Would someone please slap me the next time I even think of entering a contest. I just received judge's comments back from a contest and I am still seething. I received comments about stilted dialogue because I don't use contractions. Well, I am being historically correct in my dialogue. The Nez Perce Indians in the 1700's and most of the older ones today did not and do not use contractions. It is something we lazy anglos came up with. Their language is pure.
And my characters were dubbed steroetypical. Maybe because I have depicted them exactly as they were??? I have read book upon book in the words of Nez Perce who lived in the time I am writing about. I have conversed via e-mail with members of the tribe who have put my questions to the elders if they were unsure. If I am writing this book with that influence how, pray tell, am I making them sterotypical? Then another judge says she wishes I would go deeper into the culture - while others say that slows it down!
I will not send this or anything else to contests. And hope I run into an editor or agent who sees this for the historical value it has and not poo-poo it because it is different.
I'm through with contests!