The student newspaper of Bucks County Community College

The Centurion

The student newspaper of Bucks County Community College

The Centurion

The student newspaper of Bucks County Community College

The Centurion

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Bucks’ Short Fiction Contest is Looking for Aspiring Writers

Courtesy of Unsplash

The annual Short Fiction Contest is back at Bucks County Community College with a fast approaching deadline and will be judged by a guest celebrity author.

Elizabeth Luciano, a Bucks language and literature professor for almost 20 years, founded the short fiction contest in 2017 as an outcropping of a sabbatical project she did in 2016. It is based on the Bucks County Poet Laureate competition, which has been around for 47 years.

As contest director, Luciano reads through all the entries and narrows them down to five or six finalists. The finalists are then judged by a published author in the Philadelphia area. There is a different author each year, this year’s judge is Emma Eisenberg.

Anyone 18 years old or over or who is a county resident may enter the contest, provided they are not a Bucks employee. All genres are welcome and profanity or sexuality is acceptable if it serves the story, but not if it is merely gratuitous.

The story must be unpublished (including online blogs), and following the page limitation. Stories that have won other contests are not admissible. If a story has already won the short fiction contest, it is invalid to resubmit, but a previous winner, may submit a different story.

A submission is unsuitable if it doesn’t align with the rules, or is a fan fiction i.e. a story based on previously published work. There is one entry per person, per contest. This year’s new and important rule is the forbidden use of artificial intelligence. Plagiarism is strictly prohibited.

Aside from modest monetary prizes, the contest aims to give notice and encouragement to writers who are trying to gain a toehold in creative writing. Winners can always mention their prize on their writing resumes, when they’re submitting work to editors, querying agents or applying to Master’s of Fine Arts programs.

There is a celebration where the top three winners will receive gift cards from $50 to $200.They will also have the opportunity to share their work at a reading on Nov. 18 at 1 p.m.

The deadline for submission is noon on Oct. 19. The results are announced on the BCCC webpage and through a press release that goes out to local papers. All applicants receive an email about the status of their entry.

The contest has received financial assistance in the past from the Bucks Foundation, and currently receives financial and administrative support from the department of Language and Literature. The Buck’s marketing department is also extremely helpful in getting the word out.

Good luck to all contestants!

For the complete and official rules of the contest visit the contest website at: