Skip to main content

Looking for a Reason to Beat the Winter Blues? Stay Inside With NYC Midnight's Short Story Challenge 2009

[Contributed by Natalie Raben from NYC Midnight (]

NYC Midnight's ( Short Story Challenge 2009 is a creative competition that challenges writers to think outside of their comfort zones. In 2002, two New Yorker's founded NYC Midnight as an LLC to play host to several different yearly writing and screenwriting challenges. For the Short Story Challenge 2009, the cloak of anonymity will be removed for writers on January 16, 2009 when the mystery genres and subjects are revealed to each participant or group.

Writers, who have the option of working in teams, will then be given seven full days and nights to burn the midnight oil and crank out a 2,500 word-count original short story. The published authors and professors that compose this year's panel of judges will then select up to 100 winners to advance on to the final heat, which takes place in March. During this, writers will compete for a chance to win thousands in cash and prizes by writing a short story, also of mystery topic and genre, in just 24 hours.

This challenge is open to residents of all states and countries, so anyone can sign up. Also, interested authors can use the promo code "STORYTIME" when signing up to receive $5 off of the entry fee and can do so here:

The Short Story Challenge 2009 is a great way to:

  • Test yourself
  • Receive candid feedback on your writing
  • Sharpen your writing skills
  • Win money and prizes
  • Provide an excuse to stay indoors during cold winter months

Not only will participants receive feedback from the panel of judges, but they will also have the option of signing in to an online special review forum where they can read and comment on each other's stories. So let's get ready to.....write!


Popular posts from this blog

What Is the Difference Between Hardcover and Paperback?

Today, my reader, Rahman contacted me with a doubt:

Dear Lenin, would you explain why there are two types of books: hardcover and paperback?
This is quite a simple affair and there are explanatory articles to be found at various places on the Net. Here is my addition.


A hardcover aka hardback is a book bound with thick protective cover, with usually a paper or leather dust jacket over the main cover. The aim of hardcover is protection and durability. These books are mainly for long-term use and collectors’ editions. Hardcover books last far longer than the corresponding paperbacks. They do not get damaged easily thus making them perfect for reference guides, great literary works, etc.

In addition, there is a difference in the type of paper used to print hardcover books. The paper used is long-lasting acid-free type. Acid-free paper has a pH value of 7 (neutral) which makes it highly durable. The papers are stitched and glued to the spine.

Hardbacks are prepared for commercial …

En Dash, Em Dash, and Hyphen

We have three types of dashes in use: The hyphen, En Dash, and the Em Dash. In this post, we will see how to use them all correctly.

Hyphen (-)

The hyphen is the minus key in Windows-based keyboards. This is a widely used punctuation mark. Hyphen should not be mistaken for a dash. Dash is different and has different function than a hyphen.

A hyphen is used to separate the words in a compound adjective, verb, or adverb. For instance:

The T-rex has a movement-based vision.
My blog is blogger-powered.
John’s idea was pooh-poohed.

The hyphen can be used generally for all kinds of wordbreaks.

En Dash (–)

En Dash gets its name from its length. It is one ‘N’ long (En is a typographical unit that is almost as wide as 'N'). En Dash is used to express a range of values or a distance:

People of age 55–80 are more prone to hypertension.
Delhi–Sidney flight was late by three hours.

In MS Word, you can put an En Dash either from the menu, clicking Insert->Symbol or by the key-combination, Ctrl + Num…

What Is the Meaning of the Word 'Ghajini'? Story and Trivia of Aamir Khan's New Film [Special]

[Special Entry]

Aamir Khan's latest film is titled a little weirdly for the taste of Hindi filmgoers. 'Ghajini': They have never heard of such a name, and such a word never existed in Hindi or in any other Indian language.

The name Ghajini is the name of the villain of the film. In Tamil version, the name of the villain was Laxman.

As a Tamil moviegoer, I have already watched Ghajini and know the story in full.

So, What Does the Title Mean?

In Tamil, the title of the film is inspired by the story of Mahmud of Ghazni, an ancient invader of India. This person was so persistent in invading India that he continued trying after several failures. In the film too, the protagonist is such persistent in finding out and killing the villain of the film, who had killed his girlfriend, Kalpana (played by Asin). Aamir's Character (named Sanjay Ramaswamy in Tamil), is a short-term amnesiac, who cannot remember anything more than fifteen minutes.

You may ask then how the Ghazni became…