Well, "Great White Ship" didn't win in the Final Four. I'm actually somewhat relieved, the tension over the competition was a bit of a distraction.
When the Daily Science Fiction bracket madness started in March, I lobbied for support, but I actually lost track of it for a number of weeks and it advanced at least a couple of rounds without my paying any attention. I picked up the trail again when it made it to the Sweet 16, and since then I've lobbied for support. I spent time on Facebook posting messages, and that takes time.
I'm proud of the story, and I think it did very well for an old-fashioned "Sense of Wonder"-type story, which isn't really fashionable in speculative fiction any more.
Late yesterday, just before 5 p.m. I made a last-ditch effort and messaged everyone in the newspaper to please visit the web site and vote for me. One staff member visited the site and read it, and I was quite pleased that he said he really liked my description of an East Texas thunderstorm:
"It's like God dumps a big tin bucket of water on top of your head, then drops the bucket over your head, and then he pounds on the bucket."
I always like that piece of business, and I was glad he liked it, too.
The Great White Ship is back in port, and being refurbished for its next voyage, which will be the lead story in my forthcoming reprint collection from Fantastic Books, "The Clock Struck None".