The Long List

Lothian Life is delighted to announce a twelve strong ‘long list’ in our Happy Ever After? short story competition.

Back in October, when we launched the competition, the remit was to write a very short story (a maximum of 500 words) that was in some way ‘uplifting’. Since then, guest judges and local authors, Sandy Bennett-Haber and Marie Campbell, have been busy reading through a pile of very welcome entries.

We originally planned to create a short list of six stories, but there were so many interesting entries, we decided to start with a long list of 10 – except it’s become twelve because we couldn’t agree which to leave out!

The variety of stories and prose-poems we received was enormous: from the tragic to the comic, and the ordinary to the extraordinary, we had crime, sci-fi and romantic fiction. And there is no question that every author made the most of their words – thank you for some excellent reading!

The longlist we’ve chosen is eclectic, to say the least. Sometimes the story itself grabbed us first, with others it was the style of the writing, or the original interpretation of the theme; the best managed to combine all three…

Sandy put it this way: ‘I was impressed by the original ideas, the character development and plot the writers established in the 500, or less words’.

We’d also like to point out that there were many great stories that didn’t make this long list; there were a lot of tough decisions made. There were a few very good entries that just didn’t fit our view of the ‘uplifting’ remit, others were just pipped to the post, so please don’t be discouraged, and do think about submitting your story to another competition or journal.

So, drum-roll, please, for the long list (in alphabetical order):

Ruth Aylett                Office Politics

Kelly Black                Seas of Hope

Patsy Collins                Is It Time Yet?

Phoebe Cooper                The Break

Helen Cormack                The Wedding Dress

Deirdre Duncan                Christmas Spirit

Siubhan McParlane                Brakefast Club

Neet Neilson                Tit for tat

Catriona Patience                Positive?

Liz Power                Rent

Adam Trodd                Airmail

Kirsti Wishart                The Flight of Widow Gibson

Congratulations to all of you!

We’ll be back in a few days with the shortlist and the three winners.



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