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2012 Short Story and Poetry Contest Winners

Judges Gina Oschner and Sue Parman have announced the winners of the 2012 Oregon Writers Colony annual writing contests. First-place winners through honorable mentions are invited to read an excerpt at the awards program.

Short Story Fiction

1st place

Patricia Barnhart
Lakeview, Oregon
Ellen Gregory

Gina Oschner’s note: “When I read ‘Ellen Gregory’ I knew I was in the confidant hands of a talented storyteller. The writing is clean, precise, imaginative, and it leaps off the page.”

2nd place

Shirley Dixon
Portland, Oregon
A Different Calling

Gina Oschner’s note: “Voice thrums behind A Different Calling, pulling the reader forward into a world we could not inhabit if not for the care and attention to description and detail afforded in the story”

3rd place

Diane Manley
Eugene, Oregon
The Favorite

First Honorable Mention

Harry Demarest
Corvallis, Oregon
Johnny Angel

Other Honorable Mentions (alphabetical by author)

Darlene Buechel, Chilton, Wisconsin, Six Rules for Surviving a Stepdad
Patricia MacAodha, Portland, Oregon, The Witch with the Backpack
John J. White, Merritt Island, Florida, Beneath the Wintry Sky

Judges Panel “Entries of Note” (alphabetical by author)

(These made it into the top ten lists of at least three judges, or high on the list of at least one judge.)
Patricia Barnhart, Lakeview, Oregon, Piece by Piece
Valerie Lake, Corvallis, Oregon, Jose’s Boots
Diane Miller, Sweethome, Oregon, The Struggle to Lose It
Chet Skibinski, Lake Oswego, Oregon, The Prince and his Tunnels
Patricia A. Smith, Corvallis, Oregon, Birthday Surprise

Short Story Nonfiction

1st place

Morgan Songi
Eugene, Oregon
Spirit Nights

Gina Oschner’s note: “In Spirit Nights the writer thoughtfully weaves an examination of past and present, memory and absence. The author skillfully architects exposition, summary, and scene to create a blended narration that reads in some places like poetry.”

2nd place

Donelle Knudsen
Richland, Washington
Ashes to Ashes and the Spirit of Forgiveness

3rd place

Cheryl Sears
Portland, Oregon
Prejudice Revisited

Gina Oschner’s note: “Both Ashes to Ashes and Prejudice Revisited struck me as being authentic and candid journeys through painful territory. Both authors explore through well-crafted scene and thoughtful narration their struggles in accepting some form of loss as well as the recognition that to be human is to be flawed in some manner”

First Honorable Mention

Leland Spencer
Monument, Oregon
Junkpile Go-Cart

Honorable Mentions (alphabetical by author)

Valerie Lake, Corvallis, Oregon, Invasive Species
Genny Lynch, Lebanon, Oregon, Kissing Lessons
Jean Peterson, Nehalem, Oregon, Border Banditos

Judges Panel “Entries of Note” (alphabetical by author)

(These made it into the top ten lists of at least three judges, or high on the list of at least one judge.)
Judith B. Allen, Manzanita, Oregon, Twenty Questions
Donelle Knudsen, Richland, Washington, Desert Rose or a Blooming Miracle
Rick Lamplugh, Corvallis, Oregon, Mystery at Trout Lake
Laura Loomis, Pittsburg, California, Ghost House

Elizabeth Bolton Poetry Contest

1st place

Barb McMakin
Crestwood, Kentucky
Familiar Skeletons

2nd place

Morgan Azinger
Portland, Oregon
Indescribable Things

3rd place

Karen Keltz
Tillamook, Oregon
Miasma

First Honorable Mention

Eileen Malone
Broadmoor Village, California
Whale Watching Guy

Other Honorable Mentions (alphabetical by author)

Morgan Azinger, Portland, Oregon, American Apocalypse
Ellanaine Lockie, California, Just Desserts
Morgan Songi, Eugene, Oregon, Weeds

Poetry judge Parman commented, “I’ve just finished my fifth perusal of these wonderful poems, long enough for some to drift to the top and others to the bottom. Many of the poems entered in the contest were full of pain and sharp experience; many were good stories (I’m a sucker for a good story), but when I had to choose between an explicit story told with only the barest gesture toward the poetic medium versus a tightly knit poem containing the hinted ghost of a story, I went for the ghost versus the explicitly told tale. Also, all things being roughly equal, a good title can make a difference.”