Ajan polut (”Paths of Time”) was the first alternative history story competition held in Finland. It was organized by the Finnish Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Association and the Science Fiction Culture Cabinet at the University of Turku.
There were 86 short stories in the competition, from established writers as well as new names. The texts varied from the beginning of Finland’s written history to very close to the present day. World War II and the Finnish Civil War were the most popular time periods.
The competition was very tight, with the judges ultimately unable to choose a clear winner. Therefore, three stories were declared tied winners, and also the second place was a tie between two stories:
- Jotta taidat suomen kielen (“So you’ll know the Finnish language”) by Jussi Katajala Presidentin elokuut (“The President’s autumns”) by Jussi Katajala Uusi maailma (“A new world”) by Anne-Mari Halonen
- Sankariäidin häpeä (“The shame of the hero mother”) by Jaakko Poikonen Toven menestysreseptit (“Tove’s recipies for success”) by Sirpa Kalliokoski
The winners received a cash prize of 200 € each, and 100 € for the second place. The top stories will be published in an anthology. The jury comprised sf critic Pasi Karppanen, author Juha-Pekka Koskinen, and researcher Mari K. Niemi, with a pre-selection jury of Pasi Karppanen, student of history Virpi Luoma, and student of political history Juho Oksanen.