I keep meaning to enter the Bulwer Lytton Fiction Contest, but I also keep forgetting to get my entries in. Still, it's always worth a look when the year's winners are announced. Yes, I know the announcement itself was several months ago, but that's in keeping with my general record of procrastination and partial recall.
Anyway, read this from the 2009 Grand Prize winner and see if it doesn't make you want to take pen in hand:
"Folks say that if you listen real close at the height of the full moon, when the wind is blowin' off Nantucket Sound from the nor' east and the dogs are howlin' for no earthly reason, you can hear the awful screams of the crew of the “Ellie May," a sturdy whaler Captained by John McTavish; for it was on just such a night when the rum was flowin' and, Davey Jones be damned, big John brought his men on deck for the first of several screaming contests."
Federal Way, WA
The runner-up is also inspiring, for those of us who like to make people laugh:
"The wind dry-shaved the cracked earth like a dull razor--the double edge kind from the plastic bag that you shouldn't use more than twice, but you do; but Trevor Earp had to face it as he started the second morning of his hopeless search for Drover, the Irish Wolfhound he had found as a pup near death from a fight with a prairie dog and nursed back to health, stolen by a traveling circus so that the monkey would have something to ride."