This spring, Jaye Wells released her kick-butt novel RED-HEADED STEPCHILD. Her debut. It was a wonderful moment for a hard-working writer and a great blog friend. (Go Jaye!)
RED-HEADED STEPCHILD had a birth of sorts back in August 2006 during the "Lonely Moon" contest here at The Clarity of Night. Jaye penned an honored entry called "I Can Dig It," which introduced the world to a rockin' female vampire/assassin burying her latest handiwork. That character is the beloved Sabina Kane now taking names and dishing punishment in her on-going series. Today, Jaye is returning to The Clarity of Night to inspire YOU, the next debut novelist who will ignite the world. Welcome to the "In Vino Veritas (Truth in Wine)" Short Fiction Contest in honor of Jaye and all of her accomplishments!! (Can I get an OH-YEAH?!!!) Please join me in welcoming her as co-host and in offering well-earned congratulations.
THE CONTEST WILL OPEN ON WEDNESDAY, JULY 8, 2009.
Now, down to business. Here's how the contest works. Using the photograph above for inspiration, compose a short fiction (or poetry) piece of no more than 250 words in any genre or style. After the contest opens, send your entry to me by email at jevanswriter at yahoo dot com before 11:00 p.m., Wednesday, July 15th (Eastern Time, United States). I'd prefer attachments formatted in Microsoft Word or Word Perfect (please see the format request below), but if you have something more exotic, you can paste the text into the body of an email. Each entry will be posted and indexed.
Now for the goodies. The following prizes are up for grabs:
- 1st Place: $50 Amazon gift certificate and a signed copy of RED-HEADED STEPHCHILD
- 2nd Place: $30 Amazon gift certificate
- 3rd Place: $25 Amazon gift certificate
- 4th Place: $20 Amazon gift certificate
- 5th Place: $15 Amazon gift certificate
- Readers' Choice Award 1st Place: $30 Amazon Gift certificate and a signed copy of RED-HEADED STEPCHILD
But this is about more than prizes. I hope you take advantage of the opportunity to meet and interact with your fellow writers. Our different perspectives, styles, and skills shine when we all start at the same place. It's a great opportunity to learn from each other.
- 250 words maximum.
- Titles are optional, but encouraged. Titles do not count toward your word count.
- One entry per person.
- Any genre or style is welcome. If you choose to submit poetry, you must have narrative movement within the poem if you wish to compete with the prose pieces for the prizes.
- The copyright remains with you, the author; however, you grant me worldwide first electronic publishing rights to post your entry on this blog indefinitely.
- Judging will be conducted by me, Jason Evans. For an explanation of the judging criteria and scoring system, see A Note on Judging. You can also read the winning entries from past contests. Judging will also be conducted by Jaye Wells as co-host. (See below.)
- Please provide a name for your byline. If you have a website or a blog, I'd be happy to link your site to your byline. If you don't have a website or blog, feel free to include a short bio. A bio does not count towards your word count.
- At the close of the contest, I will give the date and time for the announcement of winners.
- After the winners are announced, I will post what I liked most about each entry in the comments.
- The Readers' Choice Award is awarded by vote of the contest participants. The entry with the highest number of votes wins. The rules for this portion of the contest will be posted after the entry period closes.
- Public critiques in comments are encouraged, but must remain respectful. I reserve the right to delete comments and ban participants who do not abide by the collegial spirit of Clarity of Night contests.
- For prior contests and their results, see the links on the sidebar.
These are not rules, and I will not reject an entry which does not conform, but if you follow them, my work in running the contest is much less. For that, I will be eternally grateful!
- Single space lines, and double space paragraph breaks.
- No tabs or indents for new paragraphs.
- If you have italics in your text, please code it for html by putting a begin italics code < i > where it starts and an end italics code < /i > where it ends.
- Although it's rarely used, handle bold < b >< /b > and underline < u >< /u > the same way.
- Write your title at the top of the document left justified in title case (first letters capitalized). On the next line write your byline left justified (example, by Jason Evans). Add two blank lines, then begin your story.
Judging By Jaye:
As co-host, Jaye will also be judging entries. She is not bound by my scoring system. Here's what she had to say about what she is looking for: "No matter the length, all good stories elicit emotion from the reader. As I'm reading the entries, I'll be paying attention to those that make me feel something--fear, sympathy, amusement, etc. Of course, I'm a sucker for clever word play (but not too clever, if you're trying too hard it shows). The third element is probably the most important: Originality. Surprise me with your take on the photo. Stretch your creative muscles and give me the unexpected. Good luck!"
Welcome to this latest contest! You can send your entries early, but the contest will officially open and entries will be posted starting on July 8th.
Help spread the word!