2018 Themes

Connections: Lost and Found

We’re looking for stories about special friendships, unlikely allegiances, surprising encounters and missed connections; the bonds that knit people, families, and communities together, and what happens when those fall apart.


From teenage drama to total fiascos, we delve into themes of struggle and unease. Stories can be funny and cringe-inducing, but we’re also looking for thoughtful narratives of facing one’s fears and overcoming challenges.

Appetites and Desires

How do our needs, both physical and emotional, bring us together? When do they pit people against others vying for the same resources? We’re looking for stories on food, hunger, ambition, and passion on a personal scale, and as part of larger systems.

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2017 Themes

Metamorphosis: Tales of Transformation and Change

We’re looking for stories of change in individuals, families, societies and nature. Think big OR small: Coming of age transformations, local stories of gentrification, national upheavals, or the impacts of global warming. Change can bring new energy and inspirations; it can also come at a cost. We’re looking for a mix of funny, thoughtful and poignant stories to illustrate how humans cope with the only certain uncertainty in life.

Skin and Bones: Life, Death, and Everything in Between

We’re looking for stories of the frailties and strengths of the human body, and how we handle sickness and health. Also, this theme could encompass life’s milestones along the journey: becoming a parent, losing a love, birthdays, weddings, funerals, and more.


From little white lies to national scandals, we want tales of skullduggery and deceit. Some lies are told for personal gain, others for protection. Are there times when honesty is NOT the best policy? We want all manner of stories about people, places and things that are not what they first appear.


Wild animals, wild places, wild adventures. Think man versus beast, the allure of the unknown, the ways we negotiate the natural world, and humanity’s struggle to find a place within it. This could also include stories of rebellion, lawlessness, and upheaval, moments when one’s inner wildness is released, as well as the battle to keep it in check.

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2016 Themes

Bad Advice and Second Chances
Some of us have actually paid cash money for a 1974 Dodge Dart. Tell us your stories about when you listened to your Uncle Leo rather than your common sense, or any other time you told that small voice in your head to shut up and sit down. Also, tell us about the aftermath and how you’ve lived to tell the tale.

Destination Unknown: Trips, Travels, and Unexpected Journeys
Tell us of a time when you went in search of something: a new place, a lost love, a chance at following a dream. Or when you set out just for fun- Where did the wanderlust take you and who did you meet along the way? We want stories of those eager for change and those longing for what’s left behind.

Danger: Tales of Mischief and Misfortune
We’re looking for stories with an element of danger, either real or imagined. A lurking threat, a prank gone wrong, bullets dodged or imminent disaster. These could be humorous or serious; ideally stories will have a bit of each.

Work it: Stories of Labor and Leisure
Drudgery or dream job- how do you make your money? What’s the oddest job you’ve ever taken? What would push you to walk away? At the end of the day, how do you put the world of work behind you? We’re looking for stories about any kind of work and play.