthippe from late 16c.,supposedly the wife of Socrates (5c. B.C.E.). The ultimate quarrelsome, nagging wife. The name is related to the name Xanthippos, a compound of xanthos “yellow” + hippos “horse.”

Yellow Horse lady???  I don’t get it.


Xanadu We’ve all heard of this one.

Xenia No, this is not a misspelled zinnia. It’s a city in Ohio, from Gk. xenia “hospitality,” lit. “state of a guest,” from xenos “guest” (see guest). Founded 1803 and named by vote of a town meeting, on suggestion of the Rev. Robert Armstrong to suggest friendliness and hospitality.

Xeres Not the Persian king.   1661, name of Andalusian town (modern Jerez) famous for its wine


X-ray, Xerox, Xmas

xanthous 1829, from Gk. xanthos “yellow,” of unknown origin. Prefix form xantho- is used in many scientific words; cf. xanthein (1857) “soluble yellow coloring matter in flowers,” Huxley’s Xanthochroi (1867) “blond, light-skinned races of Europe” (with okhros “pale”), xanthophyll (1838) “yellow coloring matter in autumn leaves.”

Oh Huxley. I haven’t thought of you in a long time.

xebec “small three-masted vessel,” 1756, from Fr. chébec, from It. sciabecco, ult. from Ar. shabbak “a small warship.” Altered by infl. of cognate Sp. xabeque, which shows the old way of representing the Sp. sound now spelled -j-.

Is that like the xebec from Quebec?  :=]

xenon 1898, from Gk. neut. of xenos “foreign, strange,” coined by its discoverer, Scottish chemist Sir William Ramsay (1852-1916);

Is this related to Krypton?

xenophobiarelated: xenophobe, xenophobic, 1903, coined from Gk. xenos “foreign, strange” + -phobia “fear” (see phobia). Earlier (c.1884) it meant “agoraphobia.”

Fear of strange? Okay.

xerasia, 1706, “excessive dryness of hair,” Medical L., from Gk. xerasia “dryness,” from xeros “dry.”

And I thought this might be a sub-section of Asia. Oh well.

xiphias 1667, genus of swordfish, from Gk. xiphias “swordfish,” from xiphos “sword,” of unknown origin.

I don’t like fish anyway.

xylem “woody tissue in higher plants,” 1875, from Ger. Xylem, coined from Gk. xylon “wood,” of unknown origin.

xylophone 1866, coined from Gk. xylon “wood” + phone “a sound”


xyster “surgical instrument for scraping bones,” 1684, from Gk. xyster, from xyein “to scrape,” from PIE base *kes- “to scrape.