TL/DR *Cue Happy Dance* I placed third in a writing competition! YAY!
Last night was the annual Monash Wordfest Short Story awards ceremony. This year (like last) it was conducted via zoom and was invitation only. When I received an invite I thought it was simply because I was an entrant in the open category of the short story competition. I was therefore humbly surprised and delighted to find out that not only had I been shortlisted, but actually placed third in the competition and will receive prize money as a result.
The short story I entered was called Extinguish and it’s very much a story of our current age. Set in lockdown times (which my State is still under), it is the story of a parent trying to deal with his two children while achieving a major work task. He craves the one thing he can’t have – a cigarette.
What encouraged me to enter this story into the competition was the response of people in my Writers Group who read the story. Several of the the group are ex-smokers and they were sure the story came from lived experience (it’s not – I don’t smoke), so I knew the story was resonating with some readers. But in a competition with hundreds of entrants and judges having their own tastes, I never expected the story to do this well. You can judge the story for yourself, because Monash have published the shortlisted and winning stories here. (the link is to my story, but you can access the others from there).
In other news, I have a new online interview coming out next week. It is to promote Sovereign Assassin, which I’m pleased to report is selling well enough to keep my publisher happy. I’ll share the interview when it is ‘live’.