Adventure Story Contest, featured

It’s Almost Time! Adventure Writing Contest

*addition: Click here to ENTER the Contest and to read Official Rules

How’s your preparation for the upcoming Adventure Scifi and Fantasy Contest coming? Do you need any help or extra inspiration?

short story banner.jpg

Entries for this Short Story Contest don’t actually open until February 26th, 2018, so you’ve still got more time to write…or procrastinate. Whichever works best for you!

My simple dream for this contest goes something like this:

A bunch of talented, inspired writers take a stab at this FREE contest to win some prizes and have their short stories included in an anthology where the proceeds from sales will be donated to a charity. In this case, I’ve chosen Compassion International.

The Basics

Write a short story (1,000 – 5,000 words) using this photo as initial inspiration

instagram square contest

Things to keep in mind: 

  • This will basically be the book cover for the anthology.
  • It is ONLY a jumping point for tone/theme inspiration and doesn’t have to represent your characters or specific setting (although using this setting appropriately somewhere in the story would be a good idea if you can shake it).
  • Genres for the contest are Contemporary or Future: Adventure, Scifi, and/or Fantasy
  • Stories should contain no sex, gratuitous violence, or excessive swearing (If I can’t feel comfortable posting it to my blog, it probably won’t pass the judging, so keep this in mind and use your awesome writer skills!)
This cover makes me feel all Indiana Jonesy, ya know?


Today I’m introducing our very special and talented author judges!

Please welcome Morgan Wylie and Claire M. Banschbach!


Morgan Wylie – An award-winning author with several genres published from YA fantasy to adult paranormal romance and other things in between. Morgan published her first novel, Silent Orchids, one year after moving across the country with her family on a journey of new discovery. After an amazing three years in Nashville, TN and the release of two more books, Morgan and her family found their way back to the Northwest where they now reside. Still working everyday with great optimism, Morgan continues to embrace all things: “Mama”, wife, teacher, and mediator to the many voices and muses constantly chattering in her head… where it gets pretty loud!


Claire Banschbach – A published author of YA fantasy fiction. Her titles include The Rise of Aredor, Wildcat of Braeton, and Adela’s Curse. Claire is from west Texas and graduated from Texas Tech HSC with a degree in physical therapy. She’s a pediatric physical therapist, and when not consumed with her gainful employment, she’s spending time with her awesome big family, dreaming up new worlds, or writing her heart out.

Official Rules and Information

    1. Opens Monday, February 26th, 2018 at 12:01 AM PST (PDT)
    2. Ends Friday, March 16th, 2018 at 9:00 PM PST (PDT)
    1. Action/Adventure and/or Scifi/Fantasy, inspired (at least in part) by the contest’s theme picture/book cover.
    2. No sex, gratuitous violence, or excessive swearing
      1. Think PG (or PG-13 at most) movie
      2. When it comes to swearing, a bare minimum is acceptable, but I’m partial to more creative ways to express a character’s emotional outbursts wherever possible.
    1. Top 15 Stories (Finalists) will be included in an anthology book. All proceeds from the anthology book sales will be donated to Compassion International.
    2. 1st place receives
      1. One custom book cover designed by Rachael for both print and ebook
      2. Winning story on Rachael’s website
      3. An interview or author profile on Rachael’s website w/social media shares on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram 2 times a week for 2 months
      4. Winning story included first in the book w/special recognition
      5. 2 print copies of the Anthology (or ebook if outside the US)
        1. (1st place prize valued at approximately $100 USD)
    3. 2nd place receives
      1. One custom ebook cover designed by Rachael
      2. An interview or author profile on Rachael’s website w/social media shares on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram twice a week for a month
      3. 2nd place story included in the anthology w/special recognition
      4. A Print Copy of the Anthology (or ebook if outside the US)
        1. (2nd place prize valued at approximately $60 USD)
    4. 3rd place receives
      1. An interview or author profile on Rachael’s website w/social media shares on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram once a week for a month
      2. 3rd place story included in anthology w/special recognition
      3. A Print copy of the Anthology (or ebook if outside the US)
        1. (3rd place prize valued at approximately $20 USD)
    1. Must be 18 years of age or older if you are from a country outside USA
    2. In United States, must be at least 14 years of age as of start date of the Contest (Feb 26th, 2018) to participate
      1. If under 18 years of age and your story qualifies for the anthology, you will need parental consent to have your story included within the book.
    3. I hate to restrict the contest too much, but only residents from USA, United Kingdom, Australia, Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada (excluding Quebec), Chile, China, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Spain, Sweden,  and Thailand can enter
      1. (if you live outside these countries and are able to provide me with information that shows you are legally allowed to participate in this contest, please contact me!)
    4. Family Members of the contest holder and other judges are excluded from participation
    5. Void where Prohibited by Law
    1. Use the CONTACT form on this website
      1. Type “Anthology Contest” first
      2. Include Name and Email Address
      3. If US Resident under 18, please specify.
    2. Rachael will reply
      1. She will then require you respond with an attached Word .doc/.docx of the story entry
        1. If you don’t have Word, some other programs such as Scrivener let you save in Word .doc/.docx file format.
        2. If you use Google Docs, that would work in place of a Word .doc, or
        3. There is also Open Office, which would be an acceptable form of file entry
        4. If you don’t receive a response within 24 hours of contacting her, please leave a comment on her website to let her know! Hopefully nobody’s messages go to spam.
    1. The contest holder will judge the first round, narrowing entries to the ranked top 20 based on the following criteria
      1. Fits the genre(s)
      2. Meets length criteria (1,000 – 5,000 words)
      3. Premise/Concept (hook), Presentation, Structure/Plot & Pacing, Characters & Dialogue, Conflict & Resolution, Reader Engagement
      4. In the possible case of a tie, the overall accuracy of grammar, spelling, and punctuation will be used as the determining factors
    2. In the 2nd round, an impartial qualified author judge (or two) will read and rate the top TEN stories based on the same criteria.
    3. 1st, 2nd, & 3rd place entries will be chosen from the top ten based on the combined score of the second and first round scores.
    1. Top Ten Finalists Announced
      1. Monday, April 9th, 2018
        1. Subject to change depending on amount of entries (notification will be made in a post at if this is the case)
        2. Announced in a post at and each entrant placing in the top 20 will receive an email notification of their position
    2. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Place Winners Announced
      1. Monday, May 7th, 2018
        1. Subject to change depending on amount of entries (notification will be made in a post at if this is the case)
        2. Announced in a post at and each entrant placing 1, 2, or 3 will receive an email notification of their position
    3. Winners have one year from the public announcement to claim their prizes. If a winner resides within the United States, they must agree to share their address with the contest holder to receive a print copy of the anthology book. The anthology book will be shipped to the winner once it has been published. An ebook will be provided in place of a print version if living outside the US or if requested.
  10. All stories remain the intellectual property of their respective authors.
  11. ONLY submit your own work.
  12. Do not submit material that has already been published. Only submit previously unpublished work to this contest.
  13. If chosen as up to the Top 20 Overall Finalist and your story is included in the anthology book, you will retain copyright to your story, but by entering this contest you give the contest holder permission and license to include your submitted entry story in the anthology. You will be given full credit for your work within.
  14. If chosen as a Top 20 Finalist, if requested, you agree to make minor changes and corrections—including but not limited to spelling or grammar—to your work as prescribed by the contest holder before publication in the anthology book.
  15. Contest open to published and unpublished writers!
  16. Phew! That should be all the legal stuff out of the way. If you have questions, please feel free to contact me via CONTACT on the menu!

Content Marketing Association has this FANTASTIC graphic that can help you structure any story, no matter the genre:

Seven Steps to the Perfect Story

I highly recommend you check it out.

So yeah. That’s the gist of it. Spread the word!

Feel free to download and use any of these images in your posts and reblog this post!

039story contest poster.jpg

short story bannershort story banner2

twitterpic contest.jpg

Share this post across social media and let’s get everyone involved! I’m excited to support you, see your work get out there, and also support a worthy cause in the process.

Please feel free to email me or leave comments and questions below. I respond to every one! (And if for some reason you don’t hear back from me, it might be your message got lost in Spamland by accident! Try me again!)

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