HBO and The Root announce a creative partnership – a branded writing contest for emerging Black writers – inspired by HBO’s new series, Lovecraft Country. The contest, titled For The Love Of The Craft, offers an opportunity for emerging Black artists to lend their voice to the short fiction contest, to have their writing reviewed by expert digital editors at The Root, as well as talented television writers from HBO, and ultimately have their work featured and published on The Root.

For The Love Of The Craft contest, launching Wednesday, September 2 and produced by G/O Media’s award-winning content studio, G/O Media Studios, will announce a single writing prompt, inspired by themes from Lovecraft Country, with hopes to uncover new Black voices and the passionate storytelling of fiction writers. Participants will have two weeks to submit their short fiction of less than 750 words, before finalist stories are judged by an editor from The Root as well as Lovecraft Country’s co-executive producers and writers, Jonathan Kidd and Sonya Winton-Odammten, and a winner is chosen.

The Root has been a leader in the amplification of Black voices, and aims to uplift conversations that often go unheard outside of African American communities. Its writers and editors are award-winning, prolific Black journalists, many with honors from institutions like the National Association of Black Journalists. The HBO series Lovecraft Country follows protagonists as they embark on a road trip across 1950s Jim Crow America. The journey leads them to overcome both literal and fictional monsters among the terrors of racist white America.

The winning writer will have their story published in a branded feature running on The Root in mid-October, in addition to receiving a $5,000 prize and a writing mentorship from HBO’s Kidd and Winton. For the full list of writing guidelines, official rules, and writing prompt, please continue to the For The Love Of The Craft landing page.

For The Love Of The Craft, Official Writing Prompt:

Lovecraft Country looks at the history of Black Americans as overflowing with all kinds of monsters, literal and figurative. That’s why we’re asking short story writers to pick a decade or an important moment in Black American history, and weave a tale of the monsters that litter that time. As long as the story is fictional, we want to experience through your writing the collision of the historic and monstrous. Whether this be the monsters of oppression, the monsters of folklore, or some new beast, we’re open to everything … and, much like in Lovecraft Country, we’re curious to see how these ideas and genres combine to show us something new.