Shortstory Competitions

As I’ve meandered into this writing short-story… thing… I’ve recently been thinking about these competitions.

First, a nod to some locales that I think are great to find contests/opportunities for short stories:

Thank you to the creators of these sites for compiling lots of opportunities to write into a single(errr, dual?) place for my ease.

Now, on to the rest of this post… I want to talk about the types of contests I see. First of all, I love writing competitions. I find I write a lot better with constraints. Situations where my brain has to find a solution that fits all the required components.

There are a few properties that you can find in writing competitions. Most are word-bound, and some have a topic (Construction, or Unicorns). I don’t want to cover those. I’d rather focus on the more unique/fun ideas.

First Line/Last Line – These have a line fed that you have to then build a story around.
“Bob, take out the trash before you kill your mother.” Go forth!

Picture – I really enjoy these contests. A picture is provided and it is our job to write a story inspired by the picture.


What is this picture telling me?

3/4/5 Elements Challenge – This is probably my favorite. As author, you are given some number of seemingly disparate things, and then you have to find a way to link them all into a short story.
Rain, Chapter-Books, Chicken, September. Write something where these are all prominent features of the story.

Do you enjoy writing challenges? Where do you find yours? Are there other kinds of writing challenges you enjoy?


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