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A weekly short story contest
Looking for a steady supply of mystery 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!
As he walked up the steps to his front door, Miles noticed a package sitting on the landing. From where he stood on the street, it was a plain looking, brown paper wrapped box about one foot long, six inches wide and six inches tall. His pulse quickened as his curiosity began to spin possibilities through his mind like sugar in a cotton candy maker. He hadn’t ordered anything and certainly wasn’t expecting any packages. It wasn’t his birthday, and Christmas was still months away. What could be inside the clean and...
“I can’t move!” cried Aria.She was submerged waist deep in a murky swamp of brown, and green water. She’d fallen into a riverbed of squelching mud. With every struggle of movement, she could feel herself sinking and tipping off balance. She had got herself completely lost out in the wilderness of Northern England. All around her was a picturesque woodland filled with pine, oak and silver birch trees. Arms of branches outstretched in a shadowed cluster; little circles of gleaming sunlight shone through in spotlight beams over the fa...
Drip, drip, drip.My eyes open. Instantly I regret that decision, moaning aloud at the thumping headache that seems to be trying its hardest to escape my skull. Despite every fibre of my body telling me not to, I sit up, letting my vision come into focus which only makes me feel even worse."Oh God." I clutch my head. "I swear, Rhiannon, drinking just isn't your thing." The last time I felt this crap had to be after Katie's party back in the Summer before college started.I look over and see an array of pills co...
I'm just going to say it now, my name isn't Cassie. And I'm not from California.But yes, this is me, standing on the streets of San Francisco, pretending I've lived in Menlo Park long enough to know where the locals go when they leave work.Which I do know, by the way. I've done my research. Weeks’ worth of it, actual...
I wonder...... What mysteries does this door contained? I hummed as I paced in front of the door. I've never thought that there would be a hidden door like this in my house. Well, it never hurt to investigate it a bit right? I opened the door and immediately, I heard chain clinking against each other. Is the door locked? It wasn't, the door creaked open easily, nothing obstructing it. Then what was that chain? Immediately, my doubts were cleared. The light creeped into the room through the door, I could bare...
Once, upon a middle age time, there lived a good and cheerful woman up high on a mountain peak. No big city to be seen for miles, stretching in the four arrows of the compass. Only company she had were the animals, the trees and her fellow villagers. And all of them knew who she was, all the people in the village. Because she was a sweet and kind woman but also, because she was fast to gossip and held the knowledge on everyone and everything they did. Scared the people we...
Wren climbed into her bed, sighing with contentment at the familiarity that contrasted to the rest of the day. Relief flooded through her, an emotion she hadn't had the luxury of associating herself with in the past couple of weeks, as she finally concluded that soon it would all be over, the dread she had felt prior to this day would all have been for no cause, because if she was supposed to die today then there was little to no chance that her death would occur in the remaining 42 minutes of the day...
'What would you consider a mystery?' Maria asked herself. An avid reader of books, she also admittedly had Sarhara like dry spells. Every so often she might go months without reading one. Then on any given day the urge to read would hit her again. The urge was more a calling really. Maria would be out on an errand and suddenly glimpse a book in a shop window. More over she might be at an antiques fair and a tittle on a second-hand book would call out to her. Almost as if the book was a live object.. 'Buy me' the book would sa...
Murder at the Seaside “Can I help you Sir?” the desk sergeant asked the elderly man who had just walked into Wimbourne police station.As the sergeant rummaged for a biro among the clutter on the desk, his mind ran through a range of options. Had the man mislaid his car in the multi-storey car park? Locked himself out of his house? Maybe he’d come to complain about a ball that had gone into his garden? Old people were notoriously absent minded and intolerant. His fingers finally found...
Levi Griffin followed his memories of the route to his best friend’s house along gloomy country roads and forty minutes later turned his car onto a paved driveway. A porch light cast an orange glow over the small redbrick house. He pulled to a stop and the screen door screeched open, revealing Margaret Tanner’s silhouette. As Levi climbed the porch step he could see she was wearing outdoor clothes, her handbag still slung on her shoulder.“Levi, it’s you,” Margret says, her eyes a bit wide, reaching out to him with both f...
“Hello, I am Sopna here and I am coming there right now. Your friend BK had directed me to be there”. Saying so, she went to the address given to her. She found Hemant Kumar waiting for her. As soon as she alighted from her car, he held her hands in ecstasy and applied extra pressure on her wrists while taking her inside. There was a reason for his explicit excitement. Both Basant Kumar, better known as BK for his close associates, and Hemant Kumar were close friends personally and at the same time arch rivals in their business, vy...
“I’m sorry Mr Bennett,” she didn’t look that sorry, “but a shared sleeper is all we have left. If you must travel on that day, you will have to share. If you can put your trip off for a day or two you can have your pick of the solo cabins — they are more expensive, of course.”“I have to be there on Friday, so it has to be the overnight train on Thursday. I’ll take the ticket, but tell them to ...
We islanders often appear to mainlanders as either simple and open or stand-offish and tricky. We’ve been the reason visitors are sure they want to buy a cabin and spend their summers here, as well rumors that we cheat visitors out of their cash at every turn. Tourists come with expectations of easy-pickings and a show of gratitude by island hicks. They may leave feeling the kindly black-berry picker providing directions, intentionally sent them the longest way back to our tiny harbor, only to ensure they missed their sailing, had to purc...
London. 1497 A.D.Last night, the Cardinal summoned me. His servants were hammering on my door at nigh on ten of the clock. My steward Bartholomew answered it, enquiring if they knew what time it was. They replied that the Cardinal’s business was a twenty-four hour one.
The LibraryIt wasn’t such a big building, but it held so many books! Sarah Jane stood just inside the door and stared at the bounty before her. Clutching her new library card, she stepped up to the first shelf, and gazed at the titles. A label on the shelf boldly announced these choices were Autobiographies. She didn’t care, they were books. Books with stories. She carefully took down the firs six books. That was all she was allowed to check out at one time.One week later she brought those six books back and gathered six mor...
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