Saturday, August 21, 2010

101 Things I Learned in Contest School aka We have a winner!

This contest generated the most entries we've had: 165!!

There were a lot of good entries with Fairbanks, as in Alaska, rather than Fairbank, as in the right word, sadly.

I always like seeing the clever references you work in:

Reference to the agency
(Rachael Harrie 6:10am)

Reference to Twilight
(Izzy 9:20am)
(Magolla 10:55am)

Reference to Sorche Fairbank
(Malia Sutton 11:11am)
(Bill Plante 11:37am)

Reference to Winnie the Pooh
(Lyle 5:13pm)

Reference to last week's contest
(The Zuccini 8:54am)

Reference to my sale list
Sarah W (10:03am)

And what contest could be complete without a reference to cupcakes!
(Claire Svendsen 10:05am)

Two entries took minimalism to a new low (word count that is!)
Katt (12:41am)
(Toni Lynn 11:10PM)

There were some entries with wonderful lines:

"The Revolution, it seemed, would not be televised"
(Ian 12:14am)

"Attorny Notzo Fairbank, Esq"
(C.R. Evers 1:42am)

"She got the Mercedes, I got the Honeywagon Blues."
(wry wryter 8:43am)

“Wag on!” he yelled as he transformed into the quadruped Terrier Man and darted into the yard. (Mama Bear 9:34am)

Sheila and I staggered off the Honeywagon, a combination tunnel of love, centrifuge and hayride (Ulysses 10:01am)

Worthington Thomas Fairbank, cursed by thoughtless parents to a life without monogrammed items
(BDA 10:28am)

In a pivotal miss-stake, Mick opened a huge gash in the metal.
(Shakespeare 10:30am)

Robert entered FairBank, hoping its namesake meant the loan officer here was more reasonable than that jerk over at CruelBank.
(Steve Forti 11:21am)

Why was I surprised that a restaurant called the Honeywagon had crappy signs?
(The Sentence Sleuth 4:15pm)

Eat shit and live, you blood-sucking scumbag!
(Wolfman141 1:19pm)

Someone's been reading too much metafiction!
Adam Kirchhoff 3:56pm

Great story with too many words, but still, special recognition:
JustWriteCat (2:24pm)

Two entries just cracked me up
Joseph L Selby (8:54am) (and yes, I know you can't see the Potomac from the White House, but who cares)

Ronda Gibb Hinrischsen (2:48pm)

These entries made the final cut:
Linda Leszczuk (1:40am)
Patrick DiOrio (10:07am)

BPatterson (12:36pm)
J.C. Montgomery (10:11pm)

Alex (8:29am)
Malcolm Matthews (10:42am)

Kathie (10:43am)
Michelle McLean (10:43am)

de la O (11:33am)
LoriWeeks (12:58pm)
RBSHoo (3:14pm)

The three finalists are:

Sha'el, Princess of Pixies (3:32pm)

“Oh, My God, this IS a pivotal moment”

“For you, maybe. But I’m a traditionalist. I have a stake in this, and I’m not happy.”

“But think about it – umm what’s your name?”

“Worker 32957.”

“Ah, yes. As I was saying, think about it. No more mindless flying, buzzing, dancing or any of that nonsense.”

“There are flaws in your reasoning, brother. Won’t you miss the Fairbank? The exploring? The picnic buzzing? It’s tradition.”

“But with the new honeywagon concept there will be no need. Freedom from tired wings at last.”

C (9:33am)

I staked this spot on the fair bank of the Snake River just for you, honey.

It was pivotal, marrying you in Independence. I thought I’d make a life of my own in Oregon; I just needed a ride. And honey, you danced on your tenderfeet all the way up the aisle.

But honey, you shouldn’t have taught me to shoot buffalo so flawlessly. And honey, you should never have traded the last of my good calico for another box of bullets.

Honey, the wagon wasn’t big enough for the both of us.

Maybe you should have died of dysentery.

John Haggerty (7:47pm)

He rolls in at midnight, stops the conversation like a cardiac arrest, smooth fairbank suit, hair slick and without flaws, a honeywagon on his arm who witches all of those men into dogs.

The filthy prospecting rubes down from their gold-dry stakes up in the hills, the knifey thieves and grifters from town, everyone just stares, as he picks up the dice, and though it’s not his turn, whispers, “One pivotal roll, who’s in.”

They lay their pennies down like penitents, and then he’s gone, and they are laid clean, like infants washed in the blood of the lamb.

The winner is the one that knocked my sox off: John Haggerty.

John, if you'll send me your mailing address we'll send you a copy of 101 Things I Learned in Film School and 101 Things I Learned in Business School. And we'll be watching for your query about that novel you've got percolating.


Michelle said...

John did an excellent job, but I *adore* C's entry. Though it may just be due to fond memories of playing Oregon Trail in elementary school.

As a note: We devolved into savages, as it's more fun to see how fast you can kill the whole family. Or find new ways to kill them.

Ali Trotta said...

Love these contest. Reading all the other entries was a blast. You people are talented AND often funny.

Great job, everyone!

And congrats to John!!

Ann Best said...

The winning entry IS incredible! Absolutely!!

HistorySleuth said...

Oh, darn, and here I thought I was being clever using the carnival con/ barfly term for fairbank. Le Sigh..

My favorite was Lyle's Winnie the Pooh.

Great exercise! Really makes you edit down to the important words.

Linda Leszczuk said...

Okay, I admit it. I love the fact that I made the final cut. Especially when there were so many great entries. Congratulations to John.

Joseph L. Selby said...

I tried to read all the entries but couldn't keep up. This is the first time I've read John's entry. Dude!


We are humbled.

Joseph L. Selby said...

I'm glad you're so laid back a out it, Janet. It's still bothering me. I originally set it in a hotel overlooking the Potomac but overshot the word count. If I had caught the error earlier, I would have deleted it and fixed the line with the appropriate view.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your comments. I shared my story with my family - they all agreed it sounded like something 'those boys' would have done.

Unknown said...

That is a plum piece of writing John Haggerty (07:47pm), and I am so very happy to see it's getting the attention is deserves.

And Thank You, Ms. Reid!

Sha'el, Princess of Pixies said...

Dang! I shoulda written about goats!

John is good. When you sign him, I want to read it!

Alex Adams said...

Congratulations, John. Great job!

Well done, everyone else, too. I had as much fun reading these as I did writing mine.

(And yay, me for making the final cut.)

Sempera said...

Great competition, loved all entries.
But isn't The revolution will not be televised a book title?

Steve Stubbs said...

Very good entry but I still have sox on. In this heat, though, given that I have not changed them in two days - well, they are coming off right now.

I don't have Twitter, so I have to post regarding my personal foot odor in your comment trail. Thanks for allowing us the medium.

J.C. Montgomery said...

I agree, it was as much fun reading everyone's stories as writing one.

Well done to all, and especially John. A true Wordsmith.

Janet Reid said...

Sempera, "The revolution will not be televised"is a song by Gil Scott-Heron, but more than that it was a political rallying cry in the 70's.

The meaning of the phrase has exceeded its source much like "Watergate" has come to mean much more than the actual break-in at Democratic headquarters in 1972.

Marjorie said...

Congratulations, John Haggerty. You entered a brilliant piece of writing that I found breathtaking.

John Haggerty said...

Thanks everyone. I'm really flattered to have been chosen, and really touched by everyone's kind words. My ego is in danger of inflating to Macy's balloon proportions.

Fun contest, and lots of fun reading all of the entries. Well played, everyone.

April said...

Wow, so many great entries! I'm inspired.

Simon Hay said...

Congrats John! Awesome! Fairbank, Fairbanks, oops! Thanks for another great contest.

Michelle McLean said...

Fun to make the final cut and congrats to John! Awesome entry :)

Carolynnwith2Ns said...

This was great fun.
Congrats to John.
When the movie is made how about I write the the theme song.

Me, Myself and a Rubik'S Cube said...

Hats off to you John.

Vicki said...

Congrats John, your entry rocked!!

This was so much fun to do and to read all of the other entries.

Terri Coop said...

WTG John for leaving the sharky one soxless! Great entry in a tough field.


Unknown said...

This contest really was a lot of fun, especially seeing how everyone used the word "honeywagon" in so many different ways. I'm really honored to have been a finalist, but congrats to John! It was amazing what you did with 100 words.

And thanks, Michelle! I'm glad to know someone else has fond memories of that game as well :)

Adam Kirchhoff said...

Woohoo, I got mentioned :-) And, in fact, I'm not a big meta-fiction fan.

Great job everyone, and a huge congrats to John!

ryan field said...

Congrats to the winners, and to everyone who participated. I had a few good snorts reading them.

Ronda Gibb Hinrichsen said...

Congratulations, John! Great job. :) And Janet, I'm glad I made you smile. :))

Joshua McCune said...

Beautifully done, John, though the honeywagon on the arm bit confused me (but also made me smile given the word's roots)

Haste yee back ;-) said...

Well, I could've call on the Protologist, he'd of stirred your Honeywagon, but I'm trying hard to be professional!

Haste yee back ;-)

Shauna said...

Impressive stuff! Congratulations John, it was very well done. Kind of made me think of a Marlon Brando movie.