2022 Flash Fiction contests – match your stories to competition word counts and win

There are many flash fiction, micro fiction, and short short fiction writing competitions, from just six words right up to 2000. These writing contests are a life blood for new and emerging writers looking to build their craft and get recognition. Stories of fewer that 2000 words are hugely popular with readers. And, in a world where time is short, what could be better than a nibble of very short stories?

If you are looking to enter and win flash fiction contests, perhaps the most important question for writers is – what’s the word count?

In this article, we will run through the best 2022 Flash Fiction contests available to meet your word count.

To skip the chat and see the full flash fiction contest list, jump down here.

What is a Flash Fiction contest?

Flash Fiction contests allow writers and creatives to make a big impact with a relatively short number of words. Flash Fiction can range from as many as 2000 words right down to only 6 words, and any word count in between. No matter what the word count, the aim of a flash fiction contest remains to tell a story, with a beginning, middle, and end, interesting characters and stimulating action. Flash fiction is perfect for people

2022 Flash Fiction Contests – word counts

In a previous post, I found the most valuable flash fiction contest 2021 in cash terms. But, we writers are not just motivated by money (although it helps).

The most important drive is creativity. A story forms in your mind and on the page. Entering these micro fiction contests give us a way to share our thoughts with other – maybe even get some recognition.

But, every contest seems to have its own rules around word count. From six words up to 2000, there is a flash fiction competition for almost any length of tiny story. Here, I’ve tried to make it easy to discover them.

Write your story then find your 2022 flash fiction contest

There’s a risk that writing contests result in the tail wagging the dog. Rather than writing your best story, you end up bending to the needs of the contest you are aware of. You have an awesome story about happy piglets that comes in at 600 words, but the only contest you can find needs 1000. Next thing you know, you are padding out your story like a pig stuffing his face at the trough.

A better approach might be to write your story. Then, look for a contest that fits your word count. Now, you’re in charge.

It’s worth noting that most contests don’t have minimum word counts. But your competition will all be writing at or close to the word count capacity.

What’s the shortest 2022 flash fiction contest word count cap?

The shortest word count requirement contest I’m aware of is our own the Six Word Wonder contest, hosted by this site. You can enter FREE and win $100 for writing a mere six words! Now that sure is short.

Flash Fiction Contests with a word count cap of 100 words or less?

Next closest to the Six Word Wonder is the 50 Word Stories contest. This one is Canada-based, and offers a modest top prize of $10 Canadian.

There are several contests for submitting 100 words or less. The biggest of these is NYC Midnight Flash Fiction Challenge with a $6,000 prize.

Fan Story 100 and NAWG 100×100 also only require one hundred words. And an honorable mention goes to the 101 Words Writing contest for obvious reasons.

What’s the average word count length for 2022 flash fiction contests?

Across all the contests I’ve listed, the average word count is 629 words. Perhaps more useful, the median length is 500 words. If you are going to choose a target writing length for flash fiction, that 500 median might be the sweet spot.

Having said that, 1000 words is the most common contest length with 10 cash paying contests having a thousand word maximum. There are six contests at 500 words.

For the visual thinkers, here’s a scatter graph to show you the spread of contest types.

Full 2022 Flash Fiction Contest list – sorted by word count

Here’s the full list of flash fiction contests available in order of the word count requirement. All these contests pay a cash prize to the winner.

The list is sorted by word count. Simply scan down the list of list of contests to find the word count that fits your story.

Note that all prizes have been translated into dollars – you’ll need to check the individual websites to confirm all the terms and conditions and the currency of the prize.

2022 Flash Fiction ContestEntry fee ($)Word CountTop Prize in US $
Six Word Wonder0.06100
50 Word Stories0.05013
Fan Story 100 word story0.0100100
NAWG 100×100 Writing Competion4100136
101 Words Writing Contest0.010110
Bridport Prize – Flash Fiction Contest122501360
Fish Publishing Flash Fiction Prize153001200
Bath Flash Fiction Award133001300
Retreat West Flash Fiction Prize5.8300255
F(r)iction’ Flash Fiction Contest10.0300300
Reflex Fiction Award103601600
River Styx – Microfiction Contest 2021155001000
Flash 5006.8500408
FanStory Future Flash Fiction0.05007
Cranked Anvil4500136
Academy for Teachers ‘Stories Out of School Contest’0.07491000
Stella Kupferberg Memorial Short Story Prize—202125.07501000
Zizzle Literary Flash Fiction Contest5.010001000
The Screw Turn Flash Fiction Competition15.010001000
The Lascaux Prize in Flash Fiction15.010001000
NYC Midnight Flash Fiction Challenge58.010006000
Oxford Flash Fiction810001360
The Darling Axe – An Axe to Grind6.41000897
Do Wha(TS) Write2.61000256
YeahWrite Super Challenge30.01000150
Stringy Bark Stories0.01500455

As you can see, there are a vast choice of 2022 flash fiction contests available to suit many word counts, and a range of budgets. The great thing here is you can leverage one story for multiple competitions. One 1000 story to eight or nine separate contests – or why not cut it down to a higher 749 or 750?

Of course, if you’ve got a story that’s longer than 2000 words, you can look out for contests needing longer word counts!

I have a 2022 flash fiction contest I would like listed here!

I’d love this list to be comprehensive, but inevitably new contests come and go over time. If you have a flash fiction contest that pays a cash prize and you would like to be listed here, or for any corrections or updates, please contact me.

The information I need you to include in your request (note that if you have multiple contests, please list each contest separately:

  • Contest name
  • Link to the submission page
  • Closing date for entries
  • Entry fee (and currency)
  • Maximum number of words allowed
  • Prize for top winner (and currency)
  • And other special information of genre / entry conditions etc

Learn more about the Six Word Wonder Contest 2022.

TL;DR 2022 Flash Fiction Contests

There are many short, short story contests available to enter for free or a relatively low entry fee. The most popular work count is 1000 words, and the range is from only six words up to two thousand words

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