From an original field of 2,100 writers around the world and after
three intense challenges, 48
finalists were challenged to create short
stories (1,000 words max.) in just 48 hours based on the following
Location: A trading floor
Object: A scrapbook
The top stories overall are listed below. Congratulations to
the winners, to all the finalists for making it so far, and to
everyone that participated for creating so many amazing stories this
#1 - ''Futures'' by
Mary Squillace SYNOPSIS - "The empires of the
future are empires of the mind." -- Winston Churchill
#2 - ''Futures Exchange'' by Michael Cursio SYNOPSIS - Ximin comes
to know her own mind in units per second.
#3 - ''The Midnight Palace'' by Jenny Williams SYNOPSIS - An elderly
janitor in the Palazzo Mezzanote, home of the Italian stock
exchange, instructs a new apprentice on the care and keeping of a
marble floor with a very personal history.
#4 - ''To Stick a Star'' by Kelli Fitzpatrick SYNOPSIS - A child
whose spaceship crashed documents her crew's efforts to survive.
When things become dire, she draws on her resourcefulness in a bold
ploy for help.
#5 - ''Ghost Nines'' by Fred Senese SYNOPSIS - Futures are traded in
the pits of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, and the present is
bought and sold in New York. The past is traded only after midnight,
on the floor of the Cotton Markethouse in Savannah, Georgia.
#6 - ''Snow Was Falling'' by Eric Forster SYNOPSIS - Gifts can be
expensive, even when they don't cost money.
#7 - ''The Little Bird'' by Elizabeth Schwandt SYNOPSIS - Gus,
adrift and alone after his father's death, decides to kill some time
on the family ranch. Ranch life is not a great match for the young
photojournalist, but his first trip to a cattle trade shows him
another side of his uncle.
#8 - ''Amor Maternus'' by Claire Arnett SYNOPSIS - When a slave is
parted from her greatest treasure, she must find the will to defy
her masters, and break their dominance over the wealth of the Allied
#9 - ''The Entomologist's Trophies'' by Sandra Skelton SYNOPSIS - A
bug collector hunts the most dangerous game.
#10 - ''Invisible Hands'' by Daniel Halem SYNOPSIS - The woman who
sweeps the floors of the Los Angeles stock exchange is secretly an
#Honorable Mention - ''Even the Devil'' by Marrie Stone SYNOPSIS -
Parting with precious family heirlooms is difficult. But what if
they were never yours?
#Honorable Mention - ''Trading Futures'' by
Jody M Keene SYNOPSIS -
An after-hours date to the trading floor takes an unexpected turn.
#Honorable Mention - ''A Hero at the End of the Day'' by Beth
Greenberg SYNOPSIS - It's not every day Captain America rings the
closing bell at the NYSE. For one father and son, the superhero's
appearance offers the chance of a lifetime.
#Honorable Mention - ''Quid Pro Quo'' by Claudia Wair SYNOPSIS - A
simple transaction; one favor for another. A woman agrees to a risky
trade that she hopes will prove mutually beneficial.
#Honorable Mention - ''Mod Cons'' by
Lisa Jade SYNOPSIS - Modular
Implants allow us to know and remember more than ever before. But
remembering every detail often just causes more pain.
#Honorable Mention - ''Ninety-Nine Orphans'' by Colin Cortie
SYNOPSIS - Those who trade lives as commodities seldom stop to
consider their own worth. What will James do when his own life,
humdrum and dreary, is placed on his desk?
#Honorable Mention - ''The Criminals'' by Rebecca Ashcraft SYNOPSIS
- Does it really matter whether a crime is large or small? An
immigrant who struggles to make her own way in a foreign land
discovers this truth about crime: it cannot be undone.
#Honorable Mention - ''Anthropodermic Bibliopegy'' by Jasmine Lane
SYNOPSIS - In an inhuman society, historians sacrifice their bodies
and lives to reach subjective truth. But new arrival T'rriklta has
doubts -- is someone like her really worthy of the Library?
#Honorable Mention - ''Blood Money'' by
Beverly Reynolds SYNOPSIS -
A senior broker is forced to work the trading floor after his
coworker's mysterious absence.
#Honorable Mention - ''The Wolf Spice'' by Elaine Lies SYNOPSIS -
Every family has a lost treasure. For Mara's, famed for generation
upon generation of cooks, it is the Wolf Spice, known for its
legendary powers and desperately needed now.
Challenge is a competition that challenges writers
around the world to create short stories
(1,000 words max.) based on genre, location, and object assignments.
Each writer will participate in at least 2 writing challenges and as
many as 4 depending on how well they place in each challenge.
When the competition begins, writers are placed in groups where they
will be judged against other writers within their same group.
Each group receives its own unique genre, location, and object
assignments (see past examples
After 2 challenges, the top 5 writers that score the highest advance
to the next challenge. In Challenge #3, writers are
placed in new groups and given a new genre, location, and object
assignment. The top 4 writers from each of the groups in
Challenge #3 advance to the fourth and final challenge of the
competition where they are given the final genre, location, and
object assignment and compete for thousands in cash and prizes.
Sound like fun? Join the competition below or
click here for a more detailed
description of how the competition works. Good luck!
View the 2nd Round Results!
View the 1st Round Results!
The maximum number of participants has been reached and registration
is now closed. There will be more exciting competitions coming
soon, so make sure to
sign up for our newsletter and follow us on
twitter so you know when the
next challenge is open for
registration. Best of luck to the writers participating, the
link to the assignments will be posted here at 11:59PM EDT on
Friday, July 22nd!
Official Rules and Participation Agreement
||June 16, 2016
||July 21, 2016
||July 22-24, 2016
||September 16-18, 2016
||November 4-6, 2016
||December 9-11, 2016
Not only does every writer receive feedback from the judges for every
story that is submitted, but
a special review forum is available for the participants to submit
their stories for review from fellow writers throughout the
competition. During the last Flash Fiction Challenge, there
were nearly 10,000 comments made
on the 650+ stories shared on the forum.
Click here to visit the
“That was exciting! Nothing like a tight deadline to get the
creative juices flowing.”
|“What an exciting opportunity. When
you've got such a tight box to fit your story into, you become
exquisitely aware of each word. Great fun.”
|“I feel like I just finished a
marathon! What a rush!”
|“Yay! I just submitted my NYC Flash
Fiction entry for Round 1! I had an enormous amount of fun
writing it. Best of luck to everyone in the competition.”
Santa Rosa, CA
“Yikes. 1,000 words comes up quick. So does 48 hours. Definitely
reached a point where I knew I had to leave out so much that I
had envisioned. Once I finished writing the ending I was able to
go back and cut some dead weight so that I could slip in some
explanatory details. Then I had to cut some more to get back to
1,000 words. On the nose. Submitted with maybe a minute or two
to spare. What a rush!”
“First draft 1482 words! Yikes! 5 drafts later, 984 words!
Hurray! My first horror story.”