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Aeon Award 2008

The Aeon Award 2008 was the Third International Aeon Award Short Fiction Contest, a speculative fiction writing competition for science fiction, fantasy and horror. It ran from January 1st 2008 to November 30th 2008 and was the first Aeon Award to move from a biannual to annual schedule. The Grand Prize was €1000 and publication in Albedo One. Second and third place cash prizes were also introduced, of €200 and €100, respectively. Our sincere thanks to all those who supported the contest by entering their stories and with publicity.

Grand Judge, Ian Watson, chose as winner from the top seven shortlisted stories, Colin Henchley’s “Twinkle Twinkle”. Congratulations to Colin, who received the €1000 prize money, and whose story was published in Albedo One, issue 36 (pictured opposite)! Grand Judge, Ian Watson, remarked of the story: “It’s so incredibly powerful and vividly written. The sight of an apparent airman on the wing is a shocker.”

In second place Ian chose “Aegis” by D. T. Neal, which he described as “wonderfully descriptive and powerful and mythopaeic”. “Aegis” was published in Albedo One, issue 37 (pictured below, opposite)

In third place was “The Better to See You With” by Allison Francisco. Of the story, Ian commented: “It reminds me in its stylishness and atmosphere of Ray Bradbury or Tom Reamy… very evocative”. “The Better to See You With” was published in Albedo One, issue 38 (pictured below, opposite).

Congratulations to the winners. And sincere commiserations to the runners-up and the authors of all those stories on the shortlist. Thank you for submitting your work and supporting the Aeon Award writing contest in its goal of promoting new writers and writing in the speculative fiction genres.

Some words from Aeon Award 2008 winning author Colin Henchley
Taken from Albedo One, issue 36:

I’ve been given the opportunity to produce a few words for the editorial, and I hope you don’t mind if I make them words of thanks. Thank you Albedo One Team for your creation of, your ideals for, and your efforts on the annual Aeon Award. Thank you Ian Watson and the little gods of good fortune that, this time, made my short story stand out. (Next time it could be YOU.) Thank you YOU, the readers. Minds agile enough to travel alternate realities are minds equipped to question the values of this one.

The Aeon Award 2008 received a record number of entries and the judges were able to shortlist a record number of stories of high merit, 40 in total, almost half of which were from female authors. The full shortlist is provided below, with the top seven stories denoted by asterisks (and listed in no particular order).

Twinkle Twinkle *** by Colin Henchley
Aegis *** by D. T. Neal
The Better to See You With *** by Allison Francisco
Extracts from a Three Volume Novel… *** by Ian Wild
Inventions *** by Alex Carnevale
Sundays Off *** by Gerard Farrell
The Hot Chocolate Rocket *** by Martin Belderson
The Trapped Tailcoat by Ian Wild
Doors by Julian West
Shadow Pains by Kelvin M. Knight
Lessons In Love by Kelvin M. Knight
Breaking the Mould by Steven J. Hopley
Escher by Helgard de Barros
The Walnut Tree by Malcolm Bray
Stay Special by Susan Lanigan
Hot Chocolate by Susan Lanigan
Regret Me Not by Jennifer Harwood-Smith
55286 by Jennifer Harwood-Smith
Come The Spring by Ahmed Jamel
Swan Wing by Joanne Mills
YoYo by Romily McNulty
Hood by Alice Godwin
You, Me and Them by Alexis Boddy
A Bump in the Night by Nakia Johnson
The Horror of Life by Clive Maxwell-Yates
Dreamscape by Matt Bone
Windproject NX104 by Anne Lente
Convicts by Robert Boumis
The Firebird by Roshni Beeharry
Lies by Kelly Harmon
The Den Ghost by Eleanor Thom
Went Wrong by Jeff Nottingham
Doorways by Catherine Edmunds
The Fatal Book by Loren Rhoads
The Flower Builder by Bernadette Owens
The Paper Garden by T. E. Peploe
Thirstlands by Nick Wood
Facing Demons by Nigel Plane
iDementia by Helmut Obermeir
The Cursed by Lisa Clarkson

Don’t forget, the International Aeon Award Short Fiction Contest opens for entries each year from 01 January to 31 November. The Aeon Award short fiction contest has been running since 2004 and has a Grand Prize of €1000 and publication in Albedo One! Second and third place contest prizes are €200 and€100 as well as guaranteed publication in Albedo One, the leading Irish magazine of science fiction, fantasy and horror. Here’s why you should enter the contest.