Looks like Joni Labaqui has posted (finally!) the latest list of HM, Semis, and Finalists for this last quarter of Writers of the Future, vol. 27. I’m proud to say I am rather chummy with three people in particular:
AnneMarie Buhl, who blogs as izanobu and with whom I attended a couple of Dean Wesley Smith workshops in February — terrific woman, heck of a writing work ethic (puts me to shame) and is sure to either a) win or b) disqualify herself via professional sales, given her skill and prolific production.
Amanda McCarter, who I have been an Alpha Reader for — and who returns the favor in kind — since 2008. Like Annie, she’s got serious skills, and her Silver Honorable Mention would no doubt have been a Finalist or Semi-Finalist in years past. The competition up top is getting so good these days, even the best writers have to fight hard to score!
Laurie Gaulinas, who is in the same Alpha Reading group with me as Amanda, and who has scored HM, Finalist, and Semi-Finalist several times before. I see Laurie as I saw Brennan Harvey: someone who keeps hitting so close around the bullseye, when she finally does hit dead-center, it will be a thing of beauty.
Huge congratulations to all three women. Terrific work, and I am only sorry none of you scored higher. As I have been saying most of the day today, I think the tippy-top of the WOTF slush has gotten furiously good. Big, fresh talent playing up there. With serious game. Not like it was back when the Contest started and they despaired of ever seeing 12 worthy stories every year. Now, they see dozens of worthy stories every quarter, and the hairs being split to determine who advances, and who has to come back to try again next time, are being split more finely than ever.
This is actually a good thing. The tougher the competition, the more sweet the win when it finally does come. Makes me appreciate my modest Vol. 26 appearance because the Vol. 26 crew is composed of some serious, serious talent — people working and selling at pro level and who are pretty much not waiting around to get busy with their careers.