by Carolyn Martinez, Director, Hawkeye Publishing
It is a privilege to host the not-for-profit Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Competition each year in honour of my dad Sydney Hammond who passed away 14 years ago. No matter how mature we become, our ties to our parents are deep and formative. I believe no one can ever truly replace a parent who’s positively nurtured us throughout our childhood and into adulthood – be it a biological, foster, adoptive, step or other parent. Those steady, loving, encouraging arms – they’re our base. The gap I feel for the absence of Dad makes me hold with reverence the place I hold in my own children’s lives. A shout out to all of you who miss a loved one.
Who Was Sydney Hammond to Hawkeye?
Syddy (Dad) played guitar, sang, drew, painted. He served in the army, rose to the ranks of detective, left to buy a corner store, and retired as a security guard. He was an all-round creative and capable guy. He drove me insane lecturing on the growing divide between the rich and the poor.
So much of Dad informs how I approach life. My soul is creative, and I like to nurture the creative talents of others. I love Australia. I’m not a fan of world-dominating global giants. I am fiercely supportive of small businesses, physical bookstores, and printed newspapers because I see all of them as integral to community – a vital construct in our happiness equation. Physical connection.
I think Dad would be proud of the moments of encouragement and joy that his writing competition affords entrants. I certainly feel him smiling at the breadth and depth of creative talent in this year’s short stories.
This year’s theme was “Courage” and I commend all 203 entrants for the courage it takes to send our writing out past the sanctity of our own familiar and private spaces to be judged by others. I wish there could be more winners. We’ve loved reading all your stories, and thank you for sharing them with us.
Hawkeye Publishing is a small and dynamic traditional publishing house based in Brisbane. We pride ourselves on the quality of our titles, and in nurturing the creative talents of our carefully selected authors. Hawkeye as a communications company was formed in 2002 to publish a community newspaper. We became a traditional book publisher in March 2020. Hawkeye has always stood for quality – a keen eye on detail.
Across regions, you may have noticed that passionate community members are popping up in local government areas to produce printed community newspapers to replace the gaps left by the closure of so many that folded over recent years. What we’re doing here with Hawkeye is similar. There are now many opportunities to self-publish, but few opportunities for new and emerging authors, in particular, to be traditionally published. We love our work, and are passionate about the space we fill in the industry. A shout out to Queensland University of Technology, and University of Sunshine Coast. We thoroughly enjoy working with them on their internship programs.
Our two annual writing competitions – the Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Competition, and the Hawkeye Manuscript Prize, are all about our desire to offer publication opportunities to talented writers. This is our third year hosting them.
Following on from last week’s announcement of the Open and Junior Short-Lists, listed again here in no particular order as a reminder:
SHORT-LIST – OPEN CATEGORY:
- Cover Talk by Maggie Veness, Tasmania, Australia
- 6th of September 2018 by Mulay Sangeeta, Great Britain
- Dumpster Zone by Jane Turner Goldsmith, South Australia
- Five to Ten by Paul Blanksby, New South Wales, Australia
- Faithy’s Shillelagh by Kathleen Hastings, Queensland, Australia
- Betrayal by Gillian Brown, France
- Gold Rush by Zachary Pryor, Victoria, Australia
- Accept, Deal, Repeat by Helen Booth, Victoria, Australia
- Dirty Bastard by Pamela Baker, Victoria, Australia
- Cratered by T. L. Ransome, United States
SHORT-LIST – JUNIOR CATEGORY:
- Bravery is Not Blind by Artemis Langlois-Euripides, 14-years-old, Western Australia
- The Last Teacher in Fairfield by Charlotte He, 9-years-old, New South Wales, Australia
- Mouse Holes by Devika Warrier, 10-years-old, New South Wales, Australia.
CONGRATULATIONS TO THESE WINNERS AND TOP PLACE-GETTERS IN THE SYDNEY HAMMOND MEMORIAL SHORT STORY COMPETITION 2021 OPEN CATEGORY:
WINNER: Gold Rush by Zachary Pryor, Victoria, Australia
SECOND PLACE: Cover Talk by Maggie Veness, Tasmania, Australia
THIRD PLACE: Betrayal by Gillian Brown, France
HIGHLY COMMENDED: Cratered by T. L. Ransome, United States
HIGHLY COMMENDED: 6th of September 2018 by Mulay Sangeeta, Great Britain
CONGRATULATIONS TO THESE WINNERS AND TOP PLACE-GETTERS IN THE SYDNEY HAMMOND MEMORIAL SHORT STORY COMPETITION 2021 JUNIOR CATEGORY:
WINNER: The Last Teacher in Fairfield by Charlotte He, 9-years-old, New South Wales, Australia
SECOND PLACE: Mouse Holes by Devika Warrier, 10-years-old, New South Wales, Australia
THIRD PLACE: Bravery is Not Blind by Artemis Langlois-Euripides, 14-years-old, Western Australia
- All 47 entrants Long-Listed in the 2021 Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Competition will receive a complimentary copy of the printed anthology.
- The winner of the open category, Zachary Pryor, can access 2 hours of author coaching or editing (worth $250 and perfect for a short story consultation or refining a publisher’s pitch).
- The front cover of this year’s anthology will be designed to reflect Zachary’s winning story Gold Rush.
- The winner of the junior category, Charlotte He, receives a free copy of Winning Short Story Competitions: The essential guide for the serious writer by L. E. Daniels and Cate Sawyer (Value $30).
- All 7 junior entrants long-listed in the junior category, and 2 who were long-listed in the open category, will be invited to a 2-hour group mentoring session with me over zoom during the December/January school holidays.
You can find the full long-list here for the Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Competition 2021.
Thank You to our Esteemed Judges
Thank you to this year’s judges: Lauren Daniels, Peta Carolan @UnfoldedEdges, Darci Robbins and Natalie Jenkins. It is a significant commitment to read and judge 203 entries and we thank you sincerely for all your efforts. Your expertise and generosity makes all the difference!
A Massive Congratulations
Once again, congratulations to all the 2021 Long-listed, Short-Listed, Place-getters, and overall Winners. Enjoy your celebrations of this significant achievement.
Next Year’s Theme
The theme for next year’s Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Competition is WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE as suggested by Leanne Green. Thanks for sending in your idea Leanne! So many story lines spring to my mind for this writing prompt. I hope it does for you too. Happy writing!
This Year’s Anthology
When the cover design for the 2021 anthology is finalised, we’ll open up for anthology orders for those interested.
Sponsorship of Next Year’s Competition
If interested in sponsoring next year’s competition, please contact us for the Sponsorship Proposal.
We would LOVE it if you considered including our books in your christmas present shopping. There’s a wide variety, award winners, and bestsellers. We’re in the process of adding a shopping cart to our website, but in the meantime if you wish to purchase multiple titles email us the titles and delivery address and we’ll consolidate your order to minimise postage.
Please let me introduce you to Zachary Pryor, winner of the 2021 Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Competition, and Georgia Fenwick, who long-listed in the junior category.
Zachary’s response to learning of his win: “Thank you so much for the call!! You’ve made my entire weekend!! Such an honour!!”
Georgia wrote to us: “I was so happy to see my name as one of the 7 on the longlist for the junior competition… My school is going to mention that I got longlisted in the school newsletter. 😀
(L) Georgia Fenwick long-listed in the junior category, and (R) winner of the 2021 Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Competition Zachary Pryor.
To all others about to be published in the anthology, if you’d like to send in your photo for publication, please do!