Elena Lapteva Wins De-Lux Prize

It was Monday and the 13th. We ignored both, and turned the day into a celebration. The finalists of this year's de-Lux writing contest from the American College of Sofia and the Anglo-American School came together in ACS's Ambassadors Room to receive their recognition for writing the best short stories of the year.

Tim Ward, chair of the English Language and Literature Department, tells the story: "A number of years ago – well before the memory of the current ELL department at ACS begins – our colleagues at the Anglo-American School initiated the Lux Prize, a creative writing prize for students at the two schools. It was judged by teachers from the American University in Bulgaria, three prizes were awarded annually and the best stories published in AAS’s in-house magazine. Time passed, people left and ACS took over the running of the prize, now rechristened the de-Lux Prize."

In 2018-2019, five pieces from ACS and five from AAS were judged anonymously by novelist and screenwriter Georgi Iliev. And the winner is Judge by ACS senior Elena Lapteva.

In his review, Iliev wrote: "This piece opens so many possibilities, raises so many questions, and veers in so many directions – yet at the end is so complete and makes such perfect sense that the feeling it leaves is one of amazement. Amazement at the author's skill. Layers of perspectives, and even styles, pile on top of each other, branch out, amuse and exasperate, then the box shuts at the end, and wow, I don't know what just happened but it felt amazing."

Second place was awarded to Are You There Allah? It’s Me, the Jew by Adam Ludwig from AAS and third place was given to Three Generations of Beauty by Elitsa Bineva from ACS. An honorable mention went to Today I Was God by ACS ninth-grader Boriana Yotzova which was funny and wise, and featured a slacker God who couldn't care less but ended the world anyway.

Amen, sister!