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Our Holiday Horrors Flash Fiction Contest is Back!

September 23, 2021

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We are delighted to announce that our annual holiday horrors flash fiction contest is back!

This year we're getting in touch with our horrific roots with the theme of Halloween. Tell us tales of trick-or-treating gone wrong, monsters lurking in the darkness to grab kiddies on their way home, or teens who accidentally raise the dead.

Halloween is the scariest holiday of them all, so finding a way to twist it into something new and exciting will be a trick, and will definitely give us all a treat!


  • Your story must be 250 words or less. That is a hard limit. It does not include your title or byline. Our guide will be the Microsoft Word word count tool.
  • Your story must feature the holiday horrors theme and be filled with frights.
  • Entry is free to all.
  • Contest opens on October 1st, 2021.
  • Contest closes at 11:59pm EST, November 15th, 2021.
  • Please submit your story in doc, docx, or rtf format. Use a sensible font that is large enough for us to read (12 pt.).
  • Only one entry per person.
  • Contest is open to everyone. If you’re under 18, you’ll need to obtain permission from a parent or legal guardian.
  • You can have a submission in consideration at Apex Magazine and enter the flash fiction contest separately.
  • Lesley Conner and a team of first readers will read all submissions. Lesley Conner will select the winner and runner-ups.
  • Winner and runner-up stories will be announced by December 15th, 2021.
  • Submit via our Moksha Portal here: https://apexbookcompany.moksha.io/publication/holiday-horrors


  • We will choose a winner and two runner-ups.
  • The winner will receive $25 and publication in issue 129 of Apex Magazine.
  • The two runner-up entries will receive $10 and publication on the Apex Magazine blog.
  • Apex will request that the winner and runner-up entries agree to our standard short fiction contract that can be found here. Clause 3 (rights fee) will be modified to reflect the offered payment terms of the holiday horrors flash fiction contest.


Winner: "All I Want for Christmas" by Charles Payseur

Runner's Up: "Missa do Galo" by Inês Montenegro and "Blood & Peppermint" by Clint Collins