Hudson Valley Writers Guild

2023 HVWG Short Fiction Contest Winners

We are pleased to announce this year’s Hudson Valley Writers Guild Short Fiction Contest winners.

  • Micro: “Thrown” by Jaye Frisina
  • Flash: “Gamble Mom” by Deyva Arthur
  • Short: “Mazzolin dei Fiori” by Paul Castellani
  • Overall: “The Custodian” by Alexander Perez

“I am always amazed by the tremendous talent that exists in our literary community,” says HVWG President Thom Francis. “This year we were very fortunate to read submissions from some of the great writers that continue to make this such a creative and vibrant corner of the world.”

This year’s contest was judged by Faith Green, Bari Falese, and Pierre Desir.

Past HVWG president & 15+ year member Faith Green says, “The Hudson Valley Writers Guild has run an annual writing contest since its inception in 1983. The forms vary from short fiction, nonfiction including memoir, and poetry. The talent in the Capital Region never ceases to amaze the Guild. Three judges are selected each year, and all are writers themselves, many published. Keep up the good work, and keep writing!”

Originally from Boston, Jaye Frisina now lives in upstate New York. When Jaye was little, she would skip school to go to the library, and then would go home and draw on the walls. She has a long love affair with ink in all its forms, and often combines words with drawings. You can find Jaye and her latest pieces on Instagram @ThirteenthStoryArt.

Deyva Arthur is a photographer, writer, mother, activist, child, and lover, forever trying to understand. For over 20 years, Deyva Arthur has been writing and photographing the human story and observing the quiet beauty of everyday life. Her work has shown across the country from New York City to Taos, New Mexico. She has received numerous awards for her photographs and writing including the Mohawk Hudson Artist Regional and the Capital District’s Photo Regional. She has written and illustrated four children’s books and has put together a collection of poetry. She has been the managing editor for the Green Party’s national newspaper and handled communications for her local NAACP. Her work includes: journalist, photographer, film editor, housing organizer, environmental researcher. She has been a counselor for refugees, the mentally ill, and the homeless, as well as, a secretary, construction worker, and sheep farmer. She lives with her family in Troy, New York.

Paul Castellani is the author of four novels. Sputnik Summer (North County Books) is the story of a teenager whose testimony about a homicide rips apart an Adirondack resort town. Natalie’s Wars (Donwood Books) is the story of a woman who struggles through WW II on the home front and then with a husband psychologically damaged by the war in the years after; Marching On (Donwood Books) is the story of a woman striving to make a life of her own as she contends with the entanglements and competing demands of marriage, family, and friendship; and The Prodigal’s Brother (Donwood Books) is the story of a man tangled in a family construction business that rode the housing boom of the last decade and implodes in the financial collapse of 2008 with deadly consequences. Before concentrating exclusively on fiction, as a researcher and teacher, Paul published a number of articles, chapters, and books on public policy. The most recent, From Snake Pits to Cash Cows: Politics and Public Institutions in New York (SUNY Press) was featured in several articles in The New York Times and The Washington Post. In addition to teaching in American colleges and universities, he has received Fulbright fellowships to teach in Hungary and The Netherlands.

Alexander Perez began writing and publishing poetry in 2022 at age forty-eight and is a member of the Hudson Valley Writers Guild. Alexander currently lives in Schenectady, New York with his partner James.

The winning stories will be published on the HVWG website, and the writers will read their work at the Hudson Valley Writers Guild Annual Meeting in November.