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Short Story Contest

 Payments may be sent available to:

Winners for 2016 have been announced! Thank you for participating!

FenCon and the Dallas Future Society are proud to present our annual short story contest. We're looking for a science fiction or fantasy story on any topic. The only limits are your imagination and the short list of rules below.

Contestants may submit one story at no charge. The entry fee for additional stories is just $10 per story. Final judging will be done by top industry professionals and the winners will be published in our 2016 Souvenir Program Book. Contest results will be announced at FenCon XIII in Irving, Texas, on September 23, 2016.


  • The first place winner will be awarded $100 plus a certificate, given a free FenCon 2017 membership, and the story will be printed in the FenCon XIII program book.
  • The first two runners-up will each be awarded $50 plus a certificate, given a free FenCon 2017 membership, and the stories may be printed (space permitting) in the FenCon program book.
  • The other runners-up may receive acknowledgment in the program book.


Contest Rules and Regulations

Entry Submission Guidelines

Entry Form

Send E-Mail to FenCon


PDF problems? Save the entry form to your local hard drive by right-clicking on this link and choosing "Save Link As".

All submissons must follow these official rules and include a completed entry form.

All submissions must follow these official rules and include a completed entry form. The contest entry deadline is July 20, 2016.

Payments may be sent available to:

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Rules and Regulations:

This contest is open to all amateur writers, defined as anyone who has not sold a work of fiction of any length to any professional publication before July 10, 2016. Sale of poetry or non-fiction does not count. “Sold to a professional publication” means being paid at least 3 cents per word. Electronic publications meeting these criteria count. However, some electronic publication involves no promise to pay any definite amount by any definite time; this does not count as a professional sale of the purposes of this contest.

Entries must be science fiction or fantasy, less than 5,000 words long, and the original work of the person submitting them. No "fanfic" or shared-worlds fiction.

No person may submit more than three stories. No person may win more than one prize. Stories must be original. Stories submitted in previous years of this contest are ineligible. In all cases, the decisions of the judges are final.

Entries must conform to the Contest Submission Guidelines and General Manuscript Submission Guidelines detailed below.

Persons who have won first prize in any previous year of this contest are ineligible. Persons who have won other prizes but whose stories have not been published in our souvenir program book remain eligible. Once you’ve been published in our book, it’s time to move on to paying markets - them fame, glory, debauchery…and rehab.

Applicable contest fees must be paid through PayPal, or by check sent to:
    FenCon Short Story Contest
    P.O. Box 701448
    Dallas, TX 75370-1448

Entries and fees must be received no later than July 20, 2016.!

Payments may be sent available to: PayPal@FenCon.org

Any entry that does not conform to these rules may not be entered into the contest, may not be returned, and may not be acknowledged.

FenCon may, at its own discretion, keep archival copies of contest submissions, but all other copies may be destroyed. For your own protection, keep a copy of your submission. No submissions will be returned. All rights will remain with the authors.

Contest Submission Guidelines:

Each story must be submitted as an RTF format document in a separate email, with its own completed official Entry Form. The official Entry Form serves as a cover sheet for your story. It must contain your story title, name, and contact information (including phone number, email address, and mailing address). You can’t win if we don’t know who you are.

On each page of your story, include only the page number and your story title with no name or contact information. These special contest procedures allow the contest administrators to anonymously circulate your story without the cover page to the judges, to avoid any appearance of bias (in case your name is known to them). Only the contest administrator will have the entry forms with your name and contact information until judging is completed.

No “fanfic” or shared-worlds fiction. All work submitted must be the original work of the submitting author.

You must not submit the same work of fiction to both the short story contest and the writer’s workshop. Any such entries may be disqualified.

Submissions must be emailed in Rich Text Format (RTF) to: storycontest@fencon.org. All major word processors will allow you to save a document as an RTF file.

Submissions not meeting proper manuscript format may not be included in the contest.

General Manuscript Submission Guidelines:

  • Begin your submission, and all subsequent chapters, approximately 1/3 down the page.
  • In the top left corner of every page, put only the title of your story.
  • In the top right corner of every page, put the page number.
  • Double space your text. Indent paragraphs by .5".
  • Margins should be at least 1" all around.
  • You can italicize and/or bold text, when applicable, or underline it. These styles of indicating emphasis are acceptable.
  • Use plain fonts. Preferred are Courier and Times (or Times New Roman).
  • Use 10 point type for Courier, 12 point type for Times.
  • Plain black text. No colored inks.
  • Illustrations are not permitted. Text only, please.

If you have any questions or comments, please e-mail storycontest@fencon.org.

2016 FenCon Short Story Contest Winners

The winners of our 2016 short story contest were announced at FenCon XIII, here on the FenCon website, in social media, and in the FenCon XIII Program Book.

  • First Place: "Going Up" by Bokerah Brumley of Cisco, TX
  • Second Place: "Moving Day" by Timothy Morgan of Lewisville, Texas
  • Third Place: "Touch" by Morell Mullins of North Little Rock, Arkansas

If you have any questions or comments, please e-mail Fran at storycontest@fencon.org.