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DIRECTORY

Best Short Story Writing Contests in 2024

Showing 131 contests that match your search.

Genres: Fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

"Reputation is an idle and most false imposition, oft got without merit and lost without deserving." - William Shakespeare For some, it is a lifetime’s pursuit, often slipping through their grasp while others see it fall into their hands by mere chance. However achieved, through talent or luck, Fame can be an ill-fated prize. The 19th Elmbridge Literary Competition, run in partnership by The R C Sherriff Trust and Elmbridge Borough Council, is looking for short stories and poems on the theme of the double-edged sword that is ‘FAME’.

Top Prize:

£250

Additional prizes:

Published chapbook

💰 Entry fee: $6

📅 Deadline: February 23, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Humor, Mystery, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, and Young Adult

Imagine 2200 is an invitation to writers from all over the globe to imagine a future in which solutions to the climate crisis flourish and help bring about radical improvements to our world. In 2,500 to 5,000 words, show us the world you dream of building. A great Imagine story is not afraid to explore the challenges ahead — the path to climate progress will involve struggle and adaptation, and we invite you to show that — but ultimately offers hope that we can work together to build a more sustainable and just world. We want to see stories that incorporate real world climate solutions and climate science, as well as cultural authenticity (a deep sense of place, customs, cuisine, and more) and characters with fully-fledged identities.

Top Prize:

$3,000

Additional prizes:

Publication in magazine

📅 Deadline: June 24, 2024

The Grace Paley Prize for Short Fiction

Association of Writers & Writing Programs

Genres: Fiction and Short Story

AWP sponsors the Award Series, an annual competition for the publication of excellent new book-length works. The competition is open to all authors writing in English regardless of nationality or residence, and is available to published and unpublished authors alike.

Top Prize:

$5,500

Additional prizes:

Publication by Red Hen Press

💰 Entry fee: $30

📅 Deadline: February 28, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fiction and Short Story

ABR welcomes entries in the 2024 ABR Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize. The Jolley Prize is worth a total of $12,500 and is for an original work of short fiction of between 2,000 and 5,000 words, written in English. This is the fifteenth time the Jolley Prize has run and it is one of the world’s leading prizes for short fiction.

Top Prize:

$6000 AUD

Additional prizes:

2nd: $4000 AUD | 3rd: $2500 AUD

💰 Entry fee: $20

📅 Deadline: April 22, 2024 (Expired)

2025 Book Prize

Unleash Press

Genres: Fiction, Novel, Novella, Poetry, and Short Story

Details: $1,000 advance and standard contract from Unleash Press for one winning manuscript. Novels, poetry collections, short story collections, and creative nonfiction manuscripts are accepted. We'll reopen for our 2025 competition in July.

Top Prize:

$1,000

Additional prizes:

Publication with Unleash Press

📅 Deadline: December 02, 2024

Genres: Christian, Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, LGBTQ, Mystery, Novel, Novella, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, and Travel

GVCA is excited to announce the ninth annual New Deal Writing Competition! This competition challenges writers to use a painting chosen by the staff at GVCA as inspiration for a short story. This year’s painting is “Playtime” by Fred Ross.

Top Prize:

$200

Additional prizes:

Publication in newsletter

💰 Entry fee: $5

📅 Deadline: March 15, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Mystery, Short Story, and Thriller

We’re interested in flash fiction pieces of between 250 and 1,000 words. We’re seeking the finest work we can find that incorporates an uncanny element. Ghost stories are welcome, of course—but your submission may involve any paranormal or supernatural theme, as well as magic realism. What we’re looking for is superb writing, fresh perspectives, and maybe a few surprises.

Top Prize:

$1,000

Additional prizes:

print and online publication

💰 Entry fee: $15

📅 Deadline: January 31, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fiction, Flash Fiction, and Short Story

The aim of the Desperate Literature Short Fiction Prize is both to celebrate the best of new, boundary-pushing short fiction and to give winners the most visibility possible for their writing. That’s why we’ve teamed up with fourteen different literary and artistic institutions to not only offer cash prizes and writing retreats but also to ensure that all our shortlisters have the opportunity to be published in multiple print and online journals, have their work put in front of literary agents, and present their stories in multiple countries.

Top Prize:

€2,000 + week's stay at the Civitella Ranieri Foundation artists' residency

Additional prizes:

2nd + 3rd: €1000 | All shortlisters: publication in our print collection Eleven Stories | All longlisters: One-year subscription to The Literary Consultancy's "Being a Writer" platform | One shortlister: two-week residency at Studio Faire, France

💰 Entry fee: $22

📅 Deadline: December 04, 2024

Writing MAGIC

Sadie Tells Stories

Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, and Young Adult

Are you an author who loves magic? Do you have an idea for a super short story that needs to be shared with the world? If you answered yes to both of those questions this contest is for you! The story can be about anything magical. Maybe it’s something that you’ve experienced in real life or it’s something you’ve created. Maybe it’s the start of a great idea. Maybe it’ll be the thing that inspires you to finally publish your book.

Top Prize:

$500

Additional prizes:

$150

💰 Entry fee: $10

📅 Deadline: April 01, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fiction, Short Story, and Flash Fiction

Biopage is hosting a writing contest to remind people the benefits of writing. Each story (or once chapter of your stories) is limited to 5,000 characters or roughly 1,000 words. You can write about good life experience, or bad, embarrassing, frightening ones. You can win $300, and five runners-up can win $100 each.

Top Prize:

$300

📅 Deadline: July 31, 2024

Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Memoir, Non-fiction, Poetry, Script Writing, Short Story, and Novella

Geminga is a neutron star so small it was difficult to detect. With Geminga: $500 for Tiny Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, or Art, Sunspot Lit honors the power of the small. No restrictions on theme or category. Word limit is 100 for fiction and nonfiction. Micropoetry is limited to 140 characters. Graphic novels should be 4 pages or less.

Top Prize:

$500

Additional prizes:

Publication in digital and print

💰 Entry fee: $12

📅 Deadline: January 31, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

The 2024 Queen Mary Wasafiri New Writing Prize, the fifteenth edition of the prestigious prize, is open from 1 February to 1 July 2024. Exceptionally international in scope, the prize supports writers who have not yet published a book-length work, with no limits on age, gender, nationality, or background. The winners of each category will receive a £1,000 cash prize and publication in Wasafiri magazine.

Top Prize:

£1,000

Additional prizes:

Publication

💰 Entry fee: $15

📅 Deadline: June 30, 2024

Genres: Fiction and Short Story

The Letter Review Prize for Short Stories (1000-3000 words) is open to writers from anywhere in the world and has no theme or genre restrictions. Winners are published and every entry is considered for publication. 20 entries are Longlisted.

Top Prize:

$1000 prize pool

Additional prizes:

2nd: $250 | 3rd: $150

💰 Entry fee: $20

📅 Deadline: April 30, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Science Fiction, and Short Story

Fantasy and sci-fi stir our imaginations, inviting us to think outside the limits of the life we know. This month, you have the extraordinary and exciting task of reimagining the world. In a fantasy or sci-fi short story, take your readers on a journey into a world of your imagination.

Top Prize:

$100

Additional prizes:

Runner up: $50 | Best peer review: $50

💰 Entry fee: $0

📅 Deadline: October 23, 2023 (Expired)

Season Themes

HAVOK Publishing

Genres: Fantasy, Flash Fiction, Mystery, Science Fiction, Short Story, and Thriller

HAVOK is a constant flash fiction contest, with rolling deadlines. Each season is split into monthly competitions with thematically connected prompts in a range of genres.

Top Prize:

$100

Additional prizes:

Publication in an anthology. Potential for larger gift card wins.

📅 Deadline: May 03, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Flash Fiction, Short Story, and Fiction

This Prize is free to enter. 2-4 Winners are published. We Shortlist 10-20 writers. Seeking stories 0-5000 words. Judges’ feedback available. Open to writers from anywhere in the world, with no theme or genre restrictions. Judged blind. All entries considered for publication + submission to Pushcart.

Top Prize:

$500

Additional prizes:

Publication by The Letter Review

📅 Deadline: April 30, 2024 (Expired)

Bacopa Literary Review Annual Writing Contest

Writers Alliance of Gainesville

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

Bacopa Literary Review’s 2024 contest is open from March 4 through April 4, with $200 Prize and $100 Honorable Mention in each of six categories: Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, Flash Fiction, Free Verse Poetry, Formal Poetry, and Visual Poetry.

Top Prize:

$200

Additional prizes:

100

📅 Deadline: May 02, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fiction, Flash Fiction, Poetry, Script Writing, and Short Story

Minds Shine Bright is an arts business based in Melbourne Australia committed to supporting the arts and writers. We run two fiction writing competitions; Minds Shine Bright Confidence, a longitudinal look at the theme confidence in fiction and poetry, and Seasons a competition with a changing external theme. Light and Shadow is currently open.

Top Prize:

$500 AUD

Additional prizes:

2nd: $400 AUD | 3rd: $300 AUD | 4th: $200 AUD | Commended entries: $100 AUD

💰 Entry fee: $3

📅 Deadline: March 31, 2024 (Expired)

NOWW 26th International Writing Contest

Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop (NOWW)

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

Open to all writers in four categories: poetry, short fiction, creative nonfiction, and critical writing.

Top Prize:

$150

Additional prizes:

2nd: $100 | 3rd: $50

💰 Entry fee: $7

📅 Deadline: February 29, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, Short Story, and Flash Fiction

As the Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano once said, "the best that the world has is in the many worlds that the world contains." Therefore, this year we invite you to reflect on the following questions: How do you or your community celebrate these connections? How do you value those experiences with those people who leave a mark on your life? 1 work will be awarded in each category: 1) photography & visual arts, 2) poetry, and 3) narrative/essay/academic investigation.

Top Prize:

$100 for photography, poetry, and essay winners

Additional prizes:

Publication

💰 Entry fee: $0

📅 Deadline: February 01, 2023 (Expired)

Askew's Word on the Lake Writing Contest

Shuswap Association of Writers

Genres: Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, Essay, Memoir, and Short Story

Whether you’re an established or emerging writer, the Askew’s Word on the Lake Writing Contest has a place for you. Part of the Word on the Lake Writers’ Festival in Salmon Arm, BC, the contest is open to submissions in short fiction (up to 2,000 words), nonfiction (up to 2,000 words), and poetry (up to three one-page poems).

Top Prize:

$200 CAD

Additional prizes:

Publication

💰 Entry fee: $11

📅 Deadline: January 31, 2024 (Expired)

The Iowa Review Awards

The Iowa Review

Genres: Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

Each January since 2003, The Iowa Review has invited submissions to The Iowa Review Awards, a writing contest in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Winners receive $1,500; first runners-up receive $750. Winners and runners-up are published in each December issue.

Top Prize:

$1,500

💰 Entry fee: $20

📅 Deadline: January 31, 2024 (Expired)

Summer Nanofiction Battle

Writing Battle

Genres: Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Romance, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Short Story, Thriller, and Young Adult

Two days to write a 250 word short story. The peer-powered quarterly writing contest where every story receives oodles of feedback. Write one. Read ten. Win thousands.

Top Prize:

Genre Winner (x4): $1,500

Additional prizes:

Genre Runner-up (x4): $375 | Feedback by industry professionals

💰 Entry fee: $20

📅 Deadline: August 02, 2024

Genres: Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Mystery, Science Fiction, Short Story, and Thriller

Inspiring Fiction’s special edition short story contest is on the theme ‘Freedom’. We are looking for crime, speculative, and fantasy short stories. The winner and shortlisted entries will be published in a bumper crossover issue of Tangled Web Magazine and Mirk Fantasy Magazine.

Top Prize:

£100

Additional prizes:

Publication and published review by the editor

💰 Entry fee: $6

📅 Deadline: July 31, 2024

Bridport Short Story Prize

Bridport Arts Centre

Genres: Fiction and Short Story

Gail Honeyman was shortlisted in our competition and went on to write Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, winning the Costa debut novel award. All the winning and highly commended pieces are entered into the Sunday Times Audible competition, top prize £30,000. UK based writers are entered into the BBC short story competition. That's not all, literary agent A.M. Heath reads all the shortlist and considers representation. Long story short? You are 5,000 words away from success.

Top Prize:

£5000

Additional prizes:

£1000 for 2nd, £500 for 3rd

💰 Entry fee: $17

📅 Deadline: May 31, 2024

F(r)iction Contests

Brink Literacy Project

Genres: Flash Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

For our contests, we seek writing that pushes boundaries and challenges us to think differently. We like work that features complex characters and strong narratives, and plays with genre, setting, voice, you name it. For Spring 2024, we have Wole Talabi judging Short Story, Sherrie Flick judging Flash Fiction, C. S. E. Cooney judging Poetry, and Marin Sardy judging Creative Nonfiction.

Top Prize:

$1,000

Additional prizes:

Publication

💰 Entry fee: $15

📅 Deadline: November 03, 2024

Genres: Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, LGBTQ, Mystery, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, and Travel

Length of story: max 3,000 words. Entries should be as a Word document. All types of stories are welcome (excluding Children’s and Young Adult Fiction). Entry Fee: £7.00 (£13 for 2 stories, £18 for 3 stories) Winning stories will be published on this website and, at a later date in a planned anthology.

Top Prize:

$500

Additional prizes:

Publication on website

💰 Entry fee: $7

📅 Deadline: July 31, 2024

Genres: Fiction, Non-fiction, and Short Story

Welcome to the 31st annual Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest. Submit published or unpublished work. $9,000 in prizes.

Top Prize:

$3,000

Additional prizes:

Two-year gift certificate from Duotrope; 10 Honorable Mentions will receive $300 each

💰 Entry fee: $22

📅 Deadline: May 01, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Crime, Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, and Young Adult

The Stella Kupferberg Memorial Short Story Prize is a writing competition sponsored by the stage and radio series Selected Shorts. Selected Shorts is recorded for Public Radio and heard nationally on both the radio and its weekly podcast. This years entries will be judged by Carmen Maria Machado (In the Dream House, Her Body and Other Parties).

Top Prize:

$1000 + free 10 week course with Gotham Writers

💰 Entry fee: $25

📅 Deadline: March 01, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Mystery and Short Story

Every year since 2014, the CWA and the Margery Allingham Society have jointly held an international competition for a short story of up to 3,500 words. Our mission is to find the best unpublished short mystery, and not only that, but one which fits into Golden Age crime writer Margery Allingham’s definition of what makes a great story. Entries are invited from all writers, published or unpublished, writing in English.

Top Prize:

£500

Additional prizes:

Two weekend passes to CrimeFest

💰 Entry fee: $16

📅 Deadline: February 29, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Short Story

Open theme/subject/genre. Maximum 3,000 words. 2 runners-up prizes of $200 each and a free writing course of choice.

Top Prize:

$1,000

Additional prizes:

2x runners up: $200 | Free writing course | Publication

💰 Entry fee: $9

📅 Deadline: April 30, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

Enter our 91st Annual Writing Competition for the chance to have your work be seen by editors and agents! Almost 500 winners will be chosen. The top winning entries of this writing contest will also be on display in the Annual Writer’s Digest Competition Collection. [$20 for a poetry entry, $30 for a manuscript entry]

Top Prize:

$5,000

Additional prizes:

2nd: $500 | 3rd: $100

💰 Entry fee: $30

📅 Deadline: May 06, 2024 (Expired)

$1000 for 1000 Words Contest

The Layla Beban Young Authors

Genres: Children's and Short Story

The $1000 for 1000 Words fiction writing contest is open to all students enrolled in grades 6-12. Each entrant may submit a fiction piece consisting of exactly 1,000 words (not including title or author’s name). The fiction piece can be on any topic, as long as it is not vulgar or offensive, does not use inappropriate profanity, and is the original work of the entrant not previously published.

Top Prize:

$1,000

📅 Deadline: February 01, 2024 (Expired)

Genres: Fiction, Humor, Non-fiction, and Short Story

July 2022 saw the launch of the 8th To Hull And Back Short Story Competition, a biennial short story contest with a humorous twist that celebrates the most imaginative and amazing short stories from writers all over the world.

Top Prize:

£1,200

Additional prizes:

2nd Prize: £600 | 3rd Prize: £300 | 3 x Highly Commended: £150 | 14 x Shortlisted: £75

💰 Entry fee: $16

📅 Deadline: June 30, 2025

Genres: Short Story

Open to all writers except SiWC paid staff, board members, and immediate families. Young writers are welcome to enter, but must be aware that their work will be judged blind among submissions made by adult writers. Please read the contest rules below before entering.

Top Prize:

$1,000

💰 Entry fee: $15

📅 Deadline: September 15, 2024

Prompts | Prompts Sans Serif | 2024-03

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