Sunday 21 December 2014

January Short Fiction Contest

By Creator:George Grie (Own work, [1]) [Public domain, GFDL ( or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Welcome to January's Short Fiction Contest here on The Cult of Me blog. As winter is closing in I thought I'd pick something cold and seasonal for this month's image. And it has a ghost ship to boot! I'm already looking forward to some spooky tales :-)

As always the stories can be of any genre. They just have to be inspired by this month's image and no more than 500 words.

Entry to the contest remains free and there are prizes for the three winners. I will also feature any of the stories that don't win but I believe are worth showcasing on this blog.
  • First prize is a £50 Amazon gift card or PayPal prize
  • Second prize is a £20 Amazon gift card or PayPal prize
  • Third prize is a £10 Amazon gift card or PayPal prize
The money for the prizes come out of my own pocket, although I do make a little from advertising on this blog. So if you see something of interest then feel free to click on the links and purchase away! If you haven't tried my books yet then check them out at the top of the page, as well as buying a good read you'll be helping this contest.

Please make sure to check your story for typos before submitting. I don't mind a few errors, but my enjoyment of a story is diminished if I have to wade through too many.

I'll post the winning entries by February 1st 2015.

As with everything in life there are a few rules:
  • Only one entry per person.
  • The story must not be longer than 500 words.
  • Closing date for submissions is January 24th 2015.
  • By submitting the story you grant me a non-exclusive license to post the story on this blog. I do ask that I post it here first.
  • You also grant me a one time non-exclusive license to include the story in an e-book release.
  • The judge's decision is final.

Use the form below to enter your submission. After you've submitted please leave a comment on this page stating that you have submitted. And please help spread the word. Great stories deserve great readers!

As well as comments section below you can chat about this competition in any of the threads I've listed below. If you don't know the sites then entering the competition is a good way to introduce yourself. Note that these sites are not affiliated with the competition in any way!

If you've started your own thread or discussion somewhere about this month's competition then let me know and I'll add the link to this page.


  1. Another great inspiring pick to write about Michael. my entry is submitted, :-)

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Hi Michael.
    Hopefully I've submitted a story. I may have submitted twice in my ineptitude or maybe not at all I can't tell :-/
    Can you let me know if you've received it?, sorry.

  4. My befuddled brain failed me last month but with this image, I had several ideas buzzing around within minutes. I enclose a story for consideration and thank you again Michael for your great competition.

  5. Hi there. I've submitted a story. Thank you for your picture prompt and consideration!

  6. HI not sure if entry come through yet, issue with google



  7. Hi Michael could you just confirm my story has come through, have had issues with trying to publish an just wanted to confirm.



  8. Hi, I just entered the competition for January. Great concept! I'm looking forward to the results. Paul Harry

  9. I #B27321
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  10. I just submitted something! Hope you like it!

  11. I decided to enter. ^^ Thank you for hosting this contest.

  12. HI have resubmitted entry because I'm not sure its getting through, hopefully this time it has - cheers Steve

  13. Submitted my story. Good luck to everyone.

  14. Hi Michael,

    I'm super excited. I just submitted my story.

    Best of luck to All!

    And thank you, Michael.

  15. Hello Michael,

    I've decided to enter your contest for January. The picture was inspirational. Thanks for the opportunity.


    Allan Rozinski

  16. Terrific idea. Nothing like a picture for inspiriation. Submission sent - thank you

  17. Oh my, did I just comment twice? So sorry if I did. If not...

    So excited to have submitted for the first time. Thank you for this wonderful and fun idea.

  18. I was pleased to be among the winners of last month's competition. Just sent a story for January's comp. Great choice of picture!

    1. Thanks John - always good to see repeat entrants!

  19. Hopefully I have managed to submit a story (I'm new to this place :-) )

  20. I submitted my piece last night, hopefully in the correct manner! Happy reading!

  21. Fourth time lucky? Trouble submitting - sorry.

  22. Entered. Thanks again for running the comp. A very inspirational picture.

  23. Story is submitted. Thank you again Michael for having this competition. Loved the picture prompt. It was extremely inspiring.

  24. I just submitted my story, Michael. It is good to be back after not having entered since June; I have been busy with other...WRITING! I have had this image in my files for years so I just had to go in for this one! As always, thanks for the contest and good luck to all the entrants!

  25. Hi Michael
    Thanks for the opportunity as ever

    Andrew C-K

  26. Thanks man that was really good fun, got the grey matter ticking over :)

  27. Not sure I made the deadline, but I sent something in...