The $1,000 Working Class Grant is intended to assist working class, blue-collar, poor, and homeless writers who have been historically underrepresented in speculative fiction due to the financial barriers that have made it much harder for them to access the writing world. SLF created the annual grant in 2013.
The SLF announcement says that science fiction, fantasy, and horror are the genres Wollenfang “generally writes when she puts pen to paper (or fingertips to keyboard), but she is ‘absolutely thrilled’ that the excerpt within her application for the 2018 Working Class Writers Grant, I, Phoenix, caught the jurors’ interest this year.”
A perennial applicant for the Working Class Writers Grant, Wollenfang was named Honorable Mention for the grant twice: once in 2015, and then again in 2016.
Her unpublished steampunk novel, Clockwork Evangeline, won the Retreat West First Chapter Competition in 2016, and was also ranked as a finalist and Judges’ Favorite for the Insights Novel Award in 2016, 2017, and 2018.
It should be no surprise then that Wollenfang finally made the impact she wanted upon the jurors for the grant this year. Working Class Writers Grant juror Rebecca Gibson said of Wollenfang’s winning entry and excerpt from I, Phoenix: “This story is thoroughly fascinating, making me want to know more—the world and character building are tight, the premise is sound, and the attached synopsis shows that the story will be spectacular when fully fleshed out.”
Receiving Honorable Mentions for the 2018 Working Class Writers Grant are Julie Borden, Dominik Parisien, and Alanna Faelan “for their entertaining and thought-provoking submissions, which made the selection of the winner a difficult but enjoyable process for our jurors.”
[Based on a press release.]