We’re pleased to announce N. West Moss the winner of our 2015 Great American Fiction Contest! Read her prize-winning story “Omeer’s Mangoes” and the stories from our five runners-up below.
Click here to purchase the collection, which includes 21 additional stories not available online.
Enter The Saturday Evening Post 2016 Great American Fiction Contest; click here.
Meet the Winner!
N. West Moss
“Am I dreaming?” asked Moss when notified her story “Omeer’s Mangoes” had won first place, publication in print and online, and a prize of $500. “I am thrilled beyond belief to be in a publication I hold in such high esteem.”
Her vividly written story drew inspiration from real-life events. “My father died last year, and about a month later, my mother and I went to New York City to visit the apartment that my parents kept for 30 years,” says Moss. “It sits right across the street from Bryant Park. When we got there, the doorman — also there for 30 years — greeted us, took my mother’s hand and asked, ‘How is Mr. Moss?’ Informed my father had died, the doorman froze, then turned to the wall and wept. His sobbing in the corner of the lobby over my father’s death was the spark for ‘Omeer’s Mangoes.’
“‘Omeer’s Mangoes’ is my first piece of fiction to reach a national audience,” says Moss. “The New York Times published an essay back in 2008, and that was exciting and unexpected. But this is exciting in a completely different way. Having people read my fiction feels much more vulnerable because it is entirely mine in a way that nonfiction skirts.”
After graduating with her MFA from William Paterson University in 2013 at age 49, Moss took a year off to write full-time —“5 to 10 hours each day.” She has won several awards — the Faulkner-Wisdom Award and Diana Woods Memorial Award for Creative Nonfiction — for her work, which has appeared primarily in literary journals, including The Westchester Review, The Blotter, and Hospital Drive.
Meet the Runners-Up
Each runner-up receives $100 and publication of his or her work on our website. (To read the prize-winning stories, click the titles below.) We salute these fine writers and the more than 200 others who entered our 2015 contest.
Story Line: On a trip to Coney Island, an alienated father and son renew their bond.
Bio: First short story published by national consumer publication; Gerard’s first novel Binary Star publishes on January 13, 2015 (Two Dollar Radio Press).
Title: “Nothing but the Truth”
Story Line:An uncle returns from WWII
a changed man. Some injuries you simply can’t see.
Bio: Published mysteries in Woman’s World magazine; published stories in literary magazines.
Title: “Party of Two”
Story Line:When a world-weary, middle-aged couple witnesses a young pair kissing in a restaurant booth, it stirs memories of first love and lost love.
Bio:Published story in Post’s online series New Fiction Friday; first short-story collection, Loss Angeles, due out in February 2015 (Short Story America Press).
Title: “1939 Plymouth, or The Bootlegger’s Driver”
Story Line: Immigrant Lüdvik Lendle loves America, a country where anything is possible. But on a road trip across America, he wonders what he has gotten himself into.
Bio: First short story published by national consumer publication; currently working on first young adult novel, Tangled Chimes.
Title: “The Three of Us”
Story Line: Laurie thought she knew everything about Paula, the brilliant and beautiful ex-wife of her fiancé, John.
Bio: First short story published by national consumer publication.
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I have a short story I wish to submit. Other than my own proof reading of it, I would like to know if professional editing is required before submission?
Hi, Ms. Seter. Thank you for expressing interest in the Great American Fiction Contest, and thanks for a great question. We accept previously unpublished work from unpublished and published authors alike, so you and your work are eligible for the contest.
Best wishes to you and your writing future, and thanks again for the thoughtful question.
Jesika St Clair, The Saturday Evening Post senior editor
Just a question… I have not published anything, but it has been suggested by a number of people, including the teacher of a writing class I have recently taken, that I should try. Do you have to be a published writer to enter the Post contest? By the way (not that I’m sure it would matter), I am 74 years of age.
Thanks, Helga Seter