The city: its architecture, archetypes, topology, and sociology. Its smells, swells, and taste. What it feels like to live cheek-by-jowl with millions of other people. What it feels like to live confronted every single day with people from radically different cultures and classes. What it feels like to live stacked in boxes built inside bigger boxes built to serve entirely different purposes by people who are long dead and mostly forgotten.
It is on the streets of the great South African cities where the wordsmiths of our future are crafted. It is the thrum of the metropolis that whets our writers. It is the fetor of alleys and the splendour of penthouse apartments, the squandered dreams tumbleweeding through midnight streets and early morning sunrises seen through the smog of our forgotten wishes, that build the worlds we write.
So show us. Show us the words pouring forth from your imaginary city-scapes. Fox & Raven is looking for the best speculative fiction short stories South Africa has to offer for our second annual ravensmoot anthology.
This year, we’re doing things a little bit differently. Here’s everything you need to know about this year’s anthology.
All the gritty details:
The first ravensmoot, published late 2013, was a showcase of Fox & Raven’s first six speculative fiction short stories. This year, ravensmoot is metamorphosing into something a bit more: a writing competition aimed at showcasing SA’s sickest genre short story talent.
Fox & Raven, together with a set of viciously cool kids (who remain anonymous for the moment) will judge all entries. A longlist will be announced on 1 October 2014 *gasp!*. All stories on the longlist will be published in a limited edition print anthology, as well as an eBook version.
The winners will be announced on the launch day of the print anthology, at a secret location that will only be disclosed later this year. Because we’re sly little foxes like that.
First place grabs a cool R3000 cash. Kontant. Moolah. The winner also pockets R1000 in book vouchers from the bookstore of their choice. Also bragging rights because they’re wicked sick awesome.
Coming in second will fatten your wallet to the tune of R2000. Lekker. Add a R500 book voucher to that, and you’re sorted.
Third place rakes in a slick R1000 dosh. And R500 in book vouchers. We’re already gagging.
The shortlisted authors will all receive a hard cover über limited edition copy of the anthology, with alternate cover art.
All longlisted authors will receive an ebook version of the anthology.
All longlisted authors will earn royalties on book sales, as per our standard short story submission agreement.
What you should be writing:
For ravensmoot: utopia/havoc, we’re looking for speculative fiction short stories by South African writers of between 8 000 and 10 000 words. The genre for the submission is urban speculative fiction, and the setting has to be a South African city (real or imaginary). We want stories where the city is an imperative element of the story; where the reader can feel the heartbeat of the concrete rising around them.
Most importantly, we want you to explore the themes of utopia and havoc, and how these two extremes are inextricable from one another.
Other important things:
If you’re still reading, you’re cool. To submit, please send your short story attached as a .doc or .pdf document to firstname.lastname@example.org. Use the subject RAVENSMOOT. Don’t, *please for the love of all things good and pure in the world don’t* paste your story in the body of the email. We no likey – we no read.
Please only submit original, unpublished work. Also, we ask nicely that you don’t submit stories that you’ve submitted elsewhere, and that you don’t submit them anywhere else until you’ve heard from us.
If your story is longlisted, you agree to give Fox & Raven Publishing exclusive rights to publish the story for one year in both print and electronic form, and non-exclusive rights thereafter.
Submissions close 15 August 2014.
Come, writers. Hear our call. Ravensmoot wants you.