National Flash Fiction Day Competition now open

Competition is open.

The 2017 National Flash Fiction Day runs February 15 – April 30.

Send your best 300-word story * Cash prizes * Two categories this year

Adult (19+)

First Prize: $1000

Second Prize: $400

Third Prize: $100

Judges: Michael Harlow and Emma Neale

Youth (18 and under)

First Prize: $200

Second Prize: $100

Third Prize: $50

Judges: Fleur Beale and Heather McQuillan

Winners will be announced June 22 at the NFFD celebrations, and all winners are invited to attend and share their stories.

NFFD 2017 in Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin, Wellington



To enter the 2017 National Flash Fiction Day competition, please follow these easy steps:



  1. Make your payment here, either online or in a ANZ branch near you:

ANZ / NZ Flash Fiction / Acct No 06-0594-0182592-00
include ‘Surname/ First initial’ as a reference

2. Once you’ve transferred your entry fee, send proof of payment (a screen shot will do) along with your NFFD story/ stories to

3. You will receive confirmation of your entry within 72 hours.

4. All entries must be received electronically. If you are not online and wish to submit, please have a friend submit via email.

2017 fees:

19+ category: $7 per story or $18 for 3 stories (3 stories max per entrant)

Youth (up to 18 years) category: $5 per story or $10 for 3 stories (3 stories max per entrant)


Submission guidelines

  • submissions open 15 February – 30 April 2017
  • competition open to all NZ citizens and residents
  • open competition; no theme or prompt
  • only previously unpublished* work will be considered
  • deadline for submissions: 30 April 2017 (midnight)
  • word limit for all submissions (both categories): 300 excluding title
  • 1.5 or double spaced, please
  • no font requirements, but make it clean
  • maximum 3 stories per entrant; if you submit more than one story, please include all submissions in one document
  • electronic submissions only, emailed to 
  • please indicate in the Subject line of the email if yours is a youth submission
  • submissions must be sent as attachments (not in the body of the email)
  • send one of the following formats: .doc, .docx, .rtf; please, no pdfs
  • please, no pdfs!
  • submissions must be received  no later than midnight, 30 April 2017
  • Your name may be on the email and any enquiries made to NFFD in the gmail account, but do not include your name or contact info on the attachment. Any submissions with author name on the attachment with the story text will be disqualified.
  • Judges’ decisions are final. No feedback will be offered on an individual basis.
  • Winners and short-listed stories will be published in a special winter edition of Flash Frontier: An Adventure in Short Fiction.

*Published means anything that has already appeared anywhere in print or online, including personal websites or blogs.

The Long List and subsequent Short List will be posted in late May/ early June.  Winners will be announced at the NFFD events in June. More information about the prize-giving celebrations updated on the Events page.




MICHAEL HARLOW and EMMA NEALE, Category for ages 19+

harlow-2017Michael Harlow’s Nothing For It But To Sing, the Kathleen Grattan Award for Poetry, was published in 2016 by Otago University Press. He has been awarded the Beatson Prize for poetry, and in 2014 the Lauris Edmond Memorial Award for Distinguished Contribution to Poetry in NZ. He has published ten books of poetry, two of which have been short-listed for the National Book Awards.  In collaboration with NZ-Suisse composer Kit Powell, he has composed, as a librettist, some thirteen Performance Works, many of which have been performed in Switzerland, Germany, France and New Zealand.  He lives in Central Otago (NZ) and works as a writer, editor and Jungian therapist.


emma-neale-2017Emma Neale has held the Todd/Creative New Zealand New Writer’s Bursary and the inaugural Janet Frame/NZSA Memorial Prize for Literature. Her novel Fosterling was short-listed for the youth category of the Sir Julius Vogel Award. Her poetry collection The Truth Garden won the Kathleen Grattan Award in 2011. She has been a University of Otago Burns Fellow, a University of Otago/Sir James Wallace Pah Homestead Fellow and a recipient of the Beatson/NZSA Fellowship. Her fifth collection, Tender Machines(2015), and her recent novel, Billy Bird (2016), have both been long-listed for the annual Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. Emma lives in Dunedin with her husband and their two  children.


FLEUR BEALE and HEATHER MCQUILLAN, Youth Category: ages 18 and under

pp_fleur_beale_2010Based in Wellington, Fleur Beale has written over twenty novels for teenagers. In 1992, Beale released her first novel Slide the Corner, which subsequently won the Storylines Gaelyn Gordon Award in 2007. She has been short-listed several times in the New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards, and in 2011 her novel Fierce September won the Awards’ Young Adult Fiction section. Fleur Beale won the 2012 Storylines Margaret Mahy Medal. Beale regularly participates in the Writers in Schools programme, and also leads Professional Development sessions for teachers.


heather-2017Heather McQuillan is a writer, teacher and student. She lives in Christchurch where she is a tutor with the School for Young Writers. She writes books for young people as well as writing short stories, flash fiction and poetry. In 2016 she won the NZ Flash Fiction Day prize and the Micro Madness prize, and she placed third in the Sunday Star Times Short Story Awards.She is currently working on a Masters of Creative Writing Thesis investigating  the flash fiction form.




* * *



2016 competition judges were the award-winning poets, novelists and short story writers James Norcliffe (more at his website and at his New Zealand Book Council page) and Elizabeth Smither (more at her New Zealand Book Council page).

2016 competition winners here.


2015 competition judges were widely acclaimed New Zealand short story writers, novelists and poets Owen Marshall (more can be found at his New Zealand Book Council site and at his website) and Fiona Kidman (more can be found at her New Zealand Book Council site and at her website).

2015 competition winners here.



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