Xykademiqz Inaugural Short Fiction Contest 9/12-9/27

Judging by how many people clicked on the links for The Grinder, how to format a short story, how to classify your story by genre, etc., it looks like quite a few readers have interest in writing fiction.

This gave me an idea! We can have our own small flash-fiction competition here!


Here are the rules:

Over the next two-ish weeks, starting today, September 12, and  ending Wednesday, September 27 (11:59 PM Pacific time), please submit a short story under 300 words.

1. The submission should include:

a) your pen name (could be your real name, or not)

b) real name (optional)

c) email (required; will not be disclosed; you will receive a confirmation within a day that I got your story)

d) a website or a Twitter handle (if you want me to link to it)

e) a brief biosketch (no more than 30 words)

f) title of your story

g) body of your short story (no longer than 300 words; the word count does NOT include the title)

2. 300 words max.  If you are a bit over, I may just edit it down to 300 myself. If you are a lot over, I will return it to you.

3. The story should be fiction, any genre. It can be inspired by reality, but has to be fictionalized.

4. Topic can be anything you like. If you need a prompt, how about “academia is / drives me nuts.”

5. You can submit multiple stories, but not more than 3 per real name and/or pen name and/or email. You will get an email confirmation within a day of submission.

6. All stories will be published October 1st and onward, so your prose will see the light of day on Xykademiqz blog.
Depending on how many stories I get, I will post one or more per day starting October 1. They will all show up.
Afterwards, I expect to create a special page for this contest that will remain for posterity in the Xykademiqz archives.

7. Readers will vote for their favorites. Once all the stories have been posted and voted on, the top three will get small prizes, think Amazon gift cards; if a winner lives outside of where these gift cards can be redeemed, we’ll think of something else.


Please submit your stories! This is meant to be a fun exercise to get everyone’s creative juices flowing.

Don’t leave me hanging here, twiddling my thumbs, with nothing fun to read.


I will leave this post sticky on top of the page until September 27.

If you have questions about the contest, please ask in the comments.

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