Bitingduck Press Challenges Readers to Write Short Fiction About New Science

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LA independent publisher Bitingduck Press hosts short story contest, accepting submissions until June 11 at

For authors dreaming of publishing a novel, manuscripts are measured in tens of thousands of words. What can you say with just 500? Can you create a world, showcase an invention, give birth to a character?

LA-area independent publisher Bitingduck Press has teamed up with Storiad, an author networking and publicity site, to host the second round of short fiction contests. The first contest, sponsored by Big Think, attracted almost 200 submissions in 72 hours for its subject "Future Food." The winning entries are showcased on the web at the Big Think site.

This time around, the subject is "Extrapolatory Science." Bitingduck is looking for "Science in Fiction," not necessarily "Science Fiction": a story about life in science, or the lives of scientists, or cutting-edge research that’s going to change the way we think, work, and live. "Clone a Sabertooth, fly to Mars, cure cancer. Make it real, but make it imaginative," say the editors. Complete contest rules and instructions are found here. The contest ends Monday, June 11 at noon PST, and winners will be announced one week later.

The top three stories will be featured on the Bitingduck and Storiad sites and considered for publication in an anthology. The top winner will be invited to submit a full-length manuscript for consideration, and will receive a detailed critique from the editors even if the book is not accepted for publication.

Bitingduck Press was founded in February 2012 and already represents over 140 titles, thanks to a merger with e-publishing pioneer Boson Books. Specializing in young adult and adult fiction about the cutting edge of science, the press will release three works of original fiction this Halloween. "The idea behind the contest is to get people writing," says Editor-in-Chief Jay Nadeau, who is a practicing scientist as well as book publisher. "The ideas from very short stories are often clean and brilliant, and can be developed into a longer story or novel. If we get enough quality material, we'll publish an anthology." Ready... set... write!

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