The Big Think, Short Fiction contest was born out of our desire to find new ways of connecting with readers and foregrounding their voices on the site. It also grew out of our realization that narrative fiction is a powerful medium for conveying big ideas, and one that has almost no presence on Big Think.
Big Think, Short Fiction #1 – Sci Fi was an Iron Chef – style competition in which writers had 72 hours (from February 17th to 20th, 2012) to submit a 1000 word short story in response to a surprise “Big Idea” . . . Future Food.
In spite of some serious hiccups involving confusion over what time zone the deadlines referred to, we received 190 submissions, which we consider a resounding success for the contest’s first time out. Even better, many, many of the submissions were funny, powerfully written, and/or mindbending in one way or another. The Future Food theme inspired tales of talking vegetables, vat-grown meat, ritual cannibalism, and homicidal Pekinese.
Choosing the top three was a genuine challenge for judge Nathan Englander, acclaimed author of For the Relief of Unbearable Urges and What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank.
But choose them he did, and today we’re proud to publish the results: