In 2000, I coordinated and judged the very first Tudor England Ghost contest at my Tudor column at Suite101. The stories were all high quality and resulted in two of them gaining places: The Visitation by Fred Pachter won first place - a beautifully written piece about Barnaby Fitzpatrick, one of the dearest friends of Edward VI. I won't tell you who is the ghost in the story! The second place getter, The Maid's Tale, was also a great story, based on a true incident in the life of Dr. John Dee. I enjoyed reading all the entries so much I decided to do the contest every year. It even inspired me to write two short pieces of my own as part of my Tudor column: Let me tell you a true Tudor Ghost tale and Tell Me What You See.
The 2001 contest winner Alesha Polles wrote a story about the young Elizabeth and a meeting with her mother Anne Boleyn in Always One. Alesha Polles also won the contest in 2002 with As the Sun Sets, another story about Elizabeth, when the contest was judged by author Cindy Vallar. The winner of the 2000 contest came in second with a wonderful Tudor ghost poem, The Ghost of Edmund Dudley.
2003 saw the stories judged by another award winning author, Sandra Worth. Again, the contest received great stories from all over the Globe, which resulted in Frozen Ghost by Sabine Naus taking the prize that year, with An Afterlife at Hampton Court by Heather Gustavsson coming in second!
In 2004, the very generous Elizabeth Chadwick, an author described by Historical Novel Society as "the best writer of medieval fiction currently around," judged the Tudor England contest. She awarded first place to: Past Design by Joann Bolner-Thomas, second place to: The Ice Ghost of Willoughby Lake by Julie Atwood and third place to: It isn't fair! I won't be king! by David Morrow.
A Question of When won the 2005 Tudor Ghost Story Contest - judged this year by C.W. Gortner, author of The Secret Lion, described by Historical Novel Society as "capturing the very essence of Tudor glamour and depravity. Honourable mentions also went to S.K. Naus' Out of the Fog and Alesha Polles' A Message from God.