Monday, July 23, 2007

Haruah's Fiction Contest

Go here for the photo.

Haruah's second-annual contest is cranking up!This year we are limiting the contest to stories: anything from a 300-word flash to 5000-word short stories. The trigger this year will be a photo by Jan Cornelis Loenen titled "Meeting at Sunrise."

Use this photo as inspiration to let your imagination run wild. Be original, be interesting, just don't be boring or cliché. Dig out a story that not only gives us an engaging plot and attention-grabbing characters, but also subtly shows a truth through dealing with life's hardships and challenges.

Remember, we are a mainstream/literary magazine, not a speculative fiction magazine. You have from now until midnight, 8/31/07 to write and submit your story. They will be evaluated and the results posted shortly before 10/1/07. The winners will be highlighted in our October issue. The following will be awarded:

First place: - $45.00 and a contributor's print copy—The photo will accompany your story

Second place: - $35.00 and a contributor's print copy

Third place: - $25.00 and a contributor's print copy

2 Honorable mentions: - $10.00 and a contributor's print copy

To submit, access our Author/Artist tool and scroll until you see the announcement for the Haruah contest on the main page. Click the "Enter Haruah 2007 Fiction Contest" button and follow the instructions from there. Note: don't include your name or personal information in the submission as this will be an anonymously judged contest. Submissions should conform to our Submission Guidelines.

There is no entry fee for the contest. Your stories will be judged on the following:

How well the story relates to the photo trigger

How complete and believable the plot is

How well the characterizations were done

The quality of the writing prose

The overall impact of the story both to move and enlighten We look forward to reading the various interpretations of this photo.

Thanks for your participation.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Authentic Parenting Blog Tour

Hectic days as we approach vacation time. Visiting Tina Howard's Blog, I realized this is the first week of Mary E. DeMuth's, Authentic Parenting blogtour. Mary is a fabulous christian writer. I like how she isn't so full of herself or so full of how perfectly believing and wonderfully holy she is. She's just like you and me, a person with flaws who is striving to become what the Master intended her to be.

I'll be hosting Mary on this blog on the fifth week of the tour. Have got it on my calendar that goes ping...also busy trying to master this techno stuff so I can do the recorded interview thing. That opens up a whole new world of possibilities as far as interviews go.


Catching the rhythm of reading and writing, I thought I'd apply for membership to the litcritter's mailing list. I must confess to suffering from a disease called lurking, and the act of listening in on conversations is something I enjoy more than me doing the talking. Well, I do talk...but that's mostly when the "spirit" moves me.

Reading Dean's blog and his thoughts on Philippine Speculative Fiction, reminded me of a conversation I had with my writer aunt (Evelyn Miranda-Feliciano), where I defended my writing what my mom called "non-christian" themes. My point being this, that my not being preachy or moralistic doesn't mean I don't believe or I don't have faith. I write the best I can and strive to go beyond my best...isn't that already a sign of faith?

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Writer Interrupted:

That's the kind of life I've been living for the past week. Samuel started on solids this week, and we're trying to get him to drink from the bottle. Add to that this week is the last week before the summer break. It's been raining lots and doesn't feel or look like summer at all. I hope the weather cooperates and gives us some beach weather when hubby has his two week break.

We're planning a surprise for our train-loving son. We are going to take a two day trip to Keulen with the ICE train. It's a secret, but since he doesn't read this (he's seven and more interested in games) I can safely write about it here. I'm looking forward to it too, never having been in an ICE train. That will be an experience. Also looking forward to Keulen.

I do love to travel. I want to go back to Paris again...maybe next year. Last time we were in Paris, someone told us it's not a good idea to visit Paris in the summer months. So, I'm shooting for sometime in October next year. Joel wants to climb the Eiffel Tower again, and he still talks about how we went up to the top of Montparnasse and looked out over the entire city. I'll never forget the look of awe on his face, and these words:

Mommy, my dream of becoming a giant has finally come true.

He was so enchanted by Paris, and we hadn't seen everything yet. So, we will definitely revisit Paris someday. With all this travelling, I suppose it isn't a surprise that he's got this desire to become an adventurer someday. But I think he's got the temperament for it. He's a child of wonder.

I planned to do the flash challenge on LH, but failed again. Baby duties. Someday, I'll get my old rhythm back.These days, taking inspiration from Dean Alfar, I do my writing guerrilla style.
What I find interesting is how it's possible for me now to slip into the zone where I left the story yesterday. Currently working on a story called Cordoba's End which I've been adding a couple of hundred words per day to. I've divided it into mini-chapters between the four main characters who are appearing in this story....and I've even roughed out how I envision the story ending.

Reading through my files, I find it interesting to note that most of my stories aren't happily ever after stories....also have got a lot of open-endings. I wonder whether it's got anything to do with my frame of mind, or if it's got something to do with me knowing that beyond the fairytale happily ever after isn't something that just happens.

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