The PARSEC Science Fiction & Fantasy Short Story Contest results are in for 2008, at least unofficially. I received my letter today.
There were 89 valid entries this year, of which twenty-one were read by the screeners and twelve passed along to the final judges. My story The Dwarves of Iron Hammer was one of the twenty-one that ultimately fell short of the final round.
The rejection included some wonderful feedback from the screeners. They had no problem with the writing but the story fell short on plot and story arc, and the ending was a bit weak.
…the shallowness of the plot sank an otherwise acceptable story
I’m a bit embarrassed to admit just how close to the deadline I started my story. Even so, I think I’m on the right track. I think the screener’s comments were right on the mark. The lack of world building and the rush to finish the story for the deadline hurt the story as a whole. I’m going to sit down and see if I can fix the plot issues and take the story from acceptable to something remarkable.
Congratulations to the winners and good luck elsewhere to the rest!
[Crossposted from stonetable.org. If you'd like to comment, you can do so either here or there.]