Flash

Short short stories, whether fiction or nonfiction, are attracting the attention of some of my writer friends. Referred to in various incarnations as microfiction, nanofiction, sudden fiction, flash fiction, and extremely concise essays, the brevity of the work is perfect for electronic delivery. It suits readers with hectic schedules and, let’s admit it, microscopic attention spans.

Publishers of flash fiction and very short literary nonfiction sometimes place severe limits on word count, challenging writers to set forth captivating stories in exactly 6, 55, or 100 words, or perhaps six sentences. However, short short stories often extend to 2,000 words—quite a bit longer than the average blogpost.

Don’t assume that creative writing in brief requires less skill than producing lengthier narratives or novels. A glance at some of the websites and journals that publish short short stories reveals the work of talented writers experimenting with a form associated with the likes of O. Henry; Ray Bradbury; and the composer John Cage, whose one-paragraph stories you can read at Indeterminacy.

Although prose poetry has a mutable definition of its own, it can resemble flash fiction and is known to mingle with it, as in the defunct biannual Double Room.

You can submit flash fiction and tiny literary nonfiction to:

Six-Word Memoirs at SMITH Magazine
your story in six words

55 Fiction
55-word fiction

100 Words moved to Twitter @100words
exactly 100 words about anything, published only if you complete the task every day for a month

365 Tales
microfiction of 365 words or less
[Updated on July 20, 2008]

400 Words
nonfiction of 400 words or less

971 MENU
very short fiction and nonfiction
no previously published works

Bateau Lit Mag
flash fiction of 500 words or less
multiple submissions (with certain conditions) and simultaneous submissions, no previously published work or work concurrently available online
[Updated on May 7, 2008]

Boston Literary Magazine
250 words or less, including haiku
[Updated on March 29, 2014]

Brevity
literary nonfiction of 750 words or less

BrevityThing
fiction in 250 words or less
[Updated on June 3, 2008]

A Brief Message
design opinions expressed in 200 words or less
[Updated on March 22, 2008]

The Café Irreal
fantastic fiction (irrealism) of 2,000 words or less
no simultaneous submissions

Common Ties
“answers that tell, in 50 words or less, stories that trigger strong emotional reactions”

Every Day Fiction
stories of 1,000 words or less
no more than three submissions at a time, no simultaneous submissions, no previously published works
[Updated on July 20, 2008]

Fictionville
flash fiction

Flash Fiction Online
stories of 700 to 1,000 words
multiple submissions, no previously published works unless the copyright has expired, no simultaneous submissions

Flash Me Magazine
all genres of fiction, 1,000 words or less
multiple submissions, reprints considered, no simultaneous submissions
[Updated on September 16, 2008]

Flashquake
fiction, nonfiction, or prose poetry of 1,000 words or less
simultaneous submissions, no multiple submissions, reprints considered

Glossolalia
flash fiction of 500 words or less
[Updated on July 3, 2008]

Haibun Today
prose plus one or more haiku, present tense, first person, subject chosen from everyday existence, with a revelatory moment
unpublished and previously published works

Hobart (website)
fiction and nonfiction of 2,000 words or less, preferably less

Inch Magazine
fiction of 750 words or less

insolent rudder
“furiously fresh flash fiction” of 1,113 words or less
multiple submissions accepted
[Updated on March 5, 2008]

Locus Novus
experimental fiction of 1,000 words or less
no previously published works
[Updated on March 6, 2008]

minima
microfiction and prose poems
(Hint: Forget about navigating this Flash-heavy website. Just send your submissions to minima@negativespacemedia.com.)

miniTEXTOS
la literatura en miniatura

Night Train
fiction of 1,500 words or less
multiple submissions accepted
[Updated on March 29, 2014]

One Sentence
true stories published with Creative Commons licenses
[Updated on April 21, 2008]

One-Screen Stories
micro-, flash, or postcard fiction and nonfiction of 150 words or less
[Updated on April 14, 2008]

Opium Magazine (online)
stories of 1,000 words or less

Pen Pricks
exactly 55 words, including the title
[Updated on April 26, 2008]

Pif Magazine
microfiction

Postcards from…
horror, science fiction, and fantasy flash fiction
no multiple submissions, no previously published works, simultaneous submissions require the courtesy of notification
[Updated on April 30, 2008]

Quarter After Eight
prose poetry, sudden fiction
no previously published works

Quick Fiction
stories of 500 words or less

Rose Metal Press
“short short, flash, and microfiction; prose poetry; novels-in-verse or book-length linked narrative poems; and other literary works that move beyond the traditional genres of poetry, fiction, and essay to find new forms of expression”
[Updated on February 16, 2009]

Rumble
microfiction limited to approximately 500 words
simultaneous and multiple submissions, no previously published works
[Updated on July 9, 2008]

Sentence: A journal of prose poetics
“…explore the gray areas around the prose poem, especially in work that exists on the boundary between the prose poem and free verse on one hand and the prose poem and the essay on the other”

Six Sentences
six sentences of any length

SmokeLong Quarterly
fiction of 1,000 words or less
simultaneous and multiple submissions, no works previously published in an online magazine

The Smoking Poet
fiction of 1,000 words or less, novel excerpts and nonfiction of 2,000 words or less
simultaneous submissions, no multiple submissions or works previously published in print or on the Web
[Updated on March 29, 2014]

Toasted Cheese
fiction of 500 words or less
no previously published works
[Updated on March 29, 2014]

Tuesday Shorts
100 words or less
no more than three submissions at a time
[Updated on April 21, 2009]

Underground Voices
flash fiction
[Updated on April 30, 2008]

Verbsap
“stark, elegant, concise” fiction or nonfiction of 3,000 words or less
no previously published works
[Updated on April 30, 2008]

Vestal Review
fiction of 500 words or less
no previously published works

Wigleaf
fiction of 1,000 words or less
multiple and simultaneous submissions
[Updated on June 5, 2008]

Word Slaw
500 words or less
[Updated on July 10, 2008]

Let me know if I missed any good ones.

15 Replies to “Flash”

  1. Thanks. I’m currently starting up a special section for my blog dedicated to original micro fiction.

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