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Excited for Flash Fiction! Who’s in?

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stephenmatlock View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote stephenmatlock Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 11:46am
Originally posted by alfdis alfdis wrote:

I'm excited about this contest, but also hesitant to sign up. I'm somewhat inexperienced, in the sense that my creative writing practice has been sporadic and the only things I've published have been academic articles. I've read some of the past winners and it seems there are a lot of people competing who are full-fledged professional writers, some with multiple published works, so I wonder if I'd just be flushing $50 down the toilet, lol (despite the fact that I'm reasonably confident about my writing skills).

What would you suggest for someone in my position? What were your experiences as fledgling writers or NYC Midnight newbies? Do you think it's worth taking a chance on, or that it might be better to wait, participate in other types of challenges or contests, hone my craft, etc., before seriously considering a challenge like this one?

Whatever happens, I'm excited about my participation in the Microfiction challenge and especially about being able to connect with other writers through these forums. I hope to hear more about your experiences!


I've never won. Never made it to Challenge #3.

But the feedback from this group is excellent. The judges usually provide something useful, but what I get from the writers here is almost entirely useful and pointed and helpful.

You need to figure out if that $43 (after your discount) amount is worth it. For me, it is. My flash fiction pieces have turned out to be reworkable into other forms, including longer stories and even short radio plays that I've staged.

If it's a good idea for you--that's okay.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Suave Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 11:59am
Originally posted by alfdis alfdis wrote:

I'm excited about this contest, but also hesitant to sign up. I'm somewhat inexperienced, in the sense that my creative writing practice has been sporadic and the only things I've published have been academic articles. I've read some of the past winners and it seems there are a lot of people competing who are full-fledged professional writers, some with multiple published works, so I wonder if I'd just be flushing $50 down the toilet, lol (despite the fact that I'm reasonably confident about my writing skills).

What would you suggest for someone in my position? What were your experiences as fledgling writers or NYC Midnight newbies? Do you think it's worth taking a chance on, or that it might be better to wait, participate in other types of challenges or contests, hone my craft, etc., before seriously considering a challenge like this one?

Whatever happens, I'm excited about my participation in the Microfiction challenge and especially about being able to connect with other writers through these forums. I hope to hear more about your experiences!

I will say this, you will not be wasting your money; you get to write two stories,
even if you don't move on. You will be introduced to the strangest prompts with 
no time to write to them and come out the other side with a story.
It is addicting, so this first $50 is just the beginning.
Honestly, you will really enjoy this contest. It gives you quite the feeling of accomplishment.



Edited by Suave - 8 hours 21 minutes ago at 7:16am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote chrissie0707 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 12:46pm
Originally posted by alfdis alfdis wrote:

I'm excited about this contest, but also hesitant to sign up. I'm somewhat inexperienced, in the sense that my creative writing practice has been sporadic and the only things I've published have been academic articles. I've read some of the past winners and it seems there are a lot of people competing who are full-fledged professional writers, some with multiple published works, so I wonder if I'd just be flushing $50 down the toilet, lol (despite the fact that I'm reasonably confident about my writing skills).

What would you suggest for someone in my position? What were your experiences as fledgling writers or NYC Midnight newbies? Do you think it's worth taking a chance on, or that it might be better to wait, participate in other types of challenges or contests, hone my craft, etc., before seriously considering a challenge like this one?

Whatever happens, I'm excited about my participation in the Microfiction challenge and especially about being able to connect with other writers through these forums. I hope to hear more about your experiences!

The first contest I signed up for the Short Story Competition in 2018. My friend had done FFC the year before and really enjoyed it, and I had never written an original story, but really wanted to see if I could. I made the finals that year. 

These comps are where my now-published works have come from. It's a great community here in the forum for getting helpful feedback, and the prompts can spark creativity you didn't know you had in you. The Flash Contest is a great one to get started in, because you're guaranteed two stories to write. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Alexis_H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 12:52pm
Originally posted by alfdis alfdis wrote:

I'm excited about this contest, but also hesitant to sign up. I'm somewhat inexperienced, in the sense that my creative writing practice has been sporadic and the only things I've published have been academic articles. I've read some of the past winners and it seems there are a lot of people competing who are full-fledged professional writers, some with multiple published works, so I wonder if I'd just be flushing $50 down the toilet, lol (despite the fact that I'm reasonably confident about my writing skills).

What would you suggest for someone in my position? What were your experiences as fledgling writers or NYC Midnight newbies? Do you think it's worth taking a chance on, or that it might be better to wait, participate in other types of challenges or contests, hone my craft, etc., before seriously considering a challenge like this one?

Whatever happens, I'm excited about my participation in the Microfiction challenge and especially about being able to connect with other writers through these forums. I hope to hear more about your experiences!
 
I started with the FFC four years ago. Before that I had written some fiction just for myself for fun maybe 10 years before. I have gotten through to round 3 twice out of those four contests and I am by no means a multi published writer. Honestly, I found the challenge pushed my creativity in ways I never would have done myself and the feedback in the forums has advanced my writing incredibly. I thought it was worth it my first year and have been coming back ever since.
 
If you have the money, treat it like a writing workshop rather than a contest.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jennifer.quail Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 1:18pm
Originally posted by alfdis alfdis wrote:



What would you suggest for someone in my position? What were your experiences as fledgling writers or NYC Midnight newbies? Do you think it's worth taking a chance on, or that it might be better to wait, participate in other types of challenges or contests, hone my craft, etc., before seriously considering a challenge like this one?

If your goal is to win first prize, then you probably will be throwing money away because even if you ARE a professional, there are literally thousands of entries. The odds are not in your favor. On the other hand, the only way to GUARANTEE you don't win is not to enter. And here, no matter how well you do with the judges and how useful or useless their feedback is, you have the forums. A big chunk of that entry fee pays for being able to post it for OTHER writers and you'll get more and varied feedback that way. I don't know any other contests where that's a feature. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote alfdis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 1:32pm
Wow, thanks everyone for your responses! There are a lot of valuable remarks in everything that all of you have said, and I appreciate how varied your writing backgrounds are. It was especially heartening to hear from those of you who competed with little writing behind you, and those who have done so and gone on to publish/stage your works. I'm actually more motivated to participate now, so thanks again, a bunch!

I'm in NO way aiming to come in first place, hahaha, and not necessarily even within the top whatever. I guess I just didn't like the idea of a guaranteed loss considering the number and quality of competitors... but it seems there's hope :-)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote regannoelle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 hours 28 minutes ago at 1:09am
Originally posted by alfdis alfdis wrote:

I'm excited about this contest, but also hesitant to sign up. I'm somewhat inexperienced, in the sense that my creative writing practice has been sporadic and the only things I've published have been academic articles. I've read some of the past winners and it seems there are a lot of people competing who are full-fledged professional writers, some with multiple published works, so I wonder if I'd just be flushing $50 down the toilet, lol (despite the fact that I'm reasonably confident about my writing skills).

What would you suggest for someone in my position? What were your experiences as fledgling writers or NYC Midnight newbies? Do you think it's worth taking a chance on, or that it might be better to wait, participate in other types of challenges or contests, hone my craft, etc., before seriously considering a challenge like this one?

Whatever happens, I'm excited about my participation in the Microfiction challenge and especially about being able to connect with other writers through these forums. I hope to hear more about your experiences!


Hello! I'm the winner of the FFC 2019 contest, and the two pieces that NYCM wanted to publish, my winning piece and a story from an earlier round, are actually my first ever publications! I'm definitely proof that your professional experience or prior publications won't hinder you in how well you do here. Regardless of if you've been published or not, the story you write each round will only ever be compared to the stories everyone else writes with the same prompts and same time period. While having more experience in writing will of course improve your work as you hone your skills, taking part in this competition is a great way to gain experience.

I love this contest and recommend it to everyone because I've seen firsthand how these experiences have shaped my writing. My first year in flash, I didn't make it beyond the first challenge. My second year around, I ended up winning! Having access to a forum of wonderful writers to provide feedback on your work is so beneficial, and so is forcing yourself out of your comfort zone with the assigned genres.

While the price to enter is a bit steep, I think it's such a valuable experience and can definitely help you grow as a writer. The chances of winning are of course slim, mathematically. Still, winning or not, you'll come out of it with at least two new stories and feedback from fellow writers and judges. You can take that feedback to make your stories even better and send it off for publication, which a lot of writers on here have done. Plus, you get to have a fun, mildly stress-inducing weekend with the rest of us along the way.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jimiflan2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 8 hours 26 minutes ago at 7:11am
Originally posted by alfdis alfdis wrote:

 I guess I just didn't like the idea of a guaranteed loss considering the number and quality of competitors... but it seems there's hope :-)

the way i look at it, is im paying a small fee to access the forums and get really useful feedback on my writing from writers like me (and like you) with little experience all the way to experienced published authors. So that is a guaranteed gain in my books.

What hasnt been said yet above, is that by reading other writers work and the opportunity to provide critique yourself is a really good way to learn the craft. I might not have a lot of experience as a writer, but i have over 40 years experience as a reader and i find challenging myself to try and find some useful critique for others really helps my own writing.

So, ive signed up, i havent been back on NYCmidnight for over 10 years, but the micro fiction challenge + lockdown drew me in and im ready for the next challenge!


Edited by jimiflan2 - 8 hours 25 minutes ago at 7:12am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote alfdis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 7 hours 16 minutes ago at 8:21am
Originally posted by regannoelle regannoelle wrote:

Originally posted by alfdis alfdis wrote:

I'm excited about this contest, but also hesitant to sign up. I'm somewhat inexperienced, in the sense that my creative writing practice has been sporadic and the only things I've published have been academic articles. I've read some of the past winners and it seems there are a lot of people competing who are full-fledged professional writers, some with multiple published works, so I wonder if I'd just be flushing $50 down the toilet, lol (despite the fact that I'm reasonably confident about my writing skills).

What would you suggest for someone in my position? What were your experiences as fledgling writers or NYC Midnight newbies? Do you think it's worth taking a chance on, or that it might be better to wait, participate in other types of challenges or contests, hone my craft, etc., before seriously considering a challenge like this one?

Whatever happens, I'm excited about my participation in the Microfiction challenge and especially about being able to connect with other writers through these forums. I hope to hear more about your experiences!


Hello! I'm the winner of the FFC 2019 contest, and the two pieces that NYCM wanted to publish, my winning piece and a story from an earlier round, are actually my first ever publications! I'm definitely proof that your professional experience or prior publications won't hinder you in how well you do here. Regardless of if you've been published or not, the story you write each round will only ever be compared to the stories everyone else writes with the same prompts and same time period. While having more experience in writing will of course improve your work as you hone your skills, taking part in this competition is a great way to gain experience.

I love this contest and recommend it to everyone because I've seen firsthand how these experiences have shaped my writing. My first year in flash, I didn't make it beyond the first challenge. My second year around, I ended up winning! Having access to a forum of wonderful writers to provide feedback on your work is so beneficial, and so is forcing yourself out of your comfort zone with the assigned genres.

While the price to enter is a bit steep, I think it's such a valuable experience and can definitely help you grow as a writer. The chances of winning are of course slim, mathematically. Still, winning or not, you'll come out of it with at least two new stories and feedback from fellow writers and judges. You can take that feedback to make your stories even better and send it off for publication, which a lot of writers on here have done. Plus, you get to have a fun, mildly stress-inducing weekend with the rest of us along the way.


Now, THAT'S exciting! Congratulations on your successes and thanks a bunch for sharing your thoughts. A lot of what you and others have said is resonating with my own thoughts about challenging myself and joining a community of writers, and thus is washing away all that sneaky doubt.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote alfdis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 6 hours 40 minutes ago at 8:57am
Well, hello, Jmiflan. I'm especially excited to hear from you, as your Microfiction entry was the first story I commented on, the first one I saw from my own group, and the first one I loved! As I was entirely new to this forum-world at the time, I'm afraid I hadn't yet caught the drift of how things work and didn't give any helpful feedback I'll attempt to go back to it and do just that in the near future, and of course I'd love to hear from you if you're at all inclined to comment on my story.

Yes, I hear you about seeing the entry fee as a kind of payment to access the forums and receive helpful feedback. This thought has been crystallizing the more I read about what people have been able to give to and take from these challenges. And you hit the nail right on the head with regards to the value of critiquing other people's work. I also find this to be a challenging and rewarding exercise in reading and writing; in scrutiny, self-expression, professionalism and... kindness, really, so long as there's a genuine appreciation of others' efforts and thoughtful attempt to be of help.

Which brings us back to the irony of my own non-review of your story! Coming soon...
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