March 2018 – Crime – Judge’s Overall Report

Judge’s Overall report – Crime Story – March 2018

I was delighted when asked to judge the crime entries for the March competition. I absolutely love a good crime story; in fact, my career has been based around it. I can with all honesty say that these entries were among the most difficult to judge, each writer brought forward their own interpretation of a crime story and I was taken aback by the high quality of the entries. I loved them all! Each story I picked up offered me something completely different, and this made the decision so much more difficult. I loved that the writers were able to offer me action, drama, suspense, and thrills! Well done to each and every participant in the competition.

The top four entries stood out for me in the way they were put together overall. They had me hooked from the beginning and offered me a great read throughout. The caliber of the entries overall was exceptional and I strongly believe the South African Writers Circle has an immensely talented group of writers! Thank you to each participant in the competition, Your writing is phenomenal and the stories were simply amazing.

Having said this, writers should take care not to lose their reader while elaborating on their plot. Losing the reader can happen in just a few words and often jumping between too many thoughts makes for difficult reading. I would also suggest the writers play with several titles before selecting one. A title plays a big part in introducing your story to the reader and it should grab them instantly.

  • Winner – Fortune Favours the Warned, by Jenny Young
  • Second – The Pagan Goddess, by Glenda Jager
  • Third – The Near Demise of Miss Du Bois, by Julia McInnes
  • Highly Commended – A Chinese Fortune Cookie, by Barbara Siedle

Charmaine Slater
Assistant Editor
Bedfordview and Edenvale News
Joburg East Express