Aminah Mae Safi Won the $1,000 We Need Diverse Books Short Story Contest, which celebrates "previously unpublished fiction by diverse writers of all backgrounds," for "Be Cool For Once," which will appear in the forthcoming WNDB YA anthology Lift Off, to be published by Crown Books for Young Readers in 2018.
"I was attracted to Safi's fresh, dynamic voice and the originality of her storytelling," said Phoebe Yeh, v-p/publisher of Crown Books for Young Readers. She acquired publication rights to the anthology that Lamar Giles, senior v-p of communications for WNDB, will edit. A slot had been reserved for the contest winner.
The anthology, featuring 12 stories, is in memory of Walter Dean Myers, inspired by his quote, "We need to bring our young people into the fullness of America's promise and to do that we must rediscover who they are and who we are and be prepared to make the journey with them whatever it takes. My conceit is that literature can be a small path along that journey."
Lift Off is the second collaboration from WNDB and Crown Books for Young Readers. The first collection is Flying Lessons & Other Stories, edited by WNDB founder and president Ellen Oh. It debuts January 3, 2017.