Justin D. Lee
Matthew the Stoat
The cardinal imperative of the wilderness is survival. That is all. Cast out from civilizational comforts, or having left on one’s own, the horizon of concern is bounded by the barest and most urgent of needs: water, food, shelter, warmth. High-minded abstractions are set aside. Actions are automatic. One is led by instinct, assuming such instincts remain.
Having passed this first test of survival, the Rewilding that accompanies passing through the first long night, new imperatives arise like shoots from the soil. The horizon expands. One sets out from his shelter to learn his territory, its borders, its dangers, its valleys and high-ground. One takes on the work of semi-permanence. He must plan for the future, the changing seasons. He hunts, traps, gathers, accumulates. He measures and maps. He builds.
This stage of semi-permanence, of establishing one’s territory, does not follow from any imperial purpose, nor the expansion of any ideological claims. It does not entail a contestation of boundaries against any enemy. That will come later. For now, the survivalist is guided by prudence, self-sufficiency, by practical know-how, the phronesis that comes from doing and observing, so that when the time of fighting commences he will be prepared, and the stage for that fight will be arranged on his terms.
Passage Prize III calls on writers and artists, on creatives of all kinds, to consider the practical applications of his art to account for the circumstances described above. The stage of our present cultural fight, as succinctly described by non-fiction judge Raw Egg Nationalist in last year’s Passage Prize anthology,
may not be as immediate as it can often seem. This is a long road that will take years, even decades to travel, and what is required of us now is the modest, though no less important task of laying the groundwork to get us there.
As Raw Egg Nationalist reminds us: “We are not going to undo many decades, centuries even, of social, cultural and political retardation overnight.”
In this spirit, the theme for this year’s prize is A Survivalist’s Guide to the Current Year.
We will attempt to draw a map of our time and place, a survey of the low and ugly landscapes that surround us, its scarce high ground, its natural shelters and geographic oddities, its abandoned encampments, and we will begin the long work of planning, securing, and testing this landscape for future advantage.
Keep your feet on the ground. Eyes open. In your fiction, poetry, art, and essay writing, put a mirror up to the world and tell us what you see, in as much clarity and unflinching detail as possible.
- Open from December 1, 2023 to March 1, 2024
- Submissions are open to all writers and artists—anons and real name authors alike
- Previously unpublished work only
- One submission per category per person—multiple submissions in the same category will be disregarded
- All submissions are eligible for publication. Submitting work is equal to a consent to publish.
- All submissions must be made via our website (please do not email anyone your submissions directly. Use the form.)
- Submissions will be read and shortlisted by the Passage Prize editor, and winning entries will then be selected by the category judges
- Submissions will be anonymized and evaluated by the judges without knowledge of the author
- OWinners will be selected by Justin D. Lee (@justindeanlee), Editor of First Things, 1st Prize fiction winner from Passage Prize II, and author of the upcoming short-story collection A Prisoner's Cinema forthcoming from Passage Press 2024.
- We will consider short stories of no more than 7K words
- Please do not submit novel excerpts (we will be hosting a novel contest soon)
- Writers are encouraged to submit their very best work, regardless of genre or topic, and are not beholden to any formal or stylistic constraints
- Winners will be selected by Giles Hoffman (@spring_pierian), Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Asylum Magazine
- We will consider essays and narrative non-fiction totaling no more than 7K words
- Essays may be accompanied by original photographs and/or other visual elements.
- Winners will be selected by William Wheelwright (@ploughmansfolly), Passage Prize I winner, writer, farmer.
- We will consider single poems, or up to 3 poems totaling no more than 10 pages, single spaced, 12 point font
- To write good poetry you must risk being cringe; but don’t be cringe
- Winners will be selected by Matthew the Stoat, (@MatthewTheStoat), artist, co-founder of The Exhibition
- Artists can submit up to 3 pieces
- Page dimensions will be 7 x 10″
- Please do not include extra text over your work. If you want to include titles, descriptions, or additional context, please add that on a 4th page
- Submissions can be done in any genre or medium (so long as it can be printed)
- Submissions can be stylistically distinct, or part of a coherent series.
- Non-winning submissions may be used as cover images for stories/essays and/or companions to other elements of the finished book
Prizes & Payouts
- First Prize winners: $1,500
- Second Prize: $1,200
- Third Prize: $1,000
- Editor’s Selection: All additional prize money will be awarded to exceptional finalists in the various categories in the amount of $200 at the editor’s discretion
*For all additional work selected for publication, artists and writers will receive $100.
Winning and selected submissions will be published and sold in a collected volume through Passage Publishing. Passage Publishing will retain a non-exclusive worldwide perpetual license over all submitted work and retains the right to sell this work. Authors and artists retain the right to sell and publish their non-selected work at anytime, and retain the right to sell and publish their selected or winning work after a period of one-year from the submission deadline or with the permission of Passage Publishing, but will not be entitled to royalties made from the sale of the collected volume.
Donations to Passage Prize will be used to fund the prize pool, pay vendors, and reimburse the editors for their time and work. Excess donations will be used to fund subsequent volumes.
SUPPORT THE CONTEST
Passage Prize Volume II: Rewilding (Paperback Edition)
The paperback edition of Passage Prize II: Rewilding; still featuring premium four-color printing on 80lb acid-free paper, a fine art book quality. The anthology features art, fiction, essays, and poetry from a roster of professional and novice craftsmen alike, working well beyond the increasingly narrow boundaries of our moribund mainstream culture. Some call it “outsider” art, others call it “dissident” art. Whatever the label, what binds this work is its quality, the bright heat of life and human blood that emanates from these pages. Nowhere else will you find anything like this.Great art requires patronage. Support the culture you want to see in the world. Book specifications 256 full color pages on 80lb matte-coated acid free paperPerfect Bound, 12pt cover stock with silk laminate coatingView full details
Passage Prize Volume II: Rewilding (Patrician Edition)
Passage Prize Volume I: Exit from the Longhouse (Paperback Edition)
A collection of the most vital works of literature and art you will find anywhere. Selected from over 2000 submissions by judges Zero HP Lovecraft, Curtis Yarvin, Benjamin Braddock and Gio Pennacchietti. Same content as the hardcover, but made with more affordable materials and design elements. Over 300 pages of original art and writing. Original essays from the judges and editor. Digital printView full details