Sarah Selecky has announced the final results of the WCDR 2014 Short Story Contest. The WCDR congratulates the winners, and we look forward to seeing your entries published in Renaissance, our short story anthology due out later this year. We thank all who entered and are pleased to see so many WCDR members take top prizes.
The winners are:
1st Place- prize $1,000
Allergies Stephanie Phil Dwyer
2nd Place- prize $400
Before and After Corrie Adams
3rd Place- Prize $200
Pearl Earbobs Gwen Tuinman
Honourable Mentions- Prize $25 and publication credit
Black As Sin Anne MacLachlan
The Night Traveller Jennifer Sutton
Here’s what Sarah had to say about the winning entries:
I chose this arresting story as the contest winner because it took big risks – and they worked! The second person point of view, the obsessive narration and fixation on font design, the compulsive repetition in language — this story uses language sculpturally, and form and content work together to create a consciousness that lifts off the page and becomes real. It was a pleasure to find this story in the entries, as one would feel delight at discovering a gemstone.
Before and After
I was enchanted by the gorgeous language in this story – the writing evokes a humid summer evening with emotions gathering like rainclouds, so thick you can taste them. The story occurs just before a major transition in the narrator’s life, and everything feels pumped up and tingly before the drop. The language is luminous and embodied: these sentences radiate.
This story is beautifully written, and I read it several times, admiring the craftsmanship – confident, strong, with sophisticated depth and design. I recognized the first sentence, of course (the prompt) but it was the rest of the opening paragraph that gripped me. The stakes are life and death, the voice is honest and authentic, the language sepia-tinted from history, and the drama is real.
Of all of the sci-fi and fantasy entries, the following two stories stood out. I loved reading these two, because in both cases, they made me forget I was reading for a contest, and I enjoyed losing myself in the stories themselves. I’d like to give them honourable mentions, because they certainly were fresh and exciting to me:
Black as Sin
This story changed my perspective on the classic tale: I’ve never thought about Snow White this way before, and the writing transported me to another time and place.
The Night Traveller
The attention to detail is wonderful! The language – and the verisimilitude it evokes — make this story feel chilling and real. Again, I was transported — I lost myself in this other world.
Thank you for inviting me to judge this contest! I send congratulations and high-fives to all of the writers who submitted stories this year.
Winner of the $250 prize for the 2014 Contest for the cover of our Renaissance Anthology is:
Ingrid Ruthig, with her innovative take on rebirth and reimagining: Weaving Stories.
“One particular word in this year’s anthology title struck a chord – “Renaissance.” It was that historic cultural movement signalling the rebirth of curiosity and freedom of the imagination. It was discovery and learning. It was knowledge spread far and wide, thanks to the Gutenberg press. It was possibility. And it continues to encompass all that, and more. Situated as it is in this title, the word suggests a reawakening to the pleasures of short fiction, maybe even a re-seeing, reinvention, or reimagining. The artwork I chose to represent that feeling is a detail from the prototype of a new textwork series I’ve begun. It, too, is a reimagining, of sorts. Based on two portraits of Marie Antoinette, the image suggests that what we think we know of any person’s story is based on a weaving of fact and fiction. At best, it’s an incomplete tale. At worst, a serious manipulation. By revisiting the picture, or the story, or the short fiction form, we open up to the possibilities of what it might be. And rediscover it for ourselves.”
The 2014 Renaissance Anthology will include the Top Winners, Longlist stories and a few extra entries, chosen for their excellence. It will be launched in the fall of 2014. Stay tuned for more details!