Albedo One, Ireland’s magazine of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror, has announced the fifth International Aeon Award short fiction contest. Grand prize is 1000 euro and publication in Albedo One. Second and third place stories win 200 and 100 euro respectively, alongside publication in Albedo One.

This year they have an added bonus prize for the winning story, courtesy of the highly respected The winning story will have the option of a free one-year publication in their Storywire section where authors earn royalties.

The contest is open to stories of up to 8000 words in any speculative genre, including science fiction, fantasy, horror, or anything in between or unclassifiable. The judges have a very broad definition of what constitutes a genre story. The contest is also open to writers of all nationalities. The winning stories will be chosen by highly respected genre author Ian Watson, who will again act as Grand Judge for this year’s contest.

The contest is open until November 30th 2010, and runs in four rounds, at the end of which the judges will announce a shortlist of those entries they feel worthy of further consideration on the Albedo One website. The 1st round ends March 31st, the second round, June 30th, the third round September 30th and the final round November 30th.

The aim of the contest is to promote new writers and writing in the speculative fiction genres, and previous contests have certainly shown us that speculative fiction at the shorter lengths is alive and well, despite its many detractors and those who would pronounce the decline of SF, horror, fantasy etc. or the death of the short story.

Previous winners have been announced at the World Science Fiction Convention and European SF Convention, have been reprinted or received Honourable Mentions in the prestigious Year’s Best Science Fiction and Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror volumes, and have been translated into other European languages and published in their national magazines (e.g. Galaxies SF, in France). So entering the Award will certainly get some attention for the respective authors and their work, never mind the prize money and publication in Albedo One.

A modest entry fee of 7 euro applies to all entries, and can be paid easily and securely via PayPal at the Albedo One website. Entries may be submitted to Full details may be found at: Aeon Award

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