Short Story Day Africa (SSDA) is opening for submissions on June 1, 2017 for this year’s competition. They’ll be accepting submissions until July 31.
The theme this year is ‘ID’. From their website they say: “This year, we’re looking for innovative short fiction that explores identity, especially (but not limited to) the themes of gender identity and sexuality. In early psychoanalysis, the ‘ID’ was postulated as being one of three aspects of personality, and the only one over which we have no control. Often hidden and home to the unconscious, the ID is the core of the self, our instinctual nature, our deepest desires. The I before ego, the earliest version of ourselves, the who we are before we have had time to be.
In modern Africa, our identities are too often defined for us and not by us, trapped by society, biology and history. In 2017, we hope to see work that seeks to break and redefine the strictures put onto our identities, as individuals and as peoples. Fiction that looks beyond the boundaries of expectation, and peers into the truest definitions of ourselves.”
You can find complete submission guidelines on their website (http://shortstorydayafrica.org/the-ssda-prize-id/) but here are the highlights:
Any African citizen or African person living in the diaspora, as well as persons residing permanently (granted permanent residence or similar) in any African country, may enter.
Writers may only submit one story for the competition. Repeat entries by the same writer will be disqualified.
Writers are welcome to submit stories in any fiction genre.
Stories must be between 3,000 and 5,000 words in length.
Stories must be submitted in English.
Stories must be submitted online via Submittable between June 1 and July 31, 2017. The link to the submission form will be made live on June 1 , 2017.
To facilitate easy reading and judging, please format your stories according to the stipulated format. Stories not formatted in this way are at
Stories must not have been previously published in any form or any format.
Simultaneous submissions are not welcome. Any story entered or published elsewhere during the course of judging or publication will be disqualified.
You are welcome to enter under a pseudonym or nom de plume, as long as you also include your real name along with your entry.
All entries will be judged anonymously. Please DO NOT put your name or any other identifying details anywhere on your manuscript.
The judges’ decision is final.
By entering, the author agrees to allow SSDA to include their entry in an anthology should it be selected by the judges; and to work with editors to get their story publication ready.
Formatting details include:
Type your document, using a single, clear font, 12-point size, double-spaced. The easiest font to use is Times New Roman, or a similar serif font.
Put the title of your story halfway down the cover page. Please give your story an original title. Please DO NOT title your story ID, SSDA Story or any similar version of such. Start your story immediately below the title.
Put an accurate word count at the top right.
Please number the pages.
Left-justify your paragraphs.
Ensure there is at least a one inch or two centimetres margin all the way around your text. This is to allow annotation to be written onto a printed copy.
Indent each new paragraph by about 1/2 inch or 1 centimetre, except for the first line of the story or the first line of a new scene. Please use the indent function of your programme, not multiple spaces or tabs.
Don’t insert extra lines between your paragraphs. A blank line indicates a new scene.
Put the word ‘End’ after the end of your text, centred, on its own line.