At Short Fiction Break, we believe there are two groups of stars in every writing contest. The first group is obvious: all the writers who enter their stories, who bravely offer their writing for critique, judging, and publication.
The second group is less obvious, but equally important: the contest judges, working hard behind the scenes to read every story and select a handful of the very best.
MEET THE JUDGES
In the last few weeks, we’ve celebrated the prizewinning stories and authors of the Spring Writing Contest. Now, it’s time to celebrate the judges who made this contest possible.
EDITOR KIM KESSLER
In October 2014, Kimberly Kessler quit her corporate job to pursue her best life and discovered her sleeping superpower: storytelling. In 2017, she combined her love of stories and helping others and became a Story Grid Certified Editor.
She is obsessed with the internal genres and specializes in helping writers craft authentic character arcs in any setting. Her favorite clients are hungry to learn and bring their full authentic selves to the collaborative process. Nothing is more rewarding than digging in together to uncover the breakthroughs they need.
She continues to pursue her own storytelling passions, writing novels and producing short films. In 2019, she published her first novel, According To Plan.
Her favorite stories use humor to explore and cope with grief and heartache and find the redemptive perspective on pain. Whatever the medium, her solemn oath is that any story she tells, whether real or made-up, will always be true.
EDIT WITH KIM
Kim is happy to work with new editorial clients, and if you’re working on a short story or novel, she’d love to help you write something amazing.
Kim is offering editorial services to our community through The Write Practice. She has a range of services for stories of all lengths.
If you’re working on a novel or nonfiction book, consider hiring her for a Story Grid Diagnostic.
If you’re working on a shorter piece of writing, find the editing package that’s right for you here.
AUTHOR RUTHANNE REID
Ruthanne Reid has led a convention panel on world-building, taught courses on plot and character development, and was the keynote speaker for the Write Practice 2021 Spring Retreat.
Author of two series with five books and fifty short stories, Ruthanne has lived in her head since childhood, when she wrote her first story about a pony princess and a genocidal snake-kingdom and used up her mom’s red typewriter ribbon in the process.
When she isn’t reading, writing, or reading about writing, Ruthanne enjoys old cartoons with her husband and two cats, and dreams of living on an island beach far, far away.
P.S. Red is still her favorite color.
READ RUTHANNE’S BOOKS
Her most recent work: For Daws to Peck At, a novella set in the AMONG THE MYTHOS universe. Vampire family drama has never looked so good.
“Don’t promise what we can’t guarantee. Nobody could protect us from Ravena of Monmouth except for Father, and he’s not here.”
How far would you go for a glimpse of the future?
Terrance, Liza, and Salome would do a lot, up to and including saving the life of Ravena, the family pariah.
But family drama is never simple, and tonight, vampires, gruesome prophecies, and the power of choice come together in a crash so wild it will change the world.
And be sure to check out Ruthanne’s writing on her website, where you can read many of her short stories for free.
THE JUDGES’ EXPERT ADVICE
In each contest, we offer writers the opportunity to hear directly from the judges why their story was or was not selected as a winner and what they can do to take their story-writing skills to the next level.
Together, Ruthanne and Kim wrote personalized, expert feedback for nearly two hundred writers in our Spring Writing Contest.
Didn’t sign up for feedback on your story? There are a handful of common challenges many stories in this contest faced. Check out this article on The Write Practice for the most common weaknesses judges find in contests and how to fix them.
Of course, no contest is complete without the writers who enter and the stories that win! We’re excited to celebrate the eight stories judges selected as the winners of this contest.
Don’t miss out on these wonderful reads!
Want more like this? You can find the stories the judges shortlisted, as well as all the stories published in this contest, here.
MORE STORIES TO COME
We had so much fun in this writing contest, and we hope you did, too. Keep your eye out for our next contest, full of more exciting themes, supportive writing community, publication opportunities, and expert judging.
Until then, happy writing!