Judging Event’s Creative Nonfiction Contest

In 2007, I submitted a nonfiction piece about my time in the army called “You and What Army” to Event‘s Creative Nonfiction contest. I was a couple of months into my year at SFU’s Writer’s Studio, new to writing in English, and my teacher, Wayde Compton, encouraged me to submit. When I found out a few months later that I was one of three winners, I could hardly believe it. It was like a dream. It was the biggest thing that ever happened to me as a writer. I remember taking the prize money to my favourite store on Commercial Drive in East Vancouver, Banshee (which no longer exists), and buying a pink dress and a necklace with a tree pendant I thought I’d cherish forever. (Unfortunately I hardly wore them, but they’re still around! Somewhere… I think.)

Greedy, I submitted again in 2009, hoping to at least get shortlisted. And then I won again, this time alongside my dear friend Eufemia Fantetti. Which was crazy in the most wonderful and unexpected way.

If you told me in 2007, when I slipped my freshly inked piece into an envelope with shaky hands and kissed it for good luck that nine years later I would be judging the contest, I would have called you crazy. Judging it feels almost as dreamy as winning it. Event’s contest gave me my first big break. It was the beginning of my literary career. I feel so incredibly lucky for the opportunity to do this for someone else.

The deadline to submit is April 15. I hope you do!

10 comments on Judging Event’s Creative Nonfiction Contest

  • Michele Kerr

    I just finished “The Best Place on Earth,” which left me breathless. Your book was about Israel….but so subtle and beautiful and so much more about relationships. I really hope you write a novel soon! My sister-in-law is a Yemenite Israeli who makes jachnun every Shabbat, and we devour it whenever we visit Israel.

  • Ayelet (author)

    Thank you so much! I am so glad to hear you enjoyed the book. I am working on a memoir at the moment, but a novel is also in the works…

  • Barbara Masry

    I loved your stories for their revelations of people not ordinarily written about. Ordinary peoples’ insights and feelings in extraordinary language. They remind me of Sherwood Anderson’s wonderful character studies in “Winesburg, Ohio.” I look forward to future books. Thank you.

  • Ayelet (author)

    Thank you for your kind comment! It made my day. And I’ll look up Sherwood Anderson’s book. <3

  • Liat Jehassi Wasserman

    As a Yemeni-Israeli emigree to the U.S., your book blew me away! I would love it if you could speak to my book group! I’ve left more information under the Contact section of this site, via your representation. Alfeh todot.

  • Ayelet (author)

    Thanks so much, Liat! I’d love to speak to your book group! You can also fill the contact form at the “contact” page, which would go directly to my email. I look forward to hearing from you!

  • Liat

    Hi again. This is Liat. I have not been home today so this is the only email I had for you. Our book group meets tonight, Tuesday, at 7pm pst. I think you are in Toronto yes? Realistically we’d connect with you at 10:30pm your time, 7:30pm ours.

    Normally, we are 10 women, all Jewish, but given the summer, it will likely be 5 of us only, or thereabouts.

    We can Skype: my phone number: 805/637-6151. Email: wass1818@yahoo.com

    What a wonderful honor it would be if this were to work out!

  • Ayelet (author)

    Oh, no! I missed you. I’m so sorry. 🙁 Did you use the contact form on the contact page? I never got your email.

  • Liat Jehassi Wasserman

    Yes, I did . Twice. There must be something wrong with the contact page transmission to your email. Anyway, perhaps you can make a guest appearance by SKYPE at our next meeting, even though we’ll be on a new book then! They’d love to meet you nonetheless, as would I!

  • Ayelet (author)

    Sure! We can do that. Please let me know when! You can email me at: my first name at first and last name dot com.
    And thanks for letting me know about the problem with the contact page. I’ll look into it right away!

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