Parkgate Prize for Fiction 2012
$2000 of Cash Prizes and Print and Digital Book Contract for Winner
Today, February 7, 2012, is the 200th anniversary of the birthday of Charles Dickens. To commemorate this event, we are launching the Parkgate Prize for Fiction, and we are excited to make 2012 the Prize's inaugural year!
As the competition's debut year, we have chosen a theme of the life and / or works of Charles Dickens. This is not designed to restrict entries, merely to provide amusement. To be clear, you can write about anything, though at some point we ask that you connect to the theme, overtly or tenuously. For example, you could have a story that mentions a Dickens character or setting (this would be considered overt), or you could merely use a Dickens quotation as an epigram for your story (less overt).
Either way, the fiction is not judged on its connection to Dickens, merely that it has a Dickens connection, however small, in order to be accepted for entry. Feel free also to submit a pre-existing story, adapted in a minor way to mention Dickens himself, as a kind of novelty homage. Don't overthink it - it's simply a nod to his birthday.
There are 3 categories: Novel Opening First Five Chapters (min. 7,500 words, max. 20,000 words), Short Story (min. 1,500 words, max. 7,500 words), and Long Story (min. 7,500 words, max. 12,500 words).
Each category will result in a Short List of 6 entries, from which a 1st Prize, 2nd Prize, and 3rd Prize will be awarded.
The three 1st Place winners are termed The Finalists. From the 3 Finalists, an overall Winner will also be chosen. This individual will also be the holder of the title Winner of the Parkgate Prize for Fiction 2012. This title may then be used in promotional material associated with the work, given it is also awarded publication by Parkgate Press (see below).
All those assigned to the Short List (in each category) will receive feedback on their entry from the judging panel.
In each category, 3rd place will receive $50, 2nd place $150 and 1st Place $300 (for all three categories, a total prize money of $1500).
The overall Winner of the Parkgate Prize for Fiction receives an additional $500 and a contract offer of publication from Parkgate Press, for either a novel, book of short stories or book of (naturally fewer) long stories, for their work to appear in both print and digital editions (paperback and Kindle, Nook, iPad and Sony e-reader editions). The paperback will be issued by Dionysus Books approximately 1 year after the Prize is awarded. The digital editions, staggered about 6 months later, will be released by Parkgate Digital. Please see the standard terms that would apply for this contract offer by visiting the Parkgate Press Submissions page.
All entries must be postmarked on or before September 30, 2012.
A Short List for each category will be announced on October 30, 2012 (so three amounts of 6 individuals, or 18 names).
A 3rd, 2nd and 1st Place for each category will be announced on November 20, 2012.
The Winner will be announced on December 10, 2012.
How To Enter
Please email your typescript as a single file, either Word or PDF, as an attachment to email@example.com. Please include 'Parkgate Prize for Fiction: your name only' in the subject line. On the first page of your entry, please include your name, correspondence address, email address, phone number, title of your work and word count. Please do not include any of this information on any other page. All works must either be previously unpublished, or the copyright currently retained by the author. N.B. Full, worldwide copyrights remain with the author for all entries.
$15 per category. You may enter more than one category (all three if you have the material), but only one entry per category. There is a discount for entering two or more categories ($25 for two, $35 for all three). Please pay either by PayPal (which includes a credit card option), or by sending a check for the total amount payable to 'Parkgate Press' at Parkgate Press (Parkgate Prize for Fiction), 1748 N. Rhodes Street, Suite 321, Arlington, Virginia 22201, USA. You will then receive an email to confirm your entry has been accepted.
Prizes in Categories
All three categories have prizes as follows: First Place $300, Second Place $150, Third Place $50.
The publishing contract would be for a novel, a collection of short stories, or a collection of long stories, to be published in the fall of 2013.
The publishing contract would be exclusively with Parkgate Press (under fiction imprint Dionysus Books). The contract would be for both print and digital editions (paperback and Kindle, Nook, iPad and Sony e-reader editions).
Best of luck!