Because I've always wanted to.
Because I have a small store of excellent, thematic prizes.
Because I can.
Once upon a time, in the dark days of high school, I sent out black valentines every year. Every year, I'd come up with a different design and would hand-make black valentines for my most beloved friends.
One year, a black chain of hearts with a dangling red "happy fucking valentine's day."
One year, a piece of black construction paper with a fortune cookie-style strip of paper with a cynical quote about love.
You get the drift.
It's time to re-visit the tradition.
This is a highly subjective contest, in which I will be the last word.
Send me anything -- ANYTHING -- that is your black valentine. A short story, a photo, an actual black valentine, a quote, a picture of something artworky... anything. Anything creative.
I have set up a special email for this:
blackvalentine2008 AT yahoo D com
Pass it on.
A distinterested third party† will strip them of their identity and send them to me for consideration.
Have your entries in by January 31.‡
I will render an opinion on February 2 and will ship the fabulous prize via priority mail on the 4th. This should be plenty of time§ to enjoy your dark valentine treasures on that special, special day.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Presupposing I can find someone to take on the job. Otherwise, you'll just have to trust my inability to play favourites.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): If I gave you a later deadline, you'd only wait until the last minute anyway. Besides, if it's fun and it goes well, I may do it again next year, then you'll have more time to plan.
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): If you are in Canada or points more distant, we'll cross our fingers and pray.