We’ve been exploring every corner of the galaxy searching for answers to the ultimate question. This month we thought we’d take a little break, sit for a while by the roadside and admire the view.
In short, there’s no ultimate question this week.
Instead, we’re giving you a photo prompt. Forget answering a question; let your imagination run wild. Use the photo as the setting for your microstory, or let it take you back to your childhood, to that place you used to visit with your family. Make the stone speak, or the lake. Put a troll under the bridge. It’s up to you. Take a breather–you deserve it!
A picture is worth exactly 42 words
Your story must include a discernible reference to the photo in the post header. You can interpret the picture literally or abstractly, but if the editors cannot find that reference, your story may not be moved to the voting grid. DO NOT INCLUDE THE PHOTO IN YOUR RESPONSE. Your post must make sense even if the reader is not looking at the photo.
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.
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.