Participants in Christendom’s inaugural St. Francis de Sales Writing Contest experienced a high-level of competition and endless creativity this semester, with the top five writers being celebrated and honored by philosophy professor Michael Brown this past week. Sponsored by the college’s faculty, the competition featured over sixty submissions from the student body, ranging from short stories, to poetry, to non-fiction essays.
The writing contest was the first-ever sponsored by the college’s faculty, with a faculty panel reading and judging every submission over the course of the spring semester, according to the main criterion of how ready each submission was for publication. The high standard resulted in an even higher level of writing from each of the submissions, making choosing only five winners a difficult task for the faculty panel.
“As a community, everyone encouraged each other to do their best, and to finish the project. Everyone was so supportive, which I think resulted in an even greater crop of stories as a result,” said junior Abigail Reimel, who placed third in the competition with her short story, “Thinking of Airplanes.”
Reimel, who is an English language and literature major at Christendom, had never written a short story before the competition. While any genre of writing was acceptable for it, Reimel chose to challenge herself, and try and impress the faculty panel with a different form of writing then they were used to from her academic papers.
“It was neat to know that I was writing something that would be judged by people who were familiar with quality literature. The bar is set so high here at Christendom, especially where writing is concerned, so it felt like a real challenge to try and write a short story, amidst so many other quality writers. Knowing how high the standard is here for writing, it meant so much more placing in the competition — it was really satisfying,” said Reimel.
While any genre of writing was acceptable, the top winners, who came from each of the college’s four classes, wrote either a short story or a poem. The winners were awarded monetary prizes for their hard work and impressive stories.
Read each of the winners below:
- First Place: Morgan Witt, “f7”
- Second Place: Madeliene Gomez, “Thus Ever Turning”
- Third Place: Abigail Reimel, “Thinking of Airplanes”
- Fourth Place: David Snyder, “When a Tree Falls”
- Fifth Place (tie): Felicity Fedoryka, “The Tea Shop at the Edge of the World”
- Fifth Place (tie) John Hebert, “A Soldier’s Prayer”