It’s official. I’m one of the eight finalists in the 1st quarter 2009 Writers of the Future competition.
The contest, sponsored by the L. Ron Hubbard Foundation, is open to writers of science fiction or fantasy who haven’t yet placed three or more of their short stories in pro-level publications.
Four times a year, eight finalists are selected from a field of 1,000+ entrants by novelist K.D. Wenworth, a two-time Nebula Award finalist, and those eight stories are passed along for final judging by a team of judges that includes the likes of Algis Budrys, Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle, Orson Scott Card, Kevin J. Anderson, Greg Benson, Tim Powers and other notables.
The seven other finalists for 1st quarter are Alex Black of Oregon, Tom Crosshill of Connecticut. David Gullen of Surrey, England, Vincent Jorgensen of California, Robert Pritchard of California, Lee Seentes of New Zealand and Brad Torgersen of Utah.
Three winners — first, second and third — will be selected by the judges and that’s when things get a bit giddy.
The first place winner receives a cash prize of $1,000; second place gets $750 and third, $500. Each of the three winning stories also earn a place in the annual Writers of the Future anthology.
Each August, the twelve winners from the previous year are invited to attend a week-long workshop, all expenses paid by the Hubbard Foundation, and at the end of the week, the winners are honored at a black-tie awards ceremony.
I haven’t made it that far yet, but I can dream. And I am pretty psyched about making finalist with my first entry in the contest.
If you’re interested in knowing more about the competition, check out the Writers’ of the Future web site. Jordan Lapp, managing editor of Every Day Fiction, and 1st place winner in the 3rd quarter 2008 competition, also has a raft of great links at his blog, Without Really Trying.
Wish me luck, if you will. Winning this would be a real leg up.