Flash Fiction Series – Summer 2017

Midwestern Gothic Flash Fiction Contest Series 2017

During the summer of 2015 we introduced our Flash Fiction contest series, and we’re thrilled to be continuing it this year! (And you can read all of our winners from 2015 and 2016 here.)

What is it? This is a collaboration between photography and writing. We’ll supply a compelling image from our photography archive, and invite writers to respond by writing short fiction inspired by the photo of up to 500 words. Each image will stay up for about one week and the top two entries (winner and runner-up) we feel best represent the photo in question will be published on the Midwestern Gothic website.

We will be doing this throughout the summer—which nets out to three rounds of images (three submission periods). The schedule will look like this:

Round 1:
July 3 – Round 1 prompt submissions open
July 8 – Due date to submit (before midnight EST)

Round 2:
July 10 – Round 2 prompt submissions open
July 15 – Due date to submit (before midnight EST)

Round 3: 
July 17 – Round 3 prompt submissions open
July 22 – Due date to submit (before midnight EST)

Posting Schedule for Winning Pieces:
Week of July 31: Winning piece + runner-up from Round 1
Week of August 7: Winning piece + runner-up from Round 2
Week of August 14: Winning piece + runner-up from Round 3

We are so excited for this celebration of the visual and literary, a new way for us to experience the landscape, and we can’t wait to read what you submit.


  1. Send submissions/questions to Ben at ben@midwestgothic.com
  2. Use the subject line Summer Flash Round X – Author Name – Name of Piece. For example: Summer Flash Round 1 – Joan Smith – “Eyes of the Wild”
  3. Include a third-person bio of up to 150 words with your submission.
  4. Either the author or the piece itself should have a Midwest connection.
  5. Submissions should be no longer than 500 words—but can be as short as you deem necessary.
  6. The submission period for each round is approximately one week, and winners will be announced in the days after the submissions period has ended. We will post the winning pieces (winner + runner-up) after the submission periods for all three rounds are finished. Please note: We will only be notifying the winning entries for each round due to time constraints. Apologies in advance for any inconvenience.
  7. It may seem obvious, but while you have free reign in your writing, your piece should, in some way, be clearly inspired by the round’s image. If we find pieces ignore this fact, they will be subject to immediate disqualification.
  8. Images will be posted at the top of this post, and in separate blog posts as well. When the submission period for a round is ceased, the image will be taken down until the next round begins.


Audible logoOur 2017 Flash Fiction Contest is sponsored by Audible. Get a free 30-day trial and 2 books, on us when you sign up. Start your free trial

Leave a Reply