Monsters & Mormons: Bedlamites contest!

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:

  1. No short (or short short) stories. As mentioned, we want you to explore other forms of discourse here.
  2. There needs to be some Mormon connection, even if it’s only a tertiary one.
  3. Your entry should be 500 words or less, and it should be submitted by 10 p.m. CDT on Friday, April 15.
  4. 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!

Welcome to the Monsters & Mormons Bedlamites contest form. Enter your submission of a section of scripture, mission statement, strategic plan, ballad, scholarly footnote, article abstract, wikipedia article, OED-style definition and usage history, Bible dictionary listing, Encyclopedia of Mormonism entry, journal entry, etc. The only rules are:
1. No short (or short short) stories.
2. There needs to be some Mormon connection, even if it’s only a tertiary one.
There will be two winners — one selected by Wm; one by Th. Each winner will receive an e-edition of the Monsters & Mormons anthology.
Please note that all submissions will be made public when the contest closes at 10 p.m. CDT on Friday, April 15. It’s a good idea to compose your entry elsewhere and then copy and paste in to th

Status Report – Portuguese-language Mormon Short Story Contest

More than 3 months ago I announced here the first Portuguese-language Mormon short story contest. Now the period for making submissions has closed, and already the contest has exceeded expectations.

Continue reading “Status Report – Portuguese-language Mormon Short Story Contest”

Portuguese-language Mormon Short Story Contest

I’m apparently just doing announcements today (which is why I’m breaking the rule and doing two posts in a day), so here is one that I’ve been working on — the Portuguese-language Parley P. Pratt Mormon Short Story Contest (link is to a Portuguese-language website). Below is the text in English of the contest announcement:

Continue reading “Portuguese-language Mormon Short Story Contest”

Book of Mormon fiction contest, AML annual meeting

AMV bloggers and friends are taking part in two interesting Mormon literature events this week, and I invite all our readers to participate as well.

LDS Publisher contest

Voting recently opened in LDS Publisher’s Book of Mormon Story Contest. The contest features young adult fiction stories with a Book of Mormon setting by both published and unpublished authors. Theric Jepson and I both submitted entries as did AMV reader/commenter David J. West. A few other AMV readers may also have participated (if so, let us know in the comments). And no, we aren’t going to tell which stories are ours — that’s against the rules.

Now, you may be asking yourself: do I really want to wade through 26 pieces of fiction (16 if you just read and vote for the published authors)? Probably not, but you should anyway — some stories are better than others, but all of them are interesting in how the engage with the Book of Mormon.

AML Annual Meeting

The Association for Mormon Letters will hold its annual meeting this Saturday, Feb. 27, at Utah Valley University Library in Orem. The theme of the program is “”˜One Eternal Round’: Mormon Literature Past, Present, and Future” and AMVers Tyler Chadwick, Harlow Clark, Patricia Karamesines and Katherine Morris will all be presenting. So will other folks whose names should be familiar to our readers — in particular: Lisa Tait, Ardis Parshall, Gideon Burton, Angela Hallstrom, Lee Allred and James Goldberg. If you are within driving distance, you should go — not only because of the interesting presentations and excellent company, but also because the meeting will feature a rare screening of the 1931 film “Corianton: A Story of Unholy Love.”

Short Story Friday: interlude — what’s cooking?

Because it’s summer, and we are all feeling a little lazy and languid. And because there’s already been a bunch of talk about short stories this week (apologies to non-Irreantum subscribers who don’t get to get in on the action — of course, there is a remedy for that). And because there’s simply a lot still to talk about with the posts that have been posted so far this week. And because I’m curious. This is what Short Story Friday is this week:

What’s going on?

Anybody enter the Irreantum fiction contest? Sources* tell me that the stories were heavy on the speculative fiction and sex. I’m not quite sure how to take that. How about the Sunstone contests? Anybody else have anything cooking that they can talk about right now**? Anybody have something to say about The Mormon Short Story? Continue reading “Short Story Friday: interlude — what’s cooking?”

Review: LDS Writer’s Market Guide 2010

Mormon Media Market (1981)
Mormon Media Market (1981)

When I was a student at BYU some enterprising student published a hardcover guide titled The Mormon Media Market, which followed the model of the Writer’s Digest annual guide Writer’s Market (now the subject of numerous spin-offs and copy-cat works). I thought at the time that this was a good idea, although it was clear from the content in the book that there wasn’t much of a market.

That has changed in the more than 20 years since that guide was published, and WindRiver Publishing is proving it, with the second (2010) edition of its LDS Writer’s Market Guide – 2010.

Continue reading “Review: LDS Writer’s Market Guide 2010”

Shawn Bailey takes third place in Irreantum Fiction Contest

The Association for Mormon Letters has announced the winners of the 2008 Irreantum Fiction Contest and the new Charlotte and Eugene England Personal Essay Contest. I’m pleased to note that AMV’s own Shawn P. Bailey was awarded third place in the fiction contest for his short story “Outside.” I had the pleasure of reading a draft of “Outside.” It’s a very good story. It’s about a young Jack Mormon who meets a rich, conservative, younger LDS guy who is dying of cancer while working to landscape the grounds of the Bountiful temple before its open house and dedication. It involves an awkward family dinner and more notably a trip to Wendover on the “fun bus.”

Congratulations, Shawn. And with Irreantum seemingly back on schedule hopefully you all will be able to read “Outside” and the other award-winning stories somewhat soon. Continue reading “Shawn Bailey takes third place in Irreantum Fiction Contest”