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We received 423 international entries in this contest, and their creativity was exceptional. Contest judge Dr. Erin Macdonald gives her reasons for awarding the top three prizes:
First Prize: First Man by Mjke Wood
Second Prize: Mall by Else Fitzgerald
Third Prize: Domesticity Complex by Sasha de Buyl-Pisco
Judge: Dr. Erin Macdonald
Astrophysicist & Sci-Fi Lecturer
FIRST PRIZE: First Man by Mjke Wood
Judge’s comments: I thought this story was a great example of using science and the suspension of disbelief we often have to do in sci-fi set close-to-home to actually create tension for the reader. You know something is a little off, because the science is explained just enough to keep you questioning what is really going on. The imagery and setting was vivid enough that I continued to think about this story and picture it long after reading.
By Mjke Wood
The landing is gentle, a kiss and a roll. No wind. No drama. I step down off the lander, place a foot on the yellow surface, and pause.
“Astarte, this is Ishtar Base. Looking good. A balmy day here at the beach.”
“Good to hear, Ishtar Base. I have clear video feed. Go to it.”
Will anyone recall those words in years to come? No. It can never be the same; each ‘first’ diluted by the firsts that went before. The Moon, Phobos, Mars … Neil Armstrong had no idea how great a giant leap was his.
There’s a ticking clock. This mission to hell will be brief. Surface temperature 460C, hot enough to boil lead. Atmospheric pressure: ninety times Earth normal. Survival time measured in minutes: each one, precious. (more…)
Science Fiction Writing Contest
No Entry Fee
Word limit: 750
Deadline: JANUARY 15, 2016
Submissions: email to
50 euro first prize (or equivalent amount in your currency)
25 euro second prize
15 euro third prize
Judge: Dr. Erin Macdonald
Astrophysicist & Sci-Fi Lecturer (more…)
Congratulations to Ann-Marie Lindstrom, who won a Write Well Award for Becky’s Song, originally published in the September 2014 issue of Brilliant Flash Fiction. For details, check out Write Well Award and be sure to read Ann-Marie’s award winning story below.
By Ann-Marie Lindstrom
When I was a little girl, Mama always called me light-headed. I never did know what that meant. Look at my hair. It’s always been the color of mud. Never was light.
Now light-fingered I knowed. Cousin Billy Frank was light-fingered. Couldn’t take him into Mr. Hobbs’ store without his taking something weren’t his. Billy Frank had a sweet tooth. And them light fingers.
And light-hearted I know. Granny was light-hearted. She could sing songs that would make you feel like things was going to be better. They might not be good right then, but you knew they was going to be better. (more…)
Many thanks to the 253 writers from Australia, Canada, England, Guyana, India, Ireland, Japan, Kenya, New Zealand, Ukraine, United States (and other undisclosed locations) who entered this writing contest!
First Prize: Diane Donovan
Second Prize: Kirby Wright
Third Prize: Corinna Underwood
Honorable Mention: Helen Picard
Judge: Glenn A. Bruce
Scriptwriter, Novelist, Political Writer
FIRST PRIZE: The Strange Voyage of A Scarecrow, A Garden and Mr Crawfield by Diane Donovan
I tend towards humor as, at the minimum, a device for relief. In this case, however, I found The Strange Voyage of A Scarecrow, A Garden and Mr Crawfield to be the cleverest writing of the lot. The premise is fresh and original, the execution fun and fairly precise, the use of language specific, and the tone whimsical. A good use of flash. Fun stuff.
The Strange Voyage of A Scarecrow, A Garden and Mr Crawfield
By Diane Donovan
Dear Mrs Crawfield,
I am writing this letter in my position as the Constable in Charge of Stapleton Police Station, and hope to set your mind at rest regarding the whereabouts of your husband, Harold.
You will recall that six days hence an earthquake of alarming severity occurred. This earthquake, while causing damage to many institutions, fortunately resulted in no loss of life.
Your husband was in his garden when the earthquake struck. He, along with his vegetable garden, various tools and a scarecrow, were shaken down a bank into the river that flows, very prettily, I’m sure, alongside your home. By some miracle the garden bed remained intact, conveying Harold rather as a raft would, rapidly downstream. The river being deep and wide took Harold and his garden through the countryside at a reasonable rate of knots (his words, dear Mrs Crawfield, and I hope they convey his excellent and undimmed sense of humour), resulting in many miles being covered over a period of four days. (more…)