Text Box: Text Box: Winning Entries Fourth Quarter 2012

First: There Are More Tears Shed …  by Lynne Voyce

Second: Into the Dark by Anne Oatley

Third: Scab by Vanessa Savage

Click on the titles to read the three winning stories

 

Highly Commended: The First Time I Saw Him by Ceri Lowe-Petraske

 

Judge’s Report for the fourth quarter’s competition 2012 from Sue Moorcroft

 

What an amazing short list of 25 entries I was sent to judge.

I wish I saw this quality of stories all the time. It made my job incredibly difficult and the stories I eventually settled on - after a lot of reading and rereading - reflect my love for a complete story as well as the quality of writing and the use of emotion, drama and characterisation.

 

1st: There Are More Tears Shed …

There Are More Tears Shed … eventually came to the head of the list because the ending wrung my heart. In a few words it speaks of hopelessness and having to live with failure and defeat, even though it was unavoidable. I love writing that evokes mental pictures with phrases such as There she lies a pink frocked swastika, a blot of deepest red spreading beneath her. This story shows us how everything can change in a moment.

 

2nd: Into the Dark

In second place, Into the Dark is, indeed, dark in its subject matter. An old but terrible series of murders, The Moors Murders, are referenced by the first names of Ian and Myra. I like the way that the story made me consider the dynamics of the relationship between the brutal pair, and whether Myra was really unduly influenced by her infatuation with her partner in crime. It’s a good story that leaves the readers with food for thought.

 

3rd: Scab

Scab drew me in not just by creating sympathy for the narrator’s situation, picked over so unsympathetically by eight-year-old Molly Rivers, but by the structure of one-way conversation. It allows us into the narrator’s feelings and thoughts whilst keeping Molly out of them, cramming in a lot of information without any sense of rush, info dump or spoonfeeding. I get a clear impression of the narrator’s tough exterior disguising her pain and my heart goes out to her.

 

Highly Commended: The First Time I Saw Him

Highly commended is The First Time I Saw Him. It utilises a vulnerable narrator who lets us into her world and shows us how she was preyed upon and how she dealt with it. I like this story most for the narrator’s voice as it can be hard to ‘get’ the voice of an adult with learning difficulties without making her sound like a child.

 

So that’s my selection. I hope you like it. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to read such a great short list.

 

www.suemoorcroft.com

Twitter: @suemoorcroft

Facebook: sue.moorcroft.3

 

We now regularly receive several hundred entries each quarter, so those making the long and short lists should feel very proud.

 

Short Listed Entries — in alphabetical order

 

A Lifetime too Late by Tony Beet

A String of Lights by Penny Aldred

About Life by Mandy Huggins

Alice in Saunaland by Tracy Fells

Best Served Cold by Helen Holmes

Crazy Lady by Alice Parrant

Globetrotting by Astrid Hill

Home Comforts by David Salter

I Remember It Well by David Salter

In a flash by Eryl Samuel

Into the Dark by Anne Oatley

Jack-o'-Lantern by Kevlin Henney

Message Received by Susan Howe

Mother and Son by Bill Myers

Norell and Nicotine by Marie Gethins

Pretty Maids All In A Row by Vanessa Savage

Pub Quiz by Alison Wassell

Scab by Vanessa Savage

Shadows by Colin Watts

The First Time I Saw Him by Ceri Lowe-Petraske

There Are More Tears Shed … by Lynne Voyce

Triple Word Score by Ken Elkes

Two Sisters and a Train by Elizabeth Willcox

Under Observation by Ceri Lowe-Petraske

Where is Yusef? by Elizabeth Willcox

 

Long Listed Entries — in alphabetical order

 

A Lifetime too Late by Tony Beet

A short French story by Alison Jane Green

A String of Lights by Penny Aldred

About Life by Mandy Huggins

Alice in Saunaland by Tracy Fells

Best Served Cold by Helen Holmes

Best Served Cold by Cathy De'Freitas

Conditions by Laura James

Crazy Lady by Alice Parrant

Globetrotting by Astrid Hill

Glory by Anthony Bynom

Gone by Brenda Old

Good Mourning by Emily Sharma

Graveyard Shift by E.L Marks

Home Comforts by David Salter

I Remember It Well by David Salter

If Only by Paul Chiswick

In a flash by Eryl Samuel

Into the Dark by Anne Oatley

Jack-o'-Lantern by Kevlin Henney

Little Swan by Rhoda Greaves

Locked In by Maria Powell

Marigold Day by Sherri Turner

Message Received by Susan Howe

Mother and Son by Bill Myers

Mr and Mrs Bobbit by Hannah M Teasdale

My Courage by Tessa Day

My Father's Library of Litter by L.A. Craig

Norell and Nicotine by Marie Gethins

Passing of Time by Ruth West

Perfect Match by Sheila Jones

Pretty Maids All in a Row by Vanessa Savage

Pub Quiz by Alison Wassell

Recognition by Vanessa Horn

Rehearsals by A.M. Hall

Scab by Vanessa Savage

Shadows by Colin Watts

The First Time I Saw Him by Ceri Lowe-Petraske

The Mermaid by Jacqueline Allan

There Are More Tears Shed … by Lynne Voyce

Triple Word Score by Ken Elkes

Two Sisters and a Train by Elizabeth Willcox

Under Observation by Ceri Lowe-Petraske

Walpurgisnaacht by Bibi Jacob

Where is Yusef? by  Elizabeth Willcox

Wish Upon a Star by Debi Sands