Update 02/22/2024: Submissions OPEN for our SPECIAL CALL

Our open, un-themed February submission period is now closed, but our **SPECIAL CALL** for Weird Horror remains open and will be open through April 21st. Accepted stories from this special call will be featured in our October 2024 issue, guest edited by Avra Margariti and Eugenia Triantafyllou.

If you would like to know more about our reading schedule, you can sign up to be a free member at our Patreon page. If you sign up as a paid member, you will also get access to our member-only submission period, which will be open March 1-31st. We also post updates on submission calls to our social media pages: Facebook, Threads, Instagram, and Bluesky.


GENERAL SUBMISSION GUIDELINES

We are looking for complete 500- to 1000-word stories with crisp prose, well-developed characters, compelling plots, and satisfying resolutions. We want stories that engage our minds and emotions.

We publish across many genres, including speculative (science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, and horror) and literary fiction. For more information on the type of stories we enjoy, please read a few issues and check out our "What We're Looking For" page.

SUBMISSION WINDOW: The Weird Horror special call will be open until April 21st.

FORMATTING: Please format your submission in a double-spaced, 12pt Times New Roman or other serif-type font (NO Courier), with standard 1" margins and black font on an unadorned, white background. No PDF submissions.  No Images and no graphics.

ANONYMOUS SUBMISSIONS: Do not include your name, address, email, or other identifying information on your manuscript (header, byline, file name, etc). 

SIMULTANEOUS SUBMISSIONS: We will accept simultaneous submissions, but please notify us and withdraw the story as soon as you learn that it has been accepted somewhere else.

MULTIPLE SUBMISSIONS: For our "Weird Horror" submission call, please wait for a determination on your first submission before submitting another.

AI-GENERATED SUBMISSIONS: We are committed to publishing stories written and edited by humans. We reserve the right to reject any submission that we suspect to be primarily generated or created by language modeling software, Chat GPT, chat bots, or any other AI apps, bots, or software. We reserve the right to ban submissions from accounts, emails, or users who we believe or suspect have submitted AI-generated content.

QUERIES: You can check on the status of your submission at any time via your Submittable account. If, after 8 weeks, your submission is still marked as "in-progress," you may email flashfictiononlineeditor@gmail.com with QUERY in the subject line for an update on its status. (Submissions sent to this address will be deleted unread.)

COMPENSATION: Our 2024 rate is $100 for each original story.

We are unable to provide personal feedback or critiques.

We do NOT accept resubmissions of stories previously rejected by Flash Fiction Online, unless requested by the editorial team.

We will NOT consider stories that promote or affirm hatred, prejudice, or violence toward any group of people based on age, race, nationality, religion, sex, gender, political affiliation, disability, neurodiversity, or other social identity.

Love what we publish? Flash Fiction Online is funded entirely through the generosity and support of our readers! Check out our Patreon here.

Ends on This opportunity will close after 1,000 submissions have been received.

Flash Fiction Online is currently seeking submissions for our “Weird Horror” issue, scheduled for October 2024. Guest editors for this issue are Avra Margariti and Eugenia Triantafyllou.

WHAT WE ARE LOOKING FOR: Weird horror is all about stories that engage with the unexplained and the unexpected, often through an esoteric lens of mysticism and metaphysics. A lot of the time the genre features circular or disjointed narrations, and endings that make readers reconsider the beginning. The mundane becomes taboo or absurd through a manipulation of the readers' perception.

Weird horror is not just scary or terrifying, it is wrong in some way that’s not easily identifiable. Something or someone exists or comes into this world and doesn’t belong. A misshape piece of a puzzle that will never be complete. What you know about reality is now somehow broken, a lie. When you read this kind of story and then take a look at the reality around you, you feel a deep sense of unease. You feel uncomfortable because now you can see what lies beneath. 

But sometimes weird horror is less subtle than just a sense of wrongness. Sometimes you have to accept the surrealism of the premise from the start. Maybe this world has hideous monsters now. Maybe human bodies function in impossible and grotesque ways. Deal with it. The focus of the story isn’t the grotesque itself. It is how it interacts with a society that might appear normal but turns out to be absurd in its own hidden and/or over-the-top way. A mockery of itself. When you come back from such a story you look at your own self with distrust. Because now you know what you are capable of.

Great example of weird horror include:

All stories submitted through this page must fit the theme! 

If you have a story that doesn’t fit this theme, please submit during one of our regular submission calls.

WORD COUNT: 500-1,000 words. Because we are focused on flash fiction, this word count is firm.

ANONYMOUS SUBMISSIONS: Do not include your name, address, email, or other identifying information on your manuscript (header, byline, file name, etc). This allows our First Readers to evaluate your story based on the work alone.

MULTIPLE SUBMISSIONS: Authors may submit ~*separate*~ stories to the special call for Weird Horror and our regular submission call. Please do NOT submit the same story to both places. Please do NOT submit stories that have been previously rejected by Flash Fiction Online. If your first submission for the Weird Horror call is rejected, you can submit another, different story, but please wait until we have processed your first submission. There is a three story limit per person for the Weird Horror submission period.

SIMULTANEOUS SUBMISSIONS: We will accept sim subs for this special call. We ask that you withdraw the submission as soon as you learn that it has been accepted elsewhere.

SCHEDULE: 

Submissions will be open from February 1st through April 21st, with a possible extension if needed.

Submissions will be evaluated concurrent with other open submission calls. FFO reviews stories in two stages – a slush stage and a winnowing stage. In the slush round, first readers vote on stories to be passed forward. These top-tier stories are reviewed once a month in our Winnowing round. Final decisions on these second-round stories are generally made within 8 weeks from the date of submission.

PAYMENT & RIGHTS FOR ORIGINAL FICTION: For original (previously unpublished) fiction, Flash Fiction Online pays $100 per story for first electronic rights, with six months exclusivity, as well as a non-exclusive one-time right to publish the stories in an anthology. The author retains all other rights. Original stories must not have been previously published anywhere, including a blog or on Patreon. Payment is made via PayPal (preferred) or mailed as a check.

Flash Fiction Online