Nicola Vincent-Abnett

Nicola Vincent-Abnett
"Savant" for Solaris, Wild's End, Further Associates of Sherlock Holms, more Wild's End

Tuesday 23 April 2013

Fashion Meets Fiction... No... Really!

I wasn’t going to write a blog today. Time and tide had somehow got away with me, and there’s work to be done.

Then the rather lovely @WillardFoxton of the Telegraph and of the 28 Dates Later blog, which is well worth a read, tweeted at me, and I couldn’t resist.

Prada... Yes, Prada, the fashion house, has launched an essay writing competition that will remunerate the winner to the tune of a € a word, which, frankly, isn’t a bad return.

I’m thinking lots of you should enter. Go on, have a go! I might even urge you.

There is one small hurdle to overcome, but I’m sure you’re all prepared for that. After all, how often do these competitions come without hurdles? That’s right... Never!

I don’t do competitions. I entered the inaugural Mslexia novel writing competition, and I was a runner-up. That’s good enough for me. I don’t want to repeat the experience. Besides, I don’t feel that I have anything to prove. I’m a professional of sorts, even if I can’t get arrested for my own work. 

I did enjoy reading the blurb for this competition, though.

Lots of writing competitions like to think of themselves as a cut above. They like to think they’re going to get something a bit literary. They’re all dying to find the next big thing, the next great thinker. Mostly, they’re looking for groundbreaking, award winning, never before imagined... You get my drift. 

The truth is, it doesn’t happen often, but that’s what the people running the competitions want, not least because as soon as they have a great competition winner, they have a great competition, and if they have a great competition, they have the potential for a cash cow.

Of course, most organisations that run competitions don’t actually go so far as to state their intentions in their blurbs.

Stand up Prada and be counted!

Prada, it turns out, had no such scruples. They know what they’re looking for, and they have no problem articulating it in their competition brief. Go them!

On the up side no one entering this competition will be in any doubt what is expected of him and his essay. On the down side, I’ve never read anything quite so pretentious in all my life, not in this context, anyway.

Best of all, this competition put a huge smile on my face.

I’m a fan of fashion, and I’m a fan of the written word.

I can’t tell you just how much I’m looking forward to reading the winning entries when they are announced in the autumn. Go on, throw your hat into the ring, you know you want to!

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