Rules and Requirements

Contest Time frames/Winner Announcements

ACM reserves the right to move more quickly or take longer than we state, if we deem it necessary. Each year is different, depending on the number and quality of the entrants, how busy the judges are, etc. Generally speaking, then, the following time frame applies:

  • Novel contest— Entry Deadline: Fall — Winners Announced: the following Spring

Content

The content of all entries should promote a Christian world view. This does not necessarily mean that it is explicitly about Christian themes and topics. The Christian philosophy can be implicit. However, judges should not have to guess at how the story represents a Christian perspective. An extreme example of this might be Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings series. Tolkien adamantly denied any explicitly Christian content in his series but the implicit endorsement of loyalty, honor, and other moral themes that Christians appreciate make his Christianity implicit in the series.

Furthermore, orthodox Christianity should be represented. That means, essentially, ‘mere Christianity’ in the sense that CS Lewis promoted. Well written but heretical stories very likely will not succeed in this contest.

Entries from previous years that did not win a cash award are allowed to be re-submitted. If you did win a cash award, you may submit a new story. Honorable Mentions may submit their previously submitted story.

Copyright

Entrants in our novel contest completely retain their rights to their work. Even the winners retain full copyright, and though an offer to publish may be extended, they are not required to accept. If, and only if, an agreement to publish is reached, will some rights be granted to ACM; obviously that is required to some degree in order to publish the work!

Number of Entries

ACM does not disclose the number of entries into its various contests.

Copies of the winning novels

Effective for the 2015 Novel Contest, all entrants will receive digital editions of the winning novels if ACM goes on to publish them, and only once they are released.

Simultaneous Submission

Authors may submit novels that have been submitted elsewhere at other times, including novels that are already published.  Obviously, if an already published author wins our contest, we will not likely be able to publish the work ourselves.

Multiple Submissions

Authors may submit up to 3 entries per year.

Online and Mailed Submissions

While the submission fee may be mailed, all novels must be submitted digitally.

Group and Mass Submissions – (short stories and poems, only)

Teachers or organizations facilitating groups of 5 authors or more who wish to participate in our contest can receive a discount.  Email ACM at office@athanatosministries.org for more information. Be ready to provide the number of entries in question and whether or not you are a teacher or represent an educational organization or ministry.

Judges

Judges are steeped in the writings of CS Lewis, GK Chesterton, Dorothy Sayers, and JRR Tolkien. Your story will be evaluated in terms of its quality, its theological insight, and effectiveness in communicating the Gospel.

Right to Revise

Athanatos Christian Ministries reserves the rights to modify this contest if, in its sole discretion, circumstances warrant it. This includes award amounts, although to this point this has not happened in the course of a contest.

Awards

In order to receive your awards you will have to sign a contract that indicates you agree to these rules and that your material is in fact entirely your own.

Skin Thickness Requirement for our Novel Contests: 1 inch. This is a contest that attempts to give the author honest, fair, helpful feedback–win or lose. We are as interested in building up writers who do not win or even make it to the semi-finalists as we are in the winners. Not giving our honest assessment of your story would not be helpful. If you do not desire our honest assessment do not enter our contest!  You do, however, have the option to receive no feedback at all.

Moreover, if there is anything about the terms or nature our contest that you do not like, the time to decide that is before you submit your entry. Along those lines, it is not necessary for you to complain to us about our contest terms. All that is needful is that you just don’t participate in our contest! Thank you for your understanding.

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