Writers & Illustrators of the Future Blog

The purpose of this blog is to provide a forum for winners, judges, entrants and anyone interested in sharing information regarding the contests and the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future volumes. For more information you can also go to www.writersofthefuture.com

Friday, December 21, 2007

Words of Wisdom from K.D. Wentworth or Tips On How To Win the Writers Contest - The Year In Review!

Hey, gang, it's the end of the fourth quarter, and I've been thinking back over the year's entries. Here are a few hints to improve your chances.

1. Avoid gratuitous and on-stage sex scenes. Off-stage sex is fine if it's necessary for the plot, but on-stage hijinks would make it inappropriate to market the anthology in as many markets as we would like.

2. Don't write about serial killers unless there's something supernatural going on. Ordinary serial killers do not qualify as fantasy. Also, most serial killer stories are horror, not dark fantasy, and so do not fit our guidelines.

3. Get your best ammunition on the first page. Put whatever makes this science fiction or fantasy up front. Also, don't start with an extended scene that only functions as an info dump. If you think you need a prologue, try breaking the information up instead and salting it throughout the story. Prologues can slow down a reader's immersion in the story.

4. If you're writing hard sf, do your research and get your facts right. The judges love hard sf entries, but the science has to be dead-on. You can't have diamond ships that shatter when iron runs into them or creatures that can blithely go from Earth normal pressure to survive without distress under Jupiter's pressures without explanation. Even though it's only scientific handwaving (because if we really could do these things, we'd be out there doing them, not writing sf stories about them), it has to sound plausible.

5. On the other hand, though, don't spend pages telling me how your space drive works. Again, just make it sound plausible and mention enough accurate scientific details to convince your reader.

6. And, lastly, if you're writing a fight scene, remember that you don't have to lovingly choreograph every single blow on both sides. I've seen too many fight scenes that go on for pages. The reader just wants to know who won and what it cost both the winner and the loser. A short description is fine, but anything longer slows the story down. It doesn't matter who hit whose head/nose/ear/stomach. It just matters who came out on top and what kind of shape they're in now.

Have a great holiday season! K.D. Wentworth - Coordinating Judge of the Writers of the Future

Thursday, December 20, 2007

4th Quarter Illustrator Winners Announced!

The judging is in and our 3 illustrator winners for the 4th quarter are:

Gustavo Bollinger of Cordoba, Argentina

William Ruhlig from Pretoria, South Africa

Kyle Phillips of Tolland, Connecticut

This is truely an International contest.

Over the next several days I will feature one of the artists per day.
(I only place 3 images at a time on the blog as that is what most systems can handle.)

Congratulations to all of you!!!

Best, Joni

Monday, December 17, 2007

4th Quarter Writer Winners Announced!!

We now have the winners for the 4th quarter of the 2007 contest. They are:

1st Place - Erin Cashier of Boulder Creek California for her story Cruciger

2nd Place - Sonia Timms of Hamersley Australia for her story Crown of Thorns

3rd Place - Jeannette Cheney of Edmond,Oklahoma for her story Taking a Mile

Congratulations to the three of you.

Best, Joni

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Randall Ensley - Illustrator Winner XXIII Has Booksigning

Here is Randall (and fans) at the Writers and Illustrators of the Future favorite bookstore in the New England area: The Booklover's Gourmet.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Clip of Writers of the Future on Audible.com. Check it Out!

Dear All,

Audible.com just sent out their monthly newsletter featuring a short clip from Writers of the Future Vol 23. If you haven't gotten your copy yet, I highly recommend that you do --