Thanks to a forum post on the NaNoWriMo websites, I was made aware of the Amazon.com Breakthrough Novel Award. The deadline I believe is February 6 2011 so if you just completed your novel yesterday, you have some time to finish editing it. Or maybe you have a novel already completed, and you want to try your luck on the opportunity to get a publishing contract with friggin Penguin which includes a $15,000 advance.
I think, since my plan was to have the novel edited and complete by the end of December (is that still possible? I think so), I might have a go at submitting it. I won't worry about doing the whole "cut it to a short story" thing until after I know whether or not I have enough to turn out a proper novel. I think I do, it just needs work.
This is sort of a "why the heck not" kind of deal - I fully expect that my novel - or short story collection, however it ends up - will be available via the self publishing route. Hopefully though, somebody sees this blog post and goes "Holy shit I should submit my novel to this contest and friggin WIN that bitch"
*ahem* carry on.