4/13/2011 Update: We have decided to let you have two weekends to work on your submissions — the new deadline for the contest is 10 p.m. CDT, Monday, April 18, 2011.
Like many of you, we were quite taken with Elder Holland’s use of the word “bedlamites” in the Sunday afternoon session of conference. It was an affectionately appropriate term applied to children, one that acknowledges the realities of wrestling with child energies in the daily praxis of Mormonism and nods to the fondness in LDS discourse of the use of the suffix ‘-ites’. It also, of course, evoked all sorts of intriguing ideas for those of us who have Monsters & Mormons on the brain. In fact, Graham Bradley tweeted: “@motleyvision You have to do an M&M volume 2 now, and I CALL DIBS ON THE BEDLAMITES”
Sorry, no plans for volume 2 as of yet. But here’s a chance to win an electronic copy of the Monsters & Mormons anthology. It’s the Bedlamites contest!
Yes, we know that it’s a real, albeit Anglophilic and somewhat archaic word that means the inmates of a lunatic asylum. But what if it wasn’t? What if it was an actual group of somethings/somebodies in Mormon history (of any dispensation)? What somethings? Which somebodies? Well, that’s up to you. But here’s the thing — we don’t want stories. We want fake documentation. It could be a section of scripture, mission statement, strategic plan, ballad, scholarly footnote, article abstract, wikipedia article, OED-style definition and usage/citation history, Bible Dictionary listing, Encyclopedia of Mormonism entry, journal entry, letter, etc. Anything that gives us a glimpse of a hidden or alternate history of the mysterious and/or long-forgotten Bedlamites.
The rules are:
- No short (or short short) stories. As mentioned, we want you to explore other forms of discourse here.
- There needs to be some Mormon connection, even if it’s only a tertiary one.
- Your entry should be 500 words or less, and it should be submitted by 10 p.m. CDT on Friday, April 15.
- Your entry should follow the tone of this blog — irreverent, odd, witty, obscure, satirical, highbrow, lowbrow, etc. are all okay. Mean or mocking is not.
There will be two winners — one selected by Wm; one by Th. Each winner will receive an e-edition of the Monsters & Mormons anthology when it is published in October of this year.
We also want our contributors to the anthology to be able to participate in the fun should they feel so inclined. Should one of them win, we will randomly select one of the other entries to give the e-book to.
We will be accepting submission only through this Google form. We will publish the winners and probably a few other favorites here on A Motley Vision, but will also make public and post a link to the Google spreadsheet that the form feeds so that we can all enjoy all of the entries. If you aren’t interested in sharing your entry, this isn’t the contest for you. Now on to the bedlam-making!