The Kool-Aid was tasty this time around as another fantastic bunch of writers drank from the conference well, to hone their craft and expand new opportunities. What with the current solar vortex hovering over San Diego, many were at risk of mild tanning exposure, but persevered late into the wee hours of nocturnal radiance to shine bright and write hard, all with ample SPC lotion, despite the broken bar. And when the local NBC news affiliate showed up at 1 a.m. to do a story on SCWC writers, they found them hard at work in Rogue workshops, reading & critiquing. (Appreciate your running with the story, Derek; we’ll post the segment soon.)
Thanks to all the staff authors, editors and agents who brought their A-game to our many tables, as usual. And big thanks to our Special Guest Speakers, Janis Thomas (notice the spelling), Suzanne Redfearn, Laurence O’Bryan and Bhava Ram. Also to Christopher John Chater and Andrew E. Kaufman, for sharing so much during Sunday’s “E-publication: First, Last or Best Choice for Emerging Authors?”
Biggest shout out of all goes to this year’s conferees. What a talented bunch of storytellers, albeit rather polite. Now let’s get to the awards…
OUTSTANDING FICTION (Historical)
Hatchepsut, First Queen of the World
by William Roberts of Poway, CA
OUTSTANDING FICTION (YA/Urban Fantasy)
Snowfall in the City of Dreams
by Carolyn Griffiths of Los Angeles, CA
OUTSTANDING FICTION (Erotic)
Return to Haven
by Marie Wade of Houston, TX
Dis(member)ed: A Mormon Mom’s Memoir
by Anne Sacson of Los Angeles, CA
by Michael R. Shevock of Portsmouth, NH
Congratulations to the honorees and to all staff who rocked SD28. Dates for SD29 are Presidents’ Day Weekend, Feb. 13-16, 2015. Between now and then, join us in Newport Beach for LA12, Sept. 19-21, 2014, and anytime on the SCWC community Facebook Page where there’s always good gab going on and gobs of pertinent information being exchanged.
Discounted pre-registration for LA12 (in Newport Beach) opens shortly. Be there or beware. In the meantime, go forth, write well, and settle only for exceptional.
And be sure to read Michael R. Shevock’s Topic Award-winning story, “Clout,” down below.
Michael Steven Gregory
Executive Director, SCWC
Each year the SCWC*SD holds a writing contest in which all conferees are invited to participate. The rules are simple: Write a piece in any form you wish of no more than 250 words based on the topic announced Friday night. The topic for the 28th annual San Diego conference was “Clout.” According to Merriam-Webster there are four full definitions to the noun clout: 1) <dialect chiefly British> a piece of cloth or leather; 2) a blow especially with the hand; also: a hard hit in baseball; 3) a white cloth on a stake or frame used as a target in archery; 4) pull, influence <political clout>. Michael R. Shevock of Portsmouth, NH is the writer of this year’s winning entry.
Michael R. Shevock
YOU MAYBE DON’ KNOW, but de clouts is alive. You look up an you see big white clout, you say, “Ho boy! Dat pretty up dere!” But it is not just smoke in da sky. It is alive. It is full of little animals dat do majik tings dat make it rain. Oh yeah. You got blue sky, den you got no majik animals dat can make de rain.
You cannot hear de clouts, because dey are soft like de foam on top of beer, and de animals in clouts are quiet like de animals dat make bread. You call dem yeast. Not Yeats. I think he was a poet. De animals in clouts and bread can’t make a rhyme for shit, so dey never write noting.