This is rather annoying. I keep running across various writing contests and, without fail, I'm unable to participate. Either the deadline has passed by the time I stumble across the notice or I don't have anything to submit that fits the contest criteria. Of course, I could write something that fits, but the deadlines have been so tight that there's no way I could produce anything worth mentioning. I need to stock my arsenal. I need stories that have been written, revised, and polished. Stories sitting there anxiously awaiting their turn on the front line. Of course, if I had completed stories hanging around, I'm pretty sure I'd be sending them out to agents and publishers. I guess what I really need is more warning! More time to brainstorm, sketch out the story, and get the words on the page. On the off chance someone out there has a romance story ready to be shipped out the door, there's a contest up and running at Gather.com . The prize is publication.