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Annual Short Story Contest

Enter Our 16th Annual Short Story Contest

 

Bookshop Santa Cruz is looking for original fiction of no more than 1200 words. We are not looking for any particular theme or style—just some great writing. This is our chance to help showcase local talent!

Submit online here.

 

 

FIRST PRIZE: $250 gift certificate and publication in Readers (with a circulation of 12,000) and on our website.

SECOND PRIZE: $100 gift certificate

THIRD PRIZE: $50 gift certificate

The second- and third-place stories will be posted here, on Bookshop Santa Cruz's website. In addition, the top three winning authors will be invited to read their stories on Bruce Bratton's Universal Grapevine radio program (Tuesdays, 7:00-8:00pm, KZSC 88.1 FM).

The deadline for submissions is February 15, 2019. 

Entries must be previously unpublished and may be dropped off, mailed in, or submitted online here. There is a $6 entry fee per story. For complete contest rules, pick up an entry form at the Information Desk or download one here. All stories must include a completed entry form. You may also submit online here. Judges will read stories blind, without author names. Winning entries will be announced on March 30, 2019. The first-prize winner will be published in our summer 2019 newsletter.

You can read our winning stories from previous years' contests below.

2018 Winners

FIRST PLACE: $250 gift certificate, plus publication in our summer 2018 newsletter.
Nancy Hofman, "Maria's Grandfather"
Read it online!

SECOND PLACE: $100 gift certificate
Joanne Wright, "Escape"
Read it online!

THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate
Rose K. Murphy, "Something to Chew On"
Read it online!

2017 Winners

FIRST PLACE: $250 gift certificate, plus publication in our summer 2017 newsletter.
Ross Clifford, "Walking"
Read it online!

SECOND PLACE: $100 gift certificate
Joanne Wright, "Nice"
Read it online!

THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate
Paul Skenazy, "Self-Help"
Read it online!

2016 WINNERS

FIRST PLACE: $250 cash, $100 gift certificate, plus publication in our summer 2016 newsletter.
Lisa Ortiz, "The Future is a Silver Lake"
Read it online!

SECOND PLACE: $75 gift certificate
Barbara Gorson, "Crazy"
Read it online!

THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate"
Mary Keil, "Knit 1, Purl 1"
Read it online!

2015 WINNERS

FIRST PLACE: $250 cash, $100 gift certificate, plus publication in our summer 2015 newsletter.
Meera Collier, "Leo on the Train"
Read it online!

SECOND PLACE: $75 gift certificate
Thomas Wetzel, "Four Roses With Father"
Read it online!

THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate"
Jeff Masuda, "Five Mile Radius"
Read it online!

2014 WINNERS

FIRST PLACE: $250 cash, $100 gift certificate, plus publication in our summer 2014 newsletter.
Clifford Henderson, "Pink"
Read it online!

SECOND PLACE: $75 gift certificate
Katariina Alongi, "Secret Formula"
Read it online!

THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate"
Elisa Fernandes-McDade, "The Quiet Began with a Panic"
Read it online!

2013 WINNERS

FIRST PLACE: $250 cash, $100 gift certificate, plus publication in our summer 2013 newsletter.
Katariina Alongi, "The Gardener"
Read it online!  

SECOND PLACE: $75 gift certificate
Breanna Eddy, "Among the Trees"
Read it online!
 
THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate"
Edward Weingold, "Trinity"
Read it online!

2012 WINNERS

FIRST PLACE: $250 cash, $100 gift certificate, plus publication in our summer 2012 newsletter.
Dee Kohanna Davis, "Green Dolphy"
Read it online!  

SECOND PLACE: $75 gift certificate
Cooper Gallegos, "The Scent of Lemons"
Read it online!
 
THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate"
Jeff Burt, "Marcellus Babineaux, Street Musician"
Read it online!

2011 WINNERS 

FIRST PLACE: $250 cash, $100 gift certificate, plus publication in our summer 2011 newsletter.
Jeff Burt, "Mrs. Linares’ Daughter" 
Read it online! 
 
SECOND PLACE: $75 gift certificate
Paul Skenazy, "Windmills"
Read it online!
 
THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate"
Vinnie Hansen, "Chinchillas"
Read it online! 

2010 WINNERS

FIRST PLACE: $250 cash, $100 gift certificate, plus publication
Nissa Cannon, "Roadside"
Read it online!

SECOND PLACE: $75 gift certificate
Erik Svehaug, "Bull-headed"
Read it online!

THIRD PLACE: $50 gift certificate
Vanessa Hemingway, "El Bar"
Read it online!  

2009 WINNERS

FIRST PLACE: SuRaa Fiction Award
Sandy Raney, "Basements Are For Dancing"
Read it online!

SECOND PLACE:
Lorrie Klosterman, "Shelter"
Read it online!

THIRD PLACE:
Molly Prentiss, "Big Dreams"
Read it online!

The winning story from 2007/2008, "January" by Katherine Bailey, was published in Bookshop's Summer 2008 Newsletter.

The winning story from 2006/2007, "On How To Abandon Your Toddler at 7-11" by Cathy Warner, was published in Bookshop's Summer 2007 Newsletter.

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