Summer's in full swing, the fish are running, and you know what that means: our hugely popular "Ode to a Dead Salmon" bad writing contest is back. Take a look at last year's finalists, sharpen your pencils and follow that smell. We want your best worst writing, submitted to email@example.com by July 31, 2012. This year sees the return of loyal judges Nancy Lord, Bill Sherwonit, and Ray Troll, so give ‘em your best.
The idea for the contest came originally from our 2008 interview with Nancy Lord. When Andromeda asked why she didn't write immediately about her Alaskan experiences, Nancy said, "I think I was scared off, years ago, by something John Haines wrote in “The Writer as Alaskan”: a kind of condemnation that new-comers to Alaska always mined the same myths, 'odes to dead salmon,' and that it would take generations to develop a worthy Alaskan literature. I’d written a few odes to dead salmon and knew that I needed to get beyond the obvious."
Since the contest was first launched, bad writing has streamed in from all over the world. We posted it all and let our readers vote. Past winners have garnered some great press, including a write-up in Alaska Magazine.
We want your best tongue-in-cheek "Ode to a Dead Salmon" bad Alaskan writing, poetry or prose, fiction or non. We'll publish all entries at our Ode to a Dead Salmon webpage so the world can read them, and we'll post the finalists here at 49 Writers. And yes, famed and fishy Alaskan artist Ray Troll has once again offered an autographed T-shirt of choice to our winner. But the main goal, of course, is to have fun.
1. Entries must conform to our editorial policy.
2. We need your real name and real email address. If you want your entry to be posted under a pseudonym or left anonymous, make that clear in your email.
3. No more than three entries per person.
4. No more than 800 words per entry (shorter is just fine with us: limerick, haiku, opening lines).
5. Entries must be your own original work.
6. You keep the copyright but by entering you're giving us permission to post.
7. This is our contest. We make the rules (that's the beauty of blogging, folks), and the rules may change as we see fit. We'll let you know if they do.
8. Entries must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by midnight on July 31.