The fifth incarnation of National Public Radio's Three-Minute Fiction contest promises to be a supernatural one. The free competition, which will be judged by Michael Cunningham, is open only to stories that begin with the line, "Some people swore that the house was haunted" and end with, "Nothing was ever the same again after that."
Cunningham, the author of the Pulitzer Prize–winning novel of visitations, voices, and convergences, The Hours, will select one winner to be interviewed on NPR and have his or her winning story read on the air. The winner will also receive autographed copies of The Hours and the author's forthcoming novel, By Nightfall, due to arrive in stores on October 5.
Stories must be under six hundred words and capable of being read in under, you guessed it, three minutes. The deadline for entries is September 26. Full guidelines, an entry form, and more on the history of the competition are available on the NPR Web site.
In the video below, some music to write by—a performance of Phillip Glass's score for the film adaptation of The Hours.