Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Good news

During the spring I applied for the Speculative Literature Foundation's Older Writers Grant. The grant is awarded annually to a writer who is fifty years of age or older at the time of grant application, and is intended to assist such writers who are just starting to work at a professional level.
The SLF said it would notify applicants by June 1st, and it has. I got my email tonight. The bad news is I didn't get the grant. The good news is that they had good things to say about the writing sample I submitted, the unpublished short story "The Fontane Sisters are Dead".
"We are delighted to inform you that your story, "The Fontaine (sic) Sisters Are Dead," has been selected as one of five Honorable Mentions for the 2011 Older Writers Grant.
"We enjoyed your writing sample very much, especially its interesting and unique premise, smooth narrative, and adept weaving of Jewish religion and culture, Southern culture and race relations."
"The Fontane Sisters are Dead" has been in the slush pile of a pro-level magazine for two months. I emailed the editor to let her know about the honorable mention.
If you are interested in apply for the SLF Older Writers Grant next year, here are some details:
"The SLF is currently offering one $750 grant annually, to be used as the writer determines will best assist his or her work. This grant will be awarded by a committee of SLF staff members on the basis of merit. Factors considered will include:
* A short (less than 500 words) autobiographical statement, describing the writer and his/her work thus far; be sure to include date of birth
* A writing sample (up to 10 pages of drama, or 10,000 words of fiction or creative nonfiction -- if sending a segment of a novel, novella, or novellette, please include a one-page synopsis as well) * A bibliography of previously-published work by the author (no more than one page, typed); applicants need not have previous publications to apply
"If awarded the grant, the recipient agrees to provide a brief excerpt from their work, and an autobiographical statement describing themselves and their writing (500-1000 words) for our files, and for possible public dissemination on our website."

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