Well, another Column Contest is in the books. Like past years, we were awed by the quantity and quality of the submissions. Selecting winners was a tough task, but after much hemming and hawing we’ve come up with these five winning entries:

Hungover Bear and Friends
by Ali Fitzgerald

Retail Therapy: Inside the Apple Store
by J.K. Appleseed

Reviews of Self-help Books by Professional Athletes
by Miles Wray

by Janet Manley

Best Joke Ever
by Mark Peters

Each writer will receive a $500 prize. Next week we’ll roll out the columns and then ask our readers to vote for our grand prize winner, who will receive an additional $250.

We’re also pleased to announce our Column Contest honorable mentions. Each of the following writers will be regular contributors to our virtual pages this year:

On the Trail of Mary Jane
by Wendy C. Ortiz

The View from Where I Standardize: Ruminations from the Test Prep Industry
by Melissa Roy

Classic Russian Writers: For teh Internets
by KA Semënova

I Like Big Brass and I Cannot Lie: Confessions from the Tuba World
by Elizabeth Eshelman

Speaking for All Christians Exactly Like Me
by Jordan Jeffers

Any Given Wednesday Afternoon
by Ian Orti

Thanks to all who entered! We’ll be back with the 6th Annual Column Contest around this time next year. Follow us on Twitter (@McSweeneys) for updates and alerts.