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First Bewildering Stories Story Contest

Theme: Twisted Fairy Tales

Go to Voting Procedures

Welcome to the first Bewildering Stories story contest! Here’s your chance to enjoy seeing your story published in a special Contest edition.

The contest is open February 1-28. Stories will be posted to the Contest edition upon receipt. The readers and contributors vote March 1-15. The winning stories will appear in regular editions.

Our theme for the first contest is “Twisted Fairy Tales.” What’s a twisted fairy tale? Well, if the prince gets the princess in a straight fairy tale, the frog gets the gal — or vice-versa — in the twisted one. And cleverness and craft just might triumph over goodness and virtue. The witch wins the day. Aladdin joins the Forty Thieves, and Puss in Boots kicks out his Master!

You do not have to cite a source for your “twisted fairy tale,” although it would be nice, if you have one. You may make up your own fairy tale or base your story on one from any traditional or non-traditional source. Click here for some possibilities.

The Rules

  1. Stories must fit our Flash Fiction or Short Stories categories. That means the length is limited to 9,000 words, which is the maximum length of a short story in three simultaneous installments; beyond that it becomes a serial. Format exception for the Contest only: each story in the contest will appear on a single page regardless of length. Accompanying art work is encouraged.

  2. The usual guidelines for submissions and esthetics apply. Any entry that the contest manager and editors agree does not fit this month’s theme will be considered as a regular submission.

  3. Stories must be received no later than Feb. 28, 2005. Voting will be open March 1 through 15. The formal deadline is midnight (GMT -5).

  4. Please send the file as either an e-mail message (for short entries) or as an attachment in RTF (rich text format) to the copy editor. Please enter “STORY CONTEST” in the subject line followed by the title of your story.

  5. You may send as many entries as you like, all at once or separately.

  6. “Twisted fairy tales” that have previously appeared in Bewildering Stories and qualify for the contest may be nominated. They do not have to be resubmitted; all the author has to do is send an e-mail to the copy editor with the title of the story and its issue number. Readers are also encouraged to nominate such stories.

  7. The contest submissions will appear on line from February 1 to March 15.
    The regular issue indexes and the home page menu will link to a Contest Index, which will link to the entry titles. Voting will be open March 1-15 (midnight GMT -5).
    Notes: The authors’ names will be revealed only after the voting ends.
    The editors and contest manager may also enter the contest but cannot win. If they attract enough votes, they may be listed as an “honorable mention.”

  8. You, Gentle Readers, will select the winners. Beginning March 1, please send your votes by way of the e-mail links on the Entries page.

    1. For purposes of voting, the contest will be split into two divisions: “Shorter” and “Longer.” Winners will be announced in each division for first, second and third place.

    2. You may cast up to six votes in each division for a grand total of 12 votes. Sorry, votes cannot be “borrowed” from one division to another; they would be too hard to keep track of.
      You may vote distributively (one vote each for as many as six stories) or cumulatively (6 votes for one story; or 5 for one and 1 for another; or 4-2; or 4-1-1; or 3-1-1-1; or in any other combination you choose). You may change your vote, if you wish, up to the end of the voting “window” on March 15.

    3. Authors may not vote for their own stories. Actually, they may, but that particular vote won’t count. No author may win more than once in the contest.

  9. Winning authors will qualify for special prizes at the option of the Publisher. The winning stories will be listed in a regular issue index, and all the stories will appear together in a special Contest Edition after March 15 (we haven’t figured out yet exactly how that will work, but it seems like a good idea).

Now... start your word processors, have fun, and send your story to the copy editor.

Copyright © 2005 by Bewildering Stories

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