My article and essay writing instructor mentions writing contests frequently in class. She encourages the students to enter numerous writing contests and thinks that the often $10 and up entry fees are worth it. Me? I'm not so sure. I'm on the fence about shooting work off to writing contests unless I feel strongly that I have a good piece. Many contests require the entries come via snail mail, which feels outdated but I don't mind that too much. Reading the microscopic and lengthy rules, however, can really take time. I usually only enter 1-2 contests per year and try to do ones that are without entry fees- like many writing contests for students.
What's your take on writing contests?