Tag Archives: christian

Inception: $250 for Prose, Poetry, or Art Opening

Beginnings have the power to spark passion or curiosity. They might immediately connect a specific place and time with an emotional tone. The best offer a feeling, atmosphere, action, or image that is gripping.

Too often in commercially driven industries, this results in sensationalism. But meaning, thoughtfulness, emotions, or shadings of tone…that is, connection…are the impulses that draw audiences into the moment. A poem handles this differently than a flash piece, which handles an opening differently than a novel. The first photo, painting or frame presented in a gallery, series, or collection strives for the same intent. Openings contain a spark that promises to continue to burn.

For Sunspot Lit’s 2020 Inception contest, send your best opening. There are no restrictions on theme, category, or the length of the piece or collection from which the beginning comes. Word limit is 250 for prose, 25 words for poetry. Graphic novel entries should be the first page (unlimited number of panels on that page) with a maximum of 250 words…so, cut the number of panels in order to meet the word count, if needed. Visual art entries should be the first in a series, the first in a gallery lineup, the first photo in a themed collection, etc. Entries are limited to one image with up to 250 words to describe the series, lineup or collection.

For 2020, the entry fee has been reduced due to COVID’s economic impact.

Close: September 31, 2020

Prize: $250 cash, publication for the winner, publication offered to runners-up and finalists.

In addition to receiving the cash prize, the winner will be published. Select finalists will have the chance to be published. Sunspot asks for first rights only; all rights revert to the contributor after publication. Works, along with the creators’ bylines, are published in the next quarterly digital edition an average of one month after contest completion as well as the annual fall print edition.

Works should be unpublished except on a personal blog or website. Artists offered publication may display their pieces in galleries, festivals or shows throughout the publication contract period.

Enter as many times as you like through Submittable, but only one piece per submission. Simultaneous submissions are accepted, but please withdraw your piece if it is published elsewhere before the winner is selected.

Open Call Ends August 31, 2020

Sunspot Literary Journal is dedicated to amplifying diverse multinational voices. We offer an Editor’s Prize of $50 for the annual edition. Artwork selected for a cover will be paid $20. Visit SunspotLit.com to download digital editions for free.

All types of prose from flash fiction and poetry to stories and essays, including scripts and screenplays, are welcome. We also accept long-form, novelette, and novella length works up to 49,000 words. Translations welcome, especially with access to the piece in the author’s original language.

One piece per prose submission; two works of visual art per submission.

Use the correct form according to the length of your prose and poetry. Works longer than allowed by the form used will be declined unread.

The Fast Flux options offer a two-week turnaround, with most responses going out within one week.

All submissions must be unpublished (except on a personal blog). Simultaneous submissions welcome. Submit as many times as you like.

Submissions must be sent through Sunspot’s Submittable page.

Single Word Writing Contest Offers $500

postcard-1197664_1920For the 2020 edition of the Single Word contest, Sunspot is handing the megaphone over to you. Submit the single word you feel is the most important in today’s world.

You’ll have 1,000 words to describe why using any form of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. If you feel the word speaks for itself, your description can simply state that fact.

Since English doesn’t always convey exact shades of meaning, the word you select can be in any language. A definition written in English will be required, and the definition will count toward the total word count of the description. The description must also be in English.

For the first edition of this contest in 2019, the prize was $50. In 2020, the prize is being increased to $500.
In addition to receiving the cash prize, the winner will be published. Select finalists will have the chance to be published.

Enter as many times as you like. Simultaneous submissions are accepted, but please withdraw your piece if it is published elsewhere before the winner is selected. Deadline is March 31, 2020.

Unique New Sci-Fi/Fantasy Publisher

Agent Steve Laube took over Marcher Lord Press and renamed it Enclave. Enclave Publishing will focus on science fiction and fantasy with a Christian worldview. This fall, they will release five books. “Fiction continues to be a place where creativity and variety have endless capacity, in all genres,” Laube notes.

Publishing Trend: Content Bind-up

Bind-ups, collections of previously published short fiction, novellas, and the like, is being viewed in a new way. Before, publishers released collections as an afterthought, mostly as a way to enhance sales or increase revenue using items from their existing catalogues.

Now, publishers are realizing that ebooks are offering new ways to engage with books. Waterbrook Multnomah is releasing three novellas in a single book as an experiment. HarperCollins Christian Publishing is revamping a series by releasing a series specifically under this format. A Year of Weddings will come out every three months with seasonal themes; each release will bind together three novellas.

Publishers are reaching into new arenas by recasting old ideas. They aren’t dead yet…not by a long shot.

Amazon Launches Christian Imprint

Amazon’s new Christian imprint will specialize in faith-based fiction and nonfiction. Brilliance Publishing will launch its first title this month. Authors include those who started out in self-publishing, and several titles will be launched with collaborative support from Christianity Today. 

Publishing Trends: Christian

Texts that deal with Biblical information and themes have long been popular with readers. In fact, publishing a Bible often anchors a publishing house with a text that continues to generate sales year after year.

This leaves the arena wide open for authors writing Christian-based works. In addition to novels that deal with spiritual topics, the nonfiction area is strong. Topics can be academic in nature or geared toward mainstream audiences reading at home on their own.

Keep an eye on titles that are coming out to determine which publisher is best for your Christian work.

Writing for the Christian Market

Do you have to be Christian or a strong believer to write for the Christian Market?

No. They’re looking for great stories and high-quality writing skills. They of course want to convey a certain message but it’s not required that you follow the press or publication’s own set of beliefs to submit.

Do write well, and make sure your message is in line with theirs.

Keep the stories uplifting and inspirational!

Be open to feedback (as always) and you just might find a new market you’ve been overlooking.

New Opportunity for Christian Authors

1Source is a collaborative effort between publishers and includes Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild, Believers Press, Bethany Press, and Anchor Distributors. Their new books will appear as part of 1Source’s Jerry B. Jenkins Select Line in spring 2014.