Nigerian wins international literary Prize

Luke Wildman: wins Writers of the Future Contest

By Nehru Odeh

Luke Wildman, a Nigerian, has won the Writers of the Future Contest in the United States.  As a winner in that global contest, which is its 38th year, not only has he earned a cash prize, his award-winning story will be published in the International bestselling anthology, L. Hubbard Present Writers of the Future, Volume 37. He will also travel to Hollywood as a distinguished guest this fall for a week long workshop where he will be honoured at a black-tie awards gala.

Wildman’s story is quite an interesting one. Born and raised in Nigeria, he arrived in the United States at 19 and has lived with his wife in Indianapolis ever since. He always rambles around the Indiana woods wearing a weirdo and muttering about books.

When not terrorizing the countryside, Luke reads copiously, devotes unhealthy amounts of time to working on his novels, and dreams of making his living through fiction. His work has appeared in Havok magazine and Parnassus, Taylor University’s literary journal.

The contest, one of the most prestigious writing competitions in the world, is currently in its 38th year and is judged by some of the premier names in speculative fiction. and has now become the largest, most successful and demonstrably most influential vehicle for budding creative talent in the world of contemporary fiction.

The judges of the Writers of the Future Contest include, Tim Powers (author of On Stranger Tides), Kevin J. Anderson and Brian Herbert (Dune prequel series), Robert J. Sawyer (Quantum Night), Brandon Sanderson (Mistborn series, Stormlight Archive), Larry Niven (Ringworld), Orson Scott Card (Ender’s Game), Nnedi Okorafor (Who Fears Death), David Farland (Runelords), and Katherine Kurtz (Deryni series) to name a few.

While, illustrators of the Future Contest judges include, Bob Eggleton (11 Chesley Awards and 7 Hugo Awards), Larry Elmore (Dungeons & Dragons book covers), Echo Chernik (graphic designs for major corporations including Celestial Seasons tea packaging), Rob Prior (art for Spawn, Heavy Metal comics and Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Ciruelo (Eragon Coloring Book).

Following the 1982 release of his internationally acclaimed bestselling science fiction, Battlefield Earth, written in celebration of 50 years as a professional writer, L. Ron Hubbard created the Writers of the Future ( in 1983 to provide a means for aspiring writers of speculative fiction to get that much-needed break. Due to the success of the Writers of the Future Contest, the companion Illustrators of the Future Contest was inaugurated five years later. Hubbard’s estate continues to fund the writers and illustrators of the Future contests in perpetuity

The intensive mentoring process has yielded fruits. It has launched the careers of hundreds of winners who have been published in the anthology and moved on to have successful literary careers. The 440 past winners of the Writing Contest have published 1,150 novels and nearly 4,500 short stories. They have produced 32 New York Times bestsellers and their works have sold over 60 million copies.  The  New York Times bestselling authors include: Jo Beverley, Tobias S. Buckell, Nancy Farmer, Eric Flint, Karen Joy Fowler, Tim Myers, Patrick Rothfuss, Lisa Smedman, Dean Wesley Smith, Elizabeth Wein, Sean Williams, and Dave Wolverton aka David Farland.

The 370 past winners of the Illustrating Contest have produced over 6,000 illustrations, 360 comic books, graced 624 books and albums with their art and visually contributed to 68 TV shows and 40 major movies.

Since inception, the Writers and Illustrators of the Future contests have produced 36 anthology volumes and awarded over $1,000,000 cumulatively in prize moneys and royalties.

For more information about the Contests, go to