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Come one, come all, step right up, and see what travails await you! Flash Fiction Month is rolling into town once again, with all its usual assortment colourful wagons, novelty tents, and prompt beasts in tow.


What mysteries will you uncover this July? What strange wonders will you behold? How many stories can you reasonably be expected to write in a single month? And exactly how many hours can a person go without sleeping before they start to hallucinate?


There’s only one way to find out!


We know what you're thinking: It's dangerous. It's unseemly. It definitely doesn't fit in with my schedule! Writing 31 flash fiction stories in 31 days? Only a madman would undertake such a foolish venture. But luckily we're all mad here. ;)


If you'd like a chance to stretch your creative muscles, and push your fictional prowess to the limit, Flash Fiction Month is the event for you. Are you ready for a month of prompts, challenges, mixed metaphors and literary contortion-ism? Are you ready to witness the horrors, and wonders that lie beyond?


  • Not sure what Flash Fiction Month is? Check out our shiny FAQ for all the sordid details, then come right back here and sign up anyway!


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If you're ready to commit to Flash Fiction Month 2021, sign up by leaving a comment below!

In your sign up comment, we will also require your answers to the following questionnaire for reasons that are not at all nefarious in nature.

SIGN UP QUESTIONNAIRE:

In honour of this being the 13th year of our existence (that's right, FFM is now officially a teenager!) the answer to each question must be limited to no more than 13 words.


  1. What is your LEAST favourite genre?

  2. What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work?

  3. List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them)

  4. What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows)

  5. What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing?

  6. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon?

  7. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth?

  8. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.)

  9. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here.

  10. Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?!


And a final question for those who participated in FFM 2020:


What categories would you like to see for the Golden Mug Awards this year? Highest fictional death count? Most instances of mermaids? Funniest writer? Scariest story? Let us know and we promise to consider it!


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We know, we know. SO MANY QUESTIONS. But you’re all writers so we figured we could get away with it. You could just put down your name... but not completing the questionnaire could have consequences down the road. So proceed with caution. :devilish:


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While you’re waiting for the main event, we suggest you peruse the FAQ stalls, deposit some inspiration in the 2021 Prompt Bank, and engage with your fellow participants in the Official FFM Discord Server.


Over the coming weeks we will be ramping up the event, preparing all our fiendish prompts and challenges, and generally making FFM 2021 the best it can be, so hang tight, and set your alarms for July 1st!


Late to the festivities? It's never too late to join in! Unless it's July 31st, in which case, yes, you’ve missed it. Alas the stands are empty, and all that remains is crushed popcorn, and the slightest odour of untethered dreams.


If you are a previous participant FFM, and know the lay of the land, you also know that we always (always…) need volunteer judges. If you’re willing to offer up some of your time, and read some entertaining flash fiction stories, send us a note! We’d love to have you. :cuteflirt:


And remember, If you have any questions, all you need to do is ask. We, the many headed Hydra – showmaster of this particular event. are at your disposal.

VIVA!

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CouchSessions's avatar

I'm late to the game, having only just heard about this but it's not the 31st just yet so what the heck?


What is your LEAST favourite genre?


To read? I like everything. To write? Definitely horror. It's all about themes.

What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work?


Trauma and renewal


List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them)


  1. Personification

  2. Onomatopoeia

  3. Subversion

(All must be done in an unexpected way though.)


What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows)


That, my friend, is the smell of keyboard preparing itself to be demolished.


What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing?


Conveying themes without being too obvious/cliche about it. The struggle is real.


Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon?


Strong open, strong close. The middle gets pretty messy.


What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth?


I love a good rollercoaster, but my favorite is the food stalls.


What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.)


"I haven't forgotten, minister." *shows scars on hand spelling out I must not tell lies.*


Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here.


Uhhhh....is zero to hero an archetype? Hercules is my favorite Disney film.


Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?!


Considering it's almost over, sure! ^^;

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar

We like that spirit! Welcome to the party. :dummy: The discord server is there if you want to meet some fellow beleaguered writers. They're great cheerleaders. ;)

joe-wright's avatar

Well I guess I'm doing this now.


What is your LEAST favourite genre?

Generally? Crime. Although I think High Fantasy has a higher ceiling of annoyance for me when I perceive it to be poorly executed. I'm ignoring the 13 words thing by the way. It's fine, shut up.


Subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work.

Rain, Comedy Cthulhoids, Cool spaceships.


THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read.

Characters heroically confronting their flaws, specialist exposition regarding an imaginary subject, gothic scenery


What is that smell?

Lasagne.


What is your greatest writing weakness?

Stamina.


Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon?

Spelling. I lean on the pathetic fallacy as a shortcut to atmosphere.


What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]?

I don't think I've been into a fairground? They look like a nightmare. They sell doughnuts there right? Doughnut Cart.


What is a specific bit of story that haunts you?

The Jaunt by Stephen King. Specifically the core concept and the ending. Just thinking about it is making my palms sweat really badly and I feel sick. I've never even read it, my Mum just told me about it in the car when I was about 7 and quietly suffering through a terrible existential crisis.


Pick a specific literary character or character archetype.

The Vergil (the protagonist's dark mirror image - see Devil May Cry 3 and every Marvel movie.)


Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?!

Evidently not, seeing as I'm only filling this in now.

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar

Good hauntings work too! We didn’t mean to make you anxious. :noes:

ECCpizzacats's avatar

What is your LEAST favourite genre?

Romance... bleh What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work? Does literal chaos count? Mainly self discovery, exploration, and change.

List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them)

In wings of fire with the inner, all caps dialogue. Forshadowing What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows)

I am confusion. I smell smoke in real life. Does that coint? What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing?

Staying on a project, time, length, and plot. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon?

I am willing to edit the thing 50 times over. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth?

The games and food. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.)

I have never been haunted by a book. Movie, yes, but not book. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here.

Protagonist/antagonist Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?!

I have no clue what I am doing, but sure.

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar

:lol: Welcome, dive right in!

MobiusMortis's avatar
  1. What is your LEAST favourite genre? (Not sure I got one!

  2. What are some of the) subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work? (Fantasy/fiction)

  3. List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (battle, conflict and drama)

  4. What is that smell? That smelly smell!?

  5. What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing? (Organization.)

  6. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon? (Trial and error. I can learn from my writing mistakes and only grow from them.)

  7. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? (The food stall don't judge.)

  8. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (improper powerscaling and potholes. I dread those and still got lots of regret for my own. )

  9. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here. (The hesitant hero.)

  10. Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?! ( I THINK I MISSED IT!)

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar

You haven’t missed it! We’re all still here, and quite a few writers are running behind this year so you wont be alone. :la:


You can play catch up (write things chronologically or out of order), or just dive right in on the current day. We also recommend the discord channel for when you need a bit of a boost, we’re all there to help. ;) Welcome!

inksoaked's avatar
  1. What is your LEAST favourite genre? procedural crime

  2. What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work? Children/children’s POV, slice of life, queerness, grief

  3. List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them) transgressive protagonists, subversión of tropes, immersive description (see Shadow of the Wind)

  4. What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows) a newborns head

  5. What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing? World building, plot structure. Lmao nothing ever happens in my stories.

  6. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon? describing The human experience so I don’t have to be creative hahahaha

  7. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth? wherever they be sellinem fried Oreos at

  8. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.) the way scents were broken apart and described in the book Perfume

  9. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here. the tragic immortal

  10. Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?! No absolutely not lmao

XevulStories's avatar
  1. What is your LEAST favourite genre?(I feel like that's a bad question since any genre can be good if well executed/hunger game-esque books like the ones with a dystopian world and rebel protagonist lol)

  2. What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work?(I guess death, abstract beings and evolution/creatures that quickly adapt)

  3. List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them) (when an author can properly juggle the cast they created, charismatic characters who have such an impact that you occasionally forget their wrongdoings and finally when a story has a motif it places in its story in interesting ways)

  4. What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows) (That's burnt toast smell because you're having another stroke, grandpa)

  5. What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing? (It would have to be formatting, making character speech feel right to just write and the pacing of my endings)

  6. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon? (I'd say maybe the concepts in my stories?)

  7. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth? (Circuses and carnivals are merely relics of a bygone era that should be eradicated. I mean to be honest can you even remember anytime you went to one of these and if you can I know you're one of their spies so get the hell out of here.)

  8. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.) (Recently it would have to be 1984 and I know it sounds pretentious but I wasn't really jamming with the start. The end however just hooked me in how it reinforces the lesson you knew from the start, the one you were being told and the one the end shows. But the way the author uses a character to inform us and the main character of this is just amazing. It's all because of that initial lesson that blooms into knowing there's no way forward and there never was.)

  9. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here. (Edgy main character who has his fits of gleeful murderous rage justified by having some horrible act done to him before he could do his occasional sprees of murder and other crimes. It has to feel though like the author is trying to justify their characters actions and not like their character's actions stem from the traumatic events they faced.)

  10. Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?! (I have no idea but I'll pretend to be hyped as hell)

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar

Pretend, and the hype will follow. :giggle: Welcome! If you need any help with anything just shout.

XevulStories's avatar

Oh one question is this writing prompt based or do we just submit any stories we want?

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar

Whatever you fancy really, we have people in both camps. You can do your own thing, but there are also optional daily prompts if you need a boost, and some optional extra challenges as well.


If something inspires you, run with it. If not that's fine too!

distortified's avatar
  1. What is your LEAST favourite genre? Literary Fiction

  2. What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work? Satan, the apocalypse, gods, superhumans

  3. List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them) Non-traditional Families, Obscure Myth/Lore, Questionable protagonists

  4. What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows) @inksoaked has her feet pointed at me while she sleeps. just saying.

  5. What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing? I definitely have issues with pacing at times, and with tight technical writing

  6. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon? Characterization and tone, worldbuilding.

  7. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth? I love some rollercoasters

  8. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.) The abused baby smiling toothlessly in Tommyknockers

  9. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here. The Antihero

  10. Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?! I'm never ready, but you evil bastards won't unlock the chains.

Purplesan's avatar
  1. What is your LEAST favourite genre? Classics

  2. What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work? This is actually my first time writing stories so...I don't know and we'll just have to find out @_@

  3. List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them) Romance, Revenge stories, and Necromancy >_>

  4. What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows) Its the ocean

  5. What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing? Actually maintaining motivation to write...

  6. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon? Really not sure as I've maybe written 5 short stories in my life .-.

  7. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth? Baked Potatoes. Every. Single. Time.

  8. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.) Cockroaches swarming around a party of adventurers...

  9. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here. Character tied to a shady organization >_>

  10. Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?! Only time will tell .-.

KiriHearts's avatar

omg you did this one year with me before and you wrote stories for that one class before that -.-

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar

We’re so glad you could join us. Hopefully you have fun!

MMBaird's avatar
  1. What is your LEAST favourite genre? Comedy, mostly because I'm exposed to it the least.

  2. What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work? Something fantastical.

  3. List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them) Problem solving, kind of like in mystery/detective stories; interesting characters; satisfying character change/growth.

  4. What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows) Dog paws and dust.

  5. What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing? I think just figuring out POVs and how to tell the story.

  6. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon? Not sure how to answer this.

  7. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth? Nothing with animals (they're not for entertainment), LOVE me some rollercoasters.

  8. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.) Anything by Luis López Nieves.

  9. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here. The thoughtful/awkward person turned hero.

  10. Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?! Always!

IntelligentZombie's avatar
  1. What is your LEAST favourite genre? Romance. Yuergh.

  2. What are some of the subjects/motifs/concepts that most often show up in your work? drugs, murder!

  3. List THREE details/dynamics/story elements that you LOVE to read. – (the cool little details that make your heart sing when you see them) ravens! murder! drugs

  4. What is that smell? (It could be important, who knows) COOKIES

  5. What is your greatest writing weakness? Do you despise description, or often struggle with pacing? I struggle with thinking I suck :"D And what even is dialogue

  6. Conversely, what do you think is your greatest strength when it comes to writing? What is that crutch you often lean upon? mmhmmMMMM SOME GOOD ABSTRACT IMAGERY BUB

  7. What is your favourite stall to visit at circus/carnival/fairground/[insert appropriate substitute event here]? Is it the roller-coaster? The high-wire act? The captive mermaids? The soothsayers booth? the foOOD

  8. What is a specific bit of story that haunts you? – (a fleeting moment, or recurring image from something you read, that often resurfaces in your mind? Described in a succinct and non-spoilery manner if you please.) maaaaaaaaan anything by stephen king or neil gaiman, but american gods dude. american gods. Bilquis.

  9. Pick a specific literary character or character archetype, and list it here. the femme fatale my guy

  10. Are you ready for Flash Fiction Month 2021?! not emotionally, no

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar
Teela-Y's avatar

(I arranged all my answers into paragraph form for the questions for ease of reading, hope you don't mind!) Hello everyone, it's great to be back and to see both familiar and new faces! I really enjoy exploring all genres and formats, though some of my favorite concepts and techniques include subversion, dimensional travel, and swords... you can never have too many swords. Three dynamics that I *love* to encounter when I'm reading are something being creepy out in the woods (but what turns out to be fantastical); monsters going bump in the night (that really just wanted a snack, right?); and narratives about characters learning something new or expected after great encounters. Do you smell something, by the way? ...Must be the upper atmosphere of Jupiter again as we prepare for ejection to Europa. Back on topic, my greatest weakness as a writer is having too much emphasis on blueprinting and not enough on building. Conversely, my greatest strength I've been told from friends and in workshops is my ability to impact readers emotionally. A crutch I've leaned on, however, is that I've often used humor to avoid discomfort in works hitting too close to home; as a result, I have missed opportunities for capturing authenticity in the past. Off-topic again, but have you guys visited Mr. Cooger's Carousel? It's quite charming in the fall I hear. A specific bit of story that haunts me is the atomized silhouette of the family in "There Will Come Soft Rains," by Ray Bradbury, and my favorite type of literary characters are the ones who chose to walk away from Omelas. I'm warming up for FFM2021, so let's do this! I can't wait to see what you guys come up with; I completed FFM2018 and participated in 2019, but took a break in 2020. A category I'd love to see for The Golden Mug this year is a category for "most surprising or unexpected." See you guys soon!

Flash-Fic-Month's avatar

It’s lovely to see you again! Say hi on the discord channel when you have a chance. :love:

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