Short Story Award


First Place
($200 and print publication)
C. A. Rowland -- Fredericksburg, Virginia
"The History of a Fruitcake"

Second Place
($100 and featured Roundtable publication)
Henry Supchak -- Newton, New Jersey
"Maggots and Milk"

Third Place
($50 and featured Roundtable publication)
Rich Mantle -- Allentown, Pennsylvania
"The Banquet"

Honorable Mention
(featured Roundtable publication)
Christina Dalcher -- Norfolk,  Virginia
"The Honey Clusters"
Our Celebrity Judge: Curtis Smith

Curtis Smith'
s stories and essays have appeared in over seventy-five literary journals and have been cited by The Best American Short Stories, The Best American Mystery Stories, and The Best American Spiritual Writing. Among his many publications, he is the author of the short story collections The Species Crown, Bad Monkey, and Beasts and Men; the novels Sound + Noise and Truth or Something Like It; and the essay collection Witness. His next book will be Lovepain, a novel from Aqueous Books


    competition will open on

JANUARY 1, 2016

Details will be available soon.

2015 Competition Rules:

First Place winner story will receive a $200 cash award and publication of the winning story either in the Bethlehem Writers Group's upcoming anthology of food stories, A Readable Feast: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales for Every Taste, or as a featured story in Bethlehem Writers Roundtable. 

Our first anthology, 
A Christmas Sampler: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Holiday Tales (2009), won two Next Generation Indie Book Awards: Best 
Anthology and Best Short Fiction.  Our second anthology, Once Around the Sun: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales for All Seasons came out on November 5, 2013, and was a Finalist for Best Anthology in the 2014 Next Generation Indie Book Awards.

Second and Third Place winners will receive a cash award ($100 and $50 respectively) and publication in Bethlehem Writers Roundtable.

Entry Requirements:
  • Stories must be submitted using the form below
  • Entries must be no more than 2000 words
  • All entries must be previously unpublished, and adhere to our Terms and Conditions set out below
  • Submissions open at 12:01 a.m. on October 1, 2014 and must be received by 11:59 p.m. EST, February 28, 2015.
  • Payments are requested within 24 hours of submissions. All payments must be received through PayPal no later than 11:59 p.m. EST on March 2, 2015.
Entry Fee:
  • $10 per story. 
  • First prize: $200 and consideration for inclusion in the upcoming BWG anthology, A Readable Feast: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales for Every Taste. If it is not accepted for publication in the print anthology, it will be featured in an upcoming edition of the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable. (There is no guarantee of print publication, but all previous contest winners have been accepted to be published in print.)
  • Second prize: $100 and publication in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable.
  • Third prize: $50 and publication in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable.
  • Honorable Mentions: Stories may be selected for Honorable Mention and offered publication in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable. 

  • Initial blind judging will be performed by members of the Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC. Finalists will be notified by March 31, 2015. 
  • Final selection of winners will be done by celebrated short story author Curtis Smith. Prize winners will be notified by April 30, 2015. 
  • Contest winners will be announced on the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable website and on the Bethlehem Writers Group website ( by May 1, 2015.

Terms and  Conditions:

1. Each story must relate to the theme "Food Stories" broadly interpreted, in any genre, such as: a vampire who's allergic to blood, aliens who eat music, a dysfunctional family reunion picnic, a zookeeper finding the perfect formula for an exotic animal, a gingerbread cottage, or anything else food-related your muse can dream up. 
2. All submissions must be made using the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable Short Story Award Submission Form on this page. .
3. Each story must be the original and unpublished work of the author. Work is considered published if it has appeared in whole or in part anywhere in print or online.All stories that are among the finalists will receive due diligence to ensure they have not been previously published.
4. Authors must be 18 years of age or older. Proof of eligibility will be required for all prize winners.
5. All entries must be in the English language.
6. Submissions are limited to 2000 words or fewer. Submissions of over 2000 words will be disqualified and entry fees will not be refunded. The title and author's name do not count toward the word limit.
7. Stories are judged anonymously. The author's name must not appear anywhere on the manuscript(s). Please include your story's title in the subject line of the submission form. Your name, address, phone and email address must appear in the appropriate blocks on the submission form.
8. Multiple entries by the same author are permitted. There is a $10 fee required for each entry.
9. All entries must be received by 11:59 p.m. (EST) on February 28, 2015. Submissions received after the deadline will not be opened.
10. An entry fee of $10 is required for each entry. This fee is payable using the PayPal "Buy Now" link below. Your name, email address, and story title must be included with your payment to ensure proper credit. You do not need a PayPal account to use PayPal for this purpose. Payment must be received by midnight (EST) on March 2, 2015. Payments received after the deadline will be returned minus PayPal fees.
11. Simultaneous submissions are permitted, but immediate notification is required if your work is accepted elsewhere for publication. Entry fees are not refundable.
12. By entering this competition, the author agrees to abide by these Terms and Conditions. Any violation of these rules will result in disqualification.
13. Members of the Bethlehem Writers Group, the celebrity judge, and members of any of their immediate families (in the same household) are not eligible to enter. 
14. By submitting to the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable, you certify that the work is solely your own, original work, is unpublished in any other electronic or print format, does not encroach on any trademark or copyright, and does not libel or defame any entity living or dead. You will indemnify and hold Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC harmless from any claims, causes of action, damages, or judgments arising out of publishing your submission.
15. Awards are as follows: FIRST PLACE AWARD: $200 and consideration for publication in BWG's upcoming print anthology. If the story that wins the First Place Award is not selected for inclusion in that anthology, it will be published in Bethlehem Writers Roundtable, the magazine of the Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC.  SECOND PLACE AWARD: $100 and publication in Bethlehem Writers Roundtable. THIRD PLACE AWARD: $50 and publication in Bethlehem Writers Roundtable. HONORABLE MENTIONS (if any) will be listed on the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable website and may be offered publication in Bethlehem Writers Roundtable
16. Award winners, including Honorable Mentions, grant the Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC, first serial publication rights to the winning work. The copyright of the work remains the property of the author, who, one month following publication of the work by the Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC, is free to publish the work elsewhere. Upon any subsequent publication, the author will ensure that work is accompanied by a statement indicating that the work was originally published by the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable or by the Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC, along with the date of such publication. If it was originally published in a print anthology, the name of the anthology will also appear in said statement.
17. Award winners will be notified at the email address provided with the entry. The winners must respond to this notification, with the author's certification that he/she meets all eligibility requirements and agrees to the terms of the award, within ten (10) days of the notification. Failure to respond to the email notification will cause the author to lose his/her place in the contest and the prize will be offered to the next highest scoring submission.
18. The decisions of the judges are final.
19. This offer is void where prohibited by law.

Best of luck!

Sorry, the competition is now closed. Watch for more information on our 2016 competition.