I won’t lie, I like getting awards.  Sometimes it’s simply nice to get recognition from your peers or your fans.  Sometimes you just need that little boost to feed the self-confidence machine.  Sometimes they’re just fun.  For example, when I was in college and still deciding if I wanted to give writing a shot, I entered a short story contest through my school and received an honorable mention (it also came with a shirt, but I may or may not have slept in it every night until it was nothing but threads.  Then gave the threads a viking funeral).

A few years later, at the very first horror convention I attended, the World Horror Convention, I came in fourth place in their short story contest (the true award being receiving my certificate from Neil Gaiman).

The following year, I took first place in that contest.  In a side note, apparently we were going for a POC sweep of that year’s awards:  I took first place in the short story contest; Chesya Burke took first place in the flash fiction contest; however, Wrath James White let the team down by taking second place in the Gross Out Contest (losing to one, Mr. Cullen Bunn).  Also, WHC 2011 is holding a short story contest again, which has just opened for submissions.

I have gone a few years without any recognition.  Well, that changed this past weekend at Context when I received Shroud Publishing’s Hiram award for “The Smasher of Sterotypes.”  To wit:  “He’s charming, a minister of the Christian word, African-American, and snappily dressed – an impossible convergence in a horror writer.”

The Smasher of Stereotypes

And it came with a trophy.

Because sometimes awards are just fun.