By CHRIS AGEE
Local resident and author Gerald Warfield has been busy promoting his work since winning an international writing contest last year.
An upcoming book-signing event at the Texas Christian University Bookstore in Fort Worth is the latest stop in his promotional tour.
Warfield was among 12 writers and 12 illustrators honored during last April's 28th Annual L. Ron Hubbard Achievement Awards at the Wilshire Ebell Theater in Hollywood.
Already an accomplished author and composer, Warfield submitted a short story for consideration in the Writers of the Future contest. In addition to a trip to California, a monetary prize and advance, all winning entries were published in an anthology also featuring a literary work by Hubbard.
Warfield was an instructor at institutions including Princeton University prior to becoming a speculative fiction writer. Since winning the award and becoming a professionally published author, he said his schedule has remained quite hectic.
"Life after a literary prize is all work," he said. "I've been keeping five to 10 submissions out at all times."
He explained constantly submitting works to various agencies is essential in getting noticed by a major publisher.
"As soon as I get a rejection from one publisher I send it to another," he said, explaining, "I have a big marker board in my office with all my current submissions on it...." This is how he keeps track of his rejections and acceptances.
Since winning the Writers of the Future award, Warfield said he has been recognized for other works.
"I've had acceptances and two honorable mentions," he explained. "One of the honorable mentions I'm particularly proud of is from the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities. They don't usually give awards to speculative-type fiction."
He is now contemplating a new series of fiction taking place in a future version of Mineral Wells.
Mike Quint of Galaxy Press, which sponsored the Writers of the Future award, said the writing contest has helped launch the careers of 650 aspiring writers and illustrators over the past 28 years, noting Warfield is among the small minority of new authors who have a work of literature published professionally.
Only 5 percent of the roughly one million submissions each year are published, he said, and new authors make up just a small fraction of that amount.
Warfield will be signing copies of his work at the TCU bookstore, 2950 W. Berry St., in Fort Worth, from 1-3 p.m. Saturday.