An Illustration For Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream Painted In 1793-1794 By Swiss Artist Johann Heinrich Füssli
One Contest Closes, Another Opens!
The winner and honorable mentions in the Screw Turn Flash Fiction Competition for short-short stories on a supernatural theme will be announced and published on February 14. Stay tuned—and thanks to everyone who participated.
Meanwhile, The Ghost Story Supernatural Fiction Award contest for full-length short stories that incorporate an uncanny element is scheduled to open on February 15, with cash prizes of $1,000 for the winning story, $250 for the first Honorable Mention, and $100 for the Second Honorable mention—plus publication on TGS.
This will be the fourth time we’ve run The Ghost Story Supernatural Fiction Award. Our previous winners are available for your reading enjoyment. May they provide you with some inspiration—and a pleasurable shudder!
Sudden Fiction By A Mexican Master
Mexican writer Juan Rulfo penned the novel Pedro Páramo, (1955) a chilling ghost story that was one of the main inspirations for the Latin American literary boom that became known as Magic Realism. I recently came across this cool (and rare) piece of short-short fiction by Rulfo and, since our Screw Turn Flash Fiction Competition is currently open for submissions, I thought it was appropriate to reproduce Rulfo’s story here as an example of how it’s done. Enjoy:
“It was already late in the night when I arrived at that little, lost town in the mountains. To my surprise, the peasants were waiting for me. In silence, without any explanation, they took me to the plaza. They tied me up to the tree in the center of that plaza, and again in silence, they left. [click to continue…]
Solstice Dawn, Stonehenge. Photo: Mike Peel (www.mikepeel.net)
Prizes For Short-Short Stories
Winter solstice marks the official start of our annual Screw Turn Flash Fiction Competition for short supernatural fiction of up to 1,000 words. And what better image than Stonehenge to use in announcing our competition, given that writers from Britain took all three cash prizes last year? We’re wondering if this was just a fluke, or whether the Brits can do it again. . . .
If you’ve got a short yarn ready to be read, or are thinking of writing a miniature supernatural tale—you’ve got until January 31, after all—you just might want to have a look at our contest guidelines. Good luck!
John Leech 1843
BY CHARLES DICKENS
Marley was dead: to begin with. There is no doubt
whatever about that. The register of his burial was
signed by the clergyman, the clerk, the undertaker,
and the chief mourner. Scrooge signed it: and
Scrooge’s name was good upon ‘Change, for anything he
chose to put his hand to. Old Marley was as dead as a
Mind! I don’t mean to say that I know, of my
own knowledge, what there is particularly dead about
a door-nail. I might have been inclined, myself, to
regard a coffin-nail as the deadest piece of ironmongery
in the trade. But the wisdom of our ancestors
is in the simile; and my unhallowed hands
shall not disturb it, or the Country’s done for. You
will therefore permit me to repeat, emphatically, that
Marley was as dead as a door-nail. [click to continue…]