There is an unnameable disease afflicting nearly all of modern life. It manifests as HR-style bureaucratic management of our behaviors, our relationships, and even how we think. It has been characterized as a feminine type of domineering and petty moralism, but it is a pseudo-femininity, a hypertrophied perversion of the animus that in turn produces a perverse pseudo-masculinity, reducing us all into denatured, bug-like forms. It rules our public spaces openly and explicitly, but has also leaked into private life. It is carried on the very air we breathe. You hold it in your lungs, and its poison flows through your blood. Nobody reading this is immune.
These are the conditions of the Longhouse, and in Passage Prize I we called on writers and artists to demonstrate a way out, to imagine, and thereby bring into being places and worlds beyond its walls. We received many remarkable stories and pieces of art that did just this. The rich and varied contents of the Passage Prize book are a testament to the possibility that such places are retrievable, that from the wellspring of artistic creation we can discover the means to find our way–a passage–to something better.
But still within us there is a lingering sickness. Even as we exit the Longhouse, we suffer its consequences. There is a certain languor you see in the way people walk, an erosion of spirit around the eyes that is not so easily shaken. Men of a certain age, born at the tail End of History, or even earlier, have only ever known confinement of this kind, have only ever known a social order intermediated by legalistic risk-avoidance and a dogmatic obsession with safety above all other concerns. Consent to this regime is rewarded with cheap hedonism, with the endless simulacra of authentic experience–porn and video games and medicated stupor–which shallow gratifications only tighten one’s leash to the Longhouse feedlot.
Exit is only complete once the affliction that has kept one confined is finally purged, and the native impulses neutered by that confinement are restored. We must REWILD. We must shed the deceptive comforts of safetyism, and see through the lies it tells about human nature that we have been conditioned to accept.
Consider the farmhouse pig, the plump, pink swine wallowing in shit and mud, gently snorting while waiting its turn for castration. If these animals should ever escape, by accident, or by some fortune as in a great storm that blows open the barn-doors, or by some unaccountable inner urging that leads a stray pig to an opening in the fenceline and into the woods, they will undergo a period of rapid transition into feral form. Within months they will grow coarse hair across their bodies. Tusks will sprout from their snouts. These once fat and torpid creatures will grow lean and belligerent and develop a taste for blood.
How does the pig know when it is free, when it has crossed the barrier from farm to wilderness? By what metabolic process does the condition of its spirit, its reintroduction to its natural and intended home, produce the physical changes to align with this new condition?
There is a lesson for us here. Free from the Longhouse and new to this wilderness, how might we reclaim ourselves? For Passage Prize II, we ask you to consider these questions, to consider the spiritual and physical transformations required to reconstitute our natural form. What is there to be reclaimed? What strength and know-how and native self-understanding might we recover? This is, of course, not without our social and civilizational and technological tendencies, but also this means not being resigned to the clamp of the Burdizzo, and not so tepid or insecure as to be in denial of life’s harsher elements. Simply, demonstrate to us human living as it was meant to be.
May these considerations guide you in your creations. Above all, send us your best.
Be unafraid. Speak truly. And SUBMIT.
- Open September to January 6, 2023
- 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
- Winners will be selected by Mencius Moldbugman, elite poster and author of the story collection Unsqualified Preservations
- We will consider short stories of no more than 10K 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 Raw Egg Nationalist, editor and chief of Man’s World, and the author of the best-selling The Eggs Benedict Option
- We will consider essays and narrative non-fiction totaling no more than 10k words
- Essays may be accompanied by original photographs and/or other visual elements.
- Winners will be selected by Arthur Powell, editor of Atop the Cliffs poetry journal
- 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 Fen De Villiers, whose sculptures can be found at fendevilliers.com
- 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
First Prize winners: $1,500
Second Prize: $1,200
Third Prize: $1,000
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
All proceeds from the sale of the Passage Prize book will help fund this contest. Buy now to help build the culture you want to see in the world.