2022 “On Fire” Anthology


Editor Cynthia Gregory invites your submissions!

As a writer, what does "On Fire" mean to you? Express your interpretation of this year's theme in the next Redwood Writers anthology.

Fire is a primal and mythic symbol in life, literature, and the evolution of humankind. Since the discovery of fire, igniting a flame has been a hallmark of warmth and comfort. We share ancestral stories around campfires, and a robust hearth is a symbol of a well-kept home.

As a symbol, fire can mean being consumed by passion. Flames can be a comfort or a danger, as we have discovered in California; as we add a fifth season to our calendars: fire season. Intense heat can refer to a supernatural world beyond our planet as in blazing comets and lava spewing interstellar volcanos.

Haven’t we all burned at some time in the heat of shame, love, or conflict? Certainly, after the past two years, we are familiar with the fever dreams of Covid 19.

The mythology of fire has been used to represent transformation, ambition, and purification. We celebrate good and bad circumstances with something that has been called firewater. We admire pioneers and call them trailblazers and there are some who, like a Phoenix, rise from the ashes.

As a writer, what does On Fire mean to you? If fire ignites your imagination, submit a 2,500-word short fiction or memoir entry by June 15.

Need some ideas? Here are some possible topics:

  • burning embers
  • sizzling passion
  • spontaneous combustion
  • wildfire
  • fever dreams
  • transformation
  • burning ambition
  • ashes
  • purification


Only Redwood Writers members in good standing may submit works to be considered for this anthology.

ONE submission per entrant.

If you are interested in becoming a member, click here for more information.

Submission dates:

Sunday, May 1, 2022

NEW Deadline:
Sunday, July 17, 2022
at midnight

 Got Questions?

Send an email to
[email protected]

Or use the form at the bottom of the page.

Please observe the following contest rules. Only entries that comply with the rules will be considered. No exceptions!


  • The story must relate to the theme of the anthology: "On Fire"
  • The Redwood Branch of the California Writers Club is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and supporting the education of writers. As a non-profit organization, it is our position that the club and its publications do not engage in any political or religious activities. Stories that promote a specific political or religious doctrine will not be accepted.
  • Poetry will not be included, as there is a separate anthology dedicated to poetry.
  • ONE submission per entrant.
  • All stories must be submitted by the Sunday, July 17, 2022, midnight deadline for consideration.
  • Work can be complete works or excerpts from larger works.
  • Work must be previously unpublished by a traditional publisher (self-published works are acceptable.)



At the time of submission, include a 50-word professional biography written in the third person.


  • This is a blind judging. DO NOT place your name or contact information anywhere on your submission
  • Place the title at the top of the first page
  • Word count: No more than 2,500 words
  • 1-inch margins
  • 12-point Times New Roman font
  • Manuscripts must be double-spaced
  • One space after punctuation
  • Page number at the top right
  • An abundance of spelling errors could cause a submission to be rejected prior to the editing process.


Questions should be addressed to [email protected], or use the form at the bottom of this page.



  • Document format: Your manuscript should be formatted as a Microsoft Word document (doc or docx).
  • ONLINE SUBMISSIONS ONLY: All entries must be submitted online using the submission form linked below.


Authors whose work will be included in the anthology will be notified on August 1, 2022. For the benefit of our readers and for our growth as writers, we want to help each other hone these works to make them the best possible. As such, each member whose work is accepted will be expected to work with an editor in order to make recommended revisions.

If the editor-in-chief feels that you need to make specific edits for the integrity of the piece, you have the right to refuse; unfortunately, your refusal is grounds for the story to be eliminated from the anthology.

Meet the Editor-in-Chief



Cynthia Gregory, MFA, is an award-winning author of short stories. Her work has appeared in a range of publications, including The Sun, Glimmer Train, the Briar Cliff Review, Santa Barbara Review, The Ear, and Central PA. She took second place in the Writers Digest annual fiction contest, first place in the Glimmer Train Family Matters short story competition, and first place in the Mark Twain Short Fiction Prize.

Her books, Journaling as Sacred Practice (2016), and What is Possible from Here (2021) are available on Amazon.

Find Cynthia online:

Questions? Comments?

Send Us a Message

If you didn't find the answer to your questions on this page, please use this form, or send an email to:
[email protected]

The editor will respond as soon as possible.

Thank you!

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