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BLOG: Writers of the Lost Arc

Hosting Summer Fiction Contest (2019) -- Got stories?

Does anyone have unpublished short stories between 1,500 and 3,000 words that pull you in and won't let you go till the end?


I'm co-hosting a fiction contest with AmiLiving Magazine.  It's happening this summer, 2019.  Eight stories will be chosen (by me) for the July and August summer issues of AmiLiving.  Each story will get paid between $150 and $300, depending on its length. The final winner will be decided by Monkey Survey reader vote, and the winner will be awarded an additional $300. One runner-up will also receive a $250 gift certificate from Menucha Publishers, in addition to regular payment. Not too shabby!

All submissions are sent to: fictioncontest@amimagazine.org. Do not send any entries or questions to me, please.  Otherwise I won't have any time to read your submissions or write my own stuff.


Here are the questions I anticipate you may have:


If the story I submitted really happened, can it still be called fiction?

I won't tell, if you won't tell. Meaning, it doesn't matter if a sliver, or the core, or even the entire story happens to true. The main thing is that it reads like fiction. Oftentimes, a story may not be written so well, but the writer's sincerity and the fact that it actually happened carries the story and renders it publishable. Here, the truth behind the story won't give it any boost. (This is a long-winded way of saying, it's harder to write quality fiction than memoir.)


If my story is accepted, will it appear as is or be edited?

Rare is the story that wouldn't benefit from an edit. I will be working in collaboration with the author so that both parties are satisfied with the final result.


What if my story is 3,010 words. May I send it anyway?

No. Stick to the word limit. If your story is selected for print, and those ten extra words really mean the world to the story, of course they can be re-inserted.


What topics?

Any topic appropriate for a Torah-observant audience. I have a soft spot for awesome dialogue, 3-D characters, stories that explore fresh territory, have literary merit, and/or deepen and expand the reader's experience of Judaism/Torah/religious life. And most of all, the story must be compelling.



Are novel excerpts okay?



If my story isn't accepted, does it still have a shot at getting published in Ami?

Yes! Eight spots may not be enough to contain all the amazing stories Ami expects to receive. If a story fits the Ami bill, then the writer will be contacted and asked to hold his or her story in reserve for future publication. (Yes, men can submit, too. And people 19 and over.) Such writers would get paid like any regular Ami writer. The only difference would be that I wouldn't be involved in the editing process. I'm hosting this contest just for the summer issues.


What if the story was published online? Can I submit it?

If by published you mean it appeared on your blog which reaches maybe 100 people, then I wouldn't worry. Otherwise, worry.


What is the deadline?

The deadline for the July issue is June 20th, and the deadline for the August issue is July 20th.


Can I submit a story if I have worked with you in the past or have participated in your writing groups?

Yes and yes.


What about poetry?

Sorry, no poetry submissions. But who knows. Maybe this story contest will launch a poetry contest. Kayn yirbu.


About how long should I wait to hear if the story has been accepted?

Two weeks.


Happy writing. And remember. All submissions and questions should be sent to: fictioncontest@amimagazine.org

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