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This is a fun little story I worked on for the NYC Midnight Short Story contest several years ago. I ended up completely changing the story after this draft and submitting that version, but there was a cookyness I have always appreciated in this one. My prompt was : Genre: Suspense, Subject: Going into hiding, Character: A line cook. Enjoy!
The roof of the Grand Palace of Bhutolia came to a point so sharp it seemed like it could stab the sky. Traditional stories state that the Gods themselves poured gold over its surface. The palace was so vast, servants would often lose their way. A leopard, new to the royal complex, roamed the complex freely. When he was five feet away from the cockatoo his collar released a surge of electricity. He moved closer and this time the shock caused him to lose consciousness at the foot of the grand entrance. There were 1,000 rooms in the palace, and only five of them were filled with youtuber prisoners.
Prince Ram Dorji always wore his traditional dress from Bhutolia, bright colors that flattered his clear pale skin. He came out of his morning locust pose with his toned abs constricting as he brought his legs down from over his head and he looked up at the ceiling with a smile.
Many people ask: Is it worth it to pay for a writing contest? The odds of you losing that contest are extremely high, so that is a factor. However, I think it is worth it if you get feedback from judges, so you are basically paying for a professional critique. In January 2020 I participated in the NYC Midnight's Short Story Challenge. The entry fee was $48 if you signed up early before Dec. 12th and $58 if you signed up afterward. They pin writers from all around the world against each other to write a 2,500 word story in 8 days. They assign a genre, character, and subject to each group of writers. Three judges for each group of about 40 writers choose the top 5 stories to progress to the next round. Every writer that participates gets feedback on what the judges liked and what they think the writer should work on. The participants received the results and the judges feedback at the end of March 2020 just in time for the next round of the contest to begin.
This is the short story I wrote for NYC Midnight's First Round of the 2020 Short Story Challenge. Writers from all over the world are given 8 days to write to an assigned genre, subject, and character. The maximum word count is 2,500 words. There were about 4,000 writers all around the world participating in groups of 40. The top 5 of each group will progress to the next round. The winners will be announced at the end of March/ early April.
My genre was suspense, my subject a path, and my character a beekeeper.
NYC Midnight holds contests for short stories, flash fiction, and screenplays. This year's contest has four rounds. All of the participants are broken into groups with an assigned genre, subject, and character. The top five stories are chosen by judges for each group and then the winners get to participate in the next round. The first round runs from Jan. 17-25, 2020. The story needs to be 2,500 words. I did this contest about four years ago and this will be my second time participating in the event.
So why do I want to do it?