$5,850 Tom Howard Short Story, Essay & Prose Contest 2009 Results
The 2010 Prose Contest is now open. Prize money has been increased (the First Prize is now a whopping $3,000!) but entry fees remain pegged at $15 for stories, essays, etc., with a maximum length of 5,000 words. There is no limit to the number of entries you may submit and no barriers to previously published work, or even works that have won prizes or commendations in other contests, except that you must be in a position to allow Winning Writers to publish your entry on their website should your work win a cash prize.
A final reminder that the Annual Tom Howard Poetry Contest for Verse in All Styles and Genres will close in just over two weeks at midnight on September 30. This means midnight, Pacific Time, for online entries. For postal entries, it means that envelopes must bear a date stamp no later than October 1. Remember, your entry does not have to reach us by October 1, but carry a date stamp no later than October 1.
The sites for the Tom Howard Poetry Contest are: http://tomhowardpoetry.bravepages.com and http://www.winningwriters.com .
And now the Short Story, Essay and Prose Contests Awards for 2009. Professor Konrad and I would like to congratulate every author on the winning and commended lists. We also want to express our deep appreciation for all the wonderful moments of reading pleasure you have afforded us. Selecting winners from such an embarrassment of riches was indeed a hard task, but also a pleasurable one as it enabled us to re-read some of our favorite prose entries as many as five or six times.
Unfortunately, although we awarded five extra prizes of $100 each, we were still unable to accommodate many, many really distinguished entries. In a perfect world, all the writers listed below would walk away with cash in their pockets.
If you are not one of the fortunate few, you can take heart by reversing the publicity for my book Write Ways to WIN WRITING CONTESTS: How To Join the Winners' Circle for Prose and Poetry Awards, NEW EXPANDED EDITION . How did the blurb go? Ah, yes: "To research his book, Mr Reid entered 80 major writing contests over an 18-month period, winning cash prizes or commendations no less than 27 times, which is slightly better than a one-in-three success rate." 28 times actually, because one commendation came to hand long after the book had gone to press.
Whichever figure you take, however, the fact still remains that I was seemingly unsuccessful in 51 or 52 contests. My essay, "Fan-Fan", for instance, didn't even make the commended lists in the first six contests in which I entered it. But I had faith in this essay, despite the fact that all my friends told me that an essay about a pet rabbit, no matter how heartfelt, was never going to make the big time. I entered it for the Non-Fiction Award in the prestigious Southern Cross Literary Competition 2002 and it defeated 720 other entries to win the $500 First Prize!
So if you didn't make the winning or commended lists this time, my message is: Have faith in yourself! Don't Give Up!
As said above, the 2010 prose contest is now open. First Prize has increased to $3,000. Entry fees remain at $15 for a story or essay or prose piece up to 5,000 words. If you did not win a cash prize, there is no bar against re-submitting your entry, although I would go over it carefully. Errors in grammar (such as sudden and unexplained switches in tense) and spelling can make all the difference in a popular, close-fought contest like this one. Full details can be found at Winning Writers (the contests are top left of the page), http://www.winningwriters.com or http://shortstorycontest.0catch.com (that "0" is a zero if you are typing the address yourself).
All my very best wishes!
TOM HOWARD SHORT STORY, ESSAY AND PROSE CONTEST 2009
FINAL PRIZE LIST
1. $2,000 Gabriela Blandy: The Buck
2. $1,000 Debbie Fox: Attachments
3. $500 Vicky Gouldthorp: The Phone Call
4. $250 Dixon Hearne: The Right Eye of Justice
High Distinction (in order of merit):
5. $200 Laurie Gough: The Border Crossing
6. $200 John Biggs: Total Eclipse
7. $200 Susan Keith: Kicking Up Red Clay
8. $200 James Dickson: The Decision
9. $200 Johnmichael Simon: Terminal
Most Highly Commended (in order of merit):
10. $100 Raymond Trainor: A Death on 33rd
11. $100 Mary Caperton Morton: The Suffer Fest
12. $100 Ray Clark: Promises To Keep
13. $100 Barbara Westwood: Taste of Dirt
14. $100 Fred McGavran: The Pennington Scarabs
15. $100 Desiree Winkle: Summer Friends
16. $100 Margo Frazier: The Prophetess of State Street
17. $100 Erin Neil: Boston Public
18. $100 Evelyn Krieger: Child of the Light
19. $100 Sally Hermsdorfer: In the Colored Waiting Room
20. $100 Annie Eagleton: At the Pagoda of the Golden Tortoise
Highly Commended (in order of merit): Jodi Diderrich for Hiram's Rock; Dixon Hearne for both Journey Forth and Native Heart; Judy Willman for The Ride of My Life.
Other Highly Commended entries (in random order): Amanda Stein for Two Birds; Beverly Lessard for Jesse's Great Escape; Terrence O'Keeffe for The Quest for Karas; Sheri Snively for Table Grace; Efua Traore for Neighbors; Gerard Thistleton for Wild Grapes; Susan Lanigan for Together Forever; Nancy Gould Thompson for Tails from the Crypt; Rachel Lyon for Balance; Peggy Troupin for A Memoir of Nadezhda Yakovlevna Mandelshtam; Tracey Cramer-Kelly for Born Rescuer; Rachelle Strawther for The Ignorance of Benevolence; Edson Atwood for Stargazing; Michelle Sim for Winter; Gregory Papadoyiannis for The City Beyond the River; Tony Smark for Once in a Blue Moon; Helen Bar-Lev for Bobbie; Judy Winter for Grace; S. Elaine Nelson for The Blood of Francesca Vitale; Vicky Gouldthorp for Best of Intentions; Susan Keith for Cross Town; Karen Scott for Prayer for the Dying; John Leahy for Play It Again Sam; Joseph Cavano for Phineas Rising; Christine Ferguson for The True Story of the Kent Tekulve; Andrea Moriah for The Fence; Kristen Gudsnuk for The Optimist; Michelle Handsaker for Three Essays; Justine Mazin for Terror's Passage; Nancy Roberts for The Maintenance Man; Brighten Cambridge for Lazarus Come Forth; Michael Noonan for The Different Complexions of the Detective Story; Kathryn Jordan for Breaking Point; Kriss Erickson for Autumn Miracle; Sanjay Chopra for Odysseus; Peter Charles Spanton for Trees; Jack Ellison for Amaboo; Rachel Poliquin for The Flying Men; Wandy Dager for In Your Dreams; Richard DiPirro for Quiet River; Linda McGovern for Michael's Gift; Kirstin Hirni for Grandpa's Shadow; Jeff Howe for The Train; Vince Williams for The Broadcast Journalist's Concise Handbook; Herb Wakeford for Safe on an Error; Persephone V. Kimberly for Death of a Mortal Woman; Denise Falcone for Yellow; Lester Colodny for both Snake Eyes and The Agent; Anthony A. Mastrantuone for Face in the Flower; Jim Cassidy for Aries; Katie Kyzivat for The Difference; Mari Grana for Reiver; Erika Carmody for Sally The Pink Cheetah; Diana Woodcock for Arabian Desert Revelations; Mary Lou Simms for The King of the Geese; Laura T. Jensen for Up Up and Away; Gerald E. Sheagren for Remembering Roxanne; Bob Tracz for Captain Nat.