2023 Dream Foundry Contests Will Open to Submissions April 17

The Dream Foundry’s contests for emerging writers and artists will be open to submissions are from April 17 through June 18, 2023.  There are no fees to submit.

The full rules and details regarding the contests, including links to submit and full profiles on the judges, are available here:


This contest is for writers who are relatively new to paid or incoming-earning publication of speculative short fiction in English. To be eligible for this contest, all five rules below must be true of the entrant:

  • You have published a total of less than 4,000 words of paid or income-earning speculative fiction in English.
  • You have earned a total of less than USD 320 from those words.
  • You have never been nominated for any award listed here as a major award in speculative fiction.
  • You are not a previous winner of the Dream Foundry writing contest.
  • No AI, machine learning, or large language model tools were used in the story except for checking spelling and grammar.

Cash prizes will be given to the top three entries. First Place: $1000. Second Place: $500. Third Place: $200.

Writing Contest Judges:

Suzan Palumbo is a Trinidadian Canadian speculative fiction writer, two time Nebula Award finalist, editor, and cofounder of the Ignyte Awards. Her debut dark fantasy/horror short story collection, “Skin Thief: Stories” is forthcoming from Neon Hemlock in fall 2023. Her novella “Countess” will be published by ECW Press in 2024. Her writing has been featured in: The Dark Magazine, Lightspeed Magazine, Fantasy Magazine, The Deadlands, Pseudopod, Podcastle, Anathema: Spec Fic from the Margins, and other venues. A full bibliography can be found at: suzanpalumbo.wordpress.com. She is officially represented by Michael Curry of the Donald Maass Literary Agency. She tweets @sillysyntax and posts on instagram @gothicsyntax. When she isn’t writing, she is usually sketching, listening to new wave, being a silly goth or wandering her local misty forests.

John (@Wiswell) is a disabled writer who lives where New York keeps all its trees. He is a winner of the Nebula Award for Best Short Story and Locus Award for Best Novelette, and a finalist for the Hugo, World Fantasy, and British Fantasy awards for short fiction. His work has appeared in venues such as Tor.com, LeVar Burton Reads, Uncanny Magazine, Diabolical Plots, Lightspeed Magazine, Podcastle, Escape Pod, and the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. His debut novel, SOMEONE YOU CAN BUILD A NEST IN, is due out from DAW Books in 2024.


This contest is for artists who are relatively new to paid illustration work for speculative publications in English.  To be eligible for this contest, all the following rules must be true of you:

  • You have a maximum of one (1) commissioned/original artwork for the cover of a speculative publication.
  • You have only two (2) or less non-original artworks (reprint/licensed art) used for covers of speculative fiction magazines or publications.
  • You have never been nominated for any Hugo award for art, including fan categories.
  • You are not a previous winner of the Dream Foundry art contest

Cash prizes will be given to the top three entries. First Place, Monu Bose Prize for Art: $1000. Second Place: $500. Third Place: $200.

Artist Contest Judges:

Solomon Robert Nui Enos is a Native Hawaiian artist, illustrator, and visionary. Born and raised in Makaha Valley (O‘ahu, Hawai‘i), Solomon hails from the well-known Enos ‘ohana. Solomon has been making art for more than 30 years and he is adept at artistic expression in a wide variety of media including oil paintings, book illustrations, murals, and game design. A self-described “Possibilist” Solomon’s art expresses an informed aspirational vision of the world at its best via contemporary and traditional art that leans towards Sci-Fi and Fantasy. His work touches on themes like collective-consciousness, ancestry and identity, our relationship with our planet, and all through the lens of his experience as a person indigenous to Hawai’i.

Solomon has exhibited in Biennial X (Honolulu Museum of Art), 6th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (Queensland Art Gallery), CONTACT art exhibitions, and others. His work is held in private collections and in the public collections of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center and Hawai’i State Art Museum. He has led numerous community mural projects and has received art commissions for hotels, corporate offices, public buildings, and schools in Hawai’i. His latest works include murals and augmented-reality installations for Google and Disney.

Rumours suggest that Sloane Hong [they/them] is an illustrator, comic artist and tattooer who lurks somewhere deep within the agonising, suburban sprawl of Tāmaki Makaurau, Aotearoa. However, these claims have yet to be verified. Documented photo evidence of their work may be found on plaest2k.me or on twitter and instagram using the handle @plaest2k.

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