What would patron saint of this blog, E.B. White, have to say about being published in The Saturday Evening Post? It’s impossible to say, since he never found a home amongst their pages, but F. Scott Fitzgerald did, writing in the fall of 1920, “Then, in November, I sold my first story to the editors of The Saturday Evening Post.” Exactly a hundred years later, I get to say the same thing. This past November, I was notified by the editors of the Post that the story I had entered in their annual Great American Fiction Contest was awarded the honor of being the fifth runner-up!
My story, “The Self-Made Man,” inspired in part by the work of Post contributor Ray Bradbury, involves a traveling carnival with a very sinister objective and the residents of the town that have become their newest hosts. This also has the honor of being my very first publishing credit—the first time my work has been chosen to appear online! With over 250 entries to this contest, now in its ninth year, I am very proud to be included in the incredible tradition of the GAFC and to be a part of The Saturday Evening Post’s 200thanniversary issue!
The Saturday Evening Post began in 1821 as a four-page newspaper, growing to become America’s most widely circulated weekly magazine in the early 1900s. Now, with six print issues a year, the Post has a circulation of nearly a quarter-million! Some of the authors whose fiction has appeared in the Post include F. Scott Fitzgerald, Edgar Allan Poe, Ray Bradbury, William Faulkner, Agatha Christie, Walter Tevis… I could keep going! And in 2021, though it feels ridiculous to say, I get to include myself among the writers this magazine has chosen to publish.
The announcement of the winners can be found here. As one of six writers published online through the GAFC, I can say that the other winners’ work is superb! My story is set to be available on the Post’s website on Friday, February 5.
If you can’t wait that long, or are going into parts unknown and will only have your kindle, or want to read more than just six stories, there is an anthology featuring the top 20 stories submitted to the GAFC! The anthology, Best Short Stories from the Saturday Evening Post Great American Fiction Contest 2021, is available through amazon here.
My experience with the Great American Fiction Contest has been wonderful every step of the way, and I am so happy that my first published story is at such an illustrious magazine! I have every hope there is much more to come.