Tag Archives: sentinel literary quarterly short story competition

Poetry & Short Story Competitions (June 2013) – Sentinel Literary Quarterly

The June 2013 poetry and short story competitions judged by Claire Askew and Brindley Hallam Dennis respectively will close on the 30th of June.

 

Details: These competitions are for original, previously unpublished poems up to 50 lines long and short stories up to 1,500 words long. Stories and poems may be on any subjects and in any style. Authors of all nationalities living in any part of the world are eligible to enter. The Sentinel Literary Quarterly competitions have been run successfully every 3 months since July 2009 (Poetry) and January 2010 (Short Stories).

 

Prize money in each category: £150 (first), £75 (2nd), £50 (3rd) and £10 x 3 (high commendation). The winning and commended poems and stories also receive first publication in Sentinel Literary Quarterly which appears in print, eBook and online. (See current issue at www.sentinelquarterly.com)

 

Entry Fees (Poetry): 4/1 poem, £7/2 poems, £9/3 poems, £11/4 poems, £12/5 poems, £16/7 poems, £22/10 poems.

 

Entry Fees (Short Stories): £5/1 story, £8/2 stories, £10/3 stories, £12/4 stories.

 

How to enter: You may enter online or by post. Enter online, save time and save on postage costs. Pay securely by PayPal and submit your work by e-mail, or print off entry forms at these locations:

 

Poetry: https://sentinelquarterly.com/competitions/poetry/

Short Stories: https://sentinelquarterly.com/competitions/short-stories/

 

Full details of the Sentinel Literary Quarterly writing competitions can be found at www.sentinelquarterly.com/competitions

If you have any questions regarding any aspect of our competitions please by all means ask Sandra Felix, the Competitions Secretary by writing to competitions@sentinelpoetry.org.uk

 

Judge’s Report, SLQ Short Story Competition (April 2012)

By

Kate Horsley

 

The standard of entries for the Sentinel Literary Quarterly Short Story Competition April 2012 was high.  I was particularly impressed by the quality of the writing.  The stories were engaging and comical, dramatic and heart-rending by turns and evoked a variety of different cultural settings.  With such a good standard of writing, it was hard to choose winners!  Those I’ve chosen all made bold choices about their subject matter as well as the perspective from which the story was narrated.

 

 The First Prize Winner, ‘Duopoly’, is narrated in the second person – a daring choice followed through with conviction.  A story of bereavement, ‘Duopoly’ begins with brief, punchy sentences used to depict the monotonous existence of a character who appears to be emotionally frozen.  The author’s stylish prose propels the reader to an unexpected conclusion in which the reason for the main character’s trauma is revealed.  In contrast to the apparent cynicism and economy of the story’s style, the ending is startlingly poignant.

 

The Second Prize-winner, ‘The Naked Fisherman’, tells of a young photographer’s formative experience in Lima.  Simply and directly written, this story also builds emotional effects by means of contrast.  In this case, the matter-of-fact tone of the first-person narrator is juxtaposed with a shocking turn of events towards the end of the story.  Intentions are lost in translation and events spin out of control, but the day is ultimately saved by a special moment of understanding between photographer and fisherman.

 

The Third Prize goes to a beautifully written story about an elderly couple on holiday in their caravan.  ‘Sand’ is lush and melancholy in style and has a dreamlike feel as the couple ponder their current relationship and remember the past. The seaside landscape is delicately evoked as the faded love between husband and wife drifts over the dunes and shore like endless white sand.

 

The three Highly Commended stories, ‘Nature or Nurture’, ‘That Split Second’ and ‘Guilt Sweets’ are all very well-written stories that use bold characterization.  ‘Nature or Nurture’ evokes the lives of children growing up on a farm in the 1940s.  ‘Guilt Sweets’ explores the various excesses of a jaded marital relationship to darkly comic effect and ‘That Split Second’ tells the story of an isolated elderly couple provoked into extremity after an unexpected accident occurs.

 

The non-winning entries were often interesting and well-written, but tended to spell the meaning of the story out too much, especially at the beginning.  Some stories were richly wrought in terms of description – perhaps too much so – but unfortunately the very complexity of the description overwhelmed the narrative and made it difficult to read.  A few writers neglected to check spelling and grammar or made peculiar word choices that detracted from their story’s appeal.  In order to improve these (often very good!) entries to make them into winning stories, writers should make sure to double check their presentation before submission and should focus some energy on creating an arresting and unexpected first paragraph that doesn’t give too much away.

 

First Prize

‘Duopoly’

Second Prize

‘The Naked Fisherman’

Third Prize

 ‘Sand’

Highly Commended

‘Nature or Nurture’, ‘That Split Second’ and ‘Guilt Sweets’

 

 


Sentinel Literary Quarterly Short Story Competition (July 2012). Closing Date: 20 June, 2012. Judge: Rosemary Dun. Enter here.

Sentinel Annual Short Story Competition 2012. Closing Date: 30 November 2012. Judge: David Caddy. Enter here.

Follow us on Facebook & Twitter

 

Gallery

SENTINEL LITERARY QUARTERLY POETRY AND SHORT STORY COMPETITIONS (APRIL 2012) NOW OPEN FOR ENTRIES.

  The Short Story Competition for this quarter is judged by Dr Kate Horsley, an award-winning author and Creative Writing lecturer at Lancaster University. Total prize fund of £305.00 plus publishing opportunity. Click here to enter competition now.   The Poetry … Continue reading