My story about the investigation into the shooting of three elephant seals in 2008 won third place in the Reported Narrative category at the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference. It's an honor, a major national journalism contest. One of the best parts was being invited to a workshop the day before the conference opened formally, to work with an editor and other writers to improve the story.
The original story was published in the local newspaper, The Cambrian, in April. I re-wrote it to enter it in the contest, with additional material that didn't make it into the newspaper story.
The advice I got from other insightful writers and an experienced editor was invaluable. Working with other writers is so rewarding. I can struggle for days with confusing material and not be able to clear it up, and a fresh set of eyes can break through with a few pointers.
Being a writer is the perfect job for me. I'm so grateful I get to do it. Thanks to everyone who has helped me.