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A weekly short story contest
Looking for a steady supply of fiction short stories? Every week thousands of writers submit stories to our writing contest.
Coming of Age
People of Color
Teens & Young Adult
We'll send you 5 prompts each week. Respond with your short story and you could win $250!
Author's Note Regarding Sensitive Material: this submission contains discussion on the struggle of infertility.
I peer anxiously at the silver spigot of the decanter as I top off Aunt Marge’s glass of sweet tea, wary of a single droplet escaping through that precarious seal on the teal glass. Today has to be perfect, and heaven knows that the last thing a beautiful buffet table needs is three g...
"Shit. All I have left is Earl Grey. Is that okay?"
"Sure," Angela replied curtly. She stretched and then succumbed to a long yawn, deciding to curl up on the apartment's only couch.
Marcus had moved into the bottom floor of this 100-year-old shotgun house just outside of Cincinnati three months ago. The grip of December made the original hardwood uncomfortably cold. To ...
My spoon clanked against the sides of my cup as I stirred it around and around. I watched as the peppermint tea swirled in sync without really seeing anything at all. My mind told me what to do but my heart wasn't in it.
I set the spoon on the counter beside my cup and lifted the steaming mug to my lips, taking a long drink from it. The flavor that I usually loved was tasteless on my tongue.
I set ...
Marybeth tipped the teapot and poured the steaming liquid into her cup. It had a light, floral fragrance. Marybeth added two scoops of sugar and a splash of milk.
“What do you think, Grandma?” Her granddaughter asked.
Marybeth lifted an eyebrow as she picked up the teacup and took a small sip. “Well,” said Marybeth wincing, having taken a drink of tea a little too soon. “It’s different. Beautiful, but diff...
God Ethel, you’re shameless!” exclaimed Julia as she sat on the bed and slipped her long elegant legs into a pair of silk stockings. Grinning, I picked up a magazine on the night stand. Julia always feigned shock but I knew she loved hearing the bits of gossip I dripped into her lap. I casually flipped through the glossy pages as she finished getting dressed.“I’m not doing any harm,” I replied, looking up to watch her step into a flouncy emerald green dress. “Besides, I only tell y...
Women have the power to lift the spirits and confidences of other women like no other. I don’t have to tell you that some women know how to destroy another women’s spirit and reputation like no other as well. One woman can whisper the tiniest spark of chatter into another’s ear only to ignite it into a giant flame that becomes a wildfire without hope of containment in just a matter of min...
Two men sat by a river. The sun was getting lower, glowing through the willow branches as they rest on the water’s surface. One final show, a slight chill in the air. Frost covered the grass, water hidden by a layer of mist and fog, banks overgrown. Unseen birds sang overhead.
Nothing exists beyond that.
“You see,” said the first man, tearing off chunks of sliced bread before throwing it into the water, du...
My hand shook as I sprinkled another spoonful of sugar into the steaming cup. I went to add another spoonful when Grandmother’s voice stopped me, “Not too much sugar, darling.”
“I know Grandmother,” I replied, stuffing the spoon back into the sugar bowl. I placed the teacup on its matching saucer and slowly made my way to the dining room table where Grandmother was sitting. A lace placemat was set befo...
I've often said that all poetry is political. This is because real poems deal with a human response to reality and politics is part of reality, history in the making. Even if a poet writes about sitting in a glass house drinking tea, it reflects politics.-Yehuda AmichaiThe tea kettle doesn’t whistle, it screams. Vibrations of built up steam trying to escape through a narrow opening. Once my habit was to poise beside the stovetop, listening for the stirring of water, anticipat...
When I think of golf courses I think of death. I don’t play golf it seems like a waste of time. Most people don't share the same thinking as me, but most people haven't shared the same experiences as me either.
I won't mention the name of the course (for legal reasons), but not until I took job at a golf course in Baldwin County, AL did I realize how many people die on golf courses. Some deaths are attri...
She closes the door quickly on her way in so only a little of the cold October air will make its way inside. The dull ache in her knees doesn’t surprise her, seeing as she had spent quite a while crouched in the chill of the garden. ‘Now it will all be worth it’, she thinks and makes her way to the stove with her treasures clutched in hand. The pot of water was already at a boil, so she takes it off the hot surface. One ...
Tamara froze in the doorway of the kitchen. A boundary between realms.
She knew she could retreat to the comfort and solitude of her still-warm cocoon of duvets, blankets, cushions and the 20-odd soft toys she liked to surround herself with, despite being 20-odd herself. Or she could tumble into an unknown future, proceed to the communal cutlery draw, pulling the handle with similar apprehension to pluck...
Writer's note: I accidentally submitted the story to the wrong category it should be. Write a story about a character reluctant to go to a tea party “I’ve always been a failure in the family, “I say to myself solemnly as I lay in bed. Everyone one always says David is nothing more than a loser and will always be a failure.” A letter was written as if it was from the queen herself, saying: “Dear David, I know it’s been a while since we talked last, but I was wondering if you could come to my tea party. ...
The only sounds in the house are the consistent hum of the old deep freeze and Marie shuffling around in the kitchen. The sounds, the movements, the routine, are the same as always.
The soft flick as the kitchen light turns on.
The tchsss tchsss of her house slippers dragging on the kitchen floor; it is so hard for her to step lively at this time...
Every day the kitchen window sill fills with the water-colored light of damp dawn. The brass kettle whistles with a high-pitched whine. The sound personifies my inner monologue as I grip the handle with a shaky hand. This tray of tea is not being prepared for only me. This offering of hot, inky water, is a gesture of my goodwill.
“With milk?” I suggest staring into the hazy bedroom from the threshold of ...
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