Here is how we picked our finalists: Tiffany and I each picked our favorites, and if we both had the same favorites, they were in. (We agreed upon two.) Then we each picked a favorite, independent of the other. That got us to four. The final three were chosen at random. We have had this debate before on this site: why is everything not strictly merit based? That’s because our tastes are subjective. I reviewed comments posted and read arguments that were sent to me regarding other entries, and there was such a variety of opinions, that I picked the final three randomly–and of course, you will never know which made it on “merit” and which were random selections. But I will remind you of this fact: in more than one previous contest, a randomly selected contestant went on to win the contest.
So…here are the contestants, identified by their story and pseudonym. They will remain anonymous until the contest ends.: