Don’t Betray Your Calling!

One of the fun aspects of putting together The A3 Review is coming up with the themes and prompts for each month’s contest. This month’s theme is particularly rich. One of those themes that you really need an entire novel to tackle, and we’re inviting you to do it in no more than 150 words! Betrayal. In 12-and-a-half dozen words or less. Do not betray your risk-taking disposition as a writer and an artist! This month’s theme is for you.

We’re looking for stories, poems and artwork that are political, personal or both. Secret betrayals and double crossings. From the banal to the Biblical. Write the Samson story from Delilah’s POV, for example. Or: What would Judas say? Write a poem about feeling betrayed by someone’s Tinder profile. He, or she, is definitely not as cute in real life!

Find inspiration in the words associated with betrayal: back-stabbing, double-dealing, disloyalty, treachery and duplicity.

Or tell the story of the first time you betrayed someone. What happened and where is that person today? Put into words what it feels like to be betrayed. Or what it tastes like, smells like. Write a poem of rage or forgiveness. Possible opening phrases could be: “We knew we’d been betrayed when…” or “This is how I betrayed him…” or “Just before she did it she…” or “It wasn’t the first time that…”

Click here for more prompts, suggestions, and details about how to enter this month’s contest. Deadline is the 28th of October. There’s also info here about the next few contests. If you think “Betrayal” is a juicy one, then there’s “Losing It” and “Brief Encounters” coming up, too.

When you enter our contests, don’t forget our popular (and very affordable) Brief Critique option. For just $15 we provide a line edit of your submission, along with 250 words of feedback on ways to take your work to the next level. Tick the Brief Critique add-on, and you’ll be able to pay together with your entry fee. Critiques are provided once the month’s winning entries have been announced.

We hope you’ll enjoy this month’s theme.

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Reflex Fiction Summer 2017 Winners!

Flash Fiction - Reflex Fiction - Short Stops - Summer Winners

Summer 2017 Winners

At the end of September we published the three winning stories from our Summer 2017 flash fiction competition as chosen by Vanessa Gebbie. Here are the winners and links to the stories:

First Place: Fly Away Home by Helen Rye
Second Place: Stop, Stop, Stop, Go by Stephanie Hutton
Third Place: Medium Sliced Humanity by Taria Karillion

You can read Vanessa’s thoughts on the winning stories here.

Autumn 2017 Long-List

We’ve also just published the long-list for our Autumn 2017 competition and have started publishing stories as we count down to the announcement of the winners at the end of December.

Winter 2017 Open for Entries

We’re also accepting entries for our Winter 2017 competition. Here are the important details:

Prizes: £1,000 first, £500 second, £250 third (or the equivalent in your local currency)
Entry Fee: £7 / $9 / €9
Entries close: November 30, 2017
Judge: Shasta Grant

SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY

 

Agatha Christie in the Bath and Two Online Courses

The A3 Review hosts a monthly writing contest, and this month’s theme is Naked and Nude. We read here that Agatha Christie wrote in the bath while eating apples. We googled for images, but there weren’t any, so we’re wondering: Who’ll write the story of the bathing novelist who said she specialised in “murders of quiet, domestic interest”? We like a good title, so how about: “Agatha Christie in the Bath”? Click here for more naked inspiration.

Deadline is 23rd September. 150 words max, or if you’re sending us artwork, it should fit nicely into an A6-sized panel. Click here to see all the new themes for Issue 8, The Gold Issue.

In the meantime, Issue 7 is almost here. The Silver Issue. We have 12 contributors, plus a story from flash fiction writer extraordinaire, Kathy Fish. There’s a maritime theme running through the new issue. Flowing through it! Whales and shrimp, to be precise. As well as stories and poems about a nun who steals a cross, a boy scout who’s unprepared, a teacher who learns, and some people who revel in their own dirt! From the depths of the ocean to the moon and space, with some complicated earthly relationships in between. If you haven’t pre-ordered already, you can do that by clicking here.

Some details about the two online courses… New dates are up for The A3 Review editor, Shaun Levin’s How to Map Your Book online course. The current one filled up pretty quickly, so you might want to grab a place for the course starting in November. If you’re eager to join a course now, there are still a few places on the Write Around Town online course that starts next week. Both courses are practical and focused on your own writing. It’s a great chance to get detailed feedback on your work, too. Check out both courses by clicking here.

Any questions about the courses or The A3 Review, please contact maps [at] writingmaps [dot] com

Need an opportunity to express yourself?

2017 Ouen Press Short Story Competition on ‘Taste’

Calling out to all talented wordsmiths for compelling, imaginative stories

For the third year running Ouen Press are delighted to extend an invitation for writers to submit an original short story in line with this year’s theme – ‘Taste’. Winning authors will receive cash prizes and be published in an anthology early in the New Year. This follows on from the popularity of past competitions and subsequent publication of the winning entries in Journey through Uncertainty & Last Call.

The short story must be a work of fiction that explores the concept of ‘Taste’ within its theme.  The ideal submission will be a well-crafted, compelling story – the judges will be particularly interested in imaginative interpretations of one or more of the various meanings that could be derived from the term ‘Taste’.

Deadline for entries is 31st December 2017 – full information and rules of the competition, which is open to writers worldwide, can be found at www.ouenpress.com

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Ouen Press is a small independent publisher seeking to establish a close working relationship with an ensemble of gifted storytellers, capable of offering readers compelling tales.

Both Journey through Uncertainty & other short stories AND Last Call & other short stories – distinctive anthologies including the winners from the 2016 & 2015 Ouen Press short story competitions respectively are available from Amazon in paperback & eBook.

For updates on our activities – we’d be delighted if you would come follow us on Twitter @OuenP or Like our Facebook page @OuenPress

Reflex Fiction Winter 2017 Flash Fiction Competition Is Open

Reflex Fiction Winter 2017 Flash Fiction Contest
Reflex Fiction is a quarterly international flash fiction competition for stories between 180 and 360 words. We publish one story every day as we count down to the winner of each competition.

We had a fantastic response to our Autumn competition: over 280 entries from seventeen different countries. We’re busy reading and judging in preparation for announcing the long-list on October 1. In the meantime, the next round of the competition is now open for entries. We’re delighted to have Shasta Grant, the 2016 SmokeLong Quarterly Kathy Fish Fellow, acting as judge. Here are the important details:

Prizes: £1,000 / £500 / £250 (or the equivalent in your local currency)
Entry fee: £7 / $9 / €9
Deadline: November 30, 2017
Judging: December 2017
Long-list announced: January 1, 2018
Judge: Shasta Grant

Submissions

Submissions should be made via our online entry form.

Rules

Stories must be fiction, must be the entrant’s own work, and must be between 180 and 360 words inclusive. See the Reflex Fiction website for full Rules.

Smut Slam: September

In September Cameryn Moore brings even more Smut Slam to the UK

smut slam

where sex and storytelling collide

You know what a poetry slam is, and maybe you know about story slams, too. Now it’s time for SMUT SLAM, a fast-paced storytelling open mic based on real life, real lust, real sex. The Smut Slam features real-life, first-person sex stories, guest stories from our panel of celebrity judges, and also THE FUCKBUCKET, a convenient and funnily named receptacle for all your anonymous questions and confessions!

Things are changing a bit for Smut Slam UK. Cameryn is leaving us for a little while due to visa complications, but there will be amazing guest hosts filling her shoes till she gets back.

Tuesday 12 September: SMUT SLAM Bristol: “Sex Education” at The Brunswick Club (15-16 Brunswick Square, Bristol, BS2 8NX). This night will be hosted by guest host Sam Scott.

Wednesday 13 September:  Stand Up Tragedy Presents SMUT SLAM London: “Sex Education” at the Dogstar (389 Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, SW9 8LQ ) This night will be hosted by guest host Miranda Kane who will be filling in for Cameryn in London for Autumn 2017.

For the next SMUT SLAM Edinburgh and SMUT SLAM Glasgow keep an eye on the Smut Slam Scotland facebook page.

For the next SMUT SLAM Brighton keep an eye on the Smut Slam Brighton facebook page.

SMUT SLAMMERS sign up on the night to tell a 5-minute dirty story, based on their real lives, and a lucky eight to ten names will be drawn at random.

NOT A SMUT SLAMMER? Don’t worry. The audience is in for a good time at SMUT SLAM! Sit back and enjoy. All we ask is: – No interrupting. – No heckling. – No necking in the front row. Doors open at 8pm, and the smut starts slamming at 8:30. Admission is only £10 at the door, 18 and over please!

SMUT SLAM is CREATED by Cameryn Moore, an award-winning playwright/performer, sex activist and educator, and, oh yeah: a phone sex operator. She is super excited to introduce London and Smut Slam to each other! When not performing, taking calls, or actually having sex herself, Cameryn writes Sidewalk Smut: custom type-written pornography as street performance and literary art.

The Smut Slam originated in Boston in 2011, became thoroughly established in Montreal that same year, and has since traveled all over the world, with standing-room-only shows in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, a whopping 100+ crowd in Atlanta last November, and a sold-out show in Boston in 2016.


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The Walter Swan Short Story Prize (Competition)

The Walter Swan Short Story Prize, run by the Northern Short Story Festival and Leeds Big Bookend in partnership with the Walter Swan Trust, is now open for entries. Judges are Anna Chilvers and Angela Readman.

We are looking for great new short stories. Around twenty selected short stories will be published in our anthology, to be published by Valley Press in May 2018, and three winners will be awarded cash prizes. There is no theme and you do not have to live in the North of England to enter.

“The common themes throughout Walt’s life were kindness, warmth and humour. He was always sociable and had a great talent for friendship. Much of his time was dedicated to others as a family member, friend, teacher and director, and he provided support, encouragement and inspiration in each of these roles. Walt was passionate about creative writing of all genres and, although he was extremely talented in his own right, it is his enthusiasm for the work of others which is the legacy that the Walter Swan Trust now aims to continue.”

1st Prize £200

2nd Prize £100

3rd Prize £50

Enter using our Submittable link here. See the Big Bookend website for further T&Cs.