HOLIDAY CONTEST: Show a Little Restraint!


Before you drink all the eggnog, eat all the pie, and come-on to your co-workers at the office holiday party, show a little restraint.

Write a short short that uses each word only once, and email it to by December 31 at midnight for your chance to win Electric Literature vol. 1 and be published on The Outlet. Only one entry per writer. Please include your entry into the body of your email.


WHAT: Electric Literature’s Holiday Restraint Short Short Contest

REQUIREMENTS: A short short of 30 to 300 words, that uses each word only once. (Do not repeat any words! Not even pronouns or indefinite/definite articles.) This contest is free. For the nit-picky rules, click here.

DUE: December 31st by midnight. Email submissions to

THE JUDGE: Former publisher of High Times and author Mike Edison


1st place: Electric Literature vol. 1, Paperback; Dirty! Dirty! Dirty! signed by Mike Edison
2nd place: Electric Literature vol. 1, Digital
3rd place: Raymond Queneau’s Exercises in Style

Contest judge Mike Edison is the former publisher of High Times and author of Dirty! Dirty! Dirty! Of Playboys, Pigs, and Penthouse Paupers, an American Tale of Sex and Wonder. What qualifies Mike Edison to judge a contest of restraint? Well-versed in life’s indulgences — drugs, sex, rock and roll, and the art of drinking beer in the shower — he knows what restraint is not. Mike says, “I LEARNED HOW TO JUDGE A BATTLE INSIDE A STEEL CAGE AND WHEN I MAKE A DECISION IT STICKS!!!”

For chronicles of American adventure and tips for shower-drinking, check out Mike’s book tour blog on The Outlet.

The winner will receive Electric Literature vol. 1 and a signed copy of Dirty! Dirty! Dirty! That’s all six issues of Electric Literature, which you can keep for yourself or give as an apology gift to one of the many people you will inevitably wrong during the holiday season. The first runner up will receive EL vol. 1 in any digital format, which includes Single Sentence Animations and audio. The second runner up will receive a copy of Raymond Queneau’s Exercises in Style to encourage us all to remember the powerful lessons learned over the course of this contest.

All three winning short shorts will be published on Electric Literature’s blog, The Outlet.

Confused? Here are some nit-picky rules.


About the Author

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