By Alex Banx
Los Angeles, CA (The Hollywood Times) 04/10/2022—
Friday, April 8th, 2022, the Hollywood Times was invited and delighted to cover the 38th Annual L. Ron Hubbard ‘Writers & Illustrators of the Future’ Awards Gala in Hollywood, CA, celebrating the 13 newly published science fiction & fantasy contest winning writers and 12 winning illustrators from all over the world with the release of volume 38 of the ‘Writers of the Future’ 484-page paperback presented by Author Services and Galaxy Press at the Taglyan Complex Grand Ballroom on Vine.
Back, live, and in-person, the 2022 Gala welcomed some prior contest winners from 2020 and 2021 who were in attendance this year to accept their awards, as they weren’t able to attend the 2021 awards banquet honoring 2020 and 2021 winners, due to the pandemic and travel restrictions in the countries they were coming from.
Upon arriving, the red carpet filled with celebrities, artists, writers, producers, influencers, dreamers, and do-ers.
It was more than a pleasure speaking with Nancy Cartwright (Primetime Emmy Award®-winner as the voice Bart Simpson since 1987 to present) and Kate Linder of The Young and the Restless; two of the nights’ awards presenters.
The contests’ 16 judges, 11 writers and 5 illustrators, were present including Kevin J. Anderson, co-writer of the “Dune” prequels and consultant on the 2022 6-time Oscar®-winning film, “Dune”. We sang the Birthday Song to Dr. Nnedi Okorafor, who was a contest winner in the past and has since gone on to become an international award-winning novelist and professor of African-futurism for both children and adults best known for her novels ‘Who Fears Death’, ‘Binti’ and ‘Remote Control’. Echo Chernik, educator and award-winning art nouveau artist of fantastical women, stunned in platinum from head-to-toe.
One after another, the judges, special guest speakers, writers, and illustrators shared their experiences, hurdles, and gratitude. From 16 years young to 60+, new writers and illustrators headed to the stage to accept their awards.
The Grand Prize winner of the 2022 Writers Contest, Desmond Astaire, writer of “Gallows”, took home and the Golden Award and a $5,000 check. Gallows: Predestination and retribution collide when a bartender must determine if his customer is the time-traveling tourist an FBI’s sting operation is looking for. Does the mission become an obsession? Will the end justify the means?
Among tonight’s winners, the author of the first short-story featured in the ‘Writers of the Future’, volume 38, is Azure Arthur, writer of “Agatha’s Monster”, a story of a world where monster killing and trapping is big business but one girl from a Hunter family decides she won’t kill monsters. In fact, one of her best friends is one.
The Grand Prize-winning illustrator, Zaine Lodhi, for his work for Agatha’s Monster” was also award $5,000 check and the Golden Brush Award.
L. Ron Hubbard created the Writers of the Future Contest in 1983, a year after the release of his best-selling sci-fi novel, “Battlefield Earth” to provide a means for aspiring writers of speculative fiction to get a much-needed break. Five years later, the Illustrators of the Future Contest followed. Both contests draw entries from around the world and are completely free to enter. Winners retain full rights to their and each are given cash prize awards. Grand Prize winners receive an additional $5,000. All winners are flown out to Los Angeles, expenses-paid, for a weeklong workshop given by Contest judges leading up to the Annual Black Tie Awards Gala. Since its
development, the Writers and Illustrators of the Future contests have awarded over $1 million in cash prizes and royals to emerging creative talent.
“Because a few works of art can be shown so easily to so many, there may even be fewer artists. The competition is very keen and even dagger sharp. It is with this in mind that I initiated a means for new and budding writers to have a chance for their creative efforts to be seen and acknowledged.” – L. Ron Hubbard
No entry fee is required to enter the contest or to take the free writing workshop. New writers progress through the entire process of coming up with a story, researching, outlining, plotting, descriptive writing, dialogue, narration, suspense, from beginning, middle, to end through final production.
Past winners of the Writers contest have produced 33 New York Times best-sellers selling over 60 million copies. Past Illustrator contest winners have produced 360 comic books, 624 book and album covers, and contributed their art to 68 television shows and 40 major movies.
“The Writers of the Future experience played a pivotal role during a most impressionable time in my writing career. Everyone was so welcoming. Afterwards, the WotF folks were always around when I had questions or needed help. It was all far more than a mere writing contest.” – Dr. Nnedi Okorafor – (Writers of the Future winner 2002 / 2022 Judge)
For more information on the Writers and Illustrators of the Future contests, visit their website, www.writersofthefuture.com and follow WotF on Instagram @WOTFContest