Ends in 6 days, 1 hour

Opens December 1, 2018

Closes January 23, 2019

$250.00 cash prize and Brain Mill Press Publishing Contract

The Driftless region of Wisconsin state is land that the glaciers never reached — a dramatically hilly landscape, unpressed by the weight of glaciers, with ore so close to the surface it was collected by individual miners who dug their own “badger holes” in the mineral-rich ground.

Since the miners left, this beautifully strange region has collected artists and makers, inspired by each other and the shadows and light created by ancient trees and changes in elevation.

Brain Mill Press holds the Driftless Unsolicited Novella Contest to select the novellas that will be published in the series. Two winning novellas each receive a $250.00 cash prize, a publication contract, and royalties for the novella with Brain Mill Press. The novellas are published in print and ebook and receive international distribution.

See here for previous winners and shortlisted novellas http://www.brainmillpress.com/driftless-series/

The 2019 Driftless Unsolicted Novella Contest will select two novellas in two different categories. All authors will be notified of the outcome of the contest February 1, 2019. Please familiarize yourself with the submission guidelines for each category. There is no fee to enter the contest, but a $12.00 submission will purchase the submitter a print and ebook copy of the winning novella in their category.

Writers may submit one project in either category, but may not submit multiple manuscripts or submit the same manuscript to both categories.

Fiction Category

Complete fiction novellas and novella-length short story collections may be submitted in this category. Submission must be between 20,000 and 45,000 words. Novella or collection cannot be previously published, including self-published, or have appeared in its complete form on any digital platform. Novella excerpts of 10% or less, individual short stories (single or multiple, but not the complete collection), or excerpted/earlier versions of the novella may have previously appeared in journals or digital platforms and still be considered. 

This category welcomes all approaches to literary and adult fiction including experimental narrative and structure, cross-genre approaches, and traditional narrative and structure approaches. Please do not submit screenplays, verse, poetry, or illustrations/images. Do not submit excerpts/parts/volumes belonging to your novel or longer short story collection. The contest is meant to celebrate the novella and short collections and their contribution to literature and to readers. Your submission should argue for itself as a novella-length work. 

Brain Mill Press has an acquisition mission to publish underrepresented authors and considers submissions from authors of color, LGBTQIA+ authors, disabled authors, First Nations authors, BAME authors, 50+ authors, and women/femme authors. All submissions are read in full by the editorial staff at Brain Mill Press. 

Submissions must be in a standard font (Times, Garamond, Ariel), double-spaced, cleanly formatted, and submitted as a .doc or PDF on the Submittable platform with a brief (less than one page) cover letter and biography. 

Genre Fiction Category

Genre authors in Romance, Mystery/Thriller, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Paranormal, and Horror may submit, in a single file, a complete synopsis (300-1,000 words that describe all action of the novella, including the end) and first three chapters of their genre novella. The synopsis should describe a novella of 20,000 to 45,000 words. This category is not for cross-genre submissions, genre-breaking submissions, experiment-with-genre submissions, or genre-inspired submissions, but for exemplary examples of your genre with the intent to celebrate your genre and its contributions to fiction and to readers. Own-voices genre submissions are encouraged. Authors should be familiar with the genre they are writing in, and if professional conventions are available that define your genre, authors should honor these conventions (for example, Romance should have an emotionally satisfying ending, i.e., the “HEA/HFN”). However, authors need not limit themselves to current market-defined ideas of what genre conventions demand. We are always thrilled to see underrepresented protagonists and characters, unconventional settings, tropes, and time periods, etc.

Your audience may be adults or young adults. If your submission is YA, please be familiar with the conventions of Young Adult fiction. 

Novella cannot be previously published, including self-published, or have appeared in its complete form on any digital platform. You may not submit books that are currently out of print but whose rights have reverted back to you. 

Brain Mill Press has an acquisition mission to publish underrepresented authors and considers submissions from authors of color, LGBTQIA+ authors, disabled authors, First Nations authors, BAME authors, 50+ authors, and women/femme authors. All submissions are read in full by the editorial staff at Brain Mill Press. 

If your submission is selected for publication on February 1, 2019, you will be asked to submit your final manuscript by April 30, 2019, and you will be provided with a schedule for edits. 

Submissions must be in a standard font (Times, Garamond, Ariel), double-spaced, cleanly formatted, and submitted as a .doc or PDF on the Submittable platform with a brief (less than one page) cover letter and biography.