At the last minute, I wrote a piece of flash fiction and submitted it to the PodCastle flash fiction contest. What a great experience, and what a great group of stories!
This was the first time in a really long time that I’ve shared my work with anyone outside of my family or an online writing class. The way that the contest worked was a series of rounds, then a round of semifinals, then a round of finals. My story won its first round, which was a great ego boost, and when it didn’t make it past the semifinals, I found that I was at peace. So many of the stories were so good.
But the best part was reading the comments on all of the stories, not just my own. Seeing what worked for people, what didn’t, what they disagreed on… it was all very, very helpful. I emerged from the experience with some new ideas and a better understanding of what works and doesn’t in very short fiction pieces.
Thank you, PodCastle, for hosting the contest and putting all of the work in to organize it. The experience was definitely well worth it for this writer, and I’ll be back for the next round. And maybe I’ll try my hand at the Pseudopod flash contest in August.