Screen-Shot-2017-02-15-at-2.45.54-PMThank you to the 36 writers who submitted entries to the Texas Bar Journal Short Story Contest this year.

To keep the contest fair and impartial, author names were removed from each entry. Two panels of judges faced the challenging task of selecting the winners, and for each round, the same evaluation form was used for consistency. Eleven entries advanced to the final round, which was judged by Mike Farris of Dallas, Amanda Moore of Austin, and Stephanie Tillman of Houston.

The winner, “The Peacemaker,” by Gregg Mayer, earned the highest number of points.

Please congratulate these attorney-authors for making it through the competitive first round of judging to the finals.

“The Peacemaker,” by Gregg Mayer (First Place)

“Johnny Flash,” by Login Simmons (Second Place)

“On Behalf of Themselves,” by Mary Lou Jones (Third Place)

“The Black Button,” by Michael R. Dreeben

“Confidentiality,” by David Jones

“Boxes,” by Lane D. Thibodeaux

“Termination,” by Rosanne Gordon

“Deserted City,” by Erane “Raney” LaSusa

“The Case of Buster the Bull,” by Susan I. Paquet

“Personnel Files,” by Ron Satija

“The Last Exit,” by Jennifer Soldano

Here’s an excerpt from “The Peacemaker”:

The lawyers were all dead. Luther Millenford liked it that way because that meant he was in control. Today, he was going to set right a wrong. He was going to the Peacemaker.

It had been 43 years since a lawyer had set foot in any of the thousands of courthouses across the country, buildings that were now converted into restaurants, museums, or—in many cases—razed. The Peacemaker was a monolithic mainframe computer housed in Washington, D.C. It was connected by a vast network throughout the United States, installed with programming that contained every fact, the reasoning, conclusions, and dissents of every known legal case from every reported state and federal decision since 1847, updated as recently as last week. It was a spectacular achievement: the centralization, modernization of the law.

The entire story, along with the second and third place winning entries, will be published in the June issue of the Texas Bar Journal.