Sunday 25 January 2015

February Short Fiction Contest

"Hanoi Water Puppets - Fairy Dance (3695189852)" by Greg Willis from Denver, CO, usa

Welcome to February's Short Fiction Contest here on The Cult of Me blog. This month's image found me almost instantly while browsing Wikimedia Commons. There's great art to the dolls as well as something a little creepy to them. I'm sure it will inspire some incredible stories!

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 March 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 February 22nd 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. This month's picture proved to be challenging, but worthy. thanks for the challenge.

  2. Submitted! Thanks for the opportunity once again, Michael! This month's picture certainly was more challenging. I nearly came up empty handed.

  3. Just submitted my entry for this month. Thanks Michael.

  4. Submitted a story for this month. Thanks once again Michael. Loving the challenge the picture prompt created.

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Yes, thank you for this opportunity. And nice image.

  7. Beautiful image, and a whole tradition I knew nothing about!

    1. I didn't mean to be anonymous. I'm just rubbish with technology and my laptop needs to get rid of its malware... Bryan Marshall.

    2. Yes, I looked up the tradition and ended up watching a video of the Hanoi Puppets doing Fairy Dance. And then the story idea that came to me had nothing to do with water puppets, but was entirely suggested by the picture of those creepy critters.

  8. I agree, it took awhile before the story arrived. Thanks for the opportunity Michael.
    P.S. My apologies if you receive this twice. When I hit preview the first time, the screen cleared.

  9. Been way too long since I've entered this compo! But an interesting image combined with a recent trip to Thailand gave me a neat idea :) Thanks again for the opportunity, Michael!

  10. Thank you for doing this Michael. I've just submitted!

  11. Thanks for the opportunity again, Michael
    Best wishes
    Andrew C-K