Sometimes, The Wheel is on Fire

Sometimes, The Wheel is on Fire

Friday, May 10, 2013

Space Haiku Contest Winners!

Before we get to the winners, I'd like to share a few details about the entries. I'm not sure if my friends lean this way or if the haiku format merely lends itself to such things, but five haiku referenced Star Trek (final score: Kirk 2, Picard 1), yet no other show or film garnered more than one mention before the deadline. (The others: Star Wars, Galaxy Quest, Firefly, Hitchhiker's Guide, and Invader Zim.)

On the other hand, space apparently makes you people think of flatulence. And mooning. And Uranus. That's six haiku claimed by the entirely wrong type of black hole.

Anyway, thank you to everyone who entered haiku in this year's contest (or shared it on Facebook, like Matthew of the QQQE). You made my work as judge tougher than ever. As usual, my decisions are completely biased and made without the slightest hint of logic. In other words, I am the anti-Spock.

If none of your haiku appear below, know that your best one just barely missed the cut. (Unless you're my dad. Then, just be happy you didn't get a dishonorable mention this time around.) And if you haven't already done so, make sure to check out all the entries. There's even a trio of anonymous entries near the end whose puns put my own to shame...

Honorable Mentions

Susan Kaye Quinn tried to win on a technicality. But Susan, you should know: the Wookiee only wins if I let him win.
Sweet like gorimn wine
My soaring space prose triumphs!
Wookie always wins
Scott nets two. The first because it offers up a double whammy, running out of space while talking about it. The second because... well, it's just so shiny.
Space, The Final Fron-
Dammit! Space, The Final Fron-
You know what I mean!

Hero of Canton
Unintentional patron
Orange woolen hat
Joshua's captures the futility of space travel. At least, the futility of space travel without having brought enough oxygen. Or fuel. Or...
A solo journey.
Much too far from planetfall.
Almost out of air.
I feel I had to reward one of the entries from the dark (and/or smelly) side. This one is from Joelle:
I dreamt of space flight
But studied proctology;
Uranus beckoned.
A woman called Mittens shares the gospel truth about kittens:
Cats in king sized beds
Plenty of space, so why must
you bogart my side
And then there's this one, which only works if you know Naomi's son is named Solomon. And is only accurate for another two months, at which time another son will rise and throw everything out of alignment:
My whole universe
(Not just one puny system)
Revolves around Sol.

First Place — Traditional

I don't have anything clever to say to introduce this entry. Which is good, because traditional haiku are serious stuff. The first winner is Andrea Gilbey:
Beyond this green world
Past the deep blue and farther
All is midnight black.

First Place — Humorous/Creative

Joelle snagged the top humor prize (and a gift card) with this inventive entry:

First Place — Mostly Harmless

And as you can see, I did decide to award a third top prize after all. It goes to Naomi, for proffering this sage advice:
Vast and uncharted
You cannot prepare for it.
Just bring your towel

And that'll do it for this year's haiku contest. Andrea, Joelle, and Naomi, please email me (or comment below) to let me know if you'd prefer your digital monies from Amazon or iTunes.

Congratulations to all the winners, and thanks again to everyone who entered and/or stopped by. I'm already looking forward to next year's contest...

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Haiku Contest: Space!

** The contest is now closed. Check out the winners!**

Announcing the launch of The Wheel’s 4th Annual Haiku Contest!

We've done ninja. We've done pirates. We've done robots. But this year we boldly go where no few haiku have gone before: Space!

It's pretty simple.
Step 1: You write a haiku.
(There is no step 2.)

Just follow the standard haiku structure (5 syllables, 7 syllables, then 5 again) and make it something to do with space. Whether you opt for proven science or aliens or pop culture or another meaning of space entirely is up to you.

To enter, write your own space-themed haiku in the comments section below. Two or three lucky winners will receive spacebucks $25 gift cards.

I will be selecting the best haiku in each of two categories:
  • Humorous/Creative
  • Traditional (i.e. eloquent, evocative, etc.)
In addition, I may also reward a third entry, depending on my mood. And the mood of my wallet.

The deadline to submit a haiku is this Tuesday, May 7 at 5:00pm (Eastern Time). Official "rules" are below.

Official "Rules":
  1. To enter, post space-themed haiku in the comments section below. Multiple submissions are allowed, but if you submit more than five (5) entries, there won't be enough room in the contest for all of them and they'll burn up on re-entry.
  2. Standard haiku rules apply. To qualify, each entry must be a three-line poem, the first line containing exactly 5 syllables, the second line 7 syllables, and the third line 5 syllables. If you miscount, the launch of your entry will be scrubbed and you'll have to start over from scratch.
  3. The contest is open until Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at 5:00pm, Eastern Time. If you try to sneak an entry in after the deadline, it will be treated as a stowaway and sent hurling off into the black via the airlock. It will not survive.
  4. Entries must be in English. (i.e. Using Japanese kanji will not help you win for best traditional haiku.) If I can't understand your entry, I'll assume it's a message from an alien world and be too busy trying to decipher it to award you any money.
  5. Anonymous entries will not win. If you don't tell me who you are, clearly you are a conspiracy nut who only wants to get your hands on the alien message from rule #4. I will never let you see anything of mine, and that includes gift cards.
  6. Prizes will be awarded in each of two (2) categories: Humorous/Creative and Traditional. A third prize may be awarded if the mood (or a light saber) strikes me.
    • First place winners will each receive a $25 gift card from either Amazon or iTunes (their choices).
    • An indeterminate number of Honorable Mentions will receive bragging rights over everyone who doesn’t win. Also, honor (mentioned).
    • If my father submits an entry, there's a good chance there will also be a Dishonorable Mention.
  7. I will act as sole judge, and select the winning haiku based on the aforementioned criteria, as well as other criteria I make up as I go along. All decisions are final, and will not be changed under any circumstances. Unless I'm threatened by a Wookiee. Then I'll let the Wookiee win.