Spooky Stories Sundowner 2021
It was a dark and stormy night as guests made their way to the old house on the hill, to gather and hear stories so spooky and spine-chilling, they'd not sleep for days...
The theme of this years' Spooky Stories competition was Voices. The stories needed to incorporate some form of the paranormal, real, or imagined, and of course, they needed to be spooky.
And the entrants delivered.
As judge Carolyn Wren stated in her report, 'Every year when I receive the KSP Spooky Story Competition entries to judge, I know I’m going to have a scary month.'
Congratulations to the winners of the 2021 Spooky Stories competition:
Winner: Fiona Mayers, 'Just a Voice'
Carolyn Wren said, In choosing this year’s winner, I was reminded of a quote attributed to Alfred Hitchcock which says... ‘In order to allow fear in, sometimes you have to strip everything else away.’
This is what I found in Just A Voice, and this was the story that sat front and centre in my mind if I woke up in the middle of the night.
The stark elements of darkness, a woman alone, and a stranger on the end of a phone line, plus the visceral – and very believable - reaction of our main character, Maeve, to her experiences, gives the story a genuinely spooky feel that stays with the reader long after the final word.
2nd Place: Caroline Michell, 'Voices Ethereal'
3rd Place: Sarah Ayres, 'Whispers' Commended: Kaitlin Pradhan, 'Listen'
Commended: Jo Morrison, 'Stay'
(in no particular order)
1. White Noise by B. Kay Spencer.
2. Guardian by Valerie Latimour.
3. My Mind by Hillary Goodreid.
4. Alebrije by David Allan-Petale.
5. Magic Hands by Jasmin Pradhan.
7. For Whom the Shell Whispers by Lee Harsen.
8. Never Leave by Dan Depiazzi.
9. Giggles by Emilia Beecraft.
10. The Green Cave by Amber Davis.
11. The Hum by Farzaneh Pishro.
12. A Little Help by Chris Moss.
13. A Warning to You All by Louise Burlinson.
14. The Unseen, the Unheard by Tenneille Ross.
17. The Matter of the Diet of Insectivorous Plants from Equatorial Africa by Maria Blackman.
18. Jimmy by Chris Zanich.
19. Shadows of Voices by Brian Walsh.
20. The Midnight Party by Briana Kay Bohan.
21. Silence by KJ Beat.
22. A Perfect Life by Jacqueline Warner.
23. Baptism of Fire by Jenny Lynch.
24. Appetite by Shelley Timms.
27. Stone Age Chick by K. Dee.
Winner: Jun Chu, 'Illusion'
Carolyn Wren said, Illusion took out this year’s top prize because of the wonderful mystery element of the story and the surprising reveal right at the end, all wrapped in an emotional heart. It's difficult to get those multiple layers in such a short number of words and I felt Jun Chu really succeeded.
2nd Place: Ben Humphreys, 'Mary Kings Close'
3rd Place: Saufi Risal, 'Isabelle' Commended: Ellen Bourgault, 'Shadelands'
(in no particular order)
1. Mimic by Karthiga Kamala Kannan. 2. I'm Here, Darling by Farina Ibrahim. 3. Pontianak by Nur Fatihah Mohd Fauzi. 7. The Sprung by Coen Lamb. 8. The Fateful Whisper by Daniel Brooker. 9. Joker by Francis Yan. 10. Home Sweet Home by Cassandra Lew.
Congratulations to everyone who placed and thank you to all those who entered. And as always, thank you to the Shire of Mundaring, Tabetha Rogers-Beggs of Little Black Dress Productions and Wild Weeds Press for sponsoring this award.