Submit to National Flash Fiction Day 2019!

m15flat-bwtextNational Flash Fiction Day this year will be on Saturday 15th June Submissions for the 2019 National Flash Fiction Day anthology and micro fiction competition are NOW OPEN!

Anthology

This year’s theme is filled with possibility…or not! Our theme can reveal secrets to us and it can keep danger hidden. Is it trying to keep everyone from getting in, or is it trying to keep you from getting out? Knock, knock, who’s there? It’s our theme: Doors!

We want you to open the door to stories wild with imagination. We’re looking for those creepy mysteries about doors we can’t find the key to. We want those funny tales of frustration when doors do exactly what they’re supposed to when we don’t want them to. Maybe the stories you want to share are about metaphorical doors, filled with the disappointment of doors that are closed to us or brimming with excitement at new opportunities. Whichever door you decide to write about, make sure it’s your best and that is fewer than 500 words!

This year’s editors are Joanna Campbell and Santino Prinzi.

Please submit up to three (3) unpublished flashes of 500 words or fewer before our deadline. Titles are not included in the word count.

The submission fee for this year’s anthology is: £2.50 for one (1) entry, £4.00 for two (2) entries, and £6.00 for three (3) entries.

The deadline is Friday 15th March 2019, 23:59pm GMT.

Please visit our website for the full submission guidelines.

 

Micro Fiction Competition

Entries are open for this year’s National Flash Fiction Day Micro Fiction competition! This year’s judges are Angela Readman, Diane Simmons, Kevlin Henney, and Judy Darley.

First prize is £75.
Second prize is £50.
Third prize is £25.

The winning and shortlisted authors will be published in the National Flash Fiction Day 2019 anthology. Winning and shortlisted authors will also receive a free print copy of this anthology.

Please submit up to three (3) unpublished micro fictions of 100 words or fewer before our deadline. Titles are not included in the word count and there is no themefor the micro fiction competition.

The entry fee for this year’s micro fiction competition is: £2.00 for one (1) entry, £3.50 for two (2) entries, £5.00 for three (3) entries.

The deadline is Friday 15th March 2019, 23:59pm GMT.

Please visit our website for the full submission guidelines.

 

Support

In previous years we have had funding and have been able to offer free entry to everyone. Other years, like this year, we do not have funding and have needed to charge a small fee in order to cover our costs so we can continue doing what we do.

We would like offer free entry to disadvantaged and marginalised writers but we do not have the funding we need to be able to do this. We are working to try and secure funding.

If you would like to help us achieve this by donating entries for the anthology or micro competition, please email us: nationalflashfictionday@gmail.com.

Word Factory Seeks Four Writers for Free Mentorship

Word Factory Apprentice Award Application

The National Mentoring Scheme For Short Story Writers

We are seeking four emerging short story writers to be individually mentored by leading authors for FREE as part of our renowned Word Factory Apprentice Award running from July 2019-March 2020.

The chosen writers will be talented, supportive of our inclusive ethos and willing to participate in our activities. They will have access to our events and masterclasses — a programme offering creative inspiration, writer development and collaboration between leading and emerging writers.

SUCCESSFUL APPLICANTS WILL ALSO:

  • Be invited to read their work with their mentor at a special Word Factory event in London.
  • Receive free membership to the Society of Authors.
  • Become part of the distinguished Word Factory Apprentice Award alumnae. Previous winners have achieved industry recognition including publication with independent and mainstream publishers such as Salt and Faber; awards and shortlistings including the Guardian BAME prize, Bath Flash Fiction Prize and Wasafiri prize; reviewing for journals and publications including the TLS, Economist and New Statesman and representation by leading literary agents.
  • Be eligible for a series of NEW bursaries to ensure writers from anywhere in England can benefit. We will also consider writers from other parts of the United Kingdom but our bursaries only cover writers resident in England.

The Word Factory Apprentice Award is celebrating its sixth year with a series of partnerships offering additional financial and developmental support to short story writers who live outside London. We would like to thank Arts Council England, who have offered specific funding to strengthen the national reach of the award. We are also delighted that the Northern Writers’Awards and New Writing North, will support a northern short story writer and mentor for the second year — and to be joined this year by Writing West Midlands and their Room 204 Writer Development Programme (supporting a writer from the West Midlands) and Literature Works, the writer development agency for South West England (supporting a writer from the south-west).

How To Apply

We are open to applicants from throughout the UK, and can offer small bursaries to cover the expense of travelling to London and/or meeting your mentor for writers living in England. Please read the following instructions carefully if you are a writer living in the north, the West Midlands or the South-West of England.

The award is offered to talented authors on the way to their first collection of stories or beginning to send work out for publication. In exchange, we look for individuals willing to support other writers and be part of the growing team.

The Word Factory is London based but this is no barrier to working with writers from across the UK. We are committed to opening the award to writers with no access to literary mentorship and from communities who are often excluded. At least one place a year is held open for talented BAME writers.

Please Note: the scheme is not suitable for anyone with novels or collections already published or under contract (self-published and non-fiction books may apply). Also, application is only open to residents of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Bursaries are focussed on writers living in England.

Application is simple:

You will need to send us two files: your best 2,000 word story (or part of a story) and 500 words explaining both what you intend to work on during your mentorship and what skills and commitment you will bring to the Word Factory. In the past, our apprentices have offered some of the following: social media skills; helping us run events; creating a flash fiction prize; supporting the running of festivals. In your letter, please tell us where you live and whether you have a BAME background.

What you do:

  • Use the link below to apply and pay a £10* admin fee.
  • Full details on how to send us your files will be included in your receipt.
  • Lastly, email us your story and supporting letter.

*Please note: there is an admin fee but the year’s mentoring and Word Factory membership is entirely free. Unwaged applicants or those who can’t afford this fee can still apply. Please send your story, covering letter and short explanation of your circumstances direct to Paul McVeigh at paul@thewordfactory.tv

APPLY HERE

 

IMPORTANT – You need to apply separately if:

  • You live in the North of England
  • You live in the West Midlands
  • You live in the South-West

Please look at this BOUNDARIES MAP for the purposes of this award.

If you live in the North of England:

One place is open to a writer living in the North who will also be offered a bursary to attend events in London, developmental support and access to other opportunities near to home. The northern apprentice will also benefit from our new partnership with independent publisher and short story champions, Comma Press, offering our northern winner publishing opportunities on at least four anthology projects over two years. This award also sponsors a northern mentor — this year, Carys Davies.

To apply for the Northern apprentice place, follow this link: www.northernwritersawards.com

Northern Applications

If you live in the West Midlands:

One place is open to a writer living in the West Midlands. In partnership with the Word Factory, Writing West Midlands will select a winner to become a Word Factory Apprentice as part of their Room 204 programme.

To apply for the West Midlands apprentice place, follow this link: www.writingwestmidlands.org and click on Room 204 Writer Development.

West Midlands Applications

If you live in the South-West:

One place is open to a writer living in the Sout-West.

For further information about how to apply via Literature Works and about their work supporting writers in the South West, follow this link: Literature Works Apprentice Application page.

South West Applications

Important Dates:

  • Applications OPEN on November 16th 2018.
    Please follow the separate application process if you live in the North, South-West or West Midlands.
  • Applications CLOSE on February 7th 2019 at 11:30PM.
  • WINNERS INFORMED May 2019.
  • Announcements at the Word Factory and Northern Writers’ Awards June 2019.
  • Mentorship completes March 2020.

Due to the high numbers of applications expected, we will not be contacting you if your application has been unsuccessful. Good luck! Look forward to seeing you in 2019.

The Mentors

Our 2019/209 mentors bring a vast range of experience to the award — plus a passionate commitment to the literary and social values of the Word Factory. We are delighted to announce that they are: Chris Power, Lisa Blower, Leone Ross and Carys Davies.

General applications will be judged by the two founders of the award — Word Factory founder and director Cathy Galvin and associate director Paul McVeigh, and this year they are joined by renowned short story writer Irenosen Okojie. Word Factory will also be involved in the final decision-making with our other partners in the north, south-west and West Midlands.

Sincere thanks to everyone who has supported our scheme to date, most particularly our previous mentors Adam MarekStella DuffyAlex PrestonNicholas Royle; Jacob Ross; Vanessa GebbieProfessor Ailsa CoxAlexei Sayle; Zoe Gilbert; Jarred McGinnis; Nikesh Shukla; Courttia Newland; Tom Lee; K.J.Orr and Jenn Ashworth.

Previous Apprentices

Trusted relationships are vital to the development of a writer. Our apprentices — Rebecca Swirsky, Holly Dawson, Kerstin Twatchmann, Uschi Gatward, Claire Adam, Divya Ghelani, Emily Devane, Melissa Fu, Durre Shawar, Avani Shah, Fergus Evans, Natalia Theodoridou, Georgina Aboud, Farhana Khalique and Sharon Telfer — have all become members of the Word Factory team in addition to winning awards and being published in leading magazines and journals.

The Word Factory Apprentice programme is a truly remarkable award that invites and fosters growth. The Word Factory masterclasses and salons have not only inspired me to improve my own craft but have also challenged me to use writing to connect with others and build understanding. With Zoe Gilbert’s generous mentorship, I have grown so much, taking risks and experimenting with form. I have loved every aspect of the award and highly recommend that aspiring writers apply for 2018. It is a wonderful community and I am so proud to be part of it.

Melissa Fu, 2017 Apprentice, mentored by Zoe Gilbert — in 2017 Melissa was published in The Nottingham Review, The Lonely Crowd, International Literature Showcase and Word Factory online. She was shortlisted for the Wasafiri New Prize and had a Special Mention for Spread the Word’s inaugural Life Writing Prize.

Working with Nikesh has been amazing for both my ego and my word count. With his support and advice, my novel has grown in ways I couldn’t have expected. As for the community – the Word Factory gang have welcomed me with open arms. I’ve found myself a part of a group of readers and writers who cheer each other on, share work, and always have great suggestions for what to read next.

Avani Shah, 2017 Apprentice, mentored by Nikesh Shukla — in 2017 Avani was shortlisted for the Guardian BAME Prize.

2019-mentor-photos-1024x512

Story Fridays ‘2018’ – call for submissions

How was 2018 for you?

We think it has been quite a year.  We’d like to reflect on it and even  celebrate it at Story Friday with stories that are inspired by events that happened in 2018.  These events can be personal, local, national, international; they can be political, environmental, romantic, comic, tragic.  We’d like a whole range of responses to what we’ve just experienced, as we usher in the new dawn of 2019.

Story Friday 2018 will be on 25th January 2019, deadline for submissions Monday 14th January.  We’re looking for stories that are 2,000 words or fewer.  (Full submission details here).  Writers must be available to come to Bath for the event.  If you’d rather not read, we have wonderful actors who can read your story for you.

!! STORY FRIDAY CHALLENGE !!

January’s Story Friday is all about events that have just happened, so for this Story Friday we have a special challenge.

As well as the submissions about 2018, for the first time we want to include ONE special story, inspired by a NEWS story the week before Story Friday! (ie between 18th and 24th January).  Deadline is Thursday midday 24th January, the day before Story Friday.  Max word count is 1,000 words. You are very welcome to submit both to Story Friday 2018 AND to the Challenge. The chosen story will be read by an actor at Story Friday.

Talk about HOT OFF THE PRESS!!!

For more information: A Word In Your Ear

Calling all Flashers – November Flashers’ Club

Cheltenham’s quarterly live flash fiction night, Flashers’ Club, will be opening the mic once again on Thursday 29th November, 7:30pm, at Smokey Joe’s Coffee Bar. Got a story between 100 and 1000 words? Bring it down and share it! We welcome everyone and every story – no submissions, no genre restrictions. Flashers’ is a great night out for fans of flash, whether you’re coming to read or just soak up the stories.

This month we’re very excited to feature flash author Santino Prinzi, who’ll be sharing some of his stories alongside our open mic readers. We’ll also be giving away a copy of literary journal Popshot Quarterly to one of our lucky open mic performers. Tickets are just £4, and all profits got to the charity First Story. Head over to our website to find out full details, or find us and chat to us on Twitter or Facebook.

Free Membership @JerichoWriters – LISP 4th Quarter 2018 News!

Writers! We have great news.

The London Independent Story Prize 4th Quarter Deadline is on 12th November 2018.  And beside the £200 cash prize, our winner will also receive One-Year Membership from Jericho Writers, which is worth £195.00!

LISP is accepting 300 Word Flash Fiction stories NOW! Deadline is coming, so hurry up.

Don’t miss the great prizes!

Jericho Writers is a club for writers, created by writers. They organise wonderful courses, webinars, one-to-one agent meetings, and great events that you can extend your network.

Simply, Jericho Writers is helping writers to get published.

Click to read the success stories!

Could you be next?

Please click the link to find out more about this wonderful platform!

AND CLICK HERE TO SUBMIT YOUR STORY !!

Story Friday Feast – call for submissions!

As we hurtle towards Christmas we’re planning our next Story Friday and the theme is Feast!  We’re looking for stories long and short that touch on feasting. You might go traditional and give us tables laden with roast meats and suet puddings, or take us to far-flung corners of the globe for fresh mangoes and newly dropped coconuts. You might decide that lack-of-feast, or famine, is your interest, or look at a feast that has nothing to do with food. However you want to interpret the theme we know we will be intrigued by your offerings!

Story Friday Feast will be on November 30th, deadline for submissions is on 19th November.  Please check that you are available to come along to Burdall’s Yard in Bath on the 30th November before you submit.

We are looking for short stories or monologues, fact or fiction (but mainly fiction), maximum 2,000 words. If you want to enter a flash piece that can work too, either for the stage, or in print – recently we’ve included a flash piece in our programme for the audience to read in the interval and take home with them. No poetry, thank you.

We have some wonderful professional actors who are very happy to read your story if performance gives you the jitters. Olly Langdon of Kilter Theatre (who is also our brilliant host) will read a male voice, and we have a number of female actors who can read stories which need a female voice.  Let us know in your email when you submit if you’d like someone else to read your piece.

To submit, click here.

The Nottingham Review now open for submissions

The Nottingham Review is now open for submissions for our second print issue (to be published in December). We’re looking for fiction between 100-3000 words. There is no theme. The closing date for this reading period is Wednesday 31st October 2018.

For full submission guidelines please see our website for details. Our first 10 issues are archived on the website and are free to view. You can also purchase a copy of our first print issue from our online store, priced only £3 including free delivery.

Launch of new Stroud Short Stories Anthology

Stroud Short Stories

We are launching the new Stroud Short Stories Anthology 2015-18 on Friday 28 September 2018 at the Ale House in John Street, Stroud from 7.00 to 10pm.

img_09147The new anthology covers stories from the six events from November 2015 to May 2018. That’s 57 stories by 45 authors including Joanna Campbell, Rick Vick, Melanie Golding, Steve Wheeler, Chloe Turner, Jason Jackson, Ali Bacon and Andrew Stevenson.

The first print run is 300 books and we already have 270+ reservations, so why not reserve your copy and then collect it at the launch? Email me on stroudshortstories@gmail.com

The anthology is priced at £10.

The launch is free and unticketed. Please come along. There will be a few words from me at 7.30 and then Mark Graham will read his story ‘Wayland Smith: Warrior of the Milky Way’ from the anthology.

More information on our website.

I hope to see you there.

John Holland

12 Writing Tips To Get You Started

As Anne Frank poignantly wrote: “I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.” Writing can be an incredible outlet, but sometimes there are stumbling blocks along the way.

Which is why the team at READ Foundation has put together a list of 12 Writing Tips to Get You Started.

Children writing in a classroom

READ is an education charity which builds schools and enables children from poverty-stricken backgrounds to access schooling. We’re currently running a writing competition for short stories, poems and personal essays which will inspire children in their educational path. Scroll down for more details on how to enter.

The charity has gathered the best tips from well-known writers, blogs and the wider web to help writers in their pursuit of the perfect prose.

  1. Write from the heart. A book without a pulse is like a person without a spirit. – Linda F Rad
  2. We love the tips in this Guardian article on the Top 10 Writers’ Tips on Writing. Particularly this one from Katherine Mansfield: “Looking back I imagine I was always writing. Twaddle it was too. But better far write twaddle or anything, anything, than nothing at all.”
  3. Enter competitions, send off examples to agents, read up on literacy festivals to attend, join writing clubs either locally or online – research as many places as you can which can help you on your writing journey, whether the aim is to get published, receive feedback, or simply learn more about the writing process from the people who do it professionally.
  4. Write on a computer which is disconnected from the internet (after you’ve finished reading this blog, obviously). It’s a distraction you can do without.
  5. The “show don’t tell” mentality is well-known for a good reason: it’s true. As fiction author Anton Chekhov puts it: “Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.”
  6. Oxford Dictionaries has some excellent general advice on better writing, whether it’s a letter, speech, email or something more creative. We like the tip “guide readers through what you write”. The advice is to “help readers understand your message quickly and precisely. To do this, it is necessary to show them clearly how the different parts relate to each other.”
  7. How about a writing tip from a Nobel winning author? Alice Munro, who was given the Nobel for Literature in 2013, has spent most of her writing life focussing on short stories. She said: “Usually I have a lot of acquaintance with the story before I start writing it….stories would just be working in my head for so long that when I started to write I was deep into them.”
  8. Proofread proofread proofread. It’s relly obviously when a sentennce has speling errors in it. If you’re entering a writing competition, judges may penalise you for the errors and it could mean the difference between winning or losing a contest.
  9. Write, even when you don’t feel like it. Get into the habit of writing on a regular basis. If you can commit to writing for a certain amount of time each day, for 30 days, it’ll soon become second nature. About 30-40 days is all you need to make a new habit stick.
  10. Recognise it’s not just your characters that are human – you are too! So if you have periods of struggle, you’re not alone. Don’t be too hard on yourself.
  11. Don’t wait for the perfect moment. Julie Duffy, founder of Story a Day, says “Don’t wait to write until you’re older/wiser/invited to the party. Don’t wait until you have something ‘important’ to say.” Other experts have revealed their best writing tips for beginners.
  12. Enjoy the process! It’s a journey you’ll be proud you’ve taken. Good luck!

While you’re here, we have some exciting news for you. Education charity READ Foundation is running its very first writing competition and needs people like YOU to take part. Read all about it here. The deadline for entries is Wednesday, 10thOctober 2018.

That Killer First page, Dublin, Oct 13

That Killer First Page, Oct 13

Venue: Brooks Hotel, 62 Drury Street, Dublin 2.

Date: Oct 13    Time: 10.30-4.30

Places are limited. This event sold out in Adelaide, Bali, Bath, Belfast, Cork, Galway, Kuala Lumpur, Lancaster, London, Melbourne & Singapore.  

You’ll find out what competition judges and journal editors look for in a short story and how to avoid the rejection pile. You’ll write a short piece and get feedback on that crucial story opening. In a form where every word counts, get tips on staying focused on your story and where to start the action. You’ll also look at submission opportunities; how to find them and where you should be sending your stories.

Focus:
How to get the attention of competition judges and editors
Writing fiction with emotional impact
Writing that killer first page
How to edit your story
Where to send your work

Paul McVeigh’s short fiction has been published in anthologies and journals inc. The Stinging Fly and Faber’s ‘Modern Irish Writing’. Stories have been commissioned by BBC Radio 3, 4 & 5 and Sky Arts TV. He was shortlisted for Irish Short Story of the Year 2017 at the Irish Book Awards. His short story blog shares writing opportunities and advice and gets 40,000 hits a month and has had over 2 million views. He’s interviewed short story masters like Kevin Barry, Elizabeth McCracken and George Saunders for The Irish Times. Paul co-founded the London Short Story Festival and is Associate Director at Word Factory, the UK’s national centre for excellence in the short story. He is a judge for national and international short story competitions including, in 2018, the Sean O’Faolain Prize, the Edge Hill Prize and the International Dylan Thomas Prize. He is also the current fiction editor at Southword Journal where he recently commissioned Kit de Waal and twice Booker shortlisted Deborah Levy.                                                                                   

“I emerged from the sleepy hamlet of my writing infancy last Saturday and was sky-rocketed, hurricaned, tsunamied, autobahned and g-forced out of my head by Paul McVeigh’s “That Killer First Page” Masterclass at Waterstones, Piccadilly. He’s on top of his game, gives instinctive, constructive criticism and in a few short hours, had conveyed the essence of how to make a story compelling and unputdownable from the first few lines. Get on one of his courses if you can.”

Reviews for his short stories:
“Beautiful and very moving.” Booker shortlisted Alison Moore
“How moving and stunning that story is. It’s so raw and incredibly human.” Costa shortlisted Jess Richards
“(one of) Ireland’s most exciting and talented writers.  Incredibly moving; poignant but utterly real, funny and beautifully observant.” BBC Radio 4
“Paul McVeigh’s story stands out. Funny, moving, poignant. Brilliant.” Metro Newspaper

Paul’s debut novel The Good Son’ won 2 awards and was shortlisted for a further 5.

‘A work of genius…’ Pulitzer Prize-winning Robert Olen Butler

“Both dancing and disquieting, complex and vivid, I devoured it in a day, but I’ve thought about it for many, many more.” Bailey Prize-winner Lisa McInerney The Glorious Heresies                                       ‘

‘A triumph of storytelling. An absolute gem.’ Donal Ryan

Places are limited to 15

FOR CONCESSIONS PLEASE EMAIL: paulmcveighwriter@live.co.uk

Brooks are offering a special lunch deal – two tapas plus a glass of house wine at €18.50 per person.

PaulMcVeigh short story

rhaw Magazine is open for submissions!

rhaw Magazine is now open for submissions all-year-round and we are looking for contributions to our second issue! As before, submission is free and we accept all forms of work except audio and visual pieces, including creative non-fiction, essays, all kinds of visual art, experimental writing, etc.

We now split the year into two reading periods. For our May ’19 issue, our reading period begins 1st January, so get your work into us before then! If you miss the date, don’t worry, we will consider your work for the next issue.

For full details on our submission process and guidelines, click here.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing your work!

Best,

The rhaw Magazine Team

Breve New Stories–Issue Two OUT NOW

It is time for new stories! The latest issue of Breve New Stories is finally out and you can read it HERE. 

In 2015, I launched the project for a new literary magazine that focused on one of my favourites genres: short fiction.

Breve New Stories presented a short story and a flash fiction piece in each issue, showcasing new voices from the UK.

Initially printed in the form of an agile, slim pamphlet by Footprint Workers in Leeds, it had an eco-friendly mind, and it was a homage to the long history of experimental literary magazines and zines.

As a self founded, mostly solitary endeavour, it has been difficult to keep up with the times, costs and efforts required by such a project. What fuelled it was the love for stories and the constant support from friends and authors that, against the odds, kept believing in this project and in me.

Since then, two issues and four authors have been published. Today, things have to change. It is with some sadness that I abandon the original print format in favour of a more cost effective and easy to distribute online magazine.  Despite it being displayed online, it will hopefully still convey the feeling of a printed magazine, and readers will be able to read it online, download an e-read version and why not? Print each issue on their house printer.

Breve New Stories will still feature a short story and a flash fiction in each issue but it will now be open to all authors writing in English, from all over the world. This is because, especially in our times, there is a renewed need for inclusion, for sharing stories beyond borders, for opening up to different narratives. Writing in English, many authors with diverse voices can bring their contribution. Submissions will be open again shortly after the launch of Issue Two so…stay tuned.

Read the summer tale of brotherhood and courage set in rural Scotland in Doubting Thomas and let the unexpected encounters surprise you in My New Best Friend.

Introducing authors Hamish McGee and Trudy Duffy-Wigman.

If you like what you read, please consider donating to Breve New Stories and supporting the project!

The Editor

Online: Advanced Short Story Clinic

Receive direct feedback from your tutor and fellow course participants with this online correspondence course for advanced short story writers.

Develop your stories over four months. Whether you’re an experienced writer working towards the completion of a manuscript or looking to maintain momentum and sharpen your writing skills, this clinic provides specific feedback for the refinement of your own voice and style.

Participants must have had a short story published OR have already participated in a Writers Victoria Advanced Short Story Clinic to enrol in this course.

Stories of up to 1,500 words due Wednesdays 1 August, 5 September, 10 October and 7 November

About Paul McVeigh

Paul McVeigh’s short fiction has been published in journals and anthologies and been commissioned by BBC Radio 3, 4 & 5, Faber & Faber and Sky Arts. Paul is Director of the London Short Story Festival and Associate Director at Word Factory, the UK’s national organisation for excellence in the short story. He is also a judge for international short story competitions and prizes including, this year, The Dylan Thomas Prize, The Edge Hill Short Story Prize and The Sean O’Faolain International Short Story Prize. His award-winning debut novel ‘The Good Son’ was published by Salt Publishing in 2015 and his work has been translated into seven languages.

PaulMcVeigh short story

The John O’Connor Writing School Short Story Competition 2018

 

“The world of John O’Connor is a world of the freshly snedded turnip, the new-sawn plank, the sod shining under the plough. His gift is to render the life of the Mill Row in Armagh as deftly and definitively as Steinbeck renders Cannery Row or Bob Dylan Desolate Row”

Paul Muldoon

The John O’Connor Writiing School and Literary Arts Festival, sponsored and supported by internationally renowned Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, Paul Muldoon, has a two-fold purpose. It aims to to celebrate and commemorate the life and works of John O’Connor as well as offering practical guidance and assistance to aspiring writers through its workshops and master classes in the various literary genres and writing for commercial purposes.

Entries are currently invited from aspiring writers for the third John O’Connor Short Story Competition. It is being held to commemorate the Armagh born writer whose impressive literary legacy includes a collection of short stories which still retain a timeless appeal.

Prize

The prize winner will be awarded a full bursary to attend the John O’ Connor Writing School and Literary Arts Festival which will be held in Armagh from 1st to 4th November, 2018, plus a cash prize of £250. The bursary prize allows the recipient to enjoy all events in the John O’Connor Writing School and Literary Festival 2018, and to attend one class in the writing genre of his/her choice. The winner will be notified by 2 October.

The winning entrant will be formally announced at the opening of the Writing school on Friday 2nd November, and will have the opportunity to read at an event on Sunday 4th November 2018. Single room accommodation will be available free of charge to the winning entrant.

Ts & Cs

The competition is open to those 16 years and over. Short stories must be the original work of the author and not previously published or have received awards in other competitions. Entries must be in English and between 1,800 and 2,000 words in length. There is an entry fee of £10. One entry per person. Submit your entry online by 12.00 noon on 28 August 2018.

Find full terms and conditions, and online entry form on http://thejohnoconnorwritingschool.com

A word from previous winners:

“I won the inaugural John O’Connor Short Story Competition in 2016, the news delivered to me via a lovely phone call from Cathy McCullough, a personal touch which is one of the things that makes the weekend so special. I had started writing in 2014, and the win gave me a sense of validation that is so nourishing and necessary for a new writer. That year I attended Bernie McGill’s brilliant prose workshops, which generated an idea for a novel, and Stewart Neville’s masterclass. Last year Martina Devlin facilitated the prose workshops, and again I went away full of ideas for new work. The win also gave me opportunities to read my own work in public, a prospect I once found appalling which I now actually enjoy. My stories have won other prizes, but the John O’Connor win is the one that keeps on giving. “

Louise Kennedy, 2016 winner

“Thanks to the JOCWS I have made contact with an agent who is willing to read it [her novel] when it is ready… I hope all goes as well this year as last and I will certainly be coming along to the writing workshops again. I found them really useful. “

Roisin Maguire, 2017 winner

Start your day with a burst of creativity!

Write & Shine runs a programme of writing workshops that embrace the inspirational power of the morning.  Writer Gemma Seltzer will guide you through the sessions, waking you up with words & energising you for the day ahead.

Our workshops take place bright & early in peaceful central London locations & are open to everyone, whether you’re new to writing, have some experience or simply want to add more creativity into your life. You won’t be expected to share your work, which offers great freedom & encourages all kinds of unexpected ideas to emerge.

For the summer series of workshops, we’ll find inspiration in sunshine, the lighter mornings & the 200th anniversary of Emily Brontë’s birth. Join us from 5 July.

Workshops cost £19 or you can purchase our seasonal membership to motivate you to enjoy all the workshops, events & online sessions we have on offer this summer. Find out more on our website: www.write-and-shine.com

Unthology 10

Unthank Books are very pleased to announce that Unthology 10, edited by Ashley Stokes and Robin Jones, the latest in the acclaimed short fiction series that showcases new and established writers, will be published on July 2nd 2018.

9781910061534

Extraordinary Fiction

 Tumble over a cliff in pursuit of a cherished plaything. Stray into bear territory. Scrape a drunk from the gutter. Ride the airstreams with a winged demigod. Receive a letter from a stranger. Meet a woman with a bite mark on her face. Assume the waters can be stopped. Survive the butterfly invasion. Grieve for another man’s child. Sell twenty-four copies of dross. Inherit your father’s gifts. Succumb to your drug of choice. Watch helpless at the vanishing of the herd. Imagine the giant horses. Fight or flight.

Unthologists

Daniel Carpenter, Elaine Chiew, Brian Coughlan, KM Elkes, Tracy Fells, Liam Hogan, Maxim Loskutoff, Mark Mayes, Jay Merill, Valerie O’Riordan, Gareth E Rees, Kathryn Simmonds, Hannah Stevens, Tom Vowler

How to Order

You can find out everything you need to know here. 

Launch Parties

Come and join us and meet the Unthologists. There will be readings in Norwich on July 5th and in London on July 26th. For full details, click here. 

Flashers’ Club VII: August 2018

Flashers’ Club is back off hiatus and raring to go. At our upcoming event at Smokey Joe’s Coffee Bar, Cheltenham, on Thursday the 2nd August, you can expect our usual open mic free-for-all (bring a story 100-1000 words long and you can get straight up behind the mic), FREE anthologies for all readers courtesy of indie publishers The Fiction Desk, plus a reading or two by award-winning Cypriot flash fiction author Nora Nadjarian. It’s not to be missed.

Tickets are just £4 – or £3 if you sign up to read – and all profits, as always, go to child literacy charity First Story. Find full deets at www.flashersclub.wordpress.com, and regular updates on our social media: @flashers_club, and www.facebook.com/flashersclubcheltenham.

See you there!

Oh, we do like to be beside the seaside…

If you’re visiting Folkestone for the weekend, come and listen to some twisted tales inspired by the town’s beaches and the area’s coastline.

Hand of Doom presents Twisted Tales of the Seaside on Saturday, June 30 from 8pm at the Brewery Tap, Tontine Street, Folkestone, Kent. Tickets cost £5 and are available from Ticket Source.

Please note: there’s no bar so bring your own drinks.

 

 

Story Friday: Call for Submissions

Story Fridays‘ theme for September is ‘Tomorrow’. Tomorrow could mean Saturday – or it could mean the year 2060. For Story Friday Tomorrow we’d like to explore what happens next. We’d love utopias, dystopias, dreams and expectations in this step into the unknown. This is one where you can unleash your imaginations, go wild, surprise us with your visions for the future, near and far. Go on – you’ve got all summer to weave us your dreams!

We are looking for short stories that work out loud, or monologues, fact or fiction (but mainly fiction). Maximum 2,000 words. If you want to enter a flash piece that can work too. No poetry, thank you.

The event will be held on Friday September 21st at Burdall’s Yard in Bath. Please check that you are available to come along on the 21st September before you submit.  We like the writers to be in the audience for these events.

We have some wonderful professional actors who are very happy to read your story if performance gives you the jitters.  Let us know in your email when you submit if you’d like someone else to read your piece.

For more information go to our website.