Dear Writers, Thank you to those of you who entered our Annual Best Opening Contest. After reviewing over 200 entries, we’d like to congratulate our winner and three runner-ups.
First Place: Baxter Clare Trautman Lieutenant L.A. Franco glanced at her Timex. Eight fifteen and already ninety in the shade. She watched her rookie detective prowl the scene. The kid’s first homicide, and wouldn’t it have to be a dead man sitting naked in an ’88 Caddy with a headless chicken in his lap.
Runner-ups (in alphabetical order): Barbara Bagwell, Nancy Klann & Malu Paradise
From Barbara Bagwell: My Name is Sheila. I’m fifteen and have yet to kiss a boy. Not that it bothers me. They’re all kind of gross. The girls at school wear makeup to impress them, but Mom said I looked like a streetwalker and won’t let me. I stole her mascara to look awake.
From Nancy Klann: I looked at the lime green walls of the Wash-O-Rama and wondered who on God’s earth would have picked such a color. That’s when an orange flyer taped to the far wall caught my eye. The bold, black letters screamed: URGENT, PLEASE HELP ME FIND MY MISSING LEG.
From Malu Paradise: Willie isn’t a bad person. He’s just a bad boy. The summer before he was suspended for selling pot and cigarettes in the girls' bathroom, Willie shot a bottle rocket at Nancy Lavello’s prom dress. It was funny at the time, but nobody knew the consequences it would have.
We’d also like to name several honorable mentions, listed in alphabetical order:
•Tim Kelly •Sandra McGee •Stacy Ryan •Ruth Wire •Laurie Young
First place will receive a tuition scholarship to the 2014 SBWC, June 7-12th. The three runner-ups will receive partial scholarships to this year’s conference.
Nicole Starczak SBWC, Director
“Eavesdrop and write it down from memory—gives you a stronger sense of how people talk and what their concerns are. I love to eavesdrop!” – Jane Smiley, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for her novel A Thousand Acres and 2014 SBWC opening night speaker