The HPU Short Script Contest Winners Announced

The HPU Short Script Contest Winners Announced

Each Fall HPU sponsors a short script writing contest open to all HPU students. The deadline is Dec. 21 every year, with winners announced during the spring semester. Prizes are scholarships of $150 for 1st place, $100 for 2nd place, and $50 for 3rd place, and the Mark David Bauer Fund supports the contest. For additional information on the HPU Short Script Contest, contact Professor of English and Chair, Department of English and Applied Linguistics Mark Tjarks, Ph.D., at or 808-566-2445.   

Congratulations to all the winners. The entries are judged anonymously by a panel of judges whose comments on each winning script are featured below. 


Overall:  “We thought the caliber of this year’s scripts was higher than usual.” (The Judges)


Best Original Scripts

1ST Place:  A Job for John Wayne [JOHN DIGGES

Such clever and witty dialogue, so well-written, with its sizzling dialogue and humor!  I can see three good actors working out the timing as beautifully as it is written. 


2ND Place:  That Saying [KRISTINA JENSEN]

Well-written w/ good dialogue, intelligent ideas, nice visual imagery, suspenseful, purposeful. The script builds to a revelation that is earned.  With the aid of her friend, the protagonist makes a choice that satisfies.



Hyena is oddly good, with great descriptive details, engaging dialogue, intriguing imagery, and what a startling ending! It is well written, with suspense and a nice analogy between “Wild Kingdom” and the world of this houseful of “carnivores.”


Best Adapted Scripts

1ST Place:  How I Became a Pirate (based on a short story of the same name by Melinda Long) [SUSAN DeMINICO]

It’s a charming, complex depiction of a family from a boy’s p.o.v. He puts the pirates in their place, too; it’s a pleasing combination of fantasy and realism. The adapter made it his/her own.


2ND PLACE: Girls, At Play (based on a short story of the same name by Celeste Ng) [CIERRA WALL]

A really good adaptation of a really good story. Serious and substantive. There were moments when the reader gasps at the lives of these middle-schoolers; then the adapter introduces a new character, which turns the story in a different direction.


3RD PLACE TIE: Two creative adaptations of two different 6-word micro stories.

Staying Human (based on the micro story by Bruce Sterling: “It cost so much, staying human.")  [ALICIA SPOTKAEFF]

It has two nicely realized characters, and a great trick ending. The concept and theme of Staying Human, plus the vivid final scene, impressed us.


Baby Shoes (based on the micro story by Ernest Hemingway: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”)[JOHN DIGGES]

The gangster turns all domestic and idealistic, while the stripper proves to be the hard-nosed one.  If she had only looked at the baby shoes before she made her decision!  Nice characterization and dialogue that show that, for all their similarity, they’re from two different worlds.