A Storied Affair

Celebrating Writing and Food

Congregation Bet Ha’am is pleased to announce its third annual gala, A Storied Affair, currently scheduled to be held on Saturday, May 30, 2020.

Our gala event features ten-minute readings of original stories, excerpts, essays, and poetry by Maine-based writers, interspersed with an indulgent, five-course meal. This year’s theme is justice. We interpret the theme broadly to reflect times of rallying against great injustices, small moments of victory, heroic figures both super and mundane.

While this is our congregation’s main fund-raising event, we hope to make the evening accessible to all, with tickets starting at roughly $36/person. We will also offer higher priced tickets and a raffle.

Call for Written Submissions

From March 1 to March 31, 2020, we will accept works in writing to be read at our gala. There is no submission fee. We continue to welcome submissions, even if the gala is postponed to the summer or fall.

Breaking news: The deadline for submission is now April 15, 2020!

Submissions must be:

  • Original work written by a Maine-based writer
  • Related to the theme of justice
  • 3,000 words or less
  • The work that will be presented at the event
  • New this year! Accompanied by an audio recording of the work

All submissions must be submitted using the form below (also available at bit.ly/ASACFW2020)

Writers who are selected (and a guest of each) will be honored attendees at the dinner.  

For questions, please check our FAQ below.

What is a “Maine-based author”?
If you consider yourself to be Maine-based, we do too!

What if my piece is shorter than ten minutes?
We welcome submissions of all lengths up to ten minutes (3,000 words). Shorter submissions may be grouped together into a single ten-minute segment. Don’t let a shorter work stop you!

What if my poem has specific formatting important to the piece?
You may retain your formatting, but please change the font to Times or Times New Roman.

What if I want to submit more than one piece?
We welcome multiple submissions! If you have multiple separate works, please submit them separately using our form. If your works are very short, you may submit on one form.

How do I record an audio file? 
There are a number of free programs that you may already have, including QuickTime. If you need to download a program, we suggest Audacity because it is compatible with many devices, free, and easy to use.

What if I cannot or do not want to create an audio file?
Please contact us directly (story @ bethaam.org) with your concern.

Why are you asking for an audio recording this year?
The reason is multi-faceted. All works will be presented out loud and it is important for the selection panel to be able to hear how the piece sounds. Additionally, a recording gives us a concrete idea of the time that it takes for a piece to be read. 

What if I do not want to read my piece myself at the gala?
We have talented proxy readers available–just let us know that’s what you’d like.

What about COVID-19?
Like so many other synagogues and organizations, we are frequently assessing our in-person programs. We are accepting submissions in writing for the gala because it will be held as soon as possible if not on May 30.

What if my question isn’t answered here?
Please contact us at story @ bethaam.org and we will be happy to answer any questions.

Please go to this page to submit your work.

I’m interested!

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