Unlikely Story Acceptances – ToC and (dis)Honorable Mentions

Well, it’s done. We’ve read the Journal of Unlikely Story Acceptances slush. We’ve discussed it. We’ve re-read some of them and discussed some more (thank Dog they’re short). And now we’re ready to give you a taste of the pain that we inflicted upon ourselves.

With a couple exceptions, most of the stories were bad. Really bad. A good many descended into awful. Ten stories stood out as Exceptionally Awful. Sadly, we can’t publish all of them. Budgets are a harsh mistress. And we had to make some tough choices.

The Worst of the Worst (AKA The Journal of Unlikely Story Acceptances ToC):

War of the Were-Mice by Julie Frost

Why, Ethan, Why?!?!? 🙁 by Brynn MacNab, regrettably

All Flesh is Grass by Kelda Crich

Whinny If You Love Me: A Love Story by Andrew Kaye

Twisty by Siobhan Gallagher

Runners-Up:

A Dark and Stormy Night by Somebody Who Definitely Is Not Mari Ness Or Any of Her Alter Egos. Really.

The Bestest Story I Got (With Helpful Comments from the Writer in Magenta) by A.T. Greenblatt

The Sanguine Prophecies: Book One: A Destiny Revealed by Virginia Campen

Look Inside by Melaine Rees

Neville, the Crime-Fighting Locomotive by Oliver Buckrum

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There was so much badness in this set of submissions that we couldn’t possibly mention it all, but in a clear case of misery loving company, we wanted to take this opportunity to inflict additional pain upon our readers. We have a few (dis)Honorable Mentions, for worst title, and a few (very) special categories.

(dis)Honorable Mentions:

Worst Title (that didn’t already make it to the ToC):

The Sanguine Prophecies: Book One: A Destiny Revealed by Virginia Campen

For Whom the Bellhop Always Rings Twice by John A. McColley

How Legends of Monsters Begin by Jennifer Linnaea

Why Zombies Started Eating Living Brains by Ronald D. Ferguson

Best (worst) gratuitous use of dinosaurs with bells and zombies and the phrase Dark and Stormy Night:

A Dark and Stormy Night by Somebody Who Definitely Is Not Mari Ness Or Any of Her Alter Egos. Really.

Worst example of breaking our rule about no bodily functions:

Appearances by Deva Shore

Best cutesy use of puns/best clever inside-joke for writers. Also for it not actually being a story:

The Style of Elements by Jetse DeVries

Best (worst) use of an actual author as a fiction character:

Neil at the Moon by Hunter Liguore

Best (worst) reference to a classic genre story:

The Ink-Writing Man by Josh Vogt

Best (worst) (most redundant) (like, the same simile 13 times in 600 words) use of similes:

A Fish in the Sea by Jonas David

Best story (by which we mean, was actually a fun and clever story that wasn’t horrible):

Clause of Doom by Vajra Chandrasekera

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The Journal of Unlikely Story Acceptances will (dis)grace our website on April Fool’s Day, 2014.

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