Well…I really had meant to write about something other than a writing contest, but this particular one came to my attention, and given the due dates, I think it’s worth mentioning. Authors First is in the middle of a contest that is accepting both novel and short story entries. The company is a conference space and educational site for writers, but winners of the contest will have their work published through The Story Plant, an independent publishing company. Novelists can look forward to a book contract while short story writers will have their work featured in an anthology.
The contest closes on September 30th, so unless you want to go NaNoWriMo-Hulk-Smash on your novel (and somehow also manage time to edit it into something coherent before submitting), this probably isn’t that great an opportunity, unless you already have something written. For short story writers, I think a month plus is a more than manageable time frame to put together something good.
There doesn’t seem to be any mention of genre in the contest description, but it seems that The Story Plant focuses more on literary fiction or thriller style fiction. However, if there isn’t a listed restriction, I see no harm in trying to submit things in other genres (and I will admit my research into their works is rather cursory). If this sounds like a contest you’d be interested in, you can check out the contest page over at Authors First.