Fall 2017 Three Cheers and a Tiger Winners!

Judges Boots & Broker have chosen the following stories as winners of the Fall 2017 Three Cheers and a Tiger contest:

  • Gold: “Not If We Lie” by Gail A. Webber
  • Silver: “Project Savant” by Erin McDougall
  • Bronze: “Mars” by Anila Syed

Congratulations! 🎉🎉🎉

The winning stories will appear in the December issue of Toasted Cheese.

The 17th Annual “Dead of Winter” Writing Contest

Stories submitted to the 17th Annual Dead of Winter contest (December 2017) must use the theme NEVERTHELESS SHE PERSISTED (your entry must follow guidelines below).

This year’s theme is inspired by women and their resilience.

SPECIAL:

Horror has long given us female protagonists and antagonists, both in literature and film. Your entry will not only follow the theme NEVERTHELESS SHE PERSISTED but also give us strong female characters facing and/or creating horrors in original ways.

We want them to be challenged by forces within and/or without; they might not make it to the end of your story. The threat your main character faces might be female or she may be female herself (or both). Your story may feature one woman or one girl or several females but at least one major character in your story should be a female who is persistent.

EVERY YEAR:

  • Stories MUST be based on the theme provided.
  • Stories MUST be set in winter.
  • Stories MUST fall in the horror genre
  • The word count range for DOW2017 is 3000–5000 words.

HOW TO ENTER:

The contest opens October 1, 2017 and the deadline for submission is 11:59 PM ET December 21, 2017.

Email entries to dow2017[at]toasted-cheese.com with the subject line:
Dead of Winter Contest Entry

Follow general contest guidelines and general Dead of Winter guidelines

 

Three Cheers and a Tiger Fall 2017 — CLOSED

Stories submitted to the 2017 Fall “Three Cheers and a Tiger” short fiction contest must follow the theme: “the  de-escalation of a potentially violent situation.” Your entry must also follow guidelines below.

Entries must be received by 5 PM Eastern Time, Sunday, September 24, 2017. The challenge is to write and submit a complete story in 48 hours. There is no registration and no entry fee.

SPECIAL:

Conflict has long been an inspiration to spec fic writers. In choosing this year’s theme, we’re inspired by real world events and are eager to see how SFF writers interpret not only the theme but the world in which we find ourselves. What world will you create and what will it say about our own?

EVERY YEAR:

Stories MUST be based on the theme provided.

Stories MUST be speculative fiction (sci fi or fantasy entries are welcome; read past winners to get an idea of what subgenres judges prefer).

Stories MUST fall within word count parameters. The word count range for 3CFall 2017 is 3000–4000 words.

HOW TO ENTER:

The contest opens September 22, 2017 at 5 PM ET and the deadline for submission is 5:00 PM ET September 24, 2017.

Email entries to threecheers17[@]toasted-cheese.com with the subject line:
Three Cheers Contest Entry

Paste your story directly into your email. No attachments please.

Follow general Three Cheers and a Tiger guidelines and general contest rules:

Three Cheers and a Tiger Guidelines

General Contest Rules

 

2017 A Midsummer Tale Winners

Toasted Cheese is happy to announce the winners of the 2017 A Midsummer Tale Narrative Writing Contest.

1st: “The Formula for Skipping Stones” by LS Bassen
2nd: “A Pot of Tea” by Vanessa Levin-Pompetzki
3rd: “I Ask You for a Cigarette” by SK Elliot
Honorable Mention: “Summer of Love” by Gretchen Rose

Congratulations!

First place will receive a $35 Amazon gift card and second place a $10 Amazon gift card. The first, second, and third place stories will appear in the September issue of Toasted Cheese.

Kudos to everyone who entered! We received nearly 50 entries this year and enjoyed reading your creative takes on the theme. We hope you’ll join us for A Midsummer Tale again in 2018 and that you’ll pass the contest info along to your writing friends! Next summer’s theme will be announced April 1, 2018.

Our next contest is the fall Three Cheers and a Tiger writing contest, which runs the weekend of September 22-24.

Spring Three Cheers and a Tiger Winners!

Congratulations to the winners of the 2017 Spring Three Cheers and a Tiger contest!

Gold:  “Special Warranty Activated” by Erin McDougall
Silver: “The Ginger Box” by R.J. Snowberger
Bronze: “Union” by Meredith Lindgren

The winning entries will appear in the June 2017 issue of Toasted Cheese.

We’d also like to thank everyone who entered. Some very creative secrets were hiding in the crossword puzzles in the stories we received.

We hope you had as much fun writing the stories as I had reading them.

Amanda (The Bellman) Marlowe

A Midsummer Tale 2017

A Midsummer Tale is a summer-themed narrative writing contest open to non-genre fiction and creative nonfiction.

The theme of the 2017 A Midsummer Tale Narrative Writing Contest is: Summer Love. Some loves last a lifetime, while others are transient. Write a story—fiction or nonfiction—about the love of someone or something that only lasts the length of a summer.

Deadline for entries is June 21, 2017.

Three Cheers Spring 2017 (CLOSED)

The Spring Three Cheers and a Tiger Writing Contest is now open.

Entries must be received by 5 PM Eastern Time, Sunday, March 19, 2017.

Write a mystery story that centers around a message hidden in a crossword puzzle.

Word count: Between 2250 and 2350 words.

  • Send entries to: threecheers17@toasted-cheese.com
  • Your subject line must read: Three Cheers and a Tiger Contest Entry
  • Paste your story directly into your email. No attachments please.

For complete rules:
Three Cheers and a Tiger Guidelines
General Contest Rules

Fall Three Cheers and a Tiger Winners!

The judges have spoken. Boots and the Broker have chosen the following stories as winners of the Fall 2016 Three Cheers and a Tiger contest:

  • Gold: “Little Big Man Speaks” by Robert Walton
  • Silver: “Jeanie in a Bottle” by Valerie Lunt
  • and a tie for Bronze between: “Why the Lapwing Laughs” by Christina De La Rocha and “The Error in Desire” by R.J. Snowberger

Congratulations to the winners!

All four stories will appear in the December issue of Toasted Cheese.

A Midsummer Tale

Toasted Cheese is happy to announce the winners of the 2016 A Midsummer Tale Narrative Writing Contest.

1st: “The English Girl’ by Sarah Evans
2nd: “Liberal Arts” by Heather Finnegan
3rd: “The Net” by Gail Webber

Congratulations!

First place will receive a $35 Amazon gift card and second place a $10 Amazon gift card. The first, second, and third place stories will appear in the September issue of Toasted Cheese.

Kudos to everyone who entered. We hope you’ll join us for A Midsummer Tale again in 2017 and that you’ll pass the contest info along to your writing friends! Next summer’s theme will be announced April 1, 2017.

The 16th Annual “Dead of Winter” Writing Contest

Stories submitted to the 16th Annual Dead of Winter contest (December 2016) must use the theme THE HAND OF FATE (your entry must follow guidelines below).

This year’s theme is inspired by the 50th anniversary of the cult horror film Manos: The Hands of Fate. You may take as much or as little inspiration from the film as you like. You do NOT need to use elements of it for your story, although we’d like you to be inspired and have included some ideas about that below. Your only “must” is to use the theme THE HAND OF FATE.

SPECIAL:

Manos is universally acknowledged as one of the worst films ever made but its fans have latched onto its endearing elements. If you invest an hour of your time in watching the weirdness unspool, you’ll find something memorable, whether that’s a line of dialogue, a thrift store quality prop, or the strangely charismatic Torgo (as well as “the haunting Torgo Theme”). There’s a good story buried inside this weird little movie.

Note: the commentary tracks make the film more bearable to sit through; both include supplementary material to pad out a two-hour run time so the film itself begins about a quarter to halfway through (look for grainy footage of a family in a convertible). Manos: The Hands of Fate runs a little over an hour.

There are also several articles, reviews, and synopses online.

Ideally, your entry will not only follow the theme THE HAND OF FATE but will also employ some element of the film that inspired it. Examples (plot & character) include:

  • A couple/family gets lost on their way to a vacation resort
  • A couple/family finds something unexpected when they arrive at their destination
  • A cult whose leader is betrayed by his/her assistant
  • A cult revolts against its leader
  • A man who embraces 60s-era masculinity finds himself at the center of a situation he can’t control
  • A child who replaces a beloved pet with something sinister
  • A woman whose physical beauty makes her a target of desire for one, a “prize to be won” for another
  • A caretaker who abandons his/her post and faces physical consequences
  • The making of a low-budget movie goes awry

You might also be inspired by the time setting (1966), geographic setting (rural Texas borderland), or the film’s underlying (and unintended) themes, like sexism or servility.

We are not asking for, nor will we accept, Manos fanfic or any point-by-point retelling of the story of Manos: The Hands of Fate. Do not use the characters of Michael/Mike, Margaret/Maggie, Debbie, Torgo, The Master, or The Wives. You may take inspiration from them for your original characters.

EVERY YEAR:

  • Stories MUST be based on the theme provided.
  • Stories MUST be set in winter.
  • Stories MUST fall in the horror genre*.
  • The word count range for DOW2016 is 2000–4000 words.

HOW TO ENTER:

The contest opens October 1, 2016 and the deadline for submission is 11:59 PM ET December 21, 2016.

Email entries to dow2016[at]toasted-cheese.com with the subject line:
Dead of Winter Contest Entry

Follow general contest guidelines and general Dead of Winter guidelines

manos-torgo-dow2016

Apparently when you make a bet about telling a horror story, you end up either with Frankenstein or Manos.