Submission Guidelines

To ensure that your entry is accepted and to give your story the best chance of success, please follow our submission guidelines. Please note that entries that do not follow these guidelines may not be accepted/published.

  • Stories must be 800 words or fewer. Focus on the moment and message you wish to convey and leave out any unnecessary words.
  • Your entry must be entirely your own personal work and must not break any copyright laws. It can include quotes or other references only if credit is clearly acknowledged.
  • We prefer original, unpublished stories but will accept work that has already been published online. For previously published work, you must clearly acknowledge where the piece was originally published (including your own blog) and have written permission to republish.
  • Your entry should be accessible to any reader, regardless of geographical location, age or background. Avoid jargon and spell out any acronyms used.
  • Write naturally and from the heart. Use your own voice and write from your own point of view.
  • Focus on the experience, using emotive, descriptive language.
  • Make your writing easy to scan by using short sentences and short paragraphs (2-3 sentences max).
  • Be original. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind, be creative and even be a little controversial.
  • Have a great title. Keep it simple, grab attention, make it descriptive and don’t be afraid to be creative!
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback. We suggest asking up to three people to read and edit your story before you submit it.
By submitting your entry, you agree to give permission for Terra Incognita to post your entry and profile on our website and social media platforms.
Entries are limited to one per person.

If you have any questions about the guidelines or the competition, please send us an email at