TDS Contests were created to uplift writers, poets, and artists beyond the magazine page. We want to highlight talent in as many ways as we can, and these contests are a way to do just that. In fact, winning the contest makes the writer/poet eligible for HWA Affiliate Membership. Join us in celebrating diverse creatives! You can participate in two very important ways:
SPONSOR a contest
Sponsoring means that you either donate a small amount towards the writing contest winnings OR provide the full contest award. By sponsoring a contest, you would enable a writer/poet to join the professional Horror Writer's Association (horror.org) - a big deal in the literary world.
Each contest awards a total of $30 to the winning entries:
$25 to the winner
$5 to the runner-up
The payment to the winners will be sent through PayPal.
To sponsor a contest, fill-out the PayPal form below.
ENTER a contest
Entry into the contest is simple - and FREE!
GENERAL GUIDELINES AND INFORMATION (for all contests)
RIGHTS AND PAYMENTS
The one that started it all
The Jon Meyers Dark Humour Prize for Gothic Literature
(a.k.a. The Jon Meyers Gothic Prize)
This contest specifically centers on traditional Gothic stories that use dark humour. Humour, in this sense, comes from the 18th and 19th centuries when Gothic authors crafted literary works by using aspects of the comedic fool and, in greater extent, the art of wit. It is the latter that will be emphasized in the works submitted for the Jon Meyers Gothic Prize.
The Jon Meyers Dark Humour Prize for Gothic Literature is officially open for submissions throughout September. Winners will be announced in October – just in time for Halloween and The Dark Sire’s 2nd Anniversary celebration.
1st place – $60
2nd place – $25
3rd place - $15
All three winners will be published in The Dark Forest, TDS' blog.
1st and 2nd place winners will be eligible for HWA membership (horror.org).
adult short fiction (500-7k words)
poetry (1-3 pages)
short screenplays (5-12 pages)
Works must use dark humour and Gothic storytelling devices/elements and can include monsters, creepy crawlers, werewolves, vampires, supernatural phenomenon, ghosts, and castles.
(No witches, sci-fi, or cosmic/weird horror!)
Those who wish to delve deeper into what dark humour in Gothic literature is can read Amanda Drake’s 2011 dissertation for University of Nebraska – Lincoln, which was the inspiration for this contest: https://digitalcommons.unl.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1063&context=englishdiss
Send your story in .doc/.docx format as an attachment to:
This contest is now CLOSED. Read the winning works on The Dark Forest blog.
CONGRATULATIONS to our winners:
Mario Aliberto III
"Hang Him High"
We're partnering with SECOND CHANCE LIT to bring you our first 100-word FLASH FICTION writing contest:
THE DARK CHANCES CONTEST
Contest runs June 1 - June 8.
Dark Chances uses 100-word gothic/horror flash fiction to examine the theme of "second chances." When rejection happens, when a first attempt fails, what will happen next? Can we still succeed if only we had another chance? Think of what second chances there are or could be in GOTHIC and HORROR fiction. Let your imaginations free as you interpret the theme. As long as your creation is written as a gothic or horror story with "second chances" as an incorporated theme, its eligible! And as always, ghosts, ghouls, werewolves, vampires, and the like are welcomed. *SPECIAL RULES BELOW*
Contest is open to submissions from June 1 to June 8, 2021.
Winners will be announced June 11, 2021.
Publication of TOP 3 winning stories released June 11 on TDS and Second Chance Lit blogs.
1st place wins publication plus:
TDS Merch: TDS paperback issue, skull wax melts, and a bookmark
Second Chance Merch: Notebook, 15oz mug, and a sticker
2nd place wins publication plus:
TDS Merch: TDS paperback issue and a bookmark
Second Chance Merch: 11oz mug and a sticker
3rd place wins publication plus:
TDS Merch: A Bookmark
Second Chance Merch: A sticker
Write a 100-word gothic/horror story with theme of "second chances." Then email it and a brief bio (both pasted directly into the body - no attachments) to: email@example.com.
That's it. GOOD LUCK!
This contest is fully sponsored by