Submissions for the 2018 Contest closed on February 28, 2018. We plan to announce our winner and finalists in late summer 2018.
In the wake of Earth’s hottest year on record, the effects of climate change are more apparent than ever. But how do we come to grips with the consequences on the ground, for actual people in specific places? Paolo Bacigalupi, renowned for his climate fiction novels and short stories, believes the answer lies in story: “Fiction has this superpower of creating empathy in people for alien experiences. You can live inside of the skin of a person who is utterly unlike you.” If our political responses and our empathy for people besieged by the consequences of climate change fall short, perhaps we need new stories to help us imagine possible futures shaped by climate change and our reactions to it.
In 2016, the Imagination and Climate Futures Initiative at Arizona State University hosted the inaugural Climate Fiction Short Story Contest, inviting writers from around the world to submit speculative fiction stories exploring climate change, narrating a world in flux. We were thrilled to receive submissions from 67 different countries, and to publish 12 finalists in a digital anthology, Everything Change.
For the 2018 Climate Fiction Short Story Contest, we are broadening the scope, enthusiastically inviting submissions in all genres of short fiction, including speculative, realistic, literary, experimental, hybrid forms, and more. Climate change is so massive and sometimes so ineffable that we need all of the tools of narrative to adequately understand it and share stories and experiences about it.
The contest will once again be judged by science fiction legend Kim Stanley Robinson, award-winning author of many foundational works in climate fiction, along with other climate fiction experts from ASU.
The winning story will receive a $1,000 prize. Nine finalists will receive $50 each. The winner and finalists will be published in an online anthology, which will be free to download, read, and share.
Everything Change is free to download, read, and share in PDF and EPUB formats here at the Imagination and Climate Futures website, and at the Apple iBooks and Kobo digital book stores.