Tuesday, June 27, 2017

2017 BLOODY PARCHMENT SHORT STORY COMPETITION OPEN

With the current issue of Bloody Parchment available on a Kindle near you, the SA HorrorFest Bloody Parchment team is pleased to announce that the 2017 competition is now open. We continue to seek the freshest, disturbing and disconcerting new voices in SFF, with emphasis on tales that wander into the darker side of the storytelling spectrum. While this is chiefly an African short story competition, and is focused on the development of up-and-coming voices, we are open to international entries. There is no entry fee.

Our categories for this year include flash fiction (up to 1000 words); short fiction (up to 4 000 words); and novellas (between 15 000 to 30 000 words). A winner and two runners-up will be picked among the finalists, for possible publication in a collection. Further details to be announced at the final selection.

First prize is a full assessment and round of developmental edits for a novel-length work or short story anthology. Runners-up to receive a full, developmental edit for a short story or novella other than their submission. The aim of Bloody Parchment remains the upliftment and development of new authors and the promotion of science fiction, fantasy and horror in Africa.

What we're looking for: The SA HorrorFest Bloody Parchment team is looking for short stories or novellas that fall under the horror and dark fantasy/SF genres. If it's dark, we're interested. So, yes, if you've written a GrimDark tale in a gloomy secondary world, we're interested. Hell, we'll even look at your vampires, so long as they don't sparkle. Cleverly executed alien invasions have legs. That being said, if the story's impact relies purely on gratuitous violence and rape for its punch, rather don't waste our time and yours. Also, for the love of dog, make sure your story falls within the required word count – at least a quarter of our submissions are rejected each year because they do not adhere to the word counts. While we won't reject a well-written submission that's a few hundred words over (there is wiggle room), don't expect us to read short stories that are way off the mark in terms of word count. Multiple entries are allowed, but chances are good that if both your stories make it to the final round, we will use our discretion to select the one that is the best possible fit for the anthology.

If you have any questions, feel free to drop the editor, Nerine Dorman, an email at nerinedorman@gmail.com CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES: OCTOBER 31, 2017 To enter, email your story saved as .doc or .rt format to nerinedorman@gmail.com with "Bloody Parchment 2017" in the subject line. Standard manuscript formatting is absolutely fine (12pt Times New Roman, indented paragraphs, double spacing).

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

WINNERS: 2016 SA HORRORFEST BLOODY PARCHMENT SHORT STORY COMPETITION

It is with great pride that I bring you the final round-up for the 2016 SA HorrorFest Bloody Parchment short story competition.

Taking first place, we have Blaize Kaye, with "Remains of an Old World".

Runners-up are Brett Rex Bruton, with "The Out of Place"; and Lester Walbrugh, with "For Better or Wors".

Our finalists, who have the option of going into the anthology, as well as receiving some extremely useful editor notes to help improve their story-telling overall, with guidance from an editor, include Aito Osemegbe Joseph, Shaun van Rensburg, Erhu Amreyan, Jessica Liebenberg, Toby Bennett, Stephen Embleton, Livingston Edwards, William Burger, Mignotte Mekuria, and Janine Milne.

A very big congratulations to all of you!

We would like to thank this year's judges: Cat Hellisen, Dave de Burgh, Diane Awerbuck, Efemia Chela, Lauren Smith and Sarah Lotz, who had the difficult task of evaluating the short list.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

BLOODY PARCHMENT 2016 shortlist

We have our shortlisted stories gone through for judging. A huge thank you this year to our judges: Sarah Lotz, Diane Awerbuck, Cat Hellisen, Dave de Burgh, Lauren Smith and Efemia Chela. I'm hoping to rustle up their answers by mid-May, in which we will announce our finalists, runners-up and winner.

Our shortlisted authors are: 
Aito Osemegbe Joseph
Alexander Clark
Shaun van Rensburg
Erhu Amreyan
Jessica Liebenberg
Dhee Sylvester
Stephen Embleton
Toby Bennett
Kingsley Okpii
Blaize Kaye
Livingston Edwards
Brett Rex Bruton
William Burger
Lester Walbrugh
Mignotte Mekuria
Janine Milne

A huge congratulations, folks, and I wish you all the best!
Our next anthology releases soon; we'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

BLOODY PARCHMENT 2016 SUBMISSIONS OPEN

With the current issue of Bloody Parchment available on a Kindle near you, the SA HorrorFest Bloody Parchment team is pleased to announce that the 2016 competition is now open.

Our categories for dark genre fiction this year include flash fiction (up to 1000 words); short fiction (up to 3 500 words); and novellas (between 15 000 to 30 000 words).

A winner and two runners-up will be picked, for possible publication in a collection. Further details to be announced on finalisation of the final selection.

What we're looking for:
The SA HorrorFest Bloody Parchment team is looking for short stories novellas that fall under the horror and dark fantasy/SF genres. If it's dark, we're interested. While we're obviously looking for Africa's best, this competition is open to folks from further afield. If you have any questions, feel free to drop the editor, Nerine Dorman, an email at nerinedorman@gmail.com

CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES: OCTOBER 31, 2016
To enter, email your story saved as .doc or .rt format to nerinedorman@gmail.com with "Bloody Parchment 2016" in the subject line. Standard manuscript formatting makes me happy (12pt Times New Roman, indented paragraphs, double spacing).

Friday, January 8, 2016

Beachfront Starter Homes and Other Stories

Finally, despite a few obstacles cast in our way, we're proud to present the cover of the 2013 South African HorrorFest Bloody Parchment finalists. This volume is goes with the title of the winning story by Ruth Browne: Beachfront Starter Home, Good Bones.

Many thanks to Thomas Dorman and Ronnie Belcher of award-winning BlackMilk Productions for their part in creating this year's cover. Do go check out BlackMilk's short surreal horror film La Mia Carne over on YouTube.

This issues's contributors are:
Liam Kruger – “The Phenomenology of Iceland: A Romance”
Michelle Barry – “Toast”
Chris Limb – “Scratchmind”
Morgen Knight – “Gods of Old, Anew”
Arno Hurter – “A Place in Time”
Abigail Godsell – “Ordinary Sound”
Matt Hayward – “No One Gets Out of Here Alive”
Doreen Perrine – “Foul Things”
Icy Sedgwick – “Something Wicked This Way Slithered”
Monique Snyman – “Tokoloshe”
Joshua de Kock – “Aquarium”
Ruth Browne – “Beachfront Starter Home, Good Bones”

Bloody Parchment: Beachfront Starter Home, Good Bones will be released soon by Crossroad Press. Submissions for the 2016 competition will open on June 21, 2016, and close on October 31, 2016. We will accept submissions of dark speculative fiction in two categories: short fiction (up to 3 500 words) and novella (between 15 000 to 30 000 words). Although this is primarily a short story competition geared towards promoting and developing African speculative fiction, we accept international entries. Email nerinedorman@gmail.com for further information.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

BLOODY PARCHMENT 2015 COMPETITION NOW OPEN

While 2014 resulted in some unexpected challenges (and with the upcoming anthologies from the past two competitions still in production), the SA HorrorFest Bloody Parchment team is pleased to announce that the 2015 competition is now open, only we're about to see some changes afoot.

We have decided to shift focus from short stories to the novella form, and this year we are looking novella entries of between 15 000 to 30 000 words. If you're not sure of what a novella is, go check out this link.

A winner and two runners-up will be picked, for possible publication in a collection. Further details to be announced on finalisation of the final selection.

What we're looking for:
The SA HorrorFest Bloody Parchment team is looking for novellas that fall under the horror and dark fantasy/SF genres. If it's dark, we're interested. While we're obviously looking for Africa's best, this competition is open to folks from further afield. If you have any questions, feel free to drop the editor, Nerine Dorman, an email at nerinedorman@gmail.com

CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES: OCTOBER 31, 2015

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Bloody Parchment 2014 is officially open

While the anthology of last year's winners is still in production, I hereby am pleased to announce that the 2014 short story competition is officially open. Do check out our existing volumes. Volume 1 (available as a free read at Goodreads), 2 (Hidden Things, Lost Things and Other Stories) and 3 (The Root Cellar and Other Stories).

The aim of the Bloody Parchment short story competition is to help develop talented, fresh voices in the horror, dark fantasy and weird genres, by offering a platform and signal boost for finalists. Every year we assemble a kick-ass panel of judges who are all movers and shakers in the publishing industry, with such notables as Sarah Lotz, Joe Vaz, Cat Hellisen and others who have helped in the selection process during the past. While we’re yet to announce which publisher will be picking up where eKhaya left off, there is a fantastic first prize up for grabs for the winner: a comprehensive round of edits and manuscript assessment. The two runners-up are each awarded a round of comprehensive edits and assessment of a short story or novella-length work. The winner, runners-up and finalists then have the option to be included in the short story anthology to be released mid-2015.

What are we looking for? 
Bloody Parchment is looking for short stories of up to 3 500 words in length, in the horror, dark fantasy and weird genres. Yes, this includes flash fiction. Yes, you may enter multiple stories. Yes, we like flash fiction too. LGBT authors of genre fiction are welcome. Stories set in locations other than the US or Europe would tickle us pink. We love diversity. We want to know what moves you, what mysteries fascinate you, what frightens you… So long as your story clearly falls within the horror, dark fantasy and weird genres, you’re good. We want to be unsettled

What we DO NOT WANT.
Fan fiction with the serial numbers filed off: When the Saw movies were popular, my inbox was flooded with torture porn; during 2012 it was various permutations of popular zombiepocalypses. 2013 for some reason saw gratuitous violence against women used as a cheap literary device. Mercifully vampires seem to have gone into remission. Please folks, I know you’re excited by whatever’s currently trending on your Twitter feeds, but if you absolutely MUST play with the tropes, DO put a fresh spin on your offering that will be amazeballs. We want you to dig deep and find something that is truly your own. Content that is clearly aimed to deliberately shock for the sake of wiggling your jollies will be rejected out of hand.

In addition, stories that do not follow the brief will be rejected too, so no, we do not want your Christian inspirational fiction, 30 000-word novellas, chick lit or poems. (Every time an author doesn’t follow the submission guidelines, a small gremlin curls up and dies.)

Right, now that we have that out of the way, this is how you enter: mail your short story saved as a .doc file (not exceeding 3 500 words) to nerinedorman@gmail.com before October 31, 2014. Remember to put “BLOODY PARCHMENT 2014” in the subject line. In the body of your email, please give me your real name, pen name, nationality and word count. Good luck! And if you have any questions, feel free to drop me a mail. I don’t bite…much.