The 19th mini-contest was held in December 2012. This mini-contest asked contestants to write a plain sentence with a boring adjective or adverb, then write a sentence that replaces the adjective or adverb with more evocative language.
The three highest-scoring entries did not receive a “no” vote from any of the seven judges. On the other hand, we had seven judges and six different entries that got labeled “favorite.” And four of the entries that got labeled “favorite” by one judge got labeled “no” by at least two judges.
We received 57 entries. Three entries won cash prizes and four won honorable mention. Four of our winners have never been published in OTP before.
Third Place ($5) by Evelyn Krieger (third place in short story contest #16)
1) The girl was suicidal.
2) The girl imagined herself slicing open the thin skin of her wrist, but feared she would bleed only dead leaves.
Second Place ($10) by Kathy O’Shaughnessy (hon. ment. in mini-con #16)
1) The scythe was quick and quiet.
2) The scythe whispered with each pass as it sliced through the grass and laid it softly aside: another swing, another step, another swath, another whisper.
First Place ($15) by Corinna Weyreter (new to OTP)
1) John was tired.
2) John rubbed his palms hard against his forehead, trying to force the fog from his mind that three cups of coffee had failed to shift.
Honorable Mentions (no money, just fame)
Four other entries scored highly enough to earn honorable mentions.
1) Sabrina was ambivalent.
2) Sabrina wept over her father’s body with a tissue crumpled in one fist and the crimson stained knife she had just used in the other.
(by Holly Riordan, new to OTP)
1) Miss Abigail dressed slowly.
2) Miss Abigail teased her clothes back on like a stripper in reverse, prolonging her performance as she savored the caress of undergarments sliding into place.
(by Kirby Hancock, hon. ment. in mini-con #11)
1) My dad died from cancer.
2) A life, a man, a dream, and one hell of a fight, are now buried under earth held down by gravity and a granite headstone.
(by Kellie Thurman, new to OTP)
1) The night was hot.
2) The night felt like a wool blanket had been thrown over the city–an electric one, cranked up to high.
(by Renee Hall, new to OTP)
Congratulations to the winners and our sincere thanks to everyone who entered the mini-contest.