An Illustration For Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream Painted In 1793-1794 By Swiss Artist Johann Heinrich Füssli
Midsummer Means It’s Time To Announce And Publish The Winning Stories In The Ghost Story Supernatural Fiction Award Contest. Happy Reading!
The international scope of The Ghost Story contest continues to expand. This time around, not only did we receive submissions from eight countries, but our Honorable Mention story is by an Australian writer, and one of our two Second Honorable Mention pieces comes to us from Finland.
There were also more submissions than ever before, and the high quality of so many of them made judging the contest a difficult task. In fact, we wound up with two Second Honorable Mentions not because we planned it that way, but because we loved them both, and in the end, despite the added expense of the extra prize money, we just could not bear to choose between them.
What is especially fascinating about the four stories we’re publishing here is the each one takes a completely different approach to the supernatural, and each uses the otherworldly for a different literary purpose. For instance, our overall winner—and recipient of the competition’s $1,000 cash award—presents us with a protagonist who is haunted by the traumas of his childhood as well as by the ghost of jazz musician Louis Armstrong, who serves as his own personal spirit guide. Our Honorable Mention story gives us a new mother whose fears for her baby’s safety coalesce into the physical form of a pair of strange children who appear on her doorstep in the middle of the night. One of our Second Honorable Mentions speculates about the problems, romantic and otherwise, that might be faced by someone who was born as a ghost, rather than having had to die to get that way, and our other Second Honorable Mention offers a harrowing situation—a mentally unbalanced teenager armed with a butcher knife—that is nonetheless so funny that we find ourselves laughing out loud every time we read it.
Come on inside to help us celebrate our winners, and to enjoy a chilling summertime read.
And if you’re planning to submit a supernatural story to the next Ghost Story contest, we’ll start accepting entries again at the beginning of August—and we’re looking forward to reading yours!
Finally, if you’d like to leave a comment, or to discuss our stories or the contest in general, please visit our Facebook page.