I placed fourth in the LDStorymakers first-chapter writing contest in romance/women’s fiction over the weekend. I believe I’m the first male to ever place in the romance section of this contest. I think that’s a good thing.
To accept my women’s fiction award, I wore a long dark wig and a red dress, and ran while cheering to the podium. I did this in front of some 250 or more people, with representatives from most of the LDS publishers with whom I have an interest in publishing.
It seemed like such a good idea at the time.
This is the first time I’ve worn a dress in public. I am quite sure that everybody there will remember me, which I think is probably a good thing, too. Writing conferences are not just about learning from the classes, but networking with people in the industry and making an impression.
Well, a man with a mustache and goatee in a red dress, screaming and cheering as he runs to the front of the room, probably made some sort of an impression. If I want to remind anybody who I was at the conference, all I have to say is “the man in the red dress” and they’ll remember.
My writing group, Authors Incognito, told me if I won, I should accept my award under the name of D. D. Hunt (my real initials) while in a dress, but I told them “I ain’t wearing no stinkin’ dress!”
But the night before the winners were announced, I thought, “Oh, why not? Might be fun!” I didn’t, however, tell anyone what I was doing—after all, what if I didn’t win?
Well, I did win. Nichole had brought me a wig, which I think is all my writing group expected me to wear. (Well, along with my normal clothes—I mean, wearing a dress was like a weird dream, but not the one where you’re naked in public!)
Curiously, even the guest speaker I met there who wrote the script for Friday the 13th (Part 9): Jason Goes to “An Unpleasant Place” congratulated me on my contest win—and I wasn’t even wearing my red dress and wig at the time for him to recognize me.
Now I have to actually write the rest of the story that won. All I have is the rough-draft of a prologue that I wrote three years ago and found on my hard drive the night I was submitting to the contest. I don’t even know the main character’s name yet.
The title, however, is Butter Diggers. Sounds like a juicy romance, huh?
(Thanks to Nichole Giles and Connie Hall for the pictures.)