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LVW Invites Entries to 17th Annual Flash Fiction Contest

Once again we are
holding a Flash Fiction Contest that awards
cash prizes and
charges NO entry fee.

Submissions are now being accepted and must be received by the stroke
of midnight on
August 15, 2022.


The first prize winner will receive $50, second prize $25, and third prize $15. There will also be three honorable mentions, which will not receive cash prizes but will be published with the other winners here . 

All six winning stories will be edited by a professional editor. The authors of all six winning entries will also receive a one-year complimentary membership in Ligonier Valley Writers. 

If possible, winning entries will be read at various venues during the Halloween season of 2022. Winning writers will be invited to read their stories at those locations. Winning entries will also be published on here.


This year's topic is mermaids, selkies, and other water dwellers. In 1,000 words or less, tell us a story.

Damian Dressick, our celebrity judge last year, has agreed to be the final arbiter again this year. He is the author of the flash fiction collection Fables of the Deconstruction (CLASH Books) and the novel 40 Patchtown, about the coalminers’ strike of 1922 in the patches around Windber (Bottom Dog Press: Appalachian Writing Series, 2020). His creative work has appeared in more than 50 literary journals and anthologies, including W.W. Norton’s New Micro: Exceptionally Short Fiction, Cutbank, Post Road, New Orleans Review and Smokelong Quarterly. A Blue Mountain Residency Fellow, he is the winner of the Harriette Arnow Award and the Jesse Stuart Prize. 

Damian co-hosts WANA: LIVE, a (largely) virtual reading series that brings some of the best in Appalachian writing to the world. He teaches at Clarion University of Pennsylvania. For more, check out

We hope that we'll be able to hold readings of the winning stories at various venues during the Halloween season. Please check back here for the latest info once we are able to start holding in-person events again.

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