Tales of the Dead Contest Rules

Tales of the Dead: Short Horror Story Contest

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Baltimore County Public Library is challenging you to write your own original horror story. There are two categories: Over 21 and Under 21. The theme this year is "Ghosts in the Graveyard." All entries should feature a ghost and a graveyard/cemetery/burial ground.

First, second and third place winners in each category are selected by a panel of judges including a published author, librarians, community leaders and the library director. Criteria for judging includes originality, fear factor and quality of writing.

The Over 21 winners and one guest each receive VIP tickets to A Toast Among Ghosts on Saturday, October 16, where the winners will be invited to read their stories around the ghost story fire pit. Winners will also receive a 2021 A Toast Among Ghosts T-shirt. The winning stories will be published on the Foundation website. Winners will be notified on October 1.

While the event is 21+ only, writers under 21 can enter too! The Under 21 winners are invited to read their stories at a special reception at the Reisterstown Branch with a tour of the historic Reisterstown Community Cemetery on the evening of October 7 at 6 p.m. In addition, the will receive a prize package including a 2021 A Toast Among Ghosts T-shirt and a gift card. Criteria for judging is the same as for adults.

CONTEST RULES

ENTRY

Stories should be no more than 3,000 words long, and must be submitted to contest@bcpl.net by Friday, September 17, 2021, 5 p.m. Eastern Time (ET). Please include the story title and all writer contact info on the first page of the submitted file, including mailing address, phone number and email address. All stories should be in standard manuscript format and can be submitted in .DOC or .DOCX or .RTF format. (For information about standard formatting, see William Shunn’s guide to Proper Manuscript Format.)

Under 21: include "Under 21 Submission" in the subject line and your age and school (if applicable) in the author information on the first page of your submitted file.

All entries must comply with the entry requirements specified. Any entry that does not comply with the entry requirements will not be eligible for entry into the promotion.

Entries must be received by 5:00 p.m. ET on September 17, 2021 to be eligible for consideration. If all required information is not included, entry will be disqualified. Foundation for Baltimore County Public Library is not responsible for late or incomplete entries.

By entering this promotion, the entrant gives his/her consent for Foundation for Baltimore County Public Library to publish the story on its website and use their name for promotional and marketing purposes.

PRIZES

Over 21 winners receive two (2) VIP tickets to A Toast Among Ghosts on Saturday, October 16, and one (1) A Toast Among Ghosts T-shirt. Adult winners will also be invited to read their story at the Ghost Story Fire Pit at the event.

Under 21 winners receive a prize package including one (1) A Toast Among Ghosts T-shirt and one (1) gift card. Under 21 winners are also invited to read at a special reception at Reisterstown Branch on the evening of October 7 at 6 p.m.

ELIGIBILITY

Anyone 21 years of age or older may enter to win the Over 21 contest. Writers 20 years of age and under may enter the Under 21 contest. Employees of Baltimore County Public Library and the immediate family (spouse, parent, child, sibling and their respective spouses or step of each) and household members of such employees are not eligible.

TIMING

The contest starts at 9 a.m. Eastern Time ("ET") on August 1, 2021 and ends at 5 p.m. ET on September 17, 2021.

NOTIFICATION

Winners will be notified via email by Foundation for Baltimore County Public Library. Over 21 winners' names (plus one guest per winner) will be added to the guest list for A Toast Among Ghosts on October 16, 2021.

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