F(r)iction Contests

Opens: January 4, 2024
Deadline: April 30, 2024 NOW CLOSED
Results: Announced September 9, 2024
Prizes: Win $2,100 in Prizes!
Guest Judges: Wole Talabi, Sherrie Flick, C. S. E. Cooney, and Marin Sardy
Categories: Short Story, Flash Fiction, Poetry, and Creative Nonfiction

For full Submission Guidelines, please read the information on our Submittable page carefully. And please visit our formatting guidelines page to properly format your work for submission.

An insider tip for you all: We seek work that actively pushes boundaries, that forces us to question traditions and tastes. If your work takes risks, we want to read it. We like strong narratives that make us feel something and stories we haven’t seen before. To get an idea of the kind of work we look for, please check out this page from our editors detailing what we look for in our submissions.

We also strongly recommend checking out a past issue of F(r)iction before submitting to our contests to get an idea of our general publishing aesthetic. We have several pieces available online, but there’s nothing like holding a glossy, full-color issue in your hands. You can check out all of our issues in our shop.

Short Story Judge
$1,000 Prize

Wole Talabi

WOLE TALABI is an engineer, writer, and editor from Nigeria. He is the author of the novel SHIGIDI AND THE BRASS HEAD OF OBALUFON (DAW books/Gollancz, 2023). His short fiction has appeared in places like Asimov’s Science Fiction, Lightspeed Magazine, Tor.com and is collected in the books CONVERGENCE PROBLEMS (DAW books, 2024) and INCOMPLETE SOLUTIONS (Luna Press, 2019). He has been a finalist for the Hugo, Nebula, and Locus awards, as well as the Caine Prize for African Writing and he has won the Nommo award for African speculative fiction and the Sidewise award for Alternate History. He has edited five anthologies including the acclaimed AFRICANFUTURISM: AN ANTHOLOGY (Brittlepaper, 2020) and MOTHERSOUND: THE SAUÚTIVERSE ANTHOLOGY (Android Press, 2023). He likes scuba diving, elegant equations, and oddly shaped things. He currently lives and works in Australia. Find him at wtalabi.wordpress.com and at @wtalabi on Twitter, Instagram, Bluesky and Tiktok.

Poetry Judge
$300 Prize

C. S. E. Cooney

C. S. E. Cooney (she/her) is a two-time World Fantasy Award-winning author: for her novel Saint Death’s Daughter, and for her collection Bone Swans, Stories. Other work includes The Twice-Drowned Saint, Dark Breakers, and Desdemona and the Deep. As a voice actor, Cooney has narrated over 120 audiobooks, as well as short fiction for podcasts such as Uncanny Magazine, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Tales to Terrify, and Podcastle. In March 2023, she produced her collaborative sci-fi musical, Ballads from a Distant Star, at New York City’s Arts on Site. (Find her other music at Bandcamp under Brimstone Rhine.) Forthcoming from Outland Entertainment in 2024 is the GM-less TTRPG Negocios Infernales (“the Spanish Inquisition… INTERRUPTED by aliens!”), which she co-designed with her husband, writer and game-designer Carlos Hernandez. Find her website and Substack newsetter via her Linktree or try “csecooney” on various social media platforms.

Flash Fiction Judge
$300 Prize

Sherrie Flick

Sherrie Flick is the recipient of a 2023 Creative Development Award from the Heinz Endowments. The author of a novel and two short story collections, she also served as co-editor for the 2023 Norton anthology Flash Fiction America and as series editor for The Best Small Fictions 2018 with guest editor Aimee Bender. Her debut essay collection, Homing: Instincts of a Rustbelt Feminist is forthcoming from University of Nebraska Press in 2024, and a new story collection will publish with Autumn House press in 2025. 

Creative Nonfiction Judge
$500 Prize

Marin Sardy

Marin Sardy is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir The Edge of Every Day: Sketches of Schizophrenia (Pantheon, 2019). Sardy’s essays have appeared in the New YorkerTin House, Guernica,the Missouri Review, the Paris Review, and many other journals, as well as in two award-winning photography books. A Pushcart Prize nominee, Sardy has three times had her essays listed as “notable” in the Best American series and has been awarded residency fellowships at Hawthornden Castle and Catwalk Institute. She holds an MFA from Columbia University and teaches memoir and personal essay writing for Authors Publish and Pace University. Find her at marinsardy.com or on Instagram at @marinsardy.

Please note: We are unable to offer refunds for contest submissions, so please read the options and choose your submission category carefully. For poetry and flash fiction, you can submit ONE ENTRY or a THREE PACK.

F(r)iction reserves the right to not award a winner in any categories if the submissions do not reach a publishable standard. In this case, reading fees will NOT be refunded and a winner will not be announced. Although this has rarely come to pass in our six-year-publishing history, our top priority must remain with the quality of work we publish.

No AI Submissions

We currently do not accept work from artificial intelligence (“AI”) generators or similar. By submitting your entry, you are attesting that your work was not created, in whole or in part, with an AI generator or similar. Should any portion of your work be discovered to be the product of an AI generator or similar, by submitting, you agree to indemnify Brink Literacy Project for all losses, fees, and damages it suffers relating to your submission and/or misrepresentation, including but not limited to, direct and indirect damages, loss of sale, reputational damages, attorney fees, and other expenses. You further agree to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless Brink Literacy Project against any third-party claims relating to the work you submit.