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Short Story Contest Previous winners

Our Parsec Short Story Contest Winners through the years.

2023: Preserve or Purge

Our 27th annual Parsec Short Story Contest.

  • First place – “Revenge of the Antmen” By Joseph Sidari
  • Second Place – ” Violet Crystal in the Sky” By William Jones
  • Third Place – “Almost like Home” By Taria Karillion 
  • Youth category – “Memorial” By Teresa Curry

Coordinator: Alfred (AJ) Smith 

Judges: Andrea Stewart, Jim Horlock & Lindz McLeod

First Readers: Penelope Smith and Ivy Speight

This years contest was made possible by donations from our wonderful supporters, Timons Esaias & Mary Fletcher.

2022: Hearth, Song & Table

Our 26th annual Parsec Short Story Contest.

  • First place -“It is Possible I was too Sheltered” by Lucy Zhang
  • Second Place – “Forgotten” by Scott I. Kircher
  • Third Place – “Whalesong” by A.P. Hawkin
  • Youth category – “A Clockwork Hoopoe” by Dot Rodgers

Judges: Chelsea Abdullah (@chelsabdullah), Michelle Renee Lane (@MichelleRLane), and Timons Esaias

Coordinator: Alfred (AJ) Smith

First readers: Penelope Smith and Ivy Speight

This years contest was made possible by donations from our wonderful supporters, Timons Esaias, Mary Soon Lee and the members of Parsec Inc.

2021: Still Waters, Deep Thoughts

Judges: Kelly Robson, Marcus Vance and Jamie Lackey.
Coordinator: Alfred (AJ) Smith

This years contest was made possible by donations from our wonderful supporters, Timons Esaias, Mary Soon Lee and the members of Parsec Inc.

  • First Place – “Jennifer Gives her Heart to Radioland” by Matthew McHugh
    Matt McHugh was born in suburban Pennsylvania, attended LaSalle University in Philadelphia, and after a few years as a Manhattanite, currently calls New Jersey home. Visit Matt on his website. Matt reads his story on YouTube
  • Second Place – “Fishing” by Carter Lappin
    Carter Lappin is from Southern California. She has a bachelor’s degree in creative writing. Her writing experience includes being scheduled to appear in an upcoming WorldWeaver Press anthology.
  • Third Place – “Living Stagnant” by Lucy Gray
    Lucy Gray is a fiction writer and an electrical engineering student. She began writing short stories recently to explore emotions and possibilities as a writer, just as she had previously explored as a reader. In her spare time, she enjoys embroidering, reading, and spending time with her family.

2020: Forging

  • First Place – “Crown of Iron” by Marina Massino
  • Second Place – “The Loss of a Name” by Kelsey Simon
  • Third Place – “Perfumer in Purgatory” by Alicia Hilton
    Judges: Rebecca Roanhorse, Cat Rambo & Daniel H. Wilson
    Coordinator: A.J. Smith

2019: Noir

  • First Place – “Graveyard’s Whistle” by Alfred Smith
  • Second Place – “Amazons” by Marshall J. Moore
  • Third Place – “Johnny the Fairy” by Caias Ward
    Judges: Michael A. Arnzen, David D. Levine, Jerome Stueart
    Coordinator: Brandon Ketchum

2018: Flawed Reflections

  • First Place – “Midas” by Zaina Ujayli
  • Second Place – “The Binoculars Marked H. Houdini” by Mara Buck
  • Third Place – “Reflections” by Jennifer Shelby
    Judges: J.D. Barker, Larry Ivkovich and Barbara Doran.
    Coordinator: Kevin M. Hayes

2017: A Hidden, Underlying Truth

  • First Place – “Fluffy” by Yang-Yang Wang, from Snohomish, WA.
  • Second Place – “Shades of Home” by Victor Cypert, from Jack,sonville, Alabama.
  • Third Place – “Breaking” by Maya Chhabra (former Alpha student), from New York, NY.
    Judges: Michele Markey Butler, Tom Sweterlisch, Joshua Bellin
    Coordinator: Larry Ivkovich

2016: (No Contest this year)

2015: Lost Voices

  • First Place – “An Occurrence at Owlskirk” by Paul Dixon
  • Second Place – “The Eastside Wasteland has a Winning Team” by Les Abernathy
  • Third Place – “Voices from Antiquity” by Elizabeth Spencer

2014: Parch

  • First Place: “How to Remember” by Sylvia Hiven
  • Second Place (Tie): “The Longings of a Long-Forgotten Memory” by Elizabeth Spencer
  • Second Place (Tie): “Pride, Power and Peppers” by J. Kenton Pierce

2013: Steel Cities

  • First Place: “Cities of Dust and Steel” Tom Wortman
  • Second Place: “The Bloomery” L. L. Joseph
  • Third Place: “The Steel Awoke From Long Forgetting Time” Peter Dennis

2012: Morning After

  • First Place: “The Third Portal” DeAnna Knippling
  • Second Place: “Lund” Sean Houlihan
  • Third Place: “Sable” Ryan Rebel

2011: Last Contact

  • First Place: “Evolution” Matthew James
  • Second Place: “Rapture Me” Sara Mattox
  • Third Place: “The Last Time I Saw You” H.L.  Fullerton

2010: The Color of Silence

  • First Place: “Colors in a Box, Some Missing” William Wood
  • Second Place: “Paths Others Fear to Tread” Kendra Leigh Speedling
  • Third Place (Tie): “Vision” Dorothy Biernesser
  • Third Place (Tie): “Vox Affectum” Brianna Deaveller

2009: Dark Glass

  • First Place: “Where Their Worm Dieth Not, and Their Fire Is Not Quenched” Spencer Ellsworth
  • Second Place: “The Proxy” Katy Darby
  • Third Place: “Solvers” Gaea Denker-Lehrman

2008: Metallic Feathers

2007: Fewmets at the End of Time

2006: Instruments of Madness

  • First Place:   “Coyote and the Nanobots” by Catherine Cheek
  • Second Place:  “Call of the Grand Radiant” by Camille Picot
  • Third Place:  “Moon Mad” by Erin Hartshorn

2005: High Crimes and Misdemeanors

  • First Place:  “In the Future, Everyone will be a Victim for 15 Minutes” by C. Kevin Barrett (Columbus, OH)
  • Second Place:  “A House Divided” by Erica Satifka (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • Third Place:  “Metal and Sweat” by Freddie Silva, Jr. (Roanoke Rapids, NC)

2004: Hard Port

  • First Place: “Push the Big Red Button, Bill Kennedy” C. Kevin Barrett
  • Second Place (Tie): “From the Ashes” Margaret McGaffey Fisk
  • Second Place (Tie): “Facing Facts” Anil Menon
  • Third Place: “Hard Port” Henry Tjernlund

2003: The Alien Wore Fish-Net Stockings

  • First Place: “Inter-Species Relations” R. Lee Smith (OR)
  • Second Place (Tie): “Dan on the Moon” Rebecca Carmi (OH)
  • Second Place (Tie): “Two for One” L.K. Farrar (CA)

This years theme led to some very interesting story-lines. Submissions came from all over the US, as well as India, France, Pakistan, Singapore, Canada, Australia and the U.K. Our Judges this year were: Charles Oberndorf and Mary Soon Lee.

2002: Met by Moonlight

  • First Place: “Mr. Bones Speaks to the Bright Round Moon” John Weagly
  • Second Place: “The Souvenir You Most Want” Sue Burke
  • Third Place: “A Carnival Feeling” LaZealtrice Addeana Jackson

2001: Tales of the Venus Diner

  • First Place: “The Thithshtach Diner” Kevin Hayes (PA)
  • Second Place: “The Venus Diner Travelers Club” Cynthia Crise
  • Third Place: “No Honor” Nancy Hagen-Liddle

2000: Natural Agendas

  • First Place: “The League of Horses” by William Blake Hall (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • Second Place: “The Last Librarian” Yvonne Eve Walus (New Zealand)
  • Third Place: “A Certain Vigilance” Parker and Parker (Canada)

1998: Forbidden Reality

1997: Virtual Bridges

1996: Forged in Iron

  • First Place: “A Heart Forged in Iron” by Alan Irvine (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • Second Place: “Newshound” by Jean Blevins Goldstrom

1995: Return to Mars 

The winner of the first annual PARSEC short story contest is:

Honorary Mentions: