To the bards of our tiny, industrious island,
Your Christmas presents have been opened. Your eggnog is past its expiry. The mistletoe is away, and your tree is at the curb—though you may have missed the pickup deadline, you’re not sure. Either way, there’s no getting around it: the holidays are just about done, and it’s time to get back to work.
We here at the PEI Writers’ Guild are always sad to
get back to work see the holidays end. It makes us itchy. Really itchy. We itch for one thing, and one thing only. We itch to battle.
You know what this means, don’t you? It means it’s time once again for a brand new Battle Tales contest! And just what is Battle Tales, you ask? Why, it’s a week of literary gladiatorship, heroism, and probably a lot of nail-biting. More than anything, it’s a week in which we lock ourselves indoors and rattle out the finest fiction this island has ever produced.
Here’s how it works:
- We’ll issue three writing prompts at 12:01 am, Sunday, January 20th on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website (www.peiwritersguild.com). UPDATE: The prompts have been released. You can find them here.
- The prompts will detail a few items your short story must be based on—perhaps a floor speckled in dried-out Christmas-tree needles, or a hernia caused by hefting decorations down to the basement. Maybe a brown Christmas tree at the end of a driveway, or perhaps a New Year’s resolution you just couldn’t keep. Whatever the prompts may be, they need to form the basis of 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 IV: We Battle On category when presented with the submissions menu.)
- Anything received by 11:59 pm on Saturday, January 26th will be accepted. We’re looking for stories under 2500 words, written by residents of Prince Edward Island.
- You don’t need to be a member of the PEI Writers’ Guild to enter, but we sure would love to have you.
Once the deadline passes, we’ll roll your beautiful writing into tiny scrolls, attach them to the legs of our specially-bred homing pigeons, and will set them flying to the house of our 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 this: local celebrity and a mighty dollop of personal pride! But wait, there’s 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. You’ll also get a full year’s bragging rights to all your pals, and you can even use the fact you won as an ice breaker at parties.
The winner will be announced during the PEI Writers’ Guild Winter Writing Social at 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, Sunday, January 20th
Contest ends: 11:59 pm on Saturday, January 26th
Max length: 2500 words
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.