Skip to main content

Short Short Story Competition

Learn More!  Writer’s Digest’s competition for short fiction. Send us your best...in 1,500 words or fewer. This competition is currently closed. Check back in July for our 23rd Annual Competition.
WD-SSS-2021-LaunchImages-1100x615

CLOSED

We’re looking for short fiction stories! Think you can write a winning story in 1,500 words or less? Enter the 22nd Annual Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Competition for your chance to win $3,000 in cash, get published in Writer’s Digest magazine, and a paid trip to our ever-popular Writer’s Digest Conference!

Prizes

One First Place Winner will receive:

  • $3,000 in cash
  • Their short story title published in Writer’s Digest magazine’s September/October 2022 issue
  • A paid trip to the Writer’s Digest Annual Conference, including a coveted Pitch Slam slot

The Second Place Winner will receive:

  • $1,500 in cash
  • Their short story title published in Writer’s Digest magazine’s September/October 2022 issue

The Third Place Winner will receive:

  • $500 in cash
  • Their short story title published in Writer’s Digest magazine’s September/October 2022 issue

Fourth through Tenth Place Winners will receive:

  • $100 in cash
  • Their short story titles published in Writer’s Digest magazine’s September/October 2022 issue

Eleventh through Twenty-Fifth Place Winners will receive:

  • A $50 gift certificate for writersdigestshop.com

How to Enter

  • All entries must be submitted online. Entries must be accompanied by the required judging fee. We accept PayPal or credit card payment for the required judging fee. Entry fees are non-refundable.
  • All entries must be in English. Only original works that have not been published (at the time of submission) in print, digital or online publications will be considered. Self-published work in blogs, on social media, etc. will be considered. Writer’s Digest retains one-time nonexclusive publication rights to the winning entries to be published in a Writer’s Digest publication.
  • All entries must be formatted to 8-1/2 x 11 or A4 paper. All manuscripts must be double-spaced. Entry files should not include name, address, and phone number in the upper left-hand corner of the first page since that information is collected on the form.
  • BE SURE OF YOUR WORD COUNT! Entries exceeding the word limits will be disqualified. Type the exact word count (counting every single word, except the title and contact information) at the top of the manuscript.
  • Due to U.S. Government restrictions we are unable to accept entries from Syria, Iran, North Korea, or Crimea.
  • For more information visit our Preparing Your Entry Page or our FAQ page.

Enter your email below and receive a free download, "Writer's Digest Complete Guide to Writing Contests," and be a step ahead of your competition!

Interviewing Tips | Tyler Moss

Interviewing 101: Tips for Writers

Interviewing sources for quotes or research will be part of any writer's job. Here are tips to make the process as smooth and productive as possible.

Plot Twist Story Prompts: Eliminate Threat

Plot Twist Story Prompts: Eliminate Threat

Every good story needs a nice (or not so nice) turn or two to keep it interesting. This week, have a character work to eliminate a threat.

4 Tips for Writing Gothic Horror

4 Tips for Writing Gothic Horror

Gothic horror and its many subgenres continues to increase in popularity. Here, author Ava Reid shares 4 tips on writing gothic horror.

Lucy Clarke: On the Power of Creativity

Lucy Clarke: On the Power of Creativity

Novelist Lucy Clarke discusses how a marathon of writing led to a first draft in just 17 days for her new psychological thriller, One of the Girls.

A Conversation With Jaden Terrell on Writer Expectations, Part 1 (Killer Writers)

A Conversation With Jaden Terrell on Writer Expectations, Part 1 (Killer Writers)

Killer Nashville founder Clay Stafford continues his series of interviews with mystery, thriller, and suspense authors. Here he has a conversation with novelist Jaden Terrell about writer expectations and success.

Connecting the Dots vs. Drawing the Whole Damn Picture: A Veteran Ghostwriter Takes Back His Pen and Finds Something To Say

Connecting the Dots vs. Drawing the Whole Damn Picture: A Veteran Ghostwriter Takes Back His Pen and Finds Something To Say

Writing for oneself after a decades-long career as a ghostwriter is a challenge unto itself. Here, author Daniel Paisner discusses his career as a ghostwriter, how the process differs from writing his own work, and if the two ever intersect.

Who Are Sensitivity Editors? And How Much Does Sensitivity Reading Pay?

Who Are Sensitivity Editors? And How Much Does Sensitivity Reading Pay?

Sensitivity readers offer a very specific and focused edit to manuscripts. Here, C. Hope Clark shares what a sensitivity editor is, how much it pays, and where you can start.

Kate White: On Building In Brainstorming Time

Kate White: On Building In Brainstorming Time

New York Times bestselling author Kate White discusses the process of writing her new psychological thriller, The Second Husband.

Poetry Prompt

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 615

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer shares a prompt and an example poem to get things started on the Poetic Asides blog. This week, write a desire poem.