'L. Ron Hubbard's Writers of the Future Contest' Mentors New Talent in Speculative Fiction

Share Article

Over 800 Novels and 4,000 Short Stories Published by Winners; More Than 50 Million Copies of Their Books Sold

Writers Of The Future

The competition is very keen and even dagger sharp. It is with this in mind that I initiated a means for new and budding writers to have a chance for their creative efforts to be seen and acknowledged.

Three out of every 10,000 manuscripts submitted to the publishing industry in the United States each year get published. In the science fiction and fantasy genre, all publishing houses combined release only 1,800 novels each year, most of them written by established authors. So recognition seldom comes quickly to new writers, particularly in the genre of speculative fiction. Many aspiring writers facing those kinds of odds soon discover how hard it is to get published and give up on their dreams to see their novels and stories in print.

One program that has successfully helped talented new writers gain recognition and bring them to the attention of publishers is the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Contest, now in its 30th year.

Every quarter, three winners are selected by a judge’s panel of leading authors of science fiction and fantasy including Orson Scott Card, Tim Powers, Kevin J. Anderson and Robert Sawyer. With no entry fee and judging done on an anonymous basis, the criterion is strictly merit.

Besides first time publication in the L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future—the best-selling anthology series of its kind—benefits include $25,000 in cash prizes and royalties, a writing workshop with top professionals of the genre, critiques of writing skills by well known authors as well as book signings, radio and TV interviews organized by the contest administrators to assist the new authors to get launched. Winners also form a strong community and stay in touch and support each other.

Winners of this year’s Contest will fly into Hollywood for the annual awards ceremony and Writers of the Future week-long workshop based on Hubbard’s articles on how to succeed as a writer. These were initially written for publications such as Writer’s Digest, Writer’s Review and Author and Journalist during the early years of his career when his name became a household word among the millions of readers of pulp fiction magazines.

Fantasy and science fiction writers Tim Powers and Dave Wolverton and such other successful authors in the genre, as Orson Scott Card and Nina Kiriki Hoffman have conducted the workshop, which in addition to honing writing skills also covers public relations and marketing advice to help winners launch their careers. The intensive mentoring process is working—past winners of the Contest have had over 800 novels and more than 4,000 short stories published. They have produced 27 New York Times bestsellers and their works have sold over 50 million copies.

The Contest began in 1983 when L. Ron Hubbard celebrated his bestseller return to the field of science fiction with the runaway sales of Battlefield Earth. It was with his own experiences as a new writer in mind—and from the perspective of more than five decades as a premier professional—that he created the Contest. In stating his reasons in the introduction to the first Writers of the Future anthology, he wrote: "In these modern times, there are many communication lines for works of art. Because a few works of art can be shown so easily to so many, there may even be fewer artists. The competition is very keen and even dagger sharp. It is with this in mind that I initiated a means for new and budding writers to have a chance for their creative efforts to be seen and acknowledged."

This year’s L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Achievement Awards Ceremony will take place April 13th at the Wilshire Ebelle Theatre with celebrity presenters, guests and winners from around the globe. Spanning 30 years, Hubbard’s legacy in helping writers and artists launch their careers has become truly international and is regarded as one of the top awards for creative excellence in all of speculative fiction.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Joni Labaqui
Visit website