BIRTH THEME Contest Winners

It is my pleasure to announce the winners of the BIRTH theme for the Accentuate Writers Short Story Contest.

These writers will receive the prizes listed for winning the contest, including cash prizes of $100, $75, and $25 for each placement – and they will also be included in the anthology and will receive a royalty contract for their percentage of participation in the final book. While all authors will be included as the official authors on the legal and promotional pages, only first place finishers will get their name listed on the gorgeous covers we’re using on this series of books.

Competition is getting harder and harder to judge, with new writers we’ve only just met entering this time around, and our veteran forum members improving more and more with each story they submit. The quality of some of these stories is just unreal; that is, they are good, solid stories. I’m impressed.

So let’s get on with the BIRTH theme winners – today, we have two third places, one second and one first place. Let’s start with our third place winners:


#998 – The Pact, by Lindsay Maddox, Third Place!

Seriously here, Lindsay wrote an excellent story, but she actually went above and beyond for the birth theme and gave birth to twins in real life the same month the story was judged. We think that was overkill for the contest, though! Lindsay definitely wrote a compelling story (though it could have used a tad bit of polishing, we figure while pregnant with twins, editing probably wouldn’t have been our firsts priority either), and we actually discussed what an excellent screenplay this story would make. I could totally see it on Lifetime. Hey, Lindsay, we should talk about you writing it up that way! Congratulations!

#769 – Amy, by K. Karl (who will have a new pen name soon), Third Place:

What is so entirely amusing to me here is this: Kim sent me an email and asked me to ignore her entry. She had decided NOT to enter the contest. I won’t go into the why of it, but she can tell the story herself if she’d like, but I ‘accidentally’ ‘forgot’ to remove her story from judging. Imagine my surprise when the judges sent back a score that tied her for a third place win. Just goes to show, sometimes when you think you suck, someone else might just think you shine. Writers have fragile egos, and it works both ways. I’ll say one more thing: never let ONE person’s opinion taint your joy and love of writing, because five other people might completely disagree. In this case, it was four other people – three judges and me. Congratulations, Kim!


#309 – Peace for All, by Angel Sharum

We’ve actually been calling this work “Perspective”. You’ll have to read to understand why, but the point is, when people take things at face value and put it into a certain perspective, there are others who, given the same input, have an entirely different perspective on things. This story illustrates that brilliantly. We laugh some reading this, because Angel is infamously known for killing someone in every one of her stories. This time, she took that to new heights by not killing just one person, but rather, she decides to kill everyone. No, we don’t mean everyone in the story. We mean, literally, everyone. Great job, Angel, and congratulations!


#55 – For Posterity, by Tamblyn Shaye

What a complete and wonderful surprise this story was. Drawn from literary and literal history, this story ‘cleans up’ an age-old concept of creating the perfect ‘race’, the perfect ‘human’, and categorizing anything less than perfect as expendable. We see in this story an almost futuristic revisitation of Nazi Germany, only ‘neater’, ‘cleaner’, and told in a truly fictional setting. We see a world were there is little hope for love, attraction, affection, and a lot of love for ‘ideal’, and yet, it would be difficult for anyone, except or protagonist, to say they were truly unhappy in this world, this situation. With a bent toward sci-fi, but in a realistic and futuristic way, we watch our protagonist struggle with his own inner feelings about the way the world in which he lives works, and in the end, almost come away reconciled but also, perhaps, defeated.

I have not read other stories by this writer, so wasn’t sure what to expect, but I must say I was pleased, blown away, and the judges clearly echoed my thoughts. This story is absolutely deserving of its first place position in the contest. Congratulations!


I’d like to take a moment to thank all those who entered this time. There were some fantastic stories and judging is quite difficult as the stories just keep getting better and better. Remember, just because you’re story didn’t win this time isn’t any indication on your writing ability or skills. Judging a writing contest is very subjective, and I encourage everyone who entered and did not win to tweak your story, perfect it, and submit to elsewhere. Every story entered was solid and could easily be picked up somewhere else. Don’t leave them sitting around – submit them!

Also, I want to take this time to point out that the deadline for the first Erotic Anthology is fast approaching. I’d really like to close this one out before the end of the year – please email me for more information at if you want more details on the erotic anthology – we’re putting up a new website soon, but we are looking for erotic short stories between 500-12,000 words, proofed and edited, with a compelling story and good plot, and lots and lots of sexy sizzle. No subject matter taboo; no spice to hot.

Until the next contests – congrats to all the writers and the winners.

Love and stuff,