There are more short story competitions than words I’ve written. And I’ve written a shit load of words. But finding a FLASH fiction comp (under 1000 words) is a bit of a rarity, so when I do find one, I get a bit giddy.
But lately, I’ve had to weep myself to sleep over the number of writers who have told me they never enter competitions because either: they don’t know how to find them or didn’t know so many existed.
Seriously?! Don’t make me use Caps. The fastest way to get recognition, more often than not is through competitions. The road to traditional publishing (if that’s where you want to go) is like the final fight in Lord of The Rings – fucking endless. Don’t take for granted the ease of entering competitions. Most of you enter weekly writing challenges, like my writespiration, or Esther’s or Charli’s. So there’s actually no excuse.
If you don’t can’t think of shorts or flash for comps then there are plenty of comps for novels too.
Before I give you the list of comps, here’s my top tips for finding competitions:
12 TOP TIPS For Finding Writing Competitions
1 – Nothing like a good old google…!
2 – Keep a bookmarks folder dedicated to writing competitions so you can easily find them
3 – Keep a record of the competitions you enter, with entry date, date of results, the title of your story and the price of entry
4 – Subscribe to my newsletter as each month I will bring you a selection of writing competitions ending in the following month.
5 – Subscribe to Hope Clark Funds for Writers – I know, another newsletter, try not to grumble though this newsletter is chock full of competitions, agents and publishing houses looking for writers, retreats and much more.
6 – Subscribe to Adam Cohen – Winning Writers, because everyone likes a bargain. This website specialises in FREE writing competitions, and most of them have seriously juicy cash prizes.
7 – Follow Esther, cause every Wednesday she posts a new writers market.
8 – Follow Rachel as she does a monthly post on writing competitions.
9 – I don’t know what magazine’s you get overseas but in the UK there are a handful of writers magazines, in particular Writing Magazine, does a bumper edition in the new year with an entire extra magazine with competitions laid out for the whole year.
11 – Check womens’ weekly magazines, often they have competitions too.
12 – Google search for ‘Lists’ of writing competitions like Almond Press.
For the sake of saving my aching fingers from repeating words, format for the competitions listed below is:
Competition name and link, Deadline, Word Count, Entry Fee, Prizes in order of 1st, 2nd, 3rd
No Way Out, March 30th (hurry last call), 700 words, £3.50, Prizes 1st £500, 2nd £300, 3rd £200
Honeyed Quill, 31st March (hurry last call), 100-500 words, $15, Prizes $250, $50, $25
Tethered by Letters, 31st March (hurry last call), 750 words, $10, Prizes $300
One of my faves:
Less Than 100 Words – Every Two Weeks, 100 words, 99p, Prize £20
Writing Magazine, 14th April, 750 words, £5, Prizes £200 £50
MASH, 15th April, 500 words with key words, FREE, Prize $100
Brentwood Writers Circle, 30th April, 75 words, £2, Prizes £40, £20, £15
Just 100 words, Daily, 100 words, $5 then $2 (after first entry), Prizes $50
National Association of Writers’ Groups, rolling comp closes and re opens every 100 entries, 100 words exactly, £3, Prizes £75, £25
Writers Bureau Flash Fiction Competition, 30th April, 500 words, £5, Prizes £300 + course, £200, £100
Writestars’ Short Story, 30th April, 250 words, £3.50, Prizes £100 plus goodies
Exeter Flash, 30th April, 250 words, £4, Prizes £150 £100 £50
The Page is Printed, 6 May, 1 Page, £5, Prizes 4x £75
Esther Newton, 31st May, 100 words, £2 for up to two stories, Prizes 1st £25, 2nd £15, 3rd £10
Bridport Prize, 31st May, 250, £7, Prizes £1000 £500 £250 plus 3x £25 highly commended
Wow! 1000 Word, 31st May, 1000 words, £5, Prizes £200, £100, 50
1000 Word Challenge, Quarterly themed, 1000 words, £5, Prizes, £100, £50, £25
Bath Flash Fiction, 12th June, £9, Prizes, £1000 £300 £100
Brilliant Flash Fiction, 15th June, 750 words, Free, €50, €25, €15
Flash 500, 30th June, 30th Sept, 31st Dec, 500 words, £5, Prizes £300 £100 £50
Ink Tears, 31 July, 500, £3, Prizes £250 £50 and 4x £25
Early Works , 31st August, 100 words, £3, Prizes £100
ELLE Talent Contest, 14th Sept, 700 words, Free, Prizes TBC (this isn’t open yet, but will be later in the year)
Chorleywood Literary Festival, 800 words, £5, Prizes £50 £25 (use link but actual website is down at the moment)
Mere Literary Festival, 24th Sept, 350 words plus key phrase released on 16th Sept – timed competition – open for one week only, £2, Prizes £60 £30
RW Flash, 30th Sept, 500 Words, £10, Prizes £250, £100, £75, £15
RW Monthly Themed, Last Day of Each Month, £5, Prizes £50 £25
Writers Forum, Monthly – must check mag for theme details, £5, Prizes £100 plus publication
Fish – This one has closed, however it is annual so check it out next year, 300 words, £14, Prizes €1000
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Have you found any other flash fiction writing competitions? If so let me know in the comments. What competitions do you enter?