Fiction Vortex 2014 Horror Issue

The Horror 2014 Issue is Alive!

Horror is about suspense and loss of control. Right? Well, in our process of metamorphosing from lean summer busy-bodies into lazy winter bums we are resigned to exerting our control before we are faced with coats, large family dinners, and holiday marketing. What does this have to do with the October Issue?

We aren’t announcing the winners of the contest until we actually post those stories on the site. Suspenseful, right?

However, all of the information about the winners and is available for spoilsports in the eBook of the Horror 2014 issue. Get it on Amazon and Smashwords.

For those who want to revel in the suspense, continue to look for the new horror stories here.

Fiction Vortex 2014 Horror Issue

Fiction Vortex 2014 Horror Issue

Johnny Worthen Kicks Off Fiction Vortex Horror 2014

It’s October and time for horror! Our Special Guest Judge has prepared a few words.

So, heeeeeeeres Johnny… Worthen!

Johnny Worthen Kicks Off Fiction Vortex Horror 2014

Johnny Worthen- 2nd Annual Fiction Vortex Horror Contest Judge

There are two types of fiction meant to induce a physical reaction in the reader: Pornography and Horror. Putting aside the smut, let us play in the shadows, see those things and visit those places that send gooseflesh down our backs, sweat to our palms, and make us switch on more lights in a perfectly bright house.

This year’s Fiction Vortex Horror Contest has some of the best short fiction horror I’ve ever seen. Entries ran the gamut from personal to apocalyptic. Filled with strangeness and terror, madness and fear, these stories are a tour to the dark places of the imagination. Guided by expert writers who build tension upon fear and lure us into places of wonder and fright these stories that do not end at the final word but haunt the reader for days like a dark secret memory.

As this year’s Special Guest Judge, I journeyed through the top five stories, basing rank on both visceral reaction and technique. Fiction Vortex will be sharing these top stories on the site, one a week, all month so you can get into the spirit of the season. This is October, the in-between time, Samhain, Fall, the season of change and decay, when things are not alive but neither are they wholly dead. This is the season of the witch, make no mistake. Welcome to the fair!

The week of Halloween is when my pick for top story will be announced, and the contest winner will be awarded gifts and prizes and possibly a visit from either a psychiatrist or an exorcist. Stay tuned and let us begin…

The top stories are (in no particular order) are:

‘The Things We Carry’ – Amanda Crum
‘Other Side of the Tracks’ – Daniel DeLong
‘Collection’ – Rebecca Ann Jordan
‘Dormant’ – Grimm Webster
‘The Friends’ – Luke Dykowski

*A Note From the Editors – For those of you that want your horror in larger doses and can’t wait a whole month, the Horror Issue ebook is available now! And if you want to know who won before the end of the month… then you will have to buy the issue as well. Bwahahaha. Here is the Kindle version, and for all other formats, check the Smashwords version.

Winner of the August 2014 Editor’s Choice Award

What a month August was! I mean, August is always a month. But it was also a great month for stories on Fiction Vortex. Thus it is with hearts full of sorrow and excitement that we announce the winner of the August 2014 Editor’s Choice Award. Sorrow because all the stories were fantastic in their own way, making it so hard to choose just one, and excitement because, well, it’s always exciting to announce a winner.

Cue the drum roll…

Read more

Second Annual Fiction Vortex Horror Contest


In another impromptu Fiction Vortex Staff meeting over the phone, Dan and I (Mike) realized we had slacked.

Dan: You forgot about the Horror Contest.

Mike: Uh, what?

Dan: The Horror Contest. You. Forgot. About. It.

Mike: I don’t write horror. Why would I be in a contest for horror?

Dan: Fiction Vortex has a horror contest!

Mike: It does? When? Why didn’t I know about this?

Dan:… … …

Mike: Are you there?

Dan: Are you?

Mike: Uh huh. So… you forgot about the horror contest.

Dan: click

Mike: Dan?


Mike: I found a judge.

Dan: Wha… A judge? Why?

Mike: For the Horror Contest.

Dan: Oh. Phew. Okay. Who is it?

Mike: This really cool author that always wears tie-dye shirts and writes creepy paranormal books… wait. Why else would would we need a judge?

Dan: Hmm?

Mike: Why else would I need a judge?

Dan: Oh. That. You don’t need to worry about it.

Mike: Uh. What?

Dan: So. Who is our judge?



with Guest Judge Johnny Worthen

 Five horror stories will be chosen for the October 2014 issue of Fiction Vortex (usual terms and conditions apply). Because it’s a special occasion, we’re also increasing the normal rewards and Mr. Worthen will be choosing the winners.

While regular submissions will continue as normal, the submission period for the horror contest will only be open from August 8th to September 15th.

Please use the regular submission process, but put “Horror Submission” in the subject line of the email.

Winners will be announced October 1st. The October 2014 issue, featuring original cover art by Niels Christensen, will be released shortly after. All stories will be featured on the Fiction Vortex site during the month of October, with the winning story appearing on Halloween, October 31st, 2014.

Our thanks goes out to Johnny Worthen and all participants.

Editor’s Choice Award Winner – July 2014

You’ve come prepared, I see. You brought your isometric choice inducer, a few anti-indecision spells, and a few buffs for improving quality perception, all in an effort to get us to choose our favorite story from Fiction Vortex’s July issue. Well it won’t work, I tell you.

Because we’ve already made up our minds.

Read more

Winner of the Editor’s Choice Award – June 2014

You realize that the year is half over, right? All that relief you felt when the holiday season was over, at this point we’re now getting closer to that again rather than farther away. The summer will be over before you know it, the ice golems will emerge from their hibernation caves, and we’ll all be miserable again.

But in the meantime, cheer up grumpy gus! We’ve got the winner of the June 2014 Editor’s Choice award!

Read more

Editor’s Choice Award Winner – April 2014

The weather is getting hotter, and so is the fiction. Not for long, though. Our story warming chamber is on the fritz, so you’ll have to make do with regular room-temperature stories. Or is it internet-temperature? Does the internet have a temperature? Wait, we’re getting off track. Bottom line, the temperature doesn’t matter because you’re not physically consuming the story, and the narrative quality is still top-notch.

Read more

Editor’s Choice Award Winner – March 2014

We’re a little late with the announcement of the Editor’s Choice award because we wanted to wait until after the whole April Fool’s Day business. We already throw around enough bad jokes and misdirection that we saw no reason to add another level to the confusion. Also, we had a dragon on loan, and it got out of the holding pen. So we spent the whole day running around with nets and then trying to release each other from the nets.

You know, a pretty standard Tuesday at Fiction Vortex.

Read more

Editor’s Choice Award Winner – February 2014

We’re still reeling from all the fun we had with the Best of 2013 poll, and the food poisoning. That’s what you get for eating week-old dragon sushi to celebrate the winner. Fortunately, it’s already time for another winner, and we’re much clearer on what not to do this time. Behold, the winner of the Editor’s Choice award for the February 2014 issue is…

Read more