It's that time! The [now apparently] annual Next Town Over art contest!

Anyone can enter and any medium is welcome, although I aim to include three winning entries in Next Town Over Volume 2 — with full accreditation, natch — so if you go crazy avant garde you're still eligible to win but obviously I can't include songs or installations in the book. All entries will be featured here on the site, though, with a link back to their creators’ sites/pages. I ultimately included all the entries from last year in the printed collection of books 1-4 because they were just so cool; break my heart though it might I cannot do this again as the second collection is 18+ months off and we'll have at least one more art contest's worth of entries to consider: there just flat won't be room!

Last year I had to pick a winner from what was, in my mind, a deadlocked three-way tie. This year I'm just going to plan for three winners.

One grand prize winner will receive:

  1. One signed, numbered Next Town Over Volume 1 hardcover (clothbound, with a foil-stamped slipcover, including books #1-4 and a ton of extra material)
  2. One print copy of Book 5: Wayward. Cover by the inimitable Eric Dagley. These don't even exist yet, so there may be a slight delay getting everything to you.
  3. One original hand-drawn character sketch (character of your choosing, from NTO or otherwise, on 8.5x11" bristol)
  4. A Next Town Over graphic T-shirt in your choice of Vane Black or John Henry Hunter flavor. Unisex sizes S through 3XL. (I have a few girly Ts around for petite womenfolk but they're not something I have a standing inventory of and I wouldn't count on their availability -- just know that if you win and you're an enviably slender girl it doesn't hurt to ask if I've got a better fit for you.)
  5. One signed copy of Oh, God, the Sun is Up: Tales and Fails from 24 Hour Comic Day. This is the weird, nifty little 100-page digest of some of my 24 Hour Comic attempts, successful and less so.
  6. Two Next Town Over bookmarks
  7. Two Next Town Over prints
  8. Three Next Town Over buttons

Two runners-up will win:

  1. One signed, Next Town Over Volume 1 trade paperback (same book as the hardbound limited edition, same extras, just softcover -- and a swank, foil-stamped softcover, at that)
  2. One print copy of Book 5: Wayward. Cover by the inimitable Eric Dagley. These don't even exist yet, so there may be a slight delay getting them to you.
  3. One signed copy of Oh, God, the Sun is Up: Tales and Fails from 24 Hour Comic Day. This is the weird, nifty little 100-page digest of some of my 24 Hour Comic attempts, successful and less so.
  4. Two Next Town Over bookmarks
  5. Two Next Town Over prints
  6. Three Next Town Over buttons

Kickstarter contributors will find these items familiar (apart from Book 5, of course), but if you missed the Kickstarter now's a great time to score most of the fancy higher tier extras for free. You just have to follow the guidelines (well, and win, too of course):

  1. Deadline is October 31, 2013 (so get cracking!)
  2. Send entries to erin@nexttownover.net with subject line NTO ART CONTEST 2013. This is important! I nearly lost a few entries last year (heck, maybe I did lose some and just don't know because I never saw them!) due to missing or incorrect subject lines.
  3. Full color, black and white, digital, traditional, macaroni or pumpkins are all acceptable (in fact pumpkins are encouraged; the NTO Art Contest is an October event and they are super cool and super festive). Although the focus of the contest is on visual art, short stories, etc.. are also welcome & eligible to win (in fact one nearly did last year).
  4. Please work large with visual entries (or take big photos!). .TIFs, .PSDs, .PNGs & JPGs, need to be 2100x3150px or larger for inclusion in the book.
  5. Please include your name as you’d like it to be printed on the site (and/or in the book), along with the URL of any personal site/project you’d like linked to. This also got ignored a lot last year! I will probably not have time to personally email everyone verifying bylines this year.
  6. Your piece must be NTO-related or at least NTO-relevant. Snake, Genevieve, Marshall Snowman and of course any of the comic’s wronged parties are all fair game.
  7. This probably goes without saying, but keep it rated R or under.
  8. Enter as many different pieces as you like, but know that they’ll all be judged individually and will not necessarily increase your chances of winning
  9. By submitting your work to the competition you are granting me (Erin Mehlos) non-exclusive rights to post and reproduce it electronically and in print (with full accreditation).
  10. Delivery of prizes pending their printing/availability (NTO #5 will probably not arrive for a few months. I’ll get them to you ASAP, though, and you can rest assured you’ll have them before anyone else ever sees them.)

And that’s it! If you have any questions please let me know in the comments and I’ll be happy to answer them.

Have fun, get creative, and don’t hesitate to post your project (or let folks know about the contest) on your site/blog/facebook/Twitter.

Once again, I cannot wait to see what you guys come up with.

You can check out last year's amazing entries here.