Life is short. Let’s fill it with good things: with music, with friends, with thoughtful conversations and respectful discourse, with whatever kind of art makes us–and the people around us–happy. Even silliness and frivolity have their place. Make sure there’s plenty of that, too. Let’s fill our lives with worthwhile endeavors.
You know what else is short? A microstory. But really, it’s the same endeavor, isn’t it, just on, well, a microscopic scale? We’re trying to fit as much as we can into our 42 words without losing sight of the meaning of it all. Make sure you choose the right words, and when you’re done, take a step back and decide if it really says what you wanted to say, start to finish. And then when it does, take a moment to celebrate.
Answer the ultimate question in exactly 42 words: where’s the party?
This week’s answer requires two things: a party that is currently occurring, and the location of that party. Yes, I know that the word “party” has other definitions, but for our purposes here, we are talking about a social gathering of invited guests, typically involving eating, drinking, and entertainment.
Please pay attention to tense: we don’t want to know about last month’s Christmas party or next week’s birthday party. We want to know about the party that’s happening right now.
Don’t get disqualified on a technicality
READ THE SUBMISSION GUIDELINES. Take us seriously so we can take you seriously.
COUNT YOUR WORDS. Use your eyes, not your word processor. Your post may not be eligible for voting if you go over or under 42 words. And remember, any words surrounding your microstory — explanations, references, footnotes, shout-outs, etc. — will be counted against your 42-word limit. (The only exception is photo credits.)
PROOFREAD. Nothing is easier, and nothing will get you bumped from the voting grid faster than typos, spelling or punctuation mistakes, or grammatical errors. You’ve only got 42 words; mistakes stick out.
ANSWER THE QUESTION. We try to give you some basic guidelines with every question; pay attention to what we’re looking for. Keep in mind that your post has to make sense if your reader doesn’t know the question. Don’t use the question as your title or anywhere else in your piece.
The top 42 entries will be open for voting on Thursday
You may enter only one gargleblaster microstory. Submissions are moderated. All entries will show up on our submissions grid, and up to 42 entries will be moved to the voting grid, which opens on Thursday. Everybody: read, comment, vote! Participation is the key to making this community work.
If you don’t make the voting grid, don’t despair – you’ll get a detailed love letter from our wonderful submissions editor, Rowan G., letting you know what needed improvement. Email us or head over to our pages on Facebook and Twitter with any questions.
Winners will be announced on Friday
Look for Friday’s combined winners’ post to see the crowd favorites and editors’ picks from across all of our challenge grids.
What else is happening around here?
We’ve got the nonfiction challenge opening on Mondays, the fiction and poetry challenge on Tuesdays, the microstory challenge on Wednesdays, and the come-one, come-all moonshine grid for the weekends. We’ve also got a great hangout space over at the coffeehouse. Make sure you subscribe to our weekly e-mail blast so you don’t miss out.