Wednesday, June 4, 2014

IWSG June 2014 and Bold New Worlds

Purpose of IWSG: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time. I'm currently #100.

This month I want to talk about some insecurities that are also exhilarating. Mid May I started working on a new project. It's something I've been thinking about for a few years but thought I couldn't do. I finally decided that trying would be better than always wondering "what if?" It's my chance to give back to the writing community in the way I feel most comfortable and qualified to do, but I'm terrified it will flop.

This fall I'm launching my own national high school speculative fiction short story contest. I'm going to need lots of help spreading the word. That's where YOU come in. We live in different towns and states. I need you to find one English teacher at your local high school and tell her/him about this contest. They will share it with the other teachers and the word will spread. Here's the deal...

Bold New Worlds

A High School Short Story Contest for Speculative Fiction

Contest Description:
Short story, 1,000 words or less in the science fiction, fantasy, paranormal, steampunk or other speculative fiction genre.

2014 Theme:

"Bold New Worlds"

Create and share your own world with us. It can be alien, futuristic, epic fantasy, steampunk, alternate timelines, whatever you can think of. Let your imagination take us somewhere we've never been. 

First place winner receives $50 and $50 for their school library. The top 5 entries will also receive in-depth critiques for their stories.

Emailed or sent via online form by November 15, 2014.

You can click HERE to submit by online form or Email your submission to boldnewworlds @ (no attachments please, include story in the text of the email).

Include with your story:

  • Name
  • email address
  • high school (and HS address)
  • year in school
  • word count
  • title of story

Winners will be announced in December. Winning stories will be posted here and on the Bold New Worlds Facebook page. Some entries, including winners, may be published in a collection of short stories. (Note: Any proceeds from the sale of this collection will be used solely to fund the prizes for future short story contests with more prizes given for more placings).

Short stories will be judged on:

  • creativity
  • imagination
  • world building
  • character development
  • plot development

Questions? Visit the webpage or email Charity Bradford at boldnewworlds @

And here's the best part...I have four amazing judges to help me out this first year.
L. Blankenship--fantasy
Cindy Borgne--science fiction
Alex J Cavanaugh--science fiction (space opera)
Roland Yeomans--paranormal fantasy

Can you help spread the word? 
Don't worry, I'll remind everyone in August when the submission window opens and the students are back in school.


  1. What a great idea! Good luck with it.

  2. I have some teen who will be very interested in your contest. I'll pass this on to them.

    1. Thank you! Let me kn ow if you need me to email the information to you.

  3. I'll pass this on. Best wishes.

  4. Will start today! Honored to be one of the judges.

    1. You are really a gem. Why? Because you have no idea how awesome you are! So glad to have you with us.

  5. Wow, what an awesome idea! Best of luck!

  6. That sounds like a great contest! I'll spread the word here.

    1. Thanks Miranda! I'll post about it again in August as well. If you need me to email the information to you, let me know and I will.

  7. Sounds like a worthwhile venture, Charity, that will be great for kids. Wishing you tons of success with this.

    1. Thank J.L. I hope it is helpful for them. I know it will be lots of fun for me. :)

  8. Wow, what a great idea! And also quite a challenge you are taking on - I'm so impressed. Good luck!

    1. Thanks Julie! I have to keep telling myself to start slow and re-evaluate as I go. There is so much potential in these students, I can't wait to read what they come up with.

  9. YES!!!! I used to be a high school English teacher, so you know I've got connections. I would love to help you out. I'd also love to donate maybe my paperback book or something.

    1. That would be amazing! Thank you! My big concern was that I'm starting at the end of the school year, but if I can get it on English teacher's radars at the start of school it should work.

      I'd also love to give away your book as a prize in the contest. Would you be okay if I just entered each of the contestants into a rafflecopter for it? Also, if you want to do this, could I have you mail it to me and then I'll mail it to the student?

      Thank you so much!

  10. Oh man! And I just talked to an English teacher today. Although, she teaches 8th graders...

  11. Oooh. Maybe I won't miss the deadline for this one. ;)

    I'll email a link to this post to my last English teacher. I know she'd be happy to share the contest come August.

  12. That sounds like a great idea. I'll point some of my English teacher friends here. Good luck!

  13. Sounds awesome! I'll try to spread the word in this area!

  14. I'm impressed that you're finally writing something that's been nagging at you. Good luck spreading the word!


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