Now that I’ve written it as a title, I think “Awards/Accomplishments” sounds pretentious as fuck.
But… there it is. And it is what it is. I mean, I’ve gotta keep track of this stuff somewhere.
OOTA’s Spilt Ink – The River Doesn’t Care
I initially joined OOTA (Out of the Asylum) because I needed to enter a competition and somebody’s Submittable Form only allowed me to enter if I were an official member of an official writing organisation, and they were the cheapest. Which is to say they didn’t want a couple hundred bucks from me like the AWA folks (Australian Writer’s Association). I don’t care how much other writers say it’s worth it, I can’t squeeze blood from a stone. So OOTA it is!
Then they had a competition for memoir’s and I entered a piece I’d been working on for a few months. It’s from a day I spent out fishing with my mother and brother back when I was in High School, and I was overjoyed to get a call from the then-chair who told me that regrettably I didn’t win the competition, but that I’d finished second!
The contest was judged by one of my Most Favourite WA Authors, Brooke Dunnell, whose book The Glass House is one of my favourites. Brooke absolutely honoured me with these words:
The narrator of this piece is a young man who has a near-death experience while fishing with his mother and brother, making him realise what truly matters. It’s a premise that’s hard to make fresh, but the author manages it through keen detail, a deep understanding of family dynamics and careful use of tone. The well-deployed symbolism merges seamlessly with its realism, and the protagonist’s self-awareness at the end further thwarts any potential for cliché.
So yeah. Wow. That’s one of my biggest, Big Stuff.
The Twisted Stringybark Short Story Award 2022 – Crazy Witch Woman
So while I didn’t even get shortlisted, I DID get longlisted or “Highly Commended” which qualifies enough to get published.
And that… is pretty cool. So there it is, my very first-ever time being a published author!
You can order the anthology Like Clockwork in ebook or print if you want to read my stuff. The whole book is pretty good, so I would strongly recommend it as there’s some truly good shit in there.
Night Parrot Press Anthology (TBD) – The Second Frog
This isn’t a competition so much as it’s just bragging rights and Super Friggin’ Cool. Night Parrot Press is not only here in Perth, but one of the people that runs it has roots in Boulder, CO much like myself. So I was already in contact with them about their awesomeness and neatitude when they held an open call for submissions of Micro Memoir.
I sent in a 500-word bit about a time my mother took me and my brother to a huge arcade/funworld at the bottom of a shopping centre. Much like my other memoir stuff, I do try not to include too much identifiable geographical information so that people can be more-easily immersed in the story. Had a friend tell me that reading my story about fishing had him feeling very much back at home in Canada while another told me she pictured a river here in Western Australia. So I’m thinking i nailed that bit, haha.
They’re in the editing process still as of 10/12/23 and I’m really looking forward to updating this when it’s finally published. STOKED.
Not As Big Stuff
Australian Writers’ Centre Furious Fiction – Annabel’s Teapot
The Furious Fiction competition is an absolute hoot. Every month they announce a list of writing prompts on a Friday and you have 55 hours to write 500 words that includes all the prompts.
You can read all about my entry that was longlisted here.
Australian Writers’ Centre Furious Fiction – The Captain
I was super-pleased, and a little bit surprised, that on only my second try at the Furious Fiction competition I got longlisted yet again. I do believe that I’ll keep trying until I’m shortlisted. Then I wanna win the whole thing, of course.
So that’s it, thus far. I very much look forward to adding to this list as time goes on. As I mention in my Query Letters and Submissions, I’ve only really been submitting to contests and such since August ’22, so I’ve got a decent track record rolling and I really hope it’s indicative of future success (I don’t care how they word it in investment brochures, heh).
Thanks to all the folks that read and give feedback and support me. My adult son, wife and teenage daughter are absolutely fkn Key Elements in all this, and it is their opinions that I truly value (sorry rest of the world…). Also to my youngest son who is cute and bouncy and leaves me alone just enough during our days for me to get stuff written. You are ALL my joy.