Blue Ribbon Army Anthology: Volume 1; Herding Cats

The Leaking Pen is proud to be working with the Blue Ribbon Army, or BRA, and the writers who are part of BRA, to present an anthology of works, presented and sold for charity!

BRA has been dedicated since the start to doing good works and charity fundraising, and one of our greatest partnerships is with Kids Need To Read (KNTR), a charity dedicated to getting books to kids who might not have access to fun, quality reading.

We are also dedicated to sharing our geekery and imaginations. Putting the two together, we are creating an anthology of stories, poetry, essays, and interviews by members of BRA. We will then sell this anthology, digitally as well as hopefully physical, and all proceeds will be donated to KNTR.

This anthology has been in the works for a while, and a hope had been to have it ready in time for our annual celebration of Fan Fest, but… 2020 has stopped conventions and put a damper in so many projects. At this time, there will not be a Phoenix Convention by any name, which is going to put a damper on our normal donation activities, which is why we feel its so important to make this one happen by the time we would have otherwise been together.

The Nitty Gritty! This anthology is open to authors, writers, and creators who are current members of The Blue Ribbon Army only. You don’t need to be a member of our writer subgroup (but you should be anyway! link below). You do need to be a member of BRA as of yesterday, December the 17th.

This is a non paying submission. You are donating temporary use of your writing for charity. (Temporary. Like any proper anthology, rights do revert back to the creator after a certain length of time) The Rights Assignment we will be using is linked below for you to review.

We are looking for poetry, flash fiction, short stories. On the non fiction end, Essays about being a Geek and or Nerd, Fandom, being a member of BRA, that also fit our anthology theme. We are looking to have an interview or two, but we are not soliciting for interviews, unless you happen to have a contact to get an interview, on the theme of reading and stories, with someone we would want in our pages.

We are also looking for any artwork, both potential covers, and interior artwork, that fit the theme.

The theme for this first (hopefully not last) anthology is Herding Cats. Cats have been important to BRA since its inception, through memes, lolcats, and general sharing of our furry friends. Any work of fiction has to include a cat. It doesn’t need to be central to the plot or theme of the work, but it needs to be THERE, and for more than a single throwaway sentence. (Bonus points if the cat gets petted. As many video games have recently learned, we all want to pet the kitty.) Beyond that, we do not have genre requirements, but as we are a fandom group, sci fi and fantasy will never go amiss.
Essays should include cats, or the concept of herding cats, along with generally being BRA related. (Geekery, fandom)

Poems are welcome up to 75 lines. Flash fiction between 100 and 1000 words. Short stories up to 3500 words. Essays up to 3500 words as well.

If you’re interested, please submit a .txt file or google doc link to with BRA ANTHOLOGY in the subject of your email. In the body, please copy and paste the below, filling it out.

My name:
The name of my work:
Wordcount (if applicable):
Category (Poem, Flash fiction, Short Story):
Am I a Member of BRA?:

Thank you!

Please note, if you submitted to the Anthology previously under the Awesome Writer’s group, I WILL be reaching out to you. If you don’t hear from me by December 23rd, please resubmit and mention that you submitted originally. If you submitted to the SECOND anthology, and your work fits for the first, I do NOT have your submission. Please resubmit as above, and let me know you submitted previously. Thank you!

Link to the Assignment of Rights:

BRA Writers and Authors page