Welcome to the first ever Jason Evans after-contest party!

Since April 2006 Jason has been the architect, administrator, judge, photographer, and official timekeeper of the Clarity of Night flash fiction contests. His latest contest, "Elemental," is his fourteenth.

The amount of work that goes into these events, most of which occurs behind the scenes, is daunting. The prize money comes out of Jason's own pocket. Please join us and his wife Aine in thanking him for his effort and generosity, for his cool-headedness, for all the assistance and showcasing he's provided to hundreds of published and unpublished writers. And especially for building an oasis of support and friendship in the writing community.

Leave a comment. Or a poem!—see below. Then help yourself to a glass of wine.


Aniket, Laurel, & Steve
with special thanks to Aine Evans and Cat Vibert

84 comments:

Stephen Parrish said...

Thank you Jason! For the contests, for some wonderful flash fiction, for bringing friends together and creating space for friendships to be born. For the comradery, the assistance, the support. For all the hard work. For everything.

It's already afternoon where I am, so where did they hide the corkscrew?

Catvibe said...

Jason's contest rocked
Imaginations soared there
and friendships began.

(six months passes)

CON-test time again!
Another light sparks a fire
and friendships renew.

(six months passes)

Another CON-test!
Entrants became best sellers
And are now famous!

(a year passes)

Jason's CON-test rocks
Beginners mingle with stars
And the sky shines bright.

Thanks Jason, for all the fun, the community, the opportunity, the reunions and mostly, the inspiration which lasts long after the CON-tests.

Aniket said...

I don't know how to
say it all in a haiku
I'll just say - Thank You!

Aniket said...

Ack, I posted Haiku here and full blown comment on the other post. Some host, me.

Michelle H. said...

Thank you, Jason! You host stellar contests!

Precie said...

How did I find you?
A lucky stumble, flailing
Into precious gifts.

Margaret said...

Jason - THANK YOU SO MUCH! There aren't really any words to express the thanks for the time you dedicate for us. You inspire us all with your writing, your poems, your photos and most of all, your contests.

Another wonderful contest has come to an end. I'm not a great writer but I'm learning from the others thanks to all the great entries, participation and comments - not to mention the valuable friendships that I've made.

Jason, you're one hell of a guy as I'm sure Aine has told you many a time. ;)

Now let's party....Stephen, my guess is that Aniket has the corkscrew hidden in his pocket - looks like they've been celebrating in India for hours! Hand it over, Aniket! :)

Precie said...

Some gifts so priceless
Joy, truth, validation
Cannot be repaid.

Laurel said...

THANKS, JASON!

I've made some of the best friends I've never met at CoN. Seriously, people I would reach out to first with good news or crisis.

And the quality of my writing has jumped so much from the challenge of flash fiction and the access to such great writing minds.

JASON EVANS, ladies and gentlemen. Man of the hour, friend of the people, a gentleman and a scholar!

Precie said...

Each whisper pays a
Sure return on investment
All thanks to you both.



All this this before I saw the wine uncorked. Oi.

Carrie said...

The time passes and then I see your email pop up in my box saying come check out this picture and try to win a prize. It's never about the prize though. It's hanging out and checking out different takes on one picture.

Jason, you are to be commended. You're wonderful.

xxx
Carrie

Aine said...

Okay, everyone… he’s just about here. The man of the hour will walk through the door any minute now…

Mystico said...

It's been a (mmore or less) long way since I first participated in your contests some years ago.

And it's hard to put in words the things I've learnt and the effort you've put in to make every single on of these contests a success.

Here's to a BIG THANK YOU, Jason!

(Now, where's all the food, hurm?)

Jade L Blackwater said...

snapshot and invite
fingers twitch about the page
in good company

* * *

Thanks Jason, you rock!
& thanks everyone else for reading, writing, and celebrating.

Cath Barton said...

Jason, you are one generous man. Now you enjoy the party - cheers!

Leatherdykeuk said...

Thank you for the amazing amount of work you put in to these contests. You rock!

austere said...

This once
I didn’t
Watching from the sidelines.
Waiting.

Waiting
For that bolt of lightning, that perfect storyline
Crisp, sizzlin to 245.
Which did and didn’t.

Hence
I’m particularly grateful
CoN will repeat,
Am hoarding up words
For the next next time.

Thanks, Jason

Wendy said...

Jason, I am so thrilled to have been introduced to you (thanks, Stephen Parrish) and through you to have been introduced to a whole bushel-load of talented, funny, smart people. How did I get so lucky??

This was my first introduction to the contest and I'm astounded by the effort and caring you put into it. You're helping to build such an invaluable community.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Aimee Laine said...

Thank you, Jason! These contests have been so much fun! I will open my bottle of Reisling tonight in your honor! :) It's blue though with a big sun, so it won't quite tie into this year's photograph. ;) But alas, I can still drink it!

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!
:)
Aimee

strugglingwriter said...

I don't know if I can muster any creativity. Maybe I will. For now, thanks Jason. This contest gives me a nice One Up mushroom of creativity every time.

Paul (strugglingwriter)

Sandra Cormier said...

Every time I see a new contest come up, I surprise myself. After years of rejection, an encouraging comment from my fellow writers never fails to pick me up off my ass and strive to be a better writer.

Thank you, Jason, for your inspiration.

raine said...

Thank you, Jason, for one of the best happy hours in town.
A great place to gather, share visions, and flash your fellow writers. ;)
A toast to you, sir.
Keep servin' 'em up, barkeep.

poemblaze said...

Thanks Jason! I appreciate your hosting and funding this contest. This is my first year but am hoping to add it to my list of annual events!

jason evans said...

I'm STUNNED! You guys are the coolest. Seriously! It might be hard to understand, but I always felt that I got a lot back from these contests, so they were my pleasure to do. It means a ton me, however, to really see how much you've enjoyed them and the friends you've made. Writing is kind of an insane act, and it's much more fun to be insane together!

Bottom line: You guys ROCK!

(Oh, I'm very happy to see that a party needs an appropriate amount of lubrication. Tequila and wine (not mixed) coming right up!)

Aine said...

I'm trying to get him here, I promise!

He's getting held up by his day job (how dare they!).

jason evans said...

BTW, I am laughing more and more as I scroll down the sidebar!!! The dates are hilarious. Kate Winslet and Danial Radcliffe--Aine and my celebrity alter egos! If they only knew....

I would like to offer a toast...to toasting!

Aine said...

Figures.... He slipped in, that sneaky, slippery....
:P

So which way to the bar? I need a few drinks, then maybe I'll be able to stand up later and propose a toast...

Wavemancali said...

I've been participating in Jason's contests for 4 years. A fellow blogger turned me on to contest number 4 and I have been hooked since.

They really keep my passion for writing smoldering in the background for which I am extremely grateful. Without an outlet that I enjoyed perhaps it would be snuffed out entirely.

I fully intend to keep writing in Jason's contests for as long as he puts them on and I cannot express how much I appreciate everything he does for our community.

Jade L Blackwater said...

cheers!

jason evans said...

Stephen, I was serious about you being an anchor. Thanks for that! And for your amazing gesture and sentiment here.

Cat, I definitely sense your immense creativity behind this! Thanks so much, my friend.

Aniket, your infectious enthusiasm and great heart have been my pleasure to know and share time with. Thank you!

Michelle, many thanks!

Precie, a lot of what we find and have seems to be fate, no? A toast to good fortune and fate!

Margaret, the warm feelings are very much returned. I think it's a great thing that we can come together like this and share what we share.

Laurel, probably the greatest achievement that I feel thankful for is to be the catalyst for those friendships. I know that you'll always be grateful for the people you've met.

Carrie, I noticed that quite a bit this time. Folks have drifted apart, but this connection is still there. So many people came back and enjoyed immersing in it again.

Aine, you naughty thing! You knew about all of this, didn't you?! Much praise needs to be heaped on you for putting up with me and these things that I do. And for you own efforts that you put into the contests! Not to mention, thank you for everything else!!

Mystico, I appreciate that journey you've had. I've experienced that journey too. :)

pegjet said...

Thank you Jason, not only for the contest, but for the "40s" club. One of your contests I didn't make that club--and boy, I was angry! (My ego, not your comments--you were respectful and constructive.) Specifically, my downfall was my pacing. Since that time, though, I am acutely aware of pacing, and now, and it is now noted (and complimented) by others.

When this "Elemental" contest was announced--and with a time limit!--I was determined to participate again, and see if I can earn that elusive 40s club. So a quick thank you for your organizational skills and linking all past contributors in the email.

As someone else said, it's not about the prize. It's about the writing. Your generosity with your time, effort, expertise, talent and your pocket are all more than appreciated. And the bonus is this growing community centered around this annual (bi-annual?) contest.

Peggy

Catvibe said...

Jason- Aw...I really can't take credit for the creativity behind this party — gotta blame Steve here, pointing the finger over that way!

jason evans said...

Jade, you've been an amazing supporter and friend. You're an anchor too!

Cath, you guys got some fine Tequila. ;)

Leatherdykeuk, it's a little bit of work, perhaps. ;) Thank you for being part of the fun for so long!

Austere, that spark of creativity...I think we all savor it. If these moments make it all the more exciting to explore, then that's a great thing. :)

Wendy, I can already see that you really have the spirit. I know that you're going to be a big part of the community.

Aimee, the Reisling sounds lovely! I'll share a glass (assuming I can still stand up).

Paul, you have creativity coming out of your ears. That I know. Thank you for being with me for so long!

Sandra, we're all in the same slog. We all feel that lift too and appreciate the honest helping hand. Thanks for offering yours!

Raine, throwing a good party is even more important that putting on a good contest! Thanks. :)

Poemblaze, you're more than welcome. We expect you back!!

Wavemancali, I don't know that anyone has been more dedicated than you and your family. I'm honored by all of your efforts. Seriously.

Michael Solender said...

i know from personal experience what a herculean effort goes into writing contests - with that knowledge i share my thanks for your patience and sponsorship - a fun diversion and learning experience for all along with some great flash. thanx mate.

mjs

jason evans said...

Pegjet, that's the hard side of the contests. I'm insane enough that no matter who you are, I just have to score it the way I see it. The good side is that you can be assured this is not a friend fest, where certain people always win because I like them. I really do believe that writing a strong piece, no matter whether it places, is the real goal. I also believe that respectful, honest feedback is the greatest gift we can give. Praising just to make people feel good sets them up for being hurt worse in the future.

jason evans said...

Michael, many, many thanks. I know you understand!

**If I missed anyone at this point, it was completely unintentional, I swear. I'm under the gun and already late for something.

I'll be back. :)

Lee said...

"I hope that I may always desire more than I can accomplish."
~ Michaelangelo

It seems to me Michaelangelo was inspired by both art and language.

J - It's been a wonderful experience following your blog over the last year. Thank you again for this opportunity. So many before me have expressed how I feel as well. I will be toasting you tonite on the left coast. ;)

Lisa Gail Green said...

Love the party! Great wine. Thank you for all your hard work, Jason, it's been great. Here's a little spur of the moment haiku for you:

Clarity of Night
Always so much fun to play
Jason is the best!

Ello said...

Thank you Jason! For bringing together a wonderful community. For being a wonderful advocate for writers. For being a gracious and generous mentor. For everything you do. Thank you!

Sarah Hina said...

Thanks, Jason. It takes a special kind of person to give, and give, and give again. There's fertile soil in your writing garden. And my gratitude to Aine, who accepts it all and contributes with grace.

Community sparks
with the elemental urge
to share a fire

Chris Allinotte said...

Thanks for running these contests Jason. I've happily been able to experience three of them now, and the support and camaraderie you bring out in so many authors is absolutely stunning. The community that comes out for these events is why I keep coming back.

Great work once again!

CA

jason evans said...

I will make sure that respond to all the amazing comments a bit later!

Just letting you all know that the results are up. (This is the point where I get drinks thrown on me.) Hopefully, everyone is too drunk to care. :)

Seriously, wonderful work, everyone. My high praise to all the Forties Club folks. If you didn't make it this time, that's okay. I don't put out the offer explicitly anymore, but if anyone wants my honest thoughts on how his or her piece might fly even higher, let me know.

Thanks again to Aniket, Steve, Laurel, Aine, Cat, and everyone else who made this party possible!!

C Sonberg Larson said...

Jason, Thanks so much for hosting such an amazing contest! There are so many amazing writers here and it's been great connecting and making new friends.

You're awesome!

Stephen Parrish said...

Finally! I told Aine that if Jason didn't post the winners soon I'd replace Kate Winslet with Rosie O'Donnell.

Aniket said...

Dang, I didn't make it to the 40s club twice in a row now. I need some drinks now. But, I had so much fun this time around, coz many of us who had strayed away from blogging came back for a reunion of sorts. Looking forward to the next one already.

Between Jason & Aine, I've had a free tutor and and free relationship counsellor. Talk about having a good deal!

Rohan said...

Jason's blog and contests introduced me to the genre of flash fiction. Although i have never made it to the forties club, let alone being on the winning line-up, i really enjoy the camaraderie and so many varied takes on just one picture...Thanks Jason.

Aine said...

Dang, Steve-- you're fast! (I just asked Steve if I could make a toast and he, like, waved a wand or something!)

Aniket-- just thought you'd like to know that you had a respectable showing in the Reader's choice votes! Keep doing what you do-- you have fans!

Okay, now would someone please tell Jason to come back to the party-- he left with Kate quite awhile ago... :)

Aniket said...

@Aine: Yeah, I know who they are! ;) I'm blessed to have good friends, I won't deny that. But I guess I need to have a talk with Jason. I'm getting sloppy. ;)

And totally unrelated to the party. But hey, nothing wrong with some casual conversation over drinks -

I just came back after watching Harry Potter with my dad. They killed off Beallatrix way too easily! You understand why I wanted to see more of her. ;)

But Snape and Mcgonagall were their usual best! It all ends. :'(

Loren Eaton said...

I wrote my first entry for CoN's flash fiction contest -- I think it was In Vino Veritas -- as a distraction while doctors were trying to figure out why my wife was in premature labor. Fortunately, she (and the baby) turned out just fine, and talking over my entry with her while nurses poked her with needles lightened everyone's mood. Jason, we all appreciate your labor of love in organizing these contests. They are a bright spot for me in every year. Many thanks, sir.

Prashant Dhanke said...

Thanks a lot Jason :)
Congratulations for yet another successful contest.
You must be proud of the community that you have built here.

Cheers !

Dottie (Tink's Place) said...

left my comment in the wrong place... not going to repeat it, but Thanks Jason!

Richard Levangie said...

I'm a first-timer, but it was fun. Thanks for all the hard work.

Jodi MacArthur said...

Ha! This is adorable and what a sweet toast. Jason, thank you for all the time and effort you put into these contests. I enjoy participating and especially enjoy reading and engaging with others. Wonderful thing you do here.

Pictures and words blend
Creating worlds on one page
Clarity of Night

Mona said...

yaaay! Three cheers for Jason!

Yea, he is cool! I missed the contest due to some pressing circumstances, but I will enjoy reading each entry now, at my leisure !

Congratulations to the winners!

Craig said...

Thanks for another fantastic contest Jason! Your hard work is greatly appreciated.

Peter said...

Great party, (here's my bottle for the host) and may I add my own token of admiration to all the others for Jason's hard work. Frankly, I don't know how he does it. Well done that man!

I'm also completely gobsmacked (English slang for surprised) to get 3rd place. (At best I was hoping to make the forties club as I'm no writer)so thank you for that vote of confidence in what is, ahem, a slightly risque piece.

Now I'm off to spend some of the prize money on wine, women and song and the remainder, well, that I'll just waste.
Cheers, Jason!

Aine said...

Congratulations to all entrants!! Anyone who puts forth their writing for all to see deserves hearty applause and admiration. I consider you all Gryffindors (and if you know me, you know that's the highest of high praise!)

And if I may request one more thing from all of you-- please keep writing! We can't let books and literature become a thing of the past. A writer (okay, actually 2 writers!) changed my life in unmeasurable ways. Please keep helping each other hone your skills so that the stories that need to be told can be heard (and read) by all!

JaneyV said...

Jason - as ever you have hosted a wonderful contest. I cannot fathom the sheer magnitude of the work involved and as usual I find myself in awe at how you manage to keep it all together.

I have met so many dear friends around at your gaff. It's the most congenial of hang-outs and the conversation is always lively, frequently fruity but never ever dull.

So thank you Jason for all the love, care and dedication that you channel our way. It is appreciated.

And so from the girl from Limerick, I give you a toast in the form of a limerick:

Please raise your glass to Clarity of Night
To Jason, our host and guiding light
For your energy and drive
Keeps within us alive
The desire to write and re-write

jason evans said...

Okay, so now I'm on the train and have some time to breathe!

I wanted to say something about the Eric Stolz thing, which is totally true.

Aine and I had a super long talk one of the first times we were together. Well, until dawn, actually. Part of the conversation in the wee hours went something like this:

Aine: You remind me of Eric Stolz. In appearance.

Jason: Who's he?

Aine: An actor.

Jason: Oh. What was he in? His name isn't ringing a bell.

Aine: Some Kind of Wonderful. Did you see that?

Jason: No.

Aine: Um, I don't know. What about Mask?

Jason: You mean the movie with Cher? The one were the kids is born deformed and dies in the end?

Aine: Yes!

Jason: So who did he play?

Aine: You know, the kid.

Jason: [silence]

Aine: [waiting]

Jason: [silence chilling into horror]. Oh.... I guess I can see the resemblance.


Dude, isn't that something akin to describing James Earl Jones' appearance to someone by referencing Darth Vader? I think I still have the image of that kid burned into my brain. Steve's reminder freshened it up nicely. ;)

Catvibe said...

Let's give a big cheer for Steve for best sidebar ever! Hip Hip ... *points at the crowd with one hand while raising a martini glass with the other*

Catvibe said...

LOL Jason!

jason evans said...

Lee, you've been one of the more recent kindred spirits to find your way here. I value that greatly, and I hope you find even more connections here.

Lisa, are you ready for a refill? Aren't those hors-however-you-spell-them great?

Ello, so great to see you! I hope you've been doing well and loving life!

Sarah, probably the poetic anchor to the community. You've brought a unique and powerful spirit to the contests. Thank you for that!

Chris, it's wonderful to hear that. The fact that you and others come back is the clearest feedback of all.

C., truer words were never spoken. The stars are the writers.

Rohan, hats off to YOU, my friend. It's easy to accept praise. It's much harder to accept disappointment and critiques and keep growing. You are a fighter.

Loren, thank you! I will always remember that story. What a warm moment to be turning your minds to happier things by working on your entry while she was ill.

Prashant, I'll drink that toast with you!

Dottie, warmest thanks. :)

Richard, thank you for being such a huge part of this one. I know that you commented very widely. I'm sure that was immensely appreciated.

jason evans said...

Jodi, that toast was the greatest, wasn't it? I'm still floored. Thank you for embracing the creative spirit.

Mona, I know you'll be in the next one. Right?? ;)

Craig, you're very welcome.

Peter, then you have to not be a writer all the time. I don't think any other piece had such a fierce, organic, breathing presence. I didn't want to like it because of the lack of spacing, but the piece stepped on my neck and refused to let up.

Jane, I love the limerick!! Maybe we can share a Guiness in person someday.

Cat, you can see it, right?? Too funny. And yes, AWESOME sidebar!

jason evans said...

And last, but not least, the banner photo is so fitting. I couldn't have chosen a better one myself.

Anne Frasier/Theresa Weir said...

wow. so many things I think about when i think about jason and clarity. number one might be the feeling of stepping into your childhood home. that sense of the very familiar. jason doesn't move the furniture around, and you can always be sure that your favorite chair will be there. the second thing is support. the no-trashing that is pretty much understood by everyone. clarity is almost a writer's church. thanks, jason. for some wonderful years.

Catvibe said...

@Jason, ok well maybe a little ;-)...can I say that in retribution for not making the 40s club this time? *sniff*

Catvibe said...

The banner is awesome, who did the art?

Lee said...

Great after party... thx for the invite, I am thoroughly enjoying it!

Now where'd I set my wine???

Katherine Tomlinson said...

Clarity of Night's challenge contests are always so much fun and I can only imagine the work you put into them. Thanks for doing that! And thanks for sharing your own writing and photographs. Just ... thanks for everything.

jrthumbprints said...

Without going into any details regarding my current situation, let me just say, "I enjoyed participating and wish I could've read all the entries ... thus, I did not vote this time around." Still, I plan a reading the rest of the flashes and commenting. Thanks Jason. We all need some form of escape now and then.

Linda Ryan-Harper said...

Most honorable Jason: It is said, A picture is worth a thousand words. You proved a picture is worth 25,500 words in this one contest alone. Thanks again for your hard work, the time expended and the creative inspiration.

jrthumbprints said...

Cool ... Matt Bell liked my flash: "The Day I Helped Günter Rhodes Find His Way, I Found Myself." Just goes to show how much exposure Jason's contests have.

Aine said...

Just popping my head back in. (I was out in the stables, you know-- where they keep the broomsticks.)

How about anotehr round? Can anyone else see the room spinning like that? Incrdeible party, this.

And seriously good to see as many new faces as the old favorites!

Psst-- Aniket, I'll send thee an owl about our favorite boy wizard after the party settles!

yamini said...

Jason, Thank you. You do a great job at CoN! :)

Erratic Thoughts said...

Boy, m I late?I guess I can chip in?
A toast to my favourite people and a small gig for you all...
*shaking a leg*

A moment in time,
when you opened a door
to set a stage
to share a word
I slip a thanks
to the single candle
which lit a path
to gather erudite scribblers.

Thank you Jason...

~Cheers

Aniket said...

@Erratic Thoughts: You're in time. Stephen, Laurel and I have not yet begun, cleaning up the place. Don't expect to have a sober audience though...

Erratic Thoughts said...

Sober? You ain't getting that from me today!
I am here to sway & *hick* enjoy & *hick* oh boy...:D

Rita L. Smith said...

Jason, thank you! Especially for helping to inspire me with your photography!

McKoala said...

Late to the party, and I didn't enter this time, or even comment (*guilt*...) but also wanted to thank you Jason for all the time and effort you've put into these wonderful concerts. And I am hoping to get some commenting done over the weekend!

jason evans said...

I guess I should have mentioned yesterday that I'm very subject to hangovers.

Theresa, I love your reflection. Like many things we create, it helped to form itself. The church grew, and I'm happy to keep the floors swept and pews dusted. I'm also so impressed with how people embrace the no-bashing spirit. I've had to introduce a few people to lawyer-Jason, but not many. Most of it is completely voluntary. Amazing, really.

Cat, it's a pretty ridiculous moment with Mr. Stolz, yes.

Lee, oh, was that your glass?? Thanks for coming!

Katherine, thanks are more than enough. And very appreciated.

JR, I'm so glad you could stay in it. You need somethings you can count on these days.

Linda, that's a great point! I never thought of it that way. :) We have to revise the old saying....

Yamini, much appreciated. :)

Erratic Thoughts, I love the poem. :) A candle in the night is a haunting image.

Rita, what a sweet thing to say! Many thanks.

McKoala, the competition breathed a sigh of relief this time. The claws of the Koala are honed in battle! But I'm sure the community missed you. Any comments you could leave would be highly valued, I'm sure. :) Next time....

Jay R. Thurston said...

Jason,

Thanks much for your efforts in hosting and working on the Elemental contest! It was great fun to participate and looking forward to next year!

Jay R. Thurston

Aniket said...

Oh, I almost forgot the biggest plus point of participating in CoN. You get a months worth of protection from the claws of the mighty Koala. Not many things have the power to do that...

hilary said...

Gee whizz I'm always late.... Just wanted to add my thanks to Jason for hosting such an inspiring comp. Congratulations to all the prize winners and honourable mentionees and well done for getting up there and posting everyone else.
On a personal level I'm so chuffed with my honourable mention. It's made a brilliant start to my holiday!!
Hx

SzélsőFa said...

i just popped in to raise another glass to Jason, Aine and to the community that is so alive, fun and useful!