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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Lexus offers chance for budding writers

    If you dream of being published alongside award-winning authors, here’s your chance.

    Lexus magazine is inviting students to finish the chapter of “”In the Belly of the Beast,”” their original fiction series that began in April.

    Nine celebrated authors, including Pulitzer Prize-winning Jane Smiley, have each written a part of the serial novella. Developed by Mark Haskell Smith with Lexus, the segments are all available for readers at www.lexus.com/magazine/lifestyle-pursuits/itbotb.

    Kate Fleming of Channel V Media encourages those entering to read the story but to not “”look to them for too much guidance.”” She recommends entrants “”be creative but within reason”” for their best shot at being published.

    Creative writing freshman Julie Etheridge, who has already won awards for her writing, said it is “”most definitely”” possible for the winner to come from the UA. She believes it is not “”who is more experienced, it’s who can pull out a more impressive storyline.””

    Etheridge said practicing creative writing is important, but that it mainly relies on talent. “”We’ve seen people be published at the age of 12 alongside someone at the age of 40,”” she said.

    “”In the Belly of the Beast”” is Lexus’s second annual installment of their original fiction series. Entries of the final chapter must be no longer than 1,000 words long and are due Nov 16.

    Whoever is chosen will receive “”exposure,”” said Fleming, “”essentially you now have this piece of writing that has been elevated.””

    Etheridge said such an opportunity would be “”really influential to any student’s future writing career.”” To be a part of the novella will make the winner feel like more of an equal because he or she will have been published alongside accomplished authors, she said.

    The nine authors who have written a chapter for “”In the Belly of the Beast”” are: Richard McCann, Curtis Sittenfeld, Brian Antoni, Arthur Phillips, Bob Shacochis, Pam Houston, Robert Ferrigno, Mary Otis, and Jane Smiley.

    With only one winner to be chosen and the bar set fairly high, Fleming said it’s competitive and tough, and that having your entry published is “”not necessarily a guarantee.””

    Even so, Etheridge said not to “”second-guess yourself.””

    And, if you enter without success, “”you can’t assume that because you didn’t make the contest, what you entered was bad,”” Etheridge said, “”they had many, many entries ð- it was probably a really tough choice. Just keep trying.””

    Fleming said creating an ending to the story is “”a great creative exercise for everyone interested in writing.””

    Lexus magazine wants its readers to “”get out, see the world, and get involved,”” said Fleming.

    “”They want it to be a magazine that really engages people. That’s the reason they do this magazine … to get people involved in arts and culture,”” Fleming said.

    The competition may be tough, but Etheridge said, “”everybody has a shot.””

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