Writers! Here’s Why You Should Submit to this Mythic Short Story Contest

Not me.

Hi. I’m Leslie. I run Mythraeum, where I write about mythology and archetypes, how they show up in history and legend, how they show up today in modern storytelling, and what they communicate about our human psyches.

I find it so fascinating that the same kinds of themes, archetypes, and stories have shown up throughout human history and across cultures. It’s amazing how they connect us with all of humanity throughout time, and with one another today.

One way I explore these archetypes and myths is by hosting short story contests. Every two months, a new mythic short story contest comes around. The stories are 5,000 words or less, and focus on a specific aspect of a specific myth. (The one for February 2016 is about Persephone vs. Theseus. It’s called “Persephone is a Badass.” Because she is not just the sweet-faced goddess of spring who gets shuffled back and forth between her mother and her husband.)

What’s cool is that the writers who participate in the contests all write very different stories.

The “Artemis and Orion” contest included a story set in post-apocalyptic New York, and one in a modern cutthroat business setting. But the stories were based on the same myth. (The one set in the business world won the contest, too. You can read it: “The Hunt,” by Kimberly Morning.)


That’s where Mythraeum stands now.

Let me tell you about the business plan as it will unfold over 2016 and 2017.

Later in 2016 (probably after June), I’ll start charging a small fee for entering the writing contests. Part of this fee will go towards paying readers. (So let’s say the entry fee is, for example, $15. And let’s say I pay you $5 for reading and judging a story. If you read three short stories, you’ll pretty much pay for your own entry fee.) Another part of the fee will go toward increasing the prize pot.

So the more people that enter, the higher the prize will be.

This stage of the business is important because we want to attract the strongest, coolest, most inventive writers around to the contests. (You’ll see why below.)

Later still, I’ll roll out a Mythraeum membership plan that will offer perks, exclusive content, and other dubiously glorious benefits that are yet to be determined. It will be something like $5/month. It will come with free contest entries—that much I know for sure.

And then once a year (to start), we’ll choose one of the best contest winners to develop into a short film.

The memberships will help to fund the short films.

That way everyone involved in Mythraeum comes together to create the best myth and archetype stories around, and to support the production of films based on those stories. I think these are great topics to focus on because the world needs stories that are filled with meaning.

Sound badass? I think it sounds badass.

So is this actually going to work? I see no reason why not. I’m a former actor and current ghostwriter. (I won’t tell you where because of the whole “ghost” part of “ghostwriter.”) I’ve studied theater and storytelling pretty much all my life, and have been learning filmmaking for awhile now. (There will be legalities to sort out, but that’s all figure-out-able as these developments actually develop.)

And Mythraeum is my grand plan.

When is all this going down? Not until I complete my own first short film, HEAT, so I can show you all I’m serious about this and that the short films I make based on your stories will not suck. I won’t ask you to support a sucky film.

I’ll keep you posted. You should subscribe to Mythraeum to stay updated!

And that’s why you should submit a 5,000 word (or less!) short story to the current mythic contest. It’s still free! And you should encourage all your writerly friends to do the same.


L. Marrick is an author, ghostwriter and suitcase entrepreneur, which is a hipster way of saying she travels and works from her laptop. She writes about archetypes, spirituality, and history at Mythraeum.com. Follow her on Twitter @LMarrick, and on Facebook.

© Leslie Hedrick 2016. The content of this article, except for quoted or linked source materials, is protected by copyright. Please contact the author at the above links to request usage.

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