Tag Archives: The Raven Contest

The Raven Contest: the judge has spoken!

And now the news you’ve been waiting for:  the winners of the 2016 Raven Short Story Contest, complete with judge Brenda Carre‘s comments

I loved reading all twelve stories on the editors’ short list and I want to congratulate each and every one of you for providing me with such a very difficult choice and such a varied, well-written selection of stories. If you want a more in-depth look at how I judged these I have a blog post here.

Third runner up

‘Swimming’ by Jerico Espinas, Oshawa ON, Canada

A nicely-written slice-of-life story with a poignant sense of loss on the part of the viewpoint character.  While I enjoyed this very much, the ambiguity at the end nudged it out of running for the top position.  I would love to see this story enlarged into a novel or novella.

Second runner up

‘Tarts’ by Judyth Emmanuel, Newton NSW, Australia

I loved the surreal play with language (e.e. cummings meets the Munsters) and very creepy look into the minds of the three main characters.  At times, the convolutions of word choice were a little overwhelming, but definitely a publishable piece.

First runner up

‘The Pool Guy’ by Adam Golub, Fullerton CA, USA

I really liked the dialogue here and the interplay of the sexting girlfriend and the talkative Pool Guy with Ty’s very calculating analytical personality.  I had a few laugh-out-loud minutes and was very torn between this and the winner.  A great read, and I look forward to seeing this in print.

The winning story

‘The Handler’ by Pat Flewwelling, Oshawa ON, Canada

This story wowed me, held me tightly to its very unique premise from beginning to end, and just got better with each successive reading.  A unique and torturously complicated look at life with a superhero.

Congratulations to all these superb writers.  ‘The Handler’ will be published in Pulp Literature Issue 14, Spring 2017, and we will attempt to place the other three stories in that or subsequent issues.  We’ve included the hometowns of each of the winners to show how far-flung our entrants are; and also to inquire as to what’s in the water of the small town of Oshawa Ontario, and can you bottle it for the rest of the country?

For those authors who requested critiques, our editors are working on them and should have them to you soon (before Christmas at least)!

Our next contest, the Bumblebee Flash Fiction Contest for stories up to 750 words long opens January 1st 2017.

Fiction submissions are now open until November 30th.  We look forward to reading your stories!

Never miss another contest or opening.  Subscribe to our free newsletter here.

The Raven Shortlist

It was not an easy cut to make, but we are pleased to announce the shortlist for the 2016 Raven Short Story Contest!

  • ‘Flotsam’  by Mike Twist
  • ‘Handling the Contents of Consciousness’ by Soramimi Hanarejima
  • ‘Invisible’ by Kat McNichol
  • ‘Ninth Life’ by Lisa Voisin
  • ‘Pruinessence’ by Claire Lawrence
  • ‘Right Wrist or Left?’ by Nancy Christie
  • ‘Swimming’ by Jerico Espinas
  • ‘Tarts’ by Judyth Emanuel
  • ‘The Handler’ by Pat Flewwelling
  • ‘The Pool Guy’ by Adam Golub
  • ‘Things You Should Know About Ravens’ by David Thompson
  • ‘When We Played House’ by Charlene Kwiatkowski

Congratulations to all these authors who made the shortlist.  These were hard choices to make, and all these stories have very different qualities that make them prize-winning candidates.  We will keep you in suspense till Tuesday when we will announce judge Brenda Carre’s ultimate choices.

While you wait, may we suggest a reading of last year’s winners, ‘Black Blizzard’ by Emily Linstrom and ‘The Lament for iCarus’ by PE Bolivar in Pulp Literature Issue 10?  You can even get the issue immediately and pay later by pledging at the $5 level on our Something Novel Kickstarter page.

An Unkindness of Ravens: The Raven Contest longlist

What’s unkind about the Raven Short Story Contest?  Why, making us choose, of course!  It’s never easy deciding which stories will make the cut.  Sometimes it’s like choosing between apples and automobiles: both are useful, and many are beautiful, but I wouldn’t want to ride in one or eat the other.

But choose we must.  And so here are the authors on the longlist, alphabetically by first name:

  1. Adam Golub
  2. Amanda Truscott
  3. Charity Tahmaseb
  4. Charlene Kwiatkowski
  5. Claire Lawrence
  6. Darshan Thind
  7. David Perlmutter
  8. David Thompson
  9. Janice P Egry
  10. Jeannine Manji
  11. Jerico Espinas
  12. Joanna Koch
  13. Judyth Emanuel
  14. Kat McNichol
  15. Kelly Madden
  16. Kerry Craven
  17. KT Wagner
  18. Lisa Voisin
  19. Margaret Jameson
  20. Maria Neuda
  21. Mark Fabiano
  22. Mark Wagstaff
  23. Megan Clancy
  24. Mike Twist
  25. Nancy Christie
  26. Nancy Ludmerer
  27. Pat Flewwelling
  28. Richard Arbib
  29. Rose Divecha
  30. Soramimi Hanarejima
  31. Tammy Breitweiser

Yes, 31 is a strange number for a longlist.  Remember what we said about how hard it is to make a cut?  Sometimes we just make the list a little longer to put off the pain.

So thank you writers for being so unkind to us, and congratulations on winning us over this far with your words.  The shortlist will be published soon!

While you wait, why not head on over to our Something Novel campaign?  Your support of even $1 helps us by raising our profile on Kickstarter, and if you can share it with your friends you’ll help even more.  Don’t forget to subscribe for 2017 while you’re there: after all, two of the above names will appear in our Spring 2017 issue!

Announcing the Winner of the 2015 Raven Short Story Contest

As chosen by Brenda Carre, our final judge for the Raven Short Story Contest, here are the winners.

  • First place: ‘Black Blizzard’, Emily Linstromsmallpenandink
  • Runner-up: ‘Lament for iCarus’, by Patrick Bollivar
  • Honourable mention: ‘Flight of the Gods’ by Brent Kellmer

A master of many genres, judge Brenda Carre writes fantasy, science fiction, and historical short stories and novels, as well as spicy historical romance under the pen-name Tess Cornwall.  Her short fiction has appeared in Fantasy & Science Fiction, Fiction River Anthologies, and The Blacklist anthology to name a few.  Her recent novelette, Finnraziel, can be found in The Edge of Never paranormal romance collection.  Here’s what she had to say about the entries: Continue reading

The Long and Short of the Raven Contest

We were thoroughly impressed with the quality of stories we received for this year’s  Raven Short Story Contest.  It seems as if each contest we run pushes the bar higher.  To choose our long list all three editors read the entries and give them a ‘yes’, ‘no’ or ‘maybe’.   The ‘maybe’s are crucial, because a ‘yes’ is worth two points and a ‘maybe’ worth one.  Our long list is then made up of every story that received at least two points — meaning at least one editor liked it a lot, or at least two editors thought it had potential.standoff

This is important, as we want to give our final judge, Brenda Carre, a broad selection of stories to choose from.  Fiction is so subjective, not just from person to person, but from day to day.  Sometimes a story that doesn’t grab you one night may captivate you on the second read because you’re in a different mood.  So here is the longlist, made up of the twenty-six stories we felt had winning potential: Continue reading

The Raven Short Story Contest is now open!  Send us your best short fiction from 500 – 5000 words and you’ll receive a digital subscription and the chance to win $500!  From now until September 15th you save $5 with the earlybird entry fee.  Don’t delay — enter today!