Update: I WON!
This is the other big writing news I received recently. I’ve had to wait for the official press release to go out before I could make an announcement—and keeping silent about this has really driven me to the edge of ecstatic madness. But the release went out today and I can at last shout out:
I am a Finalist in The Writers of the Future Contest!
The press release is here.
The Writers of the Future is the biggest competition for new writers in science fiction and fantasy. The judges for the contest are among the most prestigious writers in the field, and the award is highly respected. Getting listed as one of nine finalists (out of maybe a thousand entrants; they don't release the numbers) is an amazing honor.
I submitted my story to the contest in December, and was notified by phone last week that I was a finalist. The nine finalists’ stories will now go to four of the judges (we won’t know who until afterwards) and they will name the First, Second, and Third Place Winners at some point late next month. Those winners will then have their stories published in the annual anthology and will get to attend an award ceremony at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel (where the first Academy Awards Ceremony was held). Three other periods of judging will occur throughout the year.
The lowdown is that I have a one-in-three chance of getting one of the main honors and making it into a major anthology. However, even if I don’t place in the top three, I am now and forever a Writers of the Future Finalist, which is a Big Damn Deal. It’s certainly the best news I’ve gotten in my writing life so far. However, if I do win, I’ll have to worry about how to get to the ceremony in Hollywood. It’s a ten-minute drive from where I live, but sometimes with traffic it can’t take a whole half hour to get there.
(I have not posted the name of the story because the judging is done blind.)