The Luminaire Award for Best Prose is Alternating Current Press’ annual writing award to recognize the best prose and hybrid work submitted to the press. All prose submitted to Alternating Current is considered for the award, and there is no additional submission process. The winner is announced each spring/summer from our prose semifinalists, selected by an external judge with knowledge in the craft, to receive publication, publicity, a monetary award, and other incentives from our press.

Out of 203 individual stories and over 500 manuscripts that we read this year, Alternating Current acquisitions staff selected 7 stories in a blind reading to send to our phenomenal judge, author Meredith Alling, to select the winners in a second blind reading. We are so proud of these selections, and we look forward to publishing them on The Coil throughout 2017. Stay tuned to the journal to read them throughout the year!

Find out more:

Congratulations to the 2017 Winners:

First Place:
“Ephemeral Girls” by L.L. Madrid

L.L. Madrid lives in Tucson. She has an affinity for desert creatures and other feral things. When she’s not writing, she edits a peculiar little journal called Speculative 66. Links to L. L. Madrid’s works can be found at

Judge’s Comments: “‘Ephemeral Girls’ is a beautifully written, complex story about our moral obligation to others, and to ourselves. I especially loved the energy of this piece, and the rich detail (‘… suckling at the bladder from a box of wine …’).

Read “Ephemeral Girls” on The Coil.

Second Place:
“Sharon’s Lover Is Dissipating” by James R. Gapinski

Third Place:
“Entanglement” by Joel Wachman

Fourth Place:
“The Necessary Emptying” by Christine Olivas

Fifth Place:
“We went to Polonnaruwa to find history” by Subashini Navaratnam

The 2017 Finalists:

“What Little Boys Are Made Of” by Joel Wachman

“Monsters in the Agapanthus” by Jessica Barksdale

Our 2017 Judge:

Meredith Alling is the author of Sing the Song (Future Tense Books). She lives in Los Angeles, and her website is

Entries are now open for the 2018 contest. Enter here.

The Coil

Literature to change your lightbulb.

Alternating Current Press

Written by

Indie press dedicated to lit that challenges readers & has a sense of self, timelessness, & atmosphere. Publisher of @CoilMag #CoilMag (

The Coil

The Coil

Literature to change your lightbulb.

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade