"And watch this space for an announcement early next year about a new G&S Jamesian story competition (open to all), with the winning entries (if there are enough good ones) being published as a hardcover from a well-thought-of small press."
Although G&S hasn't been carrying new fiction for a few years, recent issues have carried competitions to complete some unfinished tales by M.R. James, with the winners appearing in print in the magazine.
This latest competition is a little different, though I'm not allowed to say too much till the official announcement (and it will be getting announced in a number of places), but hopefully enough entries will come in to make the hardcover publication possible in 2012 to mark the 150th anniversary of M.R.J's birth.
Post by The Lurker In The Shadows on Apr 12, 2011 18:27:09 GMT
Here are the details of the G&S competition from the latest Newsletter and from the website;
Following the very satisfying level of interest in the "Merfield Hall/House" and "The Game of Bear" story competitions (for the texts of the winning entries, see recent Newsletters), I'd been considering the possibility of a third competition when Dan McGachey came up with the suggestion that writers might like to produce sequels to MRJ's completed tales. All the people I've sounded out about this agree with me that it's a fine idea, but I want to extend it to include prequels too. Of course, there have already been examples of sequels - David Sutton's "Return to the Runes" in the second issue of G&S, for instance - but there are still plenty of possibilities. What happened to the 'satyr' (or 'satyrs') after the end of "An Episode of Cathedral History"? Are the lanes of Islington still frequented by whatever it was that Dr Abell encountered in "Two Doctors". What is left of the residue of the atrocities in "An Evening's Entertainment"; and do Count Magnus and his little friend still lurk at a certain crossroads in Essex? As for prequels, I for one would like to know what sort of treasure Canon Alberic found, how it was guarded, and the details of his death in bed of a sudden seizure. And what exactly was James Wilson's belief system, which prompted him to have his ashes placed in the globe in the centre of Mr Humphreys' maze: what is the significance of the figures on the globe - was Wilson a member of a Gnostic sect? Need I go on? I'm sure you can think of many more mysteries and questions that demand to be solved and answered.
I must emphasise that any competition entry which is just a revamp or parody of the plot of the chosen story is unlikely to be placed very highly. I'm looking for something more original than that. But there are no other rules aside from the usual ones: I will not look kindly on entries which have been simultaneously submitted elsewhere; the word count is entirely up to you (within reason!); and you can send your manuscript either in hard-copy or preferably as a Word (pre-Vista) or RichText file on e-mail attachment or CD-Rom. The competition is open to everyone, not just Newsletter readers.
The winning story will be published in the first Newsletter of 2012, and there will be a £40 prize for the author, along with a one-year subscription or extension. If I receive enough good, publishable entries, Robert Morgan of Sarob Press has expressed considerable interest in producing a hardback book containing all the best ones (to be edited and introduced by me). This is exciting news, but it's up to you to make it happen. If there are not enough quality stories to fill a book, then the best runners-up will appear in the Newsletter (and receive a one-year sub extension) as with previous competitions.
Post by Craig Herbertson on Apr 15, 2011 5:33:37 GMT
I think I might have a go at this being a huge James fan. I had a quick look at stories and wondered if there would be too many tales based on a single tale. Ie ten Treasure of Abbots in a row. But I couldn't think of a way of avoiding this without it not being a competittion.
I've avoided the more obvious tales for the same reason as you suggested Craig - but I wonder if everyone else (by a perverse reverse psychology) might think the same way!
Yes, that's what I was thinking. You look at the whistle in 'whistle when she comes' and think 'nahh, everyone will do that.' Then of course, no one does and you're left with 300 stories called Vignetteri.
Post by The Lurker In The Shadows on Apr 30, 2011 16:40:14 GMT
Glad to see some interest in this here. I do hope there are enough entries to make the book viable, particularly since next year is the 150th Anniversary of M.R. James's birth. It would make a nice little celebration to have a volume of stories by current writers who have been influenced by James.
As for myself, despite making the original suggestion, I don't have a clue which story I'm going to opt for. I did have one at the time, but I've since gone off the idea. Typical!
Post by Craig Herbertson on May 1, 2011 14:21:20 GMT
I'm keen to try. It's a question of time and as I said earlier its far harder to choose a story when you battle with the idea that there might be several people attempting the same one - of course that's not necessarily going to produce one publishable and nine unpublishable stories given they might all have a different take.
At the moment I am on the 58 000th word of my third novel and you know how difficult it is to finish anything. As soon as that's done I'll be back on shorts. For the moment I'll stick something up on my website as an advert
Sadly, I know this only too well. I have to get something I've been working on for ages done before I can even begin to think of tackling this one, but I'm fairly duty bound to enter the competition, so it's going to be shoulder to the grindstone over the next couple of months/years/decades (delete as applicable).
Thanks for adding the comp details to your website. It's much appreciated.