Thanks to the immediate success of
the Art of Throwing People Out Windows
we have been pledged an annual

!Short Story Contest!

Be forewarned– this is not a subtle contest,
but a contest of sudden change.

Winner: 75$
two Runner-Ups: 30$

Welcome to
Surf from our retro navigation panel, site-left.
All other links are in burgundy.

About us:  Bonafides and Circulation
Masthead: meet the editors
How we judge our contest

Submission for the 2024 contest is now open
and will close
June 2nd, 2024.

View the 2023 Finalists
View the 2022 Finalists
View the 2021 Finalists
View the 2020 Finalists
View the 2019 Finalists 
View the 2018 Finalists
View the 2017 Finalists
View the 2016 Finalists
View the 2015 Finalists
View the 2014 Finalists
View the 2013 Finalists

Stories must include an incident of Defenestrationism– the art, or -ism, of throwing people out windows.  This need not be literal.

Our team defines such an incident as follows,
“a sudden, immediate– perhaps violent– shift, change, or seismical event between the beginning and the end.”

Finalists are selected by owner, co-editor Paul-Newell Reaves
and co-editor Chantelle Tibbs.  These finalists are then published weekly, before winners are announced, followed by at least two weeks of Fan Voting.

Winners are selected by our panel of three Judges, with Fan Voting counting as an additional judge vote. 

Expect harsh words of criticism if Guidelines are not followed.
Otherwise, we’re all lovey-dovey.


Grammar is no list of rules, no series of hoops.  Punctuation is an art form, remember that, punctuate like there’s no tomorrow.

Edit, comrades, edit till there is no editing left to be done.  We ask you go through at least TEN read-through edits before submitting.

Incomplete sentences must serve an obvious purpose: toward narrative or character development, dialogue, theme or style.

Please, please, no Zombie fiction.  We do not encourage work whose central theme is the braindead.  All other Sci-Fi, Fantasy and stories of Dis-reality– provided it is imaginative and different– will be considered.

WORD LIMIT: we’re gonna stop reading if a novella-length work can’t hold our interest. We value precise, concise and ultra-clean, so, while there is no firm word limit, we won’t guarantee a full read-through of novellas.

There is violence in nature; there is violence in man.  But not all violence succeeds in changing the world.  Violence, for our contest, should throw someone or things out the window!

View our Editing Tips

Further options for excellence:
– think about usage of color as a theme to develop across the story.
– you could try for a completely non-violent, perhaps emotional, perhaps epiphanic, defenestrationism story

A.I. Policy:
[if you take pride in writing, skip this section]

You can try out A.I. for our contests, if you truly worry your writing skills are that flimsy. But you should probably trust your own abilities more.

I trained LLMs in creative writing, so not only will I probably recognize their work, I’ll even give you some hints:
A.I. doesn’t generate original ideas– that’s the fundamental premise of the software, it rips off stuff that’s already been published– so you’d definitely better come up with your basic conceit by hand. As to the work itself, in order to make A.I.’s writing remotely interesting, stylistically, you must be very specific about which authors’ style you want the software to write in. Pick two or three writers you enjoy reading, and put their names in the box along with your concept. Most importantly, revise the automaton’s work– and I’m not talking about typos.

That’s almost the entirety of the writing process, really– creating your concept, reading your favorite authors for inspiration, then the extensive revision– if a bot will get you over your initial writing block, I guess that’s a good use for the tool.  Don’t be satisfied with mediocrity, though, ’cause your readers certainly won’t be (and with that fun, little worm in your brain– the bit about mediocrity, you know, that the work could always be just a little bit better if you only change one thing more…– A.I. won’t save you all that much time, percentage wise).

Writing is a joy– an outlet, a passion– and if you’re using A.I. on contests for only our meager prizes, good luck with your life and the state of your soul…

Send us a DOWNLOADABLE document–
No PDFs, please, as they are difficult to transcribe to our site.
Include the title of your work both atop the document and somewhere in the name of the file.

We no longer read multiple submissions. Sorry.
Simultaneous submissions are just peachy.

MUST— email subject: !Short Story Contest!
— that’s

Please include a phone number, in case our emails end up in your spam.
It will not be distributed.

If our good side is something you care to be on,
check our illuminating submission pointers.

Feel free to compliment us on our concrete and exact guidelines.  Most of the worst writing we’ve had the displeasure of reading comes from editors trying to explain and individualize their tastes for a publication.

We adhere closely to the CLMP Contest Code of Ethics.

Please do not submit if you have or have had any affiliation with any of the three Judges.

We require only Electronic Rights, including Electronic Archival Rights.  Author maintains all Future Rights. 

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