Open Novella Contest Hype and Support Team

It’s that wonderful time of the year. The Open Novella Contest (ONC for short) has announced its 3rd year. It’s official start is Feburary 1st.

If you’ve done the contest before, feel free to skip this explanation.

What is the ONC?
The ONC is a couple month-long challenge to write a new novella, or a 20k-40k word story.

Each year the wonderful team of ambassadors that run this competition come up with a host of prompts especially for this event. You are required to use one prompt in your story. You’ll have to submit which prompt you used and the judges will have to see it at work in your story. It can be a loose interpretation, but make sure it’s noticeably apparent.

Now, you have to write. The first round will need to post and submit 2k words. Then, they’ll be a round of judging (there is no set amount of entries that make the cut off, so don’t stress over more entries hurting your chances) and some authors will progress to the second round. The second round works the same way, but you must have 8k words posted total. By the third round, the playing field will be a sliver of the thousands who entered and each author will be pushing to complete their novella. Keep in mind, you have 40k words to work with, but the judges will only read the first 20k words.

At this stage of the game, all competitors will have a completed novella. Next comes the long list. For those of you who know the Wattys, this long list and that one work the same way. Some of the authors who passed round three are chosen for the long list. Of those, a smaller amount are chosen for the shortlist. From there, it goes to the top five winners, who by then are the best of the best.

There’s also ambassador’s pick, which highlights stories the judging team enjoyed and wanted to promote. Each round also has a few winners.

Gee, sounds stressful. Why should I enter?

The ONC is stressful, but it’s also glorious when you pass each round. We as authors are constantly striving for validation. The ONC offers that.

The ONC builds community. Entrants read other entrant’s work who read other entrants work who—well, you get the idea.

ONC provides motivation. You have to write to win, and you have to write on a deadline. This helps budget time and pushes you to crank out words in a tight time frame.

Last but not least, why not? You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

More info (will update when more details are released)

Follow the official profile for quick and accurate info. @OpenNovellaContest

The official book is out with a schedule and all the good contest rules. read here

Need to brainstorm or want to talk in a different format? See our discord server made my @EPrescott here

Procrastinating something? Find a collection of ONC memes and add your own.

Read prompts here

Submit the form here

Below is where he deadline for round one will be (this will change to be Round 2 info when Round 1 concludes) in different time zones to make this easier globally.

Timezone Date
GMT Feb 29, 11:59 pm
CET/ WAT Mar 1, 12:59 am
EET Mar 1, 1:59 am
MSK/ EAT Mar 1, 2:59 am
SMT/ AMT Mar 1, 3:59 am
PKT Mar 1, 4:59 am
OMSK/ BST Mar 1, 5:59 am
CXT Mar 1, 6:59 am
CST/WST Mar 1, 7:59 am
JST Mar 1, 8:59 am
EAST/VLAT Mar 1, 9:59 am
SAKT Mar 1, 10:59 am
IDLE/ NZT Mar 1, 11:59 am
WAT Mar 1, 12:59 am
AT Feb 29, 9:59 pm
ART Feb 29, 8:59 pm
AST Feb 29, 7:59 pm
EST Feb 29, 6:59 pm
CST Feb 29, 5:59 pm
MST Feb 29, 4:59 pm
PST Feb 29, 3:59 pm
AKST/ YST Feb 29, 4:59 pm
HST/ CAT Feb 29, 3:59 pm
NT Feb 29, 2:59 pm
IDLW Feb 29, 1:59 pm

More questions?
I’ll be around to answer specific questions with my knowledge of past years contests.

Luckily for us, admins of the contest are willing to help with any questions.

@AnnieRosebud and @skidzipop1 are amazing members of the staff. Give it up to them for helping us out :clap::clap::clap:

If there’s any more admins out there that want to answer questions, let me know and I’ll add you right away.

You can work on improving your blurb game here

Tag List

@LittleMinx94 @sarakbeeksma @FantasybkLover @dreams_i_have @SurferJulz @houseofmirrors @astrophile @calmwolf @bluespringlife @ProjectPr1de @DarlaCassic @floranocturna @darvruni @Prisim @Olivaughn @Angelic_Vamp @Lightning_Stryker @Nablai @DaisyDoesNothing @JJJ000YYY @Spider-Hawk @ReyenaScarr @CaperCat @PLLgirl_27 @nilzane
@sky_is_limit @eliyeda @witchoria @MaskedParkers @KR_Williams @Azanthiel @nilzane @writeyourname97 @AnnieRosebud @Belle_Dowson @clizbethh @flyxity @lst-my-shp-sil @yvesdot

Thread schedule

Feb 1 - Feb 2: Discuss plotting
Feb 3 - Feb 8: Dive into plot
Feb 9 - Feb 29: Work on writing, commenting, feedback, etc.

Support other authors

Use “author name, genre, mature (yes/ no,) title” format

ZonderZorg, Historical Fiction/Romance, Mature No, Title: Zeelandia
Prompt 39: “The ship be cursed, lad; ye’ll no return.” I scoffed at the hag and continued aboard.

LilithFairen, Fantasy, not mature, Hearts in Shadow

I_Dxnt_Even_Knxw, Fantasy, Not mature, Where the Wild One Hides

I_Dxnt_Even_Knxw, Fantasy, Not mature, A King, a Peasant and a Witch

Wren Arrior (@astrophile), Vampire, No, Not My Type

J. A. Jumphol (@JJJ000YYY) , General fiction, not mature, Puzzles and Pieces

Lea Kales (prosenpoetry), Romance/Comedy, No, The Crush Formula

Elizabeth Solorzano (@solorzanowriter) - Nothing mature: 1. ChickLit, Carmen’s Song; 2. Mystery, Amy’s Murder; 3. General Fiction, Match Made; 4. General Fiction/Romance, Costly Touch.

@SurferJulz, Sci fi, no, What’s Left of Us

@LouisBaronSantos, Mystery/Thriller, Not Yet, Killing Caleb

Alphawrites, Paranormal/ Mystery, Yes, Title: Anaya: The Dark Voyage

Services offered
Covers by @SurferJulz


The Machines I Built
Sound of a Siren's Call
What's Left of Us cover

Graphics (Covers/Banner/Aesthetic Moodboards, etc.) & Playlist Mixes by @EPrescott

Graphics (Covers and Character Profiles) by @prosenpoetry


Winners from the thread

To be updated at the end of round 1


I saw the thread and was like, oh boy. Did I miss some drama? XD


Ooo a new thread!


Ooo, yay!! :grin:


No. Just we’re getting all buzzed up and since we know it’s happening, I thought we could use a space to prepare


Shiny new thread! :heart_eyes:


Thank you for tagging me! :grin: Can we submit fanfiction?


It’s not up yet, but when it is, you will be able to. It just has to be new for the contest :grin:


I did ONC last year and made it to the longlist (if I remember correctly) with a really badly written Hist Fic :joy: My crowning achievement


I never win, so meh about contests right now. More focused on FIF at the moment and ARF’s rewrite.


Same :joy:

I made it with my bad paranormal romance.

I missed you :hugs:


For everyone wondering why this is up so early: posting it early won by 20% in a poll in Protostars


Looking forward to the upcoming instalment. Hopefully the work will be worth it :joy:



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Oh, wow, we have an ONC thread already. looks around

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I don’t know if I’m entering this year, too much to do as it is xD


I’ve been around. Lurking mostly, but around nonetheless


Yeah :joy:

Planning is happening for now. And chatting and hyping. It’ll also be easier for me to notify interested parties when it’s out this way.

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I’m glad you’re still here though. It’s nice to have you in the threads.

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