THE BEST OF SOFT SCIENCE FICTION CONTEST
Sponsored Annually by the Soft SF Writer's Association
1277 Joan Drive
Merritt Island FL 32952
Congratulations to the 2000 Winners:First - Stephen D. Rogers for "The Meek Inherit" published in Jackhammer
Second - James Van Pelt for "Infodict"
Third - Pete Manison for "Dust Station Omega" published in Space
Mary Soon Lee for "Murder Absolute" published in The Age of Wonders
Ken Rand for "The Find" published in Extremes - Fantasy and Horror from the
Ends of the Earth
Who Can EnterThe contest is open to all writers, and you can enter as many manuscripts as you wish. The entry must have been published or offered for sale within the year the contest is entered. If the story has been published, include this information so it can be listed with any announcement of winners.
Opening and Closing DatesThe contest will open October 1 and close December 15 to avoid the Christmas rush. Judging should be complete by the first of the year and prizes disbursed by March.
Entry FeeThere will be no entry fee for the contest at this time.
Judges and PrizesThe manuscripts will be judged by the members of the Soft SF Writer's Association, who also contribute the prizes. Current awards are: First place $100, second place $50 and third place $25.
Judging CriteriaEmotional impact, artistic style, cleverness, originality, characterization, theme weight, imagery, sensuality. Stories which contain shocking or disturbing elements are unlikely to win. This is not the type of emotional impact we're looking for.
Format and LengthNo form is required for entrance to the Best of Soft SF Contest. Please send a disposable manuscript in standard format addressed to the Contest Director, 7000 words or less with you name and address securely attached. If you want a personal notification of the winners, include a SASE.
Transfer of RightsWinner's stories will be kept on file, and others disposed to keep administrative costs to a minimum. No rights will be transferred by submission to the contest. If an anthology is planned, writers will be contacted later.
GeneralSoft SF is different from hard in that characters, emotional content and artistic effect are emphasized rather than plot and deterministic science. Although adult issues are encouraged, gratuitous violence and graphic sex should be kept to a reasonable minimum. Mixed-genre stories are acceptable (fantasy/SF, mystery/SF, horror/SF) as long as elements of science fiction are included--that is, some projection of trends, facts or technology in a scientific way. Social, behavioral, natural or hard science are all acceptable as a basis; and past, present, future or alternate universe are all fine as a setting.