A Mountlake Terrace High School English teacher won this year’s Writers of the Future contest.
Stephen Merlino’s short story, “Outside the Game,” was one of three chosen from over 8,000 submissions in the 4th quarter of the contest.
Three winners were selected in each quarter of the contest. The quarter Merlino competed in had the most submissions in the history of the contest.
“I’m still stunned just thinking about it. And yes, I’m incredibly excited,” Merlino wrote on his website.
Merlino’s winning story is set in the universe of his award-winning novel, The Jack of Souls and will be published with winners from each quarter. All 12 winners will receive a cash prize and will be flown to LA in April for a week-long workshop and gala.
Merlino said last summer that he’s working on a sequel to Jack of Souls.
The Writers of the Future contest was created in 1983 to give budding science fiction writers exposure and a chance at a big break. To win the contest, Merlino was selected by a blind judging from thousands of entrants all over the world.
So far, the 368 past winners of the contest have published 838 novels and nearly 4,000 short stories. Among those, 27 became New York Times bestsellers. Their works have sold more than 50 million copies.