The A3 Review's themed monthly contest is brought to you by the folks who make Writing Maps. We believe in words and images, and love a combination of the two. We're looking for prose, poetry, graphic stories, photography, paintings, drawings, and other visual and word-based creations and various combinations of the above.

The two winning entries each month are published in The A3 Review, a fold-out literary and art magazine that comes out every six months. The current issue is Issue 4, which came out in March 2016.

Issue 5: Guest edited by KM Elkes. The two winning entries from each month, March till August, will make up the list of contributors to Issue 5. From this list, three overall winning entries will be chosen in August 2016. These three ultimate winners will receive cash prizes: 1st = £150, 2nd = £75, 3rd = £50 (approx $190, $95, $65).

Issue 6: Guest edited by KM Elkes. The two winning entries from each month, September till February, will make up the list of contributors to Issue 6. From this list, three overall winning entries will be chosen in February 2017. These three ultimate winners will receive cash prizes: 1st = £150, 2nd = £75, 3rd = £50 (approx $190, $95, $65).  

Writing:
No more than 150 words (title not included).

Art:
Needs to fit well into an A6 panel. That's about 4 x 6 inches or 10 x 15cm. Send as low-res in the first instance. If your work is accepted, we'll ask for a hi-res image.

There is a small fee of $5 (approx £3) per entry to help us cover admin and printing costs and to make sure we can keep offering cash prizes.

Follow us on Twitter for conversation, updates and inspiration. Sign up to The A3 Review newsletter here.

These are The Rules:

1. Entry fee is $5 (approx £3) per submission. Multiple submissions are welcome.

2. Enter online through Submittable.

3. Each contest closes on the 4th Saturday of the month.

4. Any entries submitted after the deadline will not be eligible.

5. The A3 Review's Monthly Contest is open to all writers and artists over 16.

6. There is no restriction on theme or style. We encourage prose, poems, prose poems, graphic stories, hybrid forms, photography, illustration, painting.

7. Maximum number of words is 150.

8. Artwork, graphic and comics stories must fit into an A6 panel.

9. Two winning entries from each month with appear in The A3 Review to be published every 6 months. From this shortlist of winners, 3 will be chosen to win cash prizes: 1st = £150, 2nd = £75, 3rd = £50.

10. Entries must be available for The A3 Review, and must not have been previously published.

11. The judges' verdict is final. No correspondence will be entered into.

12. Entries cannot be altered or substituted once they have been submitted.

13. Judging is anonymous.

14. Name and contact details must not appear on the entries.

15. Submission of entry is taken to be an unqualified acceptance of these rules.

Ends in 3 days, 11 hours $ 5.00
$ 5.00

Welcome to The A3 Review's August Contest


The prompt for August's Contest is: Tracks. Tracks listened to and tracks run. Your favourite track, the song or tune that sends you back, the track you've played on a loop or cannot bear to hear. Use your favourite music track as inspiration (listen to it as you write). Write about the karaoke tracks you'd choose, the tracks that make you want to dance or cry, that bring back memories. What are the tracks you listen to when working out or out running (on a track!). Write from the musician's point of view about making a track in a band. Write or draw or photograph other types of tracks: ones you follow through woods or across fields; picking up the track of someone or something. Think train tracks, bike tracks, tracking someone online; the inside and outside tracks, being on the right track - or even the wrong track! Don't backtrack. Make tracks. Explore the fast track, the wrong side of the tracks, or the one-track mind.

We welcome short stories, flash fiction, comics, graphic stories, a snippet of memoir, photographs, illustrations, and any combination of the above. The only restriction is a word-limit of 150 and images should fit well into an A6 panel.

For more inspiration, visit us on Twitter.

DEADLINE: 27 August 2016

Please make sure to view our full guidelines here.

Entry fee is $5 (approx £3) per submission. Multiple submissions welcome.
All genres welcome. All writers and artists welcome.

The two winning entries will be published in Issue #5 of The A3 Review, the Writing Maps Journal. Winners will also receive Writing Maps and other goodies.

The three overall winners of the March till August contests will receive cash prizes of £150 for 1st; £75 for 2nd; and £50 for 3rd.

Submit your work below, right here on Submittable.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing your work!





Ends on 9/24/2016$ 5.00
$ 5.00

Welcome to The A3 Review's September Contest

The prompt for September's Contest is: Islands.

Deserted islands, private islands, unexplored islands, prison islands, treasure islands, remote islands and the island you live on. Write about all the islands you've never been to. Think about the geography of an island – does it have palm-fringed beaches or sheer cliffs. Is it covered in forest or is it a volcanic wasteland?

Write about, draw or photograph the people and the creatures that live on the island – are they hostile or friendly, strange or familiar? Think about other types of islands – floating islands of plastic in the middle of the ocean, log islands floating down river, misty islands in the middle of lakes. Write about a surreal island where time and reality is subtly changed. Find inspiration in the symbolism of islands - their separation, their independence, their aloneness. Explore the word itself.

Check out some literature that has featured islands – Lord of The Flies, The Beach, A House for Mr Biswas, Robinson Crusoe, Utopia, Shutter Island and Papillon. Read a few island poems.

We welcome short stories, flash fiction, poetry, comics, graphic stories, a snippet of memoir, photographs, illustrations, and any combination of the above. The only restriction is a word-limit of 150 and images should fit well into an A6 panel.

For more inspiration, visit us on Twitter.

DEADLINE: 24 September 2016

Please make sure to view our full guidelines here.

Entry fee is $5 (approx £3) per submission. Multiple submissions welcome.
All genres welcome. All writers and artists welcome.

The two winning entries from each month's contest will be published in Issue #6 of The A3 Review. Winners will also receive contributor copies and Writing Maps goodies.

CASH PRIZES: Three overall winners of the September till February contests will receive cash prizes of £150 for 1st; £75 for 2nd; and £50 for 3rd.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing your work!







Ends on 10/22/2016$ 5.00
$ 5.00

Welcome to The A3 Review's October Contest

The prompt for October's Contest is: Uniforms.

Soldiers, nurses, prisoners, cops, sailors, fighter pilots, guerilla fighters, firefighters, goths, priests, chefs, hipsters and school children… the list of uniforms people wear is long and varied.

We're looking for stories and artwork about how people change when they put on a uniform, how people perceive those in uniform, how much of a disguise a uniform can be. You could write about a couple - one who loves their uniform, the other hates it. Or someone who doesn’t need to wear a uniform, but does anyway. Use the idea of rank and status - inherent in a uniform - to kickstart your creativity. Write about uniforms you've worn, or about those that excite or scare you. Secret confirms, uniforms that elicit shame or pride.

Play around with associated words like uniformity, identity, civvies, uniformly. Explore the colours of uniforms: white, blue, khaki. What about clothing that’s ambiguous as a uniform – a lab technician’s coat, or an academic’s gown? Uniforms are deeply entrenched in our psyche as both positive and negative and have striking associations with authority and rebellion – use these associations as a spring-board for your work.


We welcome short stories, flash fiction, poetry, comics, graphic stories, a snippet of memoir, photographs, illustrations, and any combination of the above. The only restriction is a word-limit of 150 and images should fit well into an A6 panel.

For more inspiration, visit us on Twitter.

DEADLINE: 22 October 2016

Please make sure to view our full guidelines here.

Entry fee is $5 (approx £3) per submission. Multiple submissions welcome.
All genres welcome. All writers and artists welcome.

The two winning entries from each month's contest will be published in Issue #6 of The A3 Review. Winners will also receive contributor copies and Writing Maps goodies.

CASH PRIZES: Three overall winners of the September till February contests will receive cash prizes of £150 for 1st; £75 for 2nd; and £50 for 3rd.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing your work!





Ends on 1/1/2017$ 35.00 - 70.00
$ 35.00 - 70.00
The editors of The A3 Review offer a Critique Service for writers looking for detailed, knowledgeable and forward-looking feedback on their work.

We will focus on the strengths of your work, and suggest ways to revisit and improve on the weaker points. We will look particularly, where relevant, at characterisation, dialogue, point of view and voice, structure, and offer ways to pinpoint what the story wants to be, which is sometimes different to what the writer wants the story to be. Through our feedback, we also aim to offer you tools to carry forward into the other stories and essays you are working on.

Critiques are for flash fiction up to 500 words, short prose between 500 and 2,500 words, and longer prose between 2,500 and 5,000. Please contact us if your prose piece is longer than 5,000 words.

An overview of what we offer:
  • 250-word feedback (flash fiction)
  • 500-word feedback (short prose)
  • 750-word feedback (longer prose)
  • a line edit, via Track Changes, of your work
  • suggestions for further reading
  • suggestions of places to submit your work
Before sending us your work, please click here for formatting guidelines.

We are passionate about writing and believe strongly that rewriting and refining a short story is an essential and satisfying part of your growth as a writer. We look forward to being part of the ongoing development of your work.
 
About the Editors:

Shaun Levin, Editor, is the author of Seven Sweet Things, Trees at a Sanatorium, and the short story collections A Year of Two Summers and Snapshots of The Boy. His short stories and essays have been anthologised alongside writers such as Ali Smith, Nadine Gordimer and Edmund White. He has won an Arts Council Writers' Award and the Moment-Karma Short Fiction Prize, judged by Jonathan Safran Foer. Shaun is the founding editor of the literary magazine Chroma, and the creator of Writing Maps. Anthologies he has edited include Things that Have Happened and Writers in the Crowd.

KM Elkes, Guest Editor, has had winning stories in, amongst others, the Bath Short Story Award 2015 and the Labello Press International Short Story Competition 2014. He won the Prolitzer Prize 2014, Brighter Writers Flash Prize 2014, Fish Publishing Flash Fiction Prize 2013, Words With Jam Prize 2013. His stories have appeared in anthologies including the Fish Prize Anthology, An Earthless Melting Pot 1, 2 & 3, Your Messages, Heat, Conspicuous Accents, Lightship Anthology 3, Words With Jam, Labello Press Gem Street Anthology and Aesthetica Annual Anthology. And in literary magazines such as Structo, Accenti Magazine (Canada), Litro and online at East Of The Web. His fiction has also been used on schools and college curriculum in USA, Canada, Switzerland, UK and China (Hong Kong).

What people say:

"Shaun's biggest gift to me was to teach me never to be satisfied with the mediocre - to dig beneath my words until I found their core beauty or anger or power; in other words to find the truth of what I was trying to say." Rosie Rowell, author of Leopold Blue.

"I was impressed by the breadth and depth of the service, and would recommend it to anyone who is looking for the kind of feedback that is both challenging and supportive. A combination of written critique and detailed edit of my manuscript provided tremendous scope for my learning, and helped identify the most critical areas for focus." Dr Jacqui Scholes-Rhodes.

PLEASE NOTE:
When choosing a payment option, please select from the drop-down menu below. The three payment options correspond to the length of your story.
Ends on 10/1/2016$ 12.00 - 15.00
$ 12.00 - 15.00
Purchase the first 4 issues of The A3 Review with a 30% discount.

Click here to see more about each issue on our website.

NOTE: Please select the correct postage option from the drop-down menu below.
Ends on 11/26/2016$ 5.00
$ 5.00

Welcome to The A3 Review's November Contest

The prompt for November's Contest is: Playhouse.

The concept of a playhouse is a rich one for writers: they are places where ‘make believe’ happens. Imagine situations where a garden playhouse is a place of sanctuary, or safety, or danger for a child. What happens in playhouses when adults are no longer around?

Write a surreal piece about a playhouse that’s very different when you crawl inside. Think about different locations and types of playhouses – treehouses, dens, forts and castles made by children in the woods, on wasteground, fields, railway sidings, rubbish dumps. Contrast one child’s beautifully crafted garden playhouse with another’s den of old planks and discarded rugs and carpets.

What kind of animals or creatures might take over an abandoned playhouse. Take the idea of children ‘playing house’ to explore a deeper, darker theme of children imitating adults. Or a warring couple having to ‘play house’ while friends or relatives visit. Like a very special doll house, we want beautifully crafted miniature pieces of art. Write about the mid-life-crisis playhouse, or the playhouse you miss, the doll's house you never had. Write about playhouses you remember, indoors and out. Draw the plan of your ideal playhouse. Play!
We welcome short stories, flash fiction, poetry, comics, graphic stories, a snippet of memoir, photographs, illustrations, and any combination of the above. The only restriction is a word-limit of 150 and images should fit well into an A6 panel.

For more inspiration, visit us on Twitter.

DEADLINE: 26 November 2016

Please make sure to view our full guidelines here.

Entry fee is $5 (approx £3) per submission. Multiple submissions welcome.
All genres welcome. All writers and artists welcome.

The two winning entries from each month's contest will be published in Issue #6 of The A3 Review. Winners will also receive contributor copies and Writing Maps goodies.

CASH PRIZES: Three overall winners of the September till February contests will receive cash prizes of £150 for 1st; £75 for 2nd; and £50 for 3rd.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing your work!





Ends on 12/24/2016$ 5.00
$ 5.00

Welcome to The A3 Review's December Contest

The prompt for December's Contest is: Orange Things. 

“But sometimes when I was starting a new story and I could not get it going, I would sit in front of the fire and squeeze the peel of the little oranges into the edge of the flame and watch the sputter of blue that they made. I would stand and look out over the roofs of Paris and think, 'Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now'." Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast.

At first glance orange seems straightforward: the fruit or the colour. But it’s far more resonant. The word was first recorded in the 13th Century and derived from ancient languages. It’s one of the few words which has no direct rhyme in English, only half-rhymes. Think about this diversity when creating your pieces. As the Hemingway quote goes on to say: "write one true sentence, and then go on from there."

Write about an orange, the heft of it, the act of peeling, the smell of the zest and taste of the fruit, the sticky juice on fingers and chins. Who is eating the orange, why and where? Write about the colour orange and its associations with places – an orange beach under an orange sun with cool orange lollies! Write or draw the moods and situations associated with orange - warmth, fire, energy, danger. Dramatic situations with orange - warning signs and hi-visibility clothes. Explore the association of orange and religion – the Irish Protestant links with Orange in France, the symbolic nature of the colour for Hindus and Buddhists. The Dutch House of Orange. Prison uniforms in the US. Include some of nature’s orange food – sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, turmeric and saffron, mangoes, apricots and satsumas at Christmas. For a different kind of inspiration, look at the use of orange by the Pre-Raphaelites or the Impressionist painters of 19th Century France.

One true sentence, then keep going!

We welcome short stories, flash fiction, poetry, comics, graphic stories, a snippet of memoir, photographs, illustrations, and any combination of the above. The only restriction is a word-limit of 150 and images should fit well into an A6 panel.

For more inspiration, visit us on Twitter.

DEADLINE: 24 December 2016

Please make sure to view our full guidelines here.

Entry fee is $5 (approx £3) per submission. Multiple submissions welcome.
All genres welcome. All writers and artists welcome.

The two winning entries from each month's contest will be published in Issue #6 of The A3 Review. Winners will also receive contributor copies and Writing Maps goodies.

CASH PRIZES: Three overall winners of the September till February contests will receive cash prizes of £150 for 1st; £75 for 2nd; and £50 for 3rd.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing your work!



$ 5.00

Welcome to The A3 Review's January Contest

The prompt for January's Contest is: Leaders and Followers. There’s huge scope with our theme around the relationship between leaders and followers. Both need each other, both are defined by each other, both rely on each other to make things work.

Write about what happens when it all goes wrong, or a situation when it's all in synch. Write about blind loyalty and betrayal. Explore the complex emotions and interactions: obedience, humility, charisma, authority, cruelty.

Write about the natural world: ducklings following their mother, bees attending their queen, the way herds of animals follow their dominant leader, and flocks of birds. Write about the point when that leadership is usurped.

Or write about work environments, sports teams, religion, the battlefield, cults, mountain rescue teams. Start with words like: "She would be the leader of..." or "We liked to follow..." Write about a follower who wants to be a leader. Make a list of all the things they'd do to achieve that? Write a poem about the burden of leadership, a tired dictator, a cult leader who has lost their faith. Draw a leader. Check out The Dead Dictators Colouring Book.

We welcome short stories, flash fiction, poetry, comics, graphic stories, a snippet of memoir, photographs, illustrations, and any combination of the above. The only restriction is a word-limit of 150 and images should fit well into an A6 panel.

For more inspiration, visit us on Twitter.

DEADLINE: 28 January 2017

Please make sure to view our full guidelines here.

Entry fee is $5 (approx £3) per submission. Multiple submissions welcome.
All genres welcome. All writers and artists welcome.

The two winning entries from each month's contest will be published in Issue #6 of The A3 Review. Winners will also receive contributor copies and Writing Maps goodies.

CASH PRIZES: Three overall winners of the September till February contests will receive cash prizes of £150 for 1st; £75 for 2nd; and £50 for 3rd.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing your work!


Ends on 2/25/2017$ 5.00
$ 5.00

Welcome to The A3 Review's February Contest

The prompt for February's Contest is: Postcards.  

Write about postcards you've written and ones you've received. Tell the story of the postcard you wish you had written or the one you wish you'd saved. Write about the art of writing postcards: list the 5 rules to writing the perfect postcard. Write about a character who communicates through postcards. How many postcards can you fit into a 150-word limit? For inspiration, read Charles Simic's "The Lost Art of Postcard Writing."

Postcards from the edge. Postcards from the future. Use an art postcard to inspire a story. Write that story on the back of the postcard. For more inspiration, visit the Postcard from the Past project on Twitter, or the brilliant PostSecret project. Create your own secret on a postcard. Postcards fit perfectly into our A6 panels. Make postcard art.

We welcome short stories, flash fiction, poetry, comics, graphic stories, a snippet of memoir, photographs, illustrations, and any combination of the above. The only restriction is a word-limit of 150 and images should fit well into an A6 panel.

For more inspiration, visit us on Twitter.

DEADLINE: 25 February 2017

Please make sure to view our full guidelines here.

Entry fee is $5 (approx £3) per submission. Multiple submissions welcome.
All genres welcome. All writers and artists welcome.

The two winning entries from each month's contest will be published in Issue #6 of The A3 Review. Winners will also receive contributor copies and Writing Maps goodies.

CASH PRIZES: Three overall winners of the September till February contests will receive cash prizes of £150 for 1st; £75 for 2nd; and £50 for 3rd.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing your work!