Flash fiction competitions 2022

[Updated 6/8/2022] As I’m solely focussed on a novel right now (and struggling, at that), I’m not really keeping a close eye on the world of flash fiction. But I thought I’d share a list of the competitions that are showing up on my Twitter timeline – hope these are useful for someone. As always, I would recommend you check out all the T&Cs before entering. And good luck!

The theme is ‘Light’, to be interpreted in any way you choose
  • Retreat West Monthly Micro Fiction Competition
  • Closing date: February 13 (monthly competition with a different theme every month)
  • Prizes: 1st place 30% of the entry fees received for the competition. 2nd place 20% of the entry fees received. Both finalists will receive a free entry to the Retreat West annual Flash Fiction Prize (top prize £350, details below) and the winning stories will be published on the website. Shortlisted writers will receive a free entry to the next Monthly Micro Fiction Competition. There is also a secret People’s Prize, which changes each month and is revealed with the results 
  • Judge: doesn’t say
  • Theme: ‘Light’, however you choose to interpret it (this is the prompt for February only, check the website for the latest one)
  • Word limit: has to be 100 words exactly
  • Entry fee: £5 per entry (with an option to receive feedback for £25), multiple entries permitted. Open internationally
  • National Flash Fiction Day (NFFD) Microfiction Competition
  • Closing date: February 15
  • Prizes: 1st place £150, 2nd place £100, 3rd place £50. There will be seven awards of £20 for highly commended pieces. The winning and shortlisted authors will be published in the National Flash Fiction Day 2021 anthology, and receive a print copy of the anthology
  • Judges: writers Chris Allen, Joanna Campbell, Tracy Fells and Damhnait Monaghan
  • Word limit: 100 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £2 for one entry, £3.75 for two, £5.25 for three, up to three entries permitted. Open internationally
  • Free Flash Fiction Competition Eight
  • Closing date: February 23 (10pm GMT)
  • Prize: £100 and publication on the Free Flash Fiction website. Two Commended entries will win a flash fiction-related book, while two shortlisted entries will also be published on the website
  • Judge: writer Martha Lane
  • Word limit: 100-300 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £2 per entry if paying by UK bank transfer, £3 if paying by Paypal/Stripe (ie. international), multiple entries permitted. Open international
  • Reflex Fiction Spring 2022 Flash Fiction Competition
  • Closing date: February 28
  • Prizes: 1st place £1,200, 2nd £600, 3rd £300, 4th £150. All longlisted stories will be eligible for publication in the print anthology, to be published in Summer 2023
  • Judge: writer Alison Woodhouse
  • Word limit: 180-360 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: choose your own entry fee system. The suggested entry fee is £7 per entry (£6 per entry for two, £5 per entry for three or more), but if that’s prohibitive, just pay what you can afford. And if you’d like to support a writer who can’t afford the full fee, there’s an option to donate towards other entrants. Open internationally
  • The Propelling Pencil Flash Fiction Competition
  • Closing date: March 13
  • Prizes: 1st place £80, 2nd place £50, 3rd place £20. Winning stories will be published on the website, which is run by author/editor/coach Audrey Niven
  • Judge: writer Emily Devane
  • Word limit: 500 words
  • Theme: no theme, but the organisers are looking for ‘stories that somehow move us forward, make progress, show us a different way of thinking or living’
  • Entry fee: £5 for one flash, £9 for two, £13 for three. A number of free places are available to under-represented or disadvantaged authors, on application. Open internationally
  • The Phare magazine WriteWords Flash Fiction Competition
  • Closing date: March 18
  • Prizes: 1st place £150 and an invitation to record the entry for the journal’s podcast. 2nd place £50. Both finalists will appear in the March competition issue and be published in a print anthology
  • Judge: doesn’t say
  • Word limit: 1,000 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £7 for one flash, £12 for two. Appears to be open internationally
What does Fate mean to you?
  • The Fifth Periscope Prize
  • Closing date: April 2
  • Prizes: 1st place £4,000 and publication on the Periscope Literary website. Up to four Honourable Mentions will receive £50
  • Word limit: 900 words
  • Judge: doesn’t say
  • Theme: ‘Fate knocking on the door’
  • Entry fee: £9 first entry, £6 second entry, 3rd entry free. Subsidised fee for students of £5 per entry. There will also be fee waivers for the first 50 low-income applicants. Max three entries permitted. Open internationally
  • Fish Flash Fiction Prize 2022
  • Closing date: April 10
  • Prizes: 1st place €1,000, 2nd place €300, 3rd place an online writing course with Fish Publishing. The top ten stories will be published in the Fish Anthology 2022
  • Judge: writer Tracey Slaughter
  • Word limit: 300 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: €14 for one flash, €8 for any subsequent entries. Open internationally

  • Free Flash Fiction Competition Nine
  • Closing date: April 23 (10pm)
  • Prize: 1st place £100. Two Highly Commended writers will receive a flash fiction-related book. The three winners and two shortlisted stories will be published on the Free Flash Fiction website
  • Judge: flash fiction writer Michelle Christophorou
  • Word limit: 100-300 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £3 via Paypal or Stripe/£2 via BACS (UK only) per entry. Open internationally
Claire Fuller
  • Lucent Dreaming 2022 Flash Fiction Prize
  • Closing date: May 31 (9pm GMT)
  • Prizes: 1st place £1,000, 2nd place £250, 3rd place £150. The three winners will also receive limited edition merch, and be published both on the Lucent Dreaming website and in the print anthology. Highly Commended and shorlisted stories will be considered for publication in the anthology and in the Lucent Dreaming magazine, and will receive a contributor fee and free copy of the publication 
  • Judge: writer, editor and CW teacher Matt Kendrick
  • Word limit: 250-800 words
  • Theme: ‘Hope’
  • Entry fee: £5 per entry, up to five entries permitted. Free entries are available to low-income writers. Open internationally
  • The Bridport Prize for Flash Fiction
  • Closing date: May 31
  • Prizes: 1st place £1,000, an invitation to take part in the awards celebration, plus feedback from the judges and Bridport professional partners. 2nd place £500, 3rd place £250. Five Highly Commended stories will be awarded £100 each. All the winning and highly commended pieces will be published in the annual Bridport Prize anthology
  • Judge: writer and flash fiction expert Kathy Fish
  • Word limit: 250 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £9 per entry, multiple entries permitted. Open internationally
  • Write By The Sea Kilmore Quay – Flash Fiction Competition
  • Closing date: EXTENDED TO June 10
  • Prizes: 1st place €500, a handcrafted trophy and publication on the festival website. An additional prize of €500 will be awarded to the overall winner of the three competition categories (Fiction Short Story, Flash Fiction and Poetry), ie. they will receive €1,000. Each category winner will be invited to read their work at a public event as part of the festival. This may be online or live with an audience depending on Covid-19 restrictions. Each category winner will also receive a free weekend ticket to the Write By The Sea festival 2022 (September 23-25, Covid-19 restrictions in force at festival time will determine the type of free ticket to be offered)
  • Judges: independent panel
  • Word limit: 700 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry Fee: €10 for one entry, or €25 for three entries (which can be in any or all of the three categories: Flash Fiction, Fiction Short Story, and Poetry ), multiple entries permitted.  Open internationally
  • 2022 QuietManDave Prize
  • Closing date: July 1 (5pm)
  • Prizes: 1st place £1,000, 2nd place £200, 3rd £50
  • Judges writer/lecturer Kate Feld and lecturer Shane Kinghorn
  • Word limit: 500 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £5 per entry, with free places available for writers who might otherwise might not be able to participate, multiple entries permitted. Open internationally
  • Michael Mullan Charity Fund Flash Fiction Competition 2022
  • Closing date: July 14
  • Prizes: 1st place €100, 2nd place €50. Winners will be announced at a special event in Kildare Town Library as part of the Kildare Readers Festival in OctoberThe winning entries will be published on the Michael Mullan Charity Fund website and on the Kildare Library and Arts Service website
  • Judge: writer and filmmaker Caroline Farrell
  • Word limit: 500 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: €10 per entry, multiple entries permitted. Open internationally. All entry fees will go towards Kidney Cancer Research at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, USA, where Michael was treated
  • Morning Coffee Writing Competition
  • Closing date: July 15 (opens for entries June 17)
  • Prizes: 1st place €200 and publication in Sonder Magazine. The winner and two runners-up will be published on the website. The competition is to raise funds for the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre (DRCC)
  • Judge: writer Nuala O’Connor
  • Word limit: 500-1,000 words
  • Theme: none, but gratuitous violence is discouraged
  • Entry fee: €6.50 per entry is the suggested fee with all proceeds going to DRCC, but larger donations would be welcomed, multiple entries permitted. Appears to be open internationally
  • Bray Literary Festival Flash Fiction Competition
  • Closing date: August 15
  • Prizes: 1st place €300, 2nd place €50, 3rd place €25. Winners will be announced and invited to read at the prizegiving event on Culture Night (September 23) in Bray Library
  • Judge: writer David Butler
  • Word limit: 500 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: €5 for a single entry, €10 for three entries. Open internationally
  • The Edinburgh Award for Flash Fiction 2023
  • Closing date: August 31 (opens for entries June 1)
  • Prizes: 1st place £1,000 and a trophy, 2nd place £300, 3rd place £150. The top twenty shortlisted writers will be invited to the annual Flash Bash at the Scottish Arts Club in Edinburgh in February 2023, where the winners will be announced.The Scottish Arts Club will present one year’s free membership of the club to the main prizewinners. Publication in the anthology will also be offered to shortlisted writers
  • Judges: TBA
  • Word limit: 250 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £7 per entry, multiple entries permitted. Open internationally
  • Oxford Flash Fiction Prize
  • Closing date: August 31 (opens for entries June 1)
  • Prizes: 1st place £1,000, 2nd place £200, 3rd place £100. Shortlisted entrants will be offered publication in the end-of-year digital anthology
  • Judges: TBA after closing date
  • Word limit: 1,000 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £6 for one entry, £10 for two, £14 for three. Open internationally
  • Allingham Flash Fiction Competition
  • Closing date: September 16
  • Prizes: 1st place €300. 1st, 2nd and 3rd-place winners will be invited to read at the awards ceremony during the Allingham Arts Festival (November 2-6) in Ballyshannon, Co Donegal
  • Judge: writer Mia Gallagher
  • Word limit: 700 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: €5 per entry, up to five entries permitted. Open internationally
  • Mslexia Flash Fiction Competition
  • Closing date: September 19
  • Prizes: 1st place £500, with three finalists getting £50 each. The winner and finalists will be published in the December 2022 issue of Mslexia, with eight additional finalists, alongside the winners, being published in the Best Women’s Short Fiction 2022
  • Judge: short fiction author Audrey Niven
  • Word limit: 300 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee:  £6 per entry, multiple entries permitted. Open internationally to anyone who self-identifies as a woman
  • Retreat West Flash Fiction Prize 2022
  • Closing date: October 30
  • Prizes: 1st place £350, 2nd place £200, 3rd place £100. Shortlisted stories will win £15. The ten shortlisted writers in all categories will receive cash prizes and be published in a paperback and ebook anthology and will receive one copy of each
  • Judge: writer Tom O’Brien
  • Word limit: 150-500 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £8 per entry, multiple entries permitted. Open internationally
  • Retreat West Micro Fiction Prize 2022
  • Closing date: October 30
  • Prizes: 1st place £200, 2nd place £100, 3rd place £50. Shortlisted stories will win £10. The ten shortlisted writers in all categories will receive cash prizes and be published in a paperback and ebook anthology and will receive one copy of each
  • Judge: writer Laura Besley
  • Word limit: 150 words
  • Theme: none
  • Entry fee: £5 per entry, multiple entries permitted. Open internationally

PS. If you’re new to writing and/or submitting, you might find a useful tip or two in my post 6 Things I’ve Learned About Entering Competitions

PPS. What’s that, you say? You wish you could buy me a coffee in return for all this invaluable information? Funnily enough, there’s a way to do that now on my brand-new Ko-fi page – link here

Photos: jplenio/Pixabay; cm_dasilva/Pixabay; TonyPrats/Pixabay

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