Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Announcing the 2015 Storming the Short Story Contest


2015 STORMING THE SHORT STORY CONTEST



Writers on the Storm (ACFW – The Woodlands) 
Houston Christian Authors (ACFW – Houston)

in partnership with Chalfont House Publishing’s fiction imprint HopeSprings Books


Eligibility: 

The Short Story contest is open to all authors, published or unpublished, 18 years of age or older.

Entries & Fee: 
An original 4,000-6,000 word short story. Entries must not have been previously published in any form.

Entry fee $25.00 via PayPal.
Entry fees are non-refundable. Entry fees are used by the local ACFW Chapters to finance the contest, as well as fundraising for local chapter events.

Theme: Dancing

Your short story can be about anything as long as it fits into the one of the genres listed below, contains the theme mentioned above, and has a clear faith element (Christian). The theme should be obvious to the reader. For instance, if the theme was “Storms” there would need to be a storm in your story somewhere. Metaphorical storms would not count.

Categories and definitions:
  • Contemporary
    • Stories set in year 1960 or after that do not fit in one of the other categories
  • Historical
    • Any story with a setting prior to 1960
  • Mystery/Thriller/Suspense
    • Contemporary 
    • Romantic suspense would fit here
  • Romance
    • Contemporary
  • Speculative
    • Any type of science fiction, fantasy, horror, or combination.
    • If it’s weird, it goes here.
  • Young Adult/Middle-Grade
    • contemporary, Earth-based, regular fiction
    • Protagonists younger than 20 years
The Contest Committee reserves the right to combine categories if a minimum of 5 entries are not received.

This is a Christian fiction contest. No objectionable content allowed. 


Judging:
Category Coordinators will determine whether the entries meet the required theme, content, and formatting requirements. Entries that do not meet the requirements will not pass to judging.

First Round judging: Panelists will score entries based on 5 categories. Scoring results will be returned to the contestant as feedback. Panelists can only vote in categories they have not entered as a contestant.

Final Round judging: HopeSprings Books will select stories for publication from the highest rated entries and will award at least a first prize in categories with 5 or more entries.

Prizes: 
Winning entries will be edited with the cooperation of the author prior to publication. Winners retain copyright to their work, but the publication contract will be a 7-year license of the paperback, ebook, and audiobook rights. 

Proceeds from the sale of the anthology will be donated directly to the ACFW Scholarship Fund, but authors can receive a report each quarter upon request.


 Proceeds donated to the ACFW Scholarship Fund


Timeline:
June 1st - Contest is open for entries.
June 30th - Submissions closed (Midnight Central Time).
August 1st - Scoring begins.
August 15th - Scoring ends.
August 31st - Winners announced.

Formatting Requirements:
  1. Name should not appear anywhere on the entry
  2. Bible verses must be referenced in a footnote or endnote
  3. Manuscript pages must be in standard format:
    • Double spaced
    • 1-inch margins
    • Size 12 Times New Roman or Courier font (Including the header)
    • Unjustified and aligned left text with no extra space between paragraphs
    • Begin one third the distance from the top margin 
    • Scene breaks should be indicated with a single (#) or triple pound sign (###) as their own line with a single blank line above and below
    • Header should contain the category and title aligned left and the page number aligned right. 
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