Wednesday 1 October 2014

Dead of Winter Horror Fiction Writing Contest Opens For Entries Today - Deadline December 21 st 2014 #writing #competition #contest

Stories submitted to the 13th Annual Dead of Winter contest (December 2013) must use the theme IT’S NOT NICE TO FOOL MOTHER NATURE (your entry must follow guidelines below). Also in honor of our 13th year, the number 13 must appear in your story in some way.

The word limit is 3,000–4,000 words.
Stories MUST be set in winter.
Stories MUST fall in the horror genre*.

As to subgenre, any is allowed but note that the judges prefer gothic, dark fantasy, erotic horror (PG-13 max), noir, psychological horror, quiet/soft horror, and suspense horror. The judges tend not to like sci-fi horror, extreme/splatter horror, Lovecraftian, etc. Please no creepy children, people who don’t know they’re dead or overdone “monsters” (vampires, were wolves, sasquatch, etc.). As to gore level, we’d far rather know what’s going on inside a character’s head than to see it on a pike. We want to be disturbed, unable to shake your story and compelled to leave on every light in the house after reading it. See previous placed Dead of Winter entries to get an idea of what the judges enjoy reading (archived March issues).

The contest opens October 1, 2013 and the deadline for submission is 11:59 PM ET December 21, 2013.

Email entries to dow2013[at] with the subject line: Dead of Winter Contest Entry

Post any questions you have about the contest in our DoW thread at the forums or tweet them to @toasted_cheese (hashtag: #tcDOW13). Please do not post any part of your entry in the thread and be wary of including information that might publicly identify your story on Twitter. If you need to contact an editor with a more specific DOW tweet, please send your Twitter DM to one of these editors: @theryn @amandamarlowe @deoris1 @unanalike

You may post your work for feedback at one of the critique forums but please title your post “DoW entry for feedback” or similar so that the judges don’t read it.

Entries are blind-judged by Baker & Billiard. Decisions are final. Winners are announced January 31.

Winning stories are published in the March issue of Toasted Cheese.

If 50 or fewer eligible entries are received, first place receives a $35 Amazon gift card & second a $10 Amazon gift card.

If 51 or more eligible entries are received, first place receives a $50 Amazon gift card, second a $15 Amazon gift card & third a $10 Amazon gift card.

*Horror “uses literary techniques to frighten, unsettle or horrify the audience; employs macabre and/or supernatural themes.”

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