Pleased to announce that two of my submissions were finalists in the William Wisdom William Faulkner Writing Competition sponsored by Pirates Alley Faulkner Society, New Orleans. HARMONY’S PEACE & JOY, my current novel-in-progress, was a finalist in that category, and my historical novel, FREE LOVE, was a finalist in the unpublished novel category. My short story, PLAY THE HAND YOU’RE DEALT, was a Semi-Finalist in that category. I’m happy for the recognition, but one of these days, gee, I’d really like to win. As my sister always says, “Art is subjective.” Okay, I’ll admit it. I just want to be liked! And, I will say that studying with Fred Shafer for the past 16 years has certainly improved my odds of being “liked”!!
THANK YOU TO EVERYONE who voted for SALUTING THE SUN for Readers Choice. We had more than 80 votes, the most in my category I think (General Fiction). The winner was in the Literary Fiction category, a novel by a professor at Gonzaga, with a whopping 466 votes. The “judged” part of the contest will be announced later in June. Sorry to have troubled you all with the process of voting, but honored to be among the 16 national finalists in General Fiction. On to the next! And don’t forget to ask me to vote for you and your cause when you get involved in one of these kinds of things.
The Judge in the Writers Digest Self-Published Book Contest had this to say about SALUTING THE SUN. Very nice review; unfortunately, we didn’t place in the top ten.
“Mary Hutchings Reed’s SALUTING THE SUN’s best feature is that it has two compelling women at its center: the cousins Dawn Ann McKnight, a Chicago weather forecaster, and the free spirted, hippy-trippy Neveah (“Heaven” spelled backwards) Thera. They could not be more different on the surface, which is of course the point. When they move in together with Dawn’s husband Derek, all sorts of problems reveal themselves. I was attracted to this novel from the beginning, thanks to this intriguing premise. What I like most about it is that while it could’ve devolved into TV-movie cliché, the characters are finely drawn enough that this never quite happens. The writing itself is often quite smooth and solid, and the dialogue is wonderfully realistic and believable. In addition, the book is nicely paced. Reed seems focused first and foremost on telling a good story, and getting it down and out without making it labored or burdensome. There’s a lightness to the book that I find very refreshing. I’m quite impressed with this. Very compelling and interesting. As one of the blurbs on the back of the book puts it succinctly, “Reed really knows how to tell a story.” “
Happy to report that a novella, The Jane (excerpted from my draft novel Womb) has been short-listed for the William Wisdom-William Faulkner Prize for a Novella. In addition, my current novel-in-progress, Harmony’s Peace & Joy has been shortlisted in that category! (more…)