It’s been a while since we saw a shortlist with an author featuring more than one story (providing you don’t count the major contests, that is). But this time around Bryana Thomas managed not one, but two great stories for the Murder Internationale Award shortlist.
Bryana, who only debuted at NiTH earlier in 2018, was joined by Darajabi Nnamani, Zsak Long, Katie Brice and Emma Poppy Allen.
Plane and Simple was Emma Poppy Allen’s debut story at Needle in the Hay, but Allen is already showing what it takes to make it at NiTH, with a macabre tale that leads the reader to an awful realisation. Allen even manages the subtlest of twists in the tail.
Darajabi Nnamani has shown up regularly on the NiTH shortlists over the past few months. His story, A Congo Conspiracy, is a powerful patina of vignettes delving into the black heart of war, it’s source, motivation, and the people it touches. A great read that resonates deeply with the reader.
Bryana Thomas’ first story on the shortlist, Snapshot Strangler, opens with the chilling line “Watching the light fade from their eyes was my favourite part.” Captivating!
Bryana’s second story is Finding Florence. Again, Bryana catches the reader right away with an engrossing opening line, then takes us further down the rabbit hole as a private investigator plays a deadly game of cat and mouse with an unlikely suspect.
After debuting almost a year ago with Tooth: Hurty, Zsak Long returns to the NiTH shortlist with Vanity Air, a tale of murder, mystery, models and a millionaire. It’s great to see Zsak back with his second shortlisted story. It just goes to show you don’t need to make the shortlist every week to make progress as a writer! That said, let’s hope we don’t have to wait another year for something from this up and coming writer.
Finally, Katie Brice took to the skies with Red or Dead? as one man made his escape after enacting horrible vengeance. This is Katie’s third shortlisted story in recent times, and we’re excited to see more from from the Love Struck and Banged to Rights author.
If you haven’t checked out all this week’s stories, I can highly recommend you do so. As for the winner, I won’t keep you waiting. Second place goes to Katie Brice for Red or Dead? Brice was beaten to the post by less than a full point by Bryana Thomas, who snatched first place with the excellent Snapshot Stranger.
Congratulations to Bryana and well done to all our shortlisters, without excellent stories, we wouldn’t have a competition 🙂
Also thanks to our judges who provided their time and efforts, always appreciated. We’re looking to fill a few slots on the judging jury if you’re interested. You don’t have to judge every contest, and it doesn’t prevent you from entering contests you don’t judge on, so if you want to help give back to NiTH or just fancy rating some short stories, drop us a line.
For now though, make sure you check out the new comps coming up and more exciting shortlists.