The 37th OTP mini-contest was held in April 2018. This mini-contest asked contestants to write a story no more than 50 words long in which travel played an important role.
Here are our winning entries, then our honorable mentions. Four out of six authors are new to OTP.
Third Place by Greg Beatty (new OTP author)
Jason loved everything about traveling. What’s this orange fruit taste like? Is that the Roman Forum…by moonlight? Eventually, though, all he wanted to do is see his wife.
He’d burst in the front door calling her name.
The silence was always the same. And it was time to travel again.
Second Place by R. C. Weissenberg (published in mini-contest #34)
Between L.A. and Vegas, Beatrice drove into traffic, and pulled over.
She bought an orange soda and lime chips at a gas station mini mart. Feet on the dashboard, blasting Bob Dylan, she watched the sunset glitter across the cars and gild the sky.
Better than getting there, she thought.
First Place by Adrianna Aron (new OTP author)
In flight, her seatmate’s confessions lit devilish little fires she couldn’t snuff out. The transitory intimacy of airplane travel! Incendiary stories of sex with strangers, told in breathy whispers: poor woman needed to talk. But the heat… this impossible heat…
Next time, the nun thought, I’ll have to feign sleep.
Honorable Mentions (no money, just fame)
Three other entries scored highly enough to earn honorable mentions.
They are safely back from Europe, my students, and I’m glad. I would have liked to join them. Germany, Austria, Switzerland, little Luxemburg… all the places. It costs more for teachers and I’m broke, so I followed online while item by item they burned through my bucket list.
(by Amy Ballard, new OTP author)
My boyfriend very seriously sat me down. He said his construction management job is relocating him to Hawaii in three weeks. I thought: here comes the break-up speech. Instead, he invited me to join. People say don’t move for love, but I’m going anyway. I haven’t told my husband yet.
(by Joe Amaral, new OTP author)
“Are we there yet?”
Glorphrax sighed and checked the star chart. They were barely halfway to Andromeda. Nothing nearby but some barely habitable backwater called Earth.
“Are we there yet? I gotta go.”
Glorphrax aimed the spaceship for Earth, where it would scorch a perfect circle in a field.
(by Laura Ruth Loomis, published in multiple mini-contests and issues)
Congratulations to the winners and our sincere thanks to everyone who entered the mini-contest.