Whoa, Cool!

Hey all, hate to toot my own horn, but I had to share this with you:

http://www.cbc.ca/books/canadawrites/2014/02/2014-cbc-short-story-prize-longlist-announced.html

Just announced yesterday.  While trying hard to stay modest and uber-cool about it, I have to admit that I was pretty amazed.  For those who don’t know, CBC is Canada’s national broadcasting service, kind of like BBC or NPR.  I have mad respect for CBC, and listen to it all the time (someone told me when I was young that I would do this someday – they were right).  Anyway, the fiction short story competition has like thousands of entries, so it’s pretty amazing to me to be amongst the 36 finalists.  Kind of mind-blowing actually.  I don’t really send my work out there to anything other than WordPress, so this is a new experience.  The story “Saad Steps Out” is, as you may suspect, a bit different… never thought anyone would enjoy that level of weirdness, but I feel warm and sappy that someone did.  When I opened the letter in the mail (yes, real mail!) yesterday, it was a bit nuts between my ears.

Anyway, CBC announces a shortlist and finalists from amongst the 36 on March 10th.  No idea how that will go, but I feel very honoured to have gotten this far.

Dream hard, rage hard.

162 thoughts on “Whoa, Cool!

  1. CONGRATULATIONS! (You may have heard that all the way from Ireland). Well done. Someone of your talent deserves to be recognised. Good luck Trent and please remember us, the little people, when you’re mega-famous 🙂

  2. Excellent! I can now add yet one more legend to my list of awesome writers I follow. Congratulations Trent, best of luck for the 10th of next month, man. Respect REDdog

    1. Heya Pete, sorry man I’ve never posted the story. I keep a bit of a parallel track of stories that I post here and those that I don’t, this is one of the latter. Well I guess you’ll see it sooner or later – either in print or out there. Gotta say I know which one I prefer! Anyway, typical oddball story with odd characters in strange situations, don’t know how else to describe it.

            1. I wish… just have to be more efficient. Between corporate soul-sucking job and three kids and a social life, you make the best of ten minutes here, ten minutes there. What do they always say? If you want to get something done, give it to someone who’s already busy. I’d like to throttle the person who said that.

      1. It’s a weekly competition where you get given a theme, write a short story on the theme, stick it on your blog, and cross your fingers. I slaughtered the oppostion this week, and I’ve been asked to join the crew who run the blog itself.

  3. Couldn’t be happier for ya NB….CBC is no small potatas! Finger’s Crossed that they continue to exhibit good taste and keep you on the short list. Tickled…just tickled! 🙂

  4. You already know what I think … I can’t imagine a writer more deserving of this. Congratulations and good luck for the upcoming rounds of winnowing down to the shortlist and finalists.

    1. Hey thanks – gonna keep my fingers crossed. I love CBC, I listen to it everywhere. We even have our own morning show in Kitchener-Waterloo now, although I still like listening to Matt Galloway and his crew in Toronto.

    1. Is there really a difference between writing and blogging? Isn’t one a newer form of the general other? I’m not really sure one way or the other. What I know is that when I post a typical blog post (typical being used loosely here), I get many more views and comments; when I post a story, it captures less attention. I wonder if a blogging forum like WordPress is really the right place for stories and the like. Maybe so, maybe not.

      1. I am much man indeed as I assume you are. Of course your name offers a bit more of a clue. If you check some of my earlier posts you’ll see that I’ve started adding my name and Google+ information into them so people know a little bit more about me. I just haven’t caught up with editing all the way.

  5. Good to know that the people who run these competitions know good stuff when they read it.
    And if those ninnies don’t pick you for the winner, you can follow the Clay Aiken path, still writing, and your fans (Trent-chers?) can catapult you to political fame!

    Or I suppose you can just keep writing great stuff…

    1. Thanks Guapo. I’m trying not to let this go to my head, and I figure the best way to do that is to bash my head against the next story.

      Clay Aiken, eh. I have never been compared to him before, but I’ll take it!

    1. Thanks Elyse, will do. I checked out some of the writers on the longlist, they’re a bit established in some cases, so my chances appear to be a bit slight. But you never know.

    1. Thank you. And thanks for making me think… I’m like, who the heck is Warren Dingman? And who names their child that? I was pretty sure it wasn’t you, so I went to the link, thinking it must be someone on the list, and voila, it’s someone commenting. Thanks for the treasure hunt – I think Warren needs more than a shout out though. Poor thing.

  6. Congrats. I don’t know you but every writer with a chance to let others share their words on a larger scale is inspiring. Be inspirational! Where can I read the short story?

    1. Well thank you – and nice to meet you. I never put that story on WordPress, I think that’s a condition of the contest, no prior publishing on any format, so hopefully later I can put it here. I guess unless I win or something (that would be cool), then it goes in a magazine.

  7. Trent! That is wonderful! not to just sound terribly dumb but where might I find the story?

    Oh and I am sure glad my fuzzy green snowflake came with me! I had a blue crochet’d square

    1. Julie! You came to my blog! That’s awesome – welcome!

      The story isn’t on the blog, though, I never posted it, don’t know why. I have bunches like that, either too weird or too sucky. If I win, I guess it gets published, if I don’t, I’ll publish it here. It is a pretty odd slice of weird.

      I always liked the snowflake…

  8. Trent I am so happy for you! You are such a talented writer and to get this kind of national recognition is just wonderful!! And i wouldn’t be surprised if you won! I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed for you and sending positive winning thoughts your way!

          1. Crazy game … two inches the other way on the empty net would have closed the game. Oh well … my the good guys win tomorrow. 😉 … I missed the curlers today as I forgot to set the DVR.

    1. G&T – thank you! And so glad to see you back! If you’re super proud, you could always wrangle up a poem and do an audio clip again, your voice and enunciation and the way you read is awesome.

              1. I think we are sick to death of hearing…and feeling that. I actually resemble a prune. Maybe soft sands and sunshine. We could all do with some of that.

  9. Congratulations Trent 🙂
    There are a few of your stories that I’ve read on your blog that I loved, and I’m very happy that you’re a finalist for this writing contest.
    I hope that you’re proud of this writing accomplishment.
    Best of luck to you on March 10th.

    1. Ah thanks man. Talk about a close one…. Canada won gold in men’s curling too, and women’s ski cross… I’m glad all this cold weather is good for something.

          1. To quote: I do not say something unless I actually mean it. 😉
            Sometimes I wish my writing was a bit more progressive and less cluttered with the descriptive. But if I tried to emulate Hemmingway all I would produce is a poor pastiche.

            1. Well, you have to find your style. Your voice. Don’t shy away from multiple voices. If you writing does not sound similar from piece to piece, I think that is a good thing. There is nothing wrong with descriptive, by the way, but always remember that your audience will have an imagination too – they can fill in the gaps. Sometimes, it’s the gaps that define the piece more than what you say – like the blank spaces in a drawing. An art teacher once told me that – it’s about the blank spaces more than what you write.

    1. Thanks, my friend. Will have to see what happens. I do love me my CBC though – given that you’re from Waterloo, I figure you know who Craig Norris and his crew are. Love that stuff.

        1. Me too. I used to listen to Matt Galloway off the Toronto feed faithfully, and I drive in a lot in the mornings so still get to hear them… felt a bit disloyal listening to Craig et al, but they’re cool. I can’t live without my CBC.

          1. Me too! CBC actually is part of what inspires me to write – the general banter and flow of words gets me thinking. CBC also gave me my 15-seconds of fame! So now I have to listen to them 🙂

              1. Dude. I just read that. You ARE famous. Man, you were interviewed by the CBC! That is so awesome. And it was a great interview, humble and funny. Seriously, we should meet up for a coffee or a drink sometime, we’re in the same city!

  10. This is amazing! And so well deserved!
    And once again, something I knew nothing about –
    Your blog looks completely different – did you lose me in the redesign?
    I clicked unfollow and then follow. If you don’t start showing up in my reader, I’m gonna get PISSED.
    Because I need my Trent fixes. This is bullshit!!

    1. Thanks Samara. CBC is a pretty big institution up here in Canada, roughly the equivalent of the BBC in UK.

      My wife helped me change my blog design, the old design was getting kind of drab. I hope I didn’t lose you in the redesign. I think I will likely post something tomorrow, let me know if it comes through. If not, I’ll give the WordPress helpers a buzz.

      1. Your recognition is well deserved! I read a lot of fiction on WP – and yours excites and challenges my brain in all sorts of crazy ways. Rock on!

        The new design looks great, btw.

        I hope unfollowing and following helped – but you weren’t in my reader the last few times either.

        Hopefully tomorrow.

        1. I don’t know if it’s deserved… it’s a bit overwhelming. I think I’m a good writer, but not yet the writer I want to be.

          Thanks for the words about the new design, my wife suggested I should change things… and then changed them for me. She got me into blogging in the first place, I wouldn’t not be here otherwise.

          Let me know about tomorrow, if it doesn’t pop up, I’ll go talk to someone at WordPress. They’re pretty helpful.

          1. TRENT!!
            STOP! You’re one of the most powerful fiction writers I’ve come across, and I read a ton of them!

            Some of your work is so incredibly disturbing it’s almost jumps off the page –
            And then, you go all the way in the opposite direction and show us great love –

            Fuck! Maybe, yes, you’ll get even better – yes, of course, we all will.

            But don’t cheat yourself out of this, man! Please! I’m so into your work – don’t sell yourself short. This, if anything, should validate what we all think of you!

            Lecture over.
            Have a nice evening.

            1. Thanks for that – it really means something to me. But I need to be better. I must be better. Getting better and finding that silk road to what I want to say – that’s what matters to me. I’m not really here to blog, I don’t even know how to blog. I just know narrative, and story, and fiction, and I need to improve. The great grace of being in the blogging world is meeting so many amazing, inspirational people like yourself – where else could that happen?

              Thanks for the lecture, Samara. Honestly, I know I can write and that I have an imagination. But I have to push to get better – something I don’t mind. Something I crave. I have such an appetite for working, for trying, it drives me a bit nuts. I don’t know if that makes any sense. I have a feeling it may make sense to you, though.

              1. Totally makes sense.

                Really great writing both inspires- and discourages me.

                It’s like I just want to write and write and write until I get better and all the while, thinking – damn! I’ll never be THAT good.

                Our best work is ahead of us.

    1. Hook, you honour me! Thanks man. Yeah, CBC has been doing this for a few years, but this year I mustered the nerve to actually enter. I did not expect this, at all.

        1. It is. I got a letter in the mail saying I’d make it, I had no idea. It was pretty cool. The short-list, though, would blow my mind into enough pieces that I’d have to drink scotch for a week straight.

  11. WE are happy for you, Trent. You have a chance at getting the message out on a bigger platform. I guess the days of bigger challenges may be ahead, beyond when to post or what followers to visit on wordpress, to what to post, where exactly to direct the message and how to express the salient issues of humanity as your writing pen now grows longer for more people to notice you and pay more heed to what you have to say. By challenges, I do not mean a bad thing, but that the game may be rolling to new grounds for you.

    1. Thanks Doc. I’m good with the challenge. Good with the new directions. Good with busting out and writing something new, something even I don’t see coming. But on the topic of humanity, Doc, I look to you.

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