Sunday 5 February 2012

Flash! Free competition, article, and more, on Writers and Artists Yearbook website.

To coincide with a recent interview on the terrific and very useful Writers and Artists Yearbook website, HERE they are hosting a competition for you to showcase your literary skill.
They are asking you to write up to 300 words of flash fiction, to the theme of 'the lonely writers' journey' - to be judged by meself. The prizes are as follows:
First place winner will receive a signed copy of 'The Coward’s Tale' in hardback, a copy of the Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook 2012, and also have their work featured on the website.
Second place winner will receive a signed copy of 'The Coward’s Tale' in hardback and also have their work featured on the website.
Highly Commended- two highly commended entries will also have their work featured on the website.
They say: If you think you are up to the challenge, read Vanessa Gebbie’s flash fiction article for inspiration and submit your entry to by the 22nd February 2012. Winners will be announced on the 7th March – good luck!

As said above, the theme is: The lonely writers’ journey... and the judge says, “interpret as you will - fiction, or creative non-fiction, or a mix of the two- who is going to know anyway?!”

There is also a Gebbie Patent Definition of flash fiction (!) - the slippery beast.

Imagine standing at the open door of a room where all is in darkness, and you can see nothing. Imagine someone flicking on the lights - to the count of one, two - then plunging the room back into darkness. You didn’t have time to take in much, but you know exactly what room this is, now - a bedroom, an operating theatre, a kitchen, a courtroom. Odds are, you also remember a few things about the room - something about the bed, for example - something out of place? Something odd about that operating theatre... what was that on the floor in the corner? The kitchen - who was that peering back at you from the window? The courtroom - was that a small boy crying in the dock? But this is today - we don’t put small boys on trial? Do we?

For the rest of the article, see HERE. in which I give names of some writers whose flash work I rate highly.
For another terrific example of flash fiction try ‘Fly’ by Elaine Chiew, which has just gone live on metazen. For other examples, the archive of the specialist flash zine Smokelong Quarterly is a gold mine.


  1. Thank you Vanessa. I will try my hand at this. It's already trembling but in the immortal words of Captain Kirk..."steady as she goes!" (I think!!! haven't seen Star Trek in a long time)

    Who wouldn't love a signed copy of your book?

  2. God luck Dora! I won't be seeing any names, thank heavens, as is right - and good luck too, to everyone who has a go!

  3. Thank you Vanessa. I'm working on it as I type, but needed to refresh my memory as to the word count and here I am :)

    Good luck to everyone.

  4. Ms. Gebbie,
    what happened to your flash fiction results??

  5. Writers and Artist's yearbook put the wining flashes up on the website a while ago -