(Psst! The prompts have been issued. You can find them here.)
Dearest word-slingers of our intrepid little province,
Have you noticed a chill on the air these past few weeks? That snow has fallen, melted, then fallen again? That you can’t drive anywhere without first scraping your windshield and running the defroster on high?
We here at the PEI Writers’ Guild aren’t meteorologists per se, but we’re pretty sure this all amounts to one thing: winter is here. Now, you probably don’t need us to tell you this, but when winter comes, we get an irresistible hankering to do battle.
And just how shall we battle, you ask? Well, by throwing a brand-new Battle Tales contest, of course! It’s a week of writerly heroism, adventure, and probably a lot of coffee-drinking. More than anything, it’s a week in which we hunker down by the fire and pound out the finest fiction this island has ever produced.
Here’s how it works:
- We’ll issue three writing prompts at 12:01 am on Sunday, January 14th on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website (www.peiwritersguild.com).
- The prompts will detail a few items your short story must include—perhaps a snowman with an unfriendly leer, or a mysterious message written in the salt caked on your car. Maybe a curiously-coloured patch of snow, or an expired airline ticket to somewhere warm. Whatever they are, they need to be included in your story.
- Then it’s off to the literary races. Your wonderful and exciting stories can be submitted online via this button:
(Be sure to click the Battle Tales III: Return of the Short Story Contest category when presented with the submissions menu.)
- Anything received by 11:59 pm on Saturday, January 20th will be accepted. We’re looking for stories under 2500 words, written by residents of Prince Edward Island.
- You don’t have to be a member of the Writers’ Guild to enter, but we sure would love to have you .
Once the deadline passes, we’ll pack your awe-inspiring submissions into a bullet-proof box, close it with chains and a combination lock, then ship it off to our specially-chosen judge, Steven Mayoff. Please refrain from putting your name on the story you submit. Enter it only during the submission process, along with any relevant contact information in case we need to reach you. Everything is kept strictly anonymous, 100% incognito, purely hush-hush.
“What’s in it for me?” you’re wondering. The short answer is: local celebrity and spiritual fulfillment — and even a little bit more! The winner of the contest will receive our highly-coveted Battle Tales trophy, a year’s free membership with the PEIWG, and will be featured online and in The Squall newsletter. Most importantly, we’ll all be very, very jealous of you. Revelling in that jealousy is highly recommended.
The winner will be announced during the PEI Writers’ Guild Winter Writing Social at the Upstreet Craft Brewery on Alan Street in Charlottetown. Time and date to be announced soon!
We can’t wait to see what you’ll create.
Contest begins: 12:01 am on Sunday, January 14, 2016
Contest ends: 11:59 pm on Saturday, January 20, 2016
Max word length: 2500
And last but never least, a few words about our esteemed, battle-hungry judge:
Steven Mayoff was born and raised in Montreal and moved to Prince Edward Island in 2001. His fiction and poetry have appeared in literary journals across Canada and the U.S. as well as in Ireland, Algeria, France, Wales, England and Croatia. He has written two books of fiction: the story collection Fatted Calf Blues (Turnstone Press, 2009) and the novel Our Lady Of Steerage (Bunim & Bannigan, 2015). Upcoming is a poetry collection Swinging Between Water And Stone to be published by Guernica Editions in 2019.