Summer Vacation Contest Winners

Winner #1 - Wendi Nelson pic.jpg

Grand Prize

Wendi nelson | lake seven

Wendi Nelson is a wife, mother and grandmother. I have had an amazing ride so far in life. I have always used humorous storytelling to make friends, and influence people. As I built a career as a sales trainer and business consultant, I used storytelling to build trust, credibility and rapport with clients and sales teams very effectively. I used it as a business tool.

My earliest recollection of a gratifying storytelling experience was when I was 8 and I charged the neighborhood kids twenty-five cents each to come to my house and view my bedridden fathers face after a motorcycle accident. My mortified Mom found me at the head of the bed with two dollars’ worth of strange kids circled around the foot of his bed as I described the high-speed accident that left him wrapped like a mummy. Dad was higher than a kite on pain meds but being my number one fan of my entrepreneurial storytelling spirit, he played along by offering up a supporting moan, groan or wince at just the perfect time in my depiction of his near-death experience. (Or at least I thought he was playing along; he could have really been just responding to his excruciating pain, but his timing was impeccable to my storyline. He never recalled any of this so we will never know) 

Last year (2018) I decided to spend the rest of my life doing what inspires me. For me that is writing and storytelling. I look at every opportunity to share a story as a gift. I love “taking people away” into a story for a feel-good experience that will make them laugh, maybe cry and hopefully always be remembered.

I live between Florida and Illinois presently with my husband Rob and Shih Tzu “Chase”ring her words with the world.

Winner #2 - Mindy Long pic.jpg

Runner up

Mindy long | true north

Mindy Long is a full-time freelance writer living in Arizona. She credits her love of stories to her father, who still tells the best tales of growing up on his family’s ranch. Mindy’s fascination with words led her to a career as a journalist, and she has been reporting and writing professionally for nearly 20 years. As a writer, she has gotten to experience everything from eating lunch with inmates at the Utah State Prison to sitting in the White House Rose Garden. Mindy has a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in Evanston, Illinois, and a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Westminster College in Salt Lake City. She grew up in the small town of Price, Utah, and still loves going back to visit.

Writer #3-Marilyn Seguin pic.jpg

honorable mention

Marilyn Seguin | the end of summer vacation

Marilyn Weymouth Seguin was born and educated in Maine and has spent the last thirty-two summers vacationing at camps in the Sebago Lakes Region. She recently retired from full-time teaching in the Writing Program of the English Department at Kent State University in Ohio, so now she and her husband can spend more time at their camp on Little Sebago Lake. Marilyn is the author of seventeen books, mostly historical fiction for young readers.