Writers of the Future, Hubbard, and Scientology

WotF, Hubbard, and Scientology Finding the Future

There’s been increasing, and increasingly more worrying, buzz about the connection between the Writers of the Future short story contest and the Church of Scientology. JW Alden has blogged about his disturbing experience in Clearwater; Jason Sanford has analyzed—and cast doubt upon—the bestseller status of the WotF anthologies; Kyle Aisteach shared his own experience; others have shared their versions and insights. A lot of discussion and sharing focuses on the so-called firewall that separates the contest from the church, in particular on the eroded state of said firewall.

I was a Writers of the Future published finalist in 2004, and a winner in one of the quarters of 2005 (not sure which quarter, since the contest has its own arcane method of numbering quarters). This means I’ve had two opportunities to attend the Writers of the Future workshop and awards gala. Having read—and recognized some of—Alden’s account, I’ve decided to share my experience at both events, everything it brought me in terms of my writing career, the cool but somewhat odd reading that resulted from it, and finally my thoughts on the much-discussed firewall. [read on…]

WotF, Hubbard, and Scientology Finding the Future

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