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QSF Flash Contest 2022: “Clarity” is Here!

Clarity

The 2022 QSF Flash Fiction contest is officially open for entries – the submission window closes May 1st. We’re excited about this year’s theme!

Every year, QSF holds a flash fiction contest to create an amazing new anthology of queer speculative fiction stories. We ask authors to do the nearly-impossible – to submit a sci fi, fantasy, paranormal or horror LGBTQ+ story that has no more than 300 words.

Clarity:

Noun:

  • 1) Coherent and intelligible
  • 2) Transparent or pure
  • 3) Attaining certainty about something
  • 4) Easy to see or hear

The whole world is murky right now. Covid waves, climate change, and right-wing pollution of our airwaves have made even truth suspect and subject to dispute. What we need most is clarity. Clarity about the world around us and the path forward. 

Tell us about clarity in all its forms and the difference it can make on your characters, the culture, and the world, for better or worse.

We’ll be accepting works from across the queer spectrum, and would love to see more entries including lesbian, trans, bi, intersex and ace protagonists, as well as gay men. We also welcome diversity in ability (physical and mental) and in race. We had our most diverse set of entries yet in 2021 – let’s keep up the trend!

We always get tons of gay sci fi shorts every year, so if you try your hand at fantasy, paranormal or horror, especially with the other letters of the queer alphabet, you’ll have a better chance of standing out. 

Try for something unique – take the road less traveled. 

We welcome both strictly genre stories and genre stories with romance in the mix.

We have four main criteria by which each work will be judged:

  • Is there at least one queer character and/or obvious queer content?
  • How well does the work incorporate speculative fiction (sci fi, fantasy, paranormal or horror) tropes and concepts?
  • Is the work well-crafted, with a plot, a beginning, a middle, and an end?
  • How well/cleverly is the theme used in the work?

We’ll announce the first batch of winners – the works selected for the anthology – soon after the judging is complete, likely in early June.

We’ll also tease you with the honorable mention winners for this year’s book.

Then we’ll announce the judges’ choices – five works that didn’t quite make the top three, but that each of the judges thought deserved special mention – and the Director’s choice.

But the biggest event will be the launch of the book, when the top three winners will be announced.

So break out your writing pencil or laptop or whatever you use, and get ready to write.

See our FAQ section and full contest rules here.

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