Imagine 2200 Imagine 2200: Write the future

 Full details 

Grist is excited to open submissions for the fourth year of our Imagine 2200: Climate Fiction for Future Ancestors short story contest. 

Imagine 2200 is an invitation to writers from all over the globe to imagine a future in which solutions to the climate crisis flourish and help bring about radical improvements to our world. We dare you to dream anew. [Get Imagine updates: Sign up for our email list]

We are thrilled to also announce the judges for our 2024/25 contest: Omar El Akkad and Annalee Newitz. El Akkad is an author and journalist whose award-winning debut novel, American War, is an international bestseller and was selected by the BBC as one of 100 Novels That Shaped Our World. Newitz is a science fiction and nonfiction writer whose third novel, The Terraformers is a finalist for the Nebula Award, and whose latest nonfiction book, Four Lost Cities, is a national bestseller.


The premise

Imagine 2200 celebrates stories that envision the next decades to centuries of equitable climate progress, imagining futures of abundance, adaptation, reform, and hope. We are looking for stories that are rooted in creative climate solutions and community-centered resilience, showing what can happen as solutions take root, and stories that offer gripping plots with rich characters and settings, making that future come alive.

In 2,500 to 5,000 words, show us the world you dream of building.

Your story should be set sometime between the near future and roughly the year 2200.

A great Imagine story is not afraid to explore the challenges ahead — the path to climate progress will involve struggle and adaptation, and we invite you to show that — but ultimately offers hope that we can work together to build a more sustainable and just world. We want to see stories that incorporate real world climate solutions and climate science, as well as cultural authenticity (a deep sense of place, customs, cuisine, and more) and characters with fully-fledged identities. We especially want to read — and share — stories that center solutions and voices from the communities most impacted by the climate crisis. 

If you’re newer to climate, below this prompt we’ve included some resources to get you started in finding inspiration from existing solutions. Feel free to use these as a jumping off point, or to bring in any climate and justice solutions you find inspiring.

Your story can bring these principles into any genre — we love seeing climate themes show up in love stories, mysteries, adventure, comedy, and more. Climate connects to every part of life, and all sorts of stories can be climate stories, so dream big — envision a world where climate solutions have flourished, and where we prioritize our well-being, work to mend our communities, and lead lives that celebrate our humanity. We can’t wait to read what you come up with.

* * *

There is no cost to enter. Submissions close June 24, 2024, 11:59 p.m. U.S. Pacific Time.

The winning writer will be awarded $3,000. The second- and third-place winners receive $2,000 and $1,000, respectively. An additional nine finalists will each receive $300. All winners and finalists will have their story published in an immersive collection on Grist’s website.

We are also partnering with Oregon State University’s Spring Creek Project, which will offer the winning writer (or a runner-up, in the case the winner cannot accept) the opportunity to participate in its Environmental Writing Fellowship and Residency, including a writing residency at the Cabin at Shotpouch Creek for the winner to spend up to four weeks in residence to continue their climate writing project. The Fellow will receive a $3,000 honorarium from Spring Creek Project.

Stories will be reviewed by a panel of experts, and judged by acclaimed authors Omar El Akkad and Annalee Newitz.

Your submission must be an original fictional story of between 2,500 and 5,000 words that has not been previously published. The full contest rules are available on our submission portal. 


 

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