And the Golden Sledgehammers Go To…
First-Place Portland: Jeremiah Reinmiller, “Give an Inch”
First-Place Out-of-Towner: Matea Wasend, “Tin Violin”
First-Place Youth, ages 11-17: Sarah Robertson, “Extraterrestrial”
First-Place Youth, ages 10 and under: Mia Robertson, “The Girl Who Lived with Purple Trolls”
Elissa Award (Readers’ Choice): Jacqui Pitt, “Appreciate the Wrapping”
Judge’s Choice Award, selected by Ariel Gore: JB Kish, “Foul Hook”
Video Award: Carrie Padian, “A Life Inside”
Just for Fun
In addition, this year our judges decided to come up with several Just-for-Fun Awards for those stories that stood out to them but didn’t win the larger prize packages. Let’s applaud these talented writers for their work as well:
Most Original Use of a Prompt: Elaine Hatcher, “Henry A. Coleman”
Best Use of Humor: Victoria Steik, “Surprise”
Flash Fiction Award: Patricia Robertson, “Vinny”
Keep Portland Weird Award: Lee Waverly and Madison Thorne, “Fab Moon Rising”
Best Novel Stuck in the Body of a Short Story: Nicole Bailey, “Apex Predator”
Best Origin Story of a Female Crime Lord: Jason LaPier, “Untitled”
Best Use of Twins: Erika Whitmore, “Irish Twins” (Every year, several stories seem to pick up on a common theme even though that theme is not part of the prompts. This year it was twins.)
If you haven’t read the stories or checked out the sponsors yet, now’s the time!
What’s Sledgehammer, You Ask?
It’s a quirky writing contest that incorporates a scavenger hunt, four writing prompts, a 36-hour deadline, the option to write as a team or solo, celebrity judge Ariel Gore, and prizes worth thousands.
It all started in 2008 with a little idea to bring writers together in Portland, Oregon. Since then, the contest has expanded with sponsors from all over and the option for writers anywhere to participate through the magic of the internet.
Visit the Contest Details page for more information.
Thank you to the 2014 Sledgehammer-level sponsors, who donated prizes worth $1,000 or more: