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Portable Story Series is a 501(c)3 organization. We are funded by $10 story submission fees (75% of which are given to the Grand Prize winner as a cash prize; 25% goes to our series) as well as donations made through our fiscal sponsor, Fractured Atlas. Our Grand Prize Audio Productions are produced for free.

If you want to support our work, please consider donating today! Donations sustain our series administration, outreach, and communications, and they enable us to provide small honorariums to contest judges and narrators.

Thank you so much!




We Have A Winner!

We’re delighted to announce the winner and runners-up for our LOVE STORY contest!

Congratulations to MARY LIZA HARTONG whose story, FALLING IN LOVE AT THE LIPSTICK LAGOON, was chosen by our judge, author Kate Bolick. FALLING IN LOVE AT THE LIPSTICK LAGOON will be recorded in the next month at CDM Sound Studios, Inc. in Manhattan. The Grand Prize audio production of the story will be available for download here.

The five runners-up are:

  • Moondance, by Ruth Knafo Setton
  • Hellen Keller, by Lauren Waterman
  • Lifespan of a Mobile Home on Fire, by Bridgette Shade
  • A String of Pearls, by Anne G. Orchardson
  • Marble Angel, by Joseph T. Argo, jr.

Thank you for all your submissions!

For our contest rules, click here

Subscribe here!



Submissions for the contest theme, “FEAR”, are now closed. The winning story will be announced in early November and will be posted for download in December.

The theme for our next contest will be available to Newsletter subscribers shortly and made publicly available in December. So, why not take advantage of the extra time to write and sign up for our newsletter here.

Thank you for your submissions to our FEAR contest!

For our contest rules, click here

Subscribe here!



This contest’s fiction theme is “FEAR”


Stories must be submitted by OCTOBER 13th, 2017.


Your story must be between 2,500 and 4,500 words. Fiction stories only, please. Before submitting your story, please read our full instructions here and our Official Rules here.
The submission fee is $10. The winning author receives $250, or 75% of the proceeds generated from story submissions (whichever is greater).

Submit your story here!


Our Next Short Story Contest

Submissions for our next short story contest are OPEN.
Genre: Fiction
Theme: Moment of Truth
Word count: 2500-4500
Due date: May 31st, 2017
Submission fee: $10
Judge: TBA
Grand Prize: Audio production of the winning story (valued at $5500) and 75% of the proceeds generated from submission fees or $250 (whichever is greater).

We Have A Winner!

The winning story for our “LOVE STORY” theme has been selected. Congratulations to Mary Liza Hartong, whose story, “FALLING IN LOVE AT THE LIPSTICK LAGOON”,  was chosen by our judge, author Kate Bolick. The grand prize includes an audio production of her story, which will be available for download in late April in our LISTEN section.

The five runners-up are:

  • “MOONDANCE”, by Ruth Knafo Setton
  • “HELLEN KELLER”, by Lauren Waterman
  • “LIFESPAN OF A MOBILE HOME ON FIRE”, by Bridgette Shade
  • “A STRING OF PEARLS” by Anne G. Orchardson
  • “MARBLE ANGEL” by Joseph T. Argo, Jr.

Thank you for all your submissions to our inaugural contest.

For more information about our contest rules, click here.


“Daddy’s Record”
by Matthew B. Kelley

“Daddy’s Record” by Matthew B. Kelley is the winning story for our fourth contest theme: MOMENT OF TRUTH. This story was performed by Dion Graham (17 minutes 48 seconds).


Synopsis: A boy finds himself in a dance with his father.

Click below to hear a small sample of the story

About the Author

Matthew B. Kelley is a writer and teacher raised in Atlanta, GA. He received a BS in Chemistry from Morehouse College. He has received writing fellowships from Kimbilio and Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop. He currently teaches Chemistry at Langston Hughes High School in Atlanta, GA.

About the Judge

Rion Amilcar Scott’s short story collection, Insurrections (University Press of Kentucky, 2016) was awarded the 2017 PEN/Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction. Presently, he teaches English at Bowie State University.

And now as long as space endures
And as long as there are beings to be found
May I likewise continue to remain
To drive away the sorrows of the world.



At CDM Studios with Dion Graham


Dion Graham, from HBO’s The Wire, also narrates The First 48 on A&E. An award-winning and critically acclaimed actor and narrator, he has performed on Broadway, Off-Broadway, internationally, in films, and in several hit television series. Working with publishers large and small he’s been honored with numerous Audie Awards, the Odyssey Award and Odyssey Honors, many AudioFile Earphone awards, and multiple PW Listen Up Awards. He’s been named an AudioFile Golden Voice, Booklist’s Voice Of Choice, Publishers Weekly’s Narrator Of The Year, and to various other ‘Best Of’ lists. Known for excellence across genres his performances have been praised as thoughtful and compelling, vivid and full of life.


With each contest, we feature charities and non-profits that are doing vital work that deserves greater visibility.  For our “Moment of Truth” contest, instead of charging download fees for “Daddy’s Record”, we ask that you make a contribution to support the work of InsideOUT WRITERS.


With each contest, we feature charities and non-profits that are doing vital work that deserves greater visibility.  For our “Moment of Truth” contest, instead of charging download fees for “Daddy’s Record”, we ask that you make a contribution to support the work of InsideOUT WRITERS.


We start with a great story. Find the perfect narrator. And create a powerful performance.


Here are the judges for our past contests.


The people behind Portable Story Series

Portable Story Series was developed by Charles de Montebello and Erin Williams. Having worked with Charles in the studio, Christopher Camp came on board to build the website and shoot our videos. Together, we’re excited about creating a series that we hope you’ll truly enjoy.

Charles de Montebello

Charles de Montebello is a native New Yorker with over 25 years of sound engineering experience. He is the winner of two Grammy awards, and multiple Audie awards. He’s always found the most success comes from a good personal experience – being able to work in an environment that feels comfortable and inspiring – so when he opened CDM Studios in 1998, he knew he was filling a void.

Erin Williams

Erin Williams’ professional background includes over 12 years working in dialogue facilitation, documentary filmmaking, media relations and training, and outreach and engagement. She freelances within a variety of sectors and enjoys learning more about the world every day.

Christopher Camp

Formerly from Audible, Amazon, and MLB.tv, Christopher Camp is a Grammy winning audio editor and has shot award winning films. He has worked with Woody Allen, Kate Winslet, and Thandie Newton among many. As founder of Analog Detail he is a designer, a developer, and an audiophile who is passionate about motion and UI.

CDM Studios

Portable Story Series is administered by CDM Sound Studios, located in midtown Manhattan. Now in its 18th year, CDM has rapidly distinguished itself as a premier recording and editing facility, specializing in voiceover, ADR, and audio-post services. Most recently, CDM has been home to many popular podcasts, such as Alec Baldwin’s “Here’s the Thing”, and Serious Eat’s podcast, “Special Sauce”.

With Portable Story Series, we’re creating an online storytelling platform that merges our love for audio with support for positive social causes that deserve greater visibility. With access to some of the best voice talent out there, it seemed a small leap for our studios to bring your stories to life.

We’re excited to create Portable Stories with you!


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    Fractured Atlas is a 501(c)(3) public charity. Contributions to Portable Story Series via Fractured Atlas are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. Donating to Portable Story Series sustains the series, its administration, and its social media outreach, and it enables us to provide small honorariums for contest judges and narrators.