"This is how you do it: you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it's done. It's that easy, and that hard."
That quote is from prolific author Neil Gaiman, who has written dozens of short stories, novels, graphic novels, screenplays, etc. Writing a story, creating a world, giving birth to characters is just as difficult, yet just as rewarding, as you might think. And you know you want to do it, and we want to see it. It's time again for the Memphis magazine Fiction Contest. Past winners come from all walks of life and more than a few have gone on to publish full-length books.
Please follow the guidelines below, sit down at your keyboard, and get to work!
2016 Memphis Magazine Fiction Contest Rules and Guidelines
1. Authors must live within 150 miles of Memphis. 2. Entries must be postmarked by February 1, 2016. 3. You may submit more than one story but each entry must be accompanied by a $10 entry fee, with check or money orders payable to Memphis magazine. 4. Each story should be typed, double-spaced, with unstapled, numbered pages. Stories should be between 3,000 and 4,500 words long. 5. Stories are not required to have a Memphis or Southern theme. 6. With each story should be a cover letter that gives us your name, address, phone number, and the title of your story. Please do not put your name anywhere on the manuscript itself. 7. Manuscripts may be previously published as long as previous publication was not in a national magazine with over 20,000 circulation or in a regional publication within Shelby County. 8. Manuscripts should be sent to Fiction Contest, c/o Memphis magazine, P.O. Box 1738, Memphis, TN 38101. Please do not send faxes or emails. Authors wishing their manuscripts returned must include a self-addressed stamped envelope with each entry.
The winning story will earn a $1,000 grand prize and be published in a future issue of Memphis. Should the quality of entries warrant, two honorable mention awards of $500 each will be awarded. Winners will be contacted by April 2016. This contest is cosponsored by The Booksellers at Laurelwood and Burke's Book Store. If you have further questions, please contact Richard Alley at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to reading your stories!
Read past winners —
- 2015 winner: David Williams, "Itta Bena Slim"
- 2014 winner: William Boyle, "Shoveling Out"
- 2013 winner: Amy Lawrence, "To Be Happy"
- 2012 winner: Courtney Miller Santo, "Wind Gap"