Volume 10, Issue 8

4 Oct

We’re kicking off October with unnerving, sinister flash fiction. Issue 10.8 features mad scientists, disembodied faces appearing behind eyelids, and dead grandmothers speaking to children. If that doesn’t get you in the spirit for our sixth annual Halloween contest, nothing will.

But Then the Mice Began to Change

by Rachel Abbey McCafferty


by Jim Hohenbary


by Xenia Dylag

Shadow Award 2019

25 Sep


I Need That Ride

by Amanda Chiado



by Fredric Koeppel


Lily 19

by Stuart Airey



If I Am Then I Must Be Now 

by Andrew Romanelli


How did you die

by Erin Kirsh


My father, bored as a parrot

by Julia Webb


The New Model

by Jennifer Lynn Krohn


Yard Sale

by Karen Mandell


He Smelled Like Grass

by Amanda Chiado



by J V Birch

Shadow Award 2019 results!

20 Sep

The smoke has cleared on
the Shadow Award…


A very special thanks to the immensely talented Mary Lenoir Bond, who served as primary judge throughout this contest and made the tough calls on another impressive slate of dark and offbeat poetry. Selecting winners is never easy. You took us to strange and surreal places with these poems, and we hope that all these entries will find good homes. 

We had a particularly international Top 10, with poets from USA, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand making the grade.

But you didn’t come here for me to go on and on. Let’s get to the goods.


Below you’ll find our short list. The following poets submitted entries that made it through several rounds of cuts, but didn’t quite squeak into the Top 10. 

Close-but-no-cigar short list shout-outs go to:

Joanne Alfano
Melissa Andres
Andy Brown
William Brown
James Christy (2)
F.E. Clark
Ryan Dematteo
Ann DeVilbiss
Dan Diehn (2)
Stuart Forrest
Jordan Franklin (2)
Fredric Koeppel
Frances Koziar
December Lace
Richard Leis
Robert Libbey (2)
Dave Lull
Brett Milam
Janna Miller
Scott-Patrick Mitchell

Jeff Morgan
Charlotte Muse
Michael O’Ryan
Tony Peyser
Stephen Pollock
Caroline Randall
Michael Rumney
Ryan Scariano
Alex Sobel
Jeanne Stauffer
Svetlana Sterlin
Rae Stinger
David Tagnani
Faye Turner-Johnson

Mary Wallach
J. Summerisle Wilson
Joanne Withers
Scott Withiam
Elliott Zee (2)

The Top 10 that you’ll find below will be published in our forthcoming Shadow Award 2019 poetry mega-issue, which will run early next week. They will also be included in this winter’s fifth-annual Prize Winners Anthology print issue. You can check out last year’s Prize Winners Anthology here.

10th Place – “Rebirth” by J V Birch
9th Place – “He Smelled Like Grass” by Amanda Chiado
8th Place – “Yard Sale” by Karen Mandell
7th Place – “The New Model” by Jennifer Lynn Krohn
6th Place – “My father, bored as a parrot” by Julia Webb
5th Place – “How did you die” by Erin Kirsh
4th Place – “If I Am Then I Must Be Now” by Andrew Romanelli


And now for those poems that really rocked us.

3rd Place

“Lily 19”
by Stuart Airey


2nd Place ($100)


by Fredric Koeppel


1st Place ($200)

“I Need That Ride”

by Amanda Chiado


Congrats to the winners, and a huge thanks to everyone who participated!
Check back early next week for the Shadow Award 2019 mega-issue.

Wild Flash

23 Aug


Seasons in the Boneyard

by Andrew Bourelle


Ten Green Bottles

by Jan Kaneen



by Alpheus Williams



The Art of Dying

by Michael Nafekh

Spacious Skies

by Emily Livingstone


The Solemn Sequoia

by Alex Schweich


Agave Armageddon

by Wiebo Grobler



by Michael Carter


Sit, Stay, Play Dead

by Emma Miller


The Grove

by Aeryn Rudel

Wild Flash results!

19 Aug

Time to hook you up to the goods…

With this latest contest, you channeled dark, offbeat, strange, and surreal sensibilities into the natural world—which it turns out can be pretty unnerving on its own. We loved seeing the depth of imagination on display here, and Wild Flash lived up to its namesake. 

Always a pleasure to see those submissions pour in from the U.S. and the U.K., and we also enjoyed reading work from authors stationed in Australia, Canada, Germany, and Ireland.  

The following writers had stories that made it through several rounds of cuts, but didn’t quite squeak into the Top 10.

Close-but-no-cigar shortlist shout-outs go to:

Richard Bower
Najla Brown
James Christy
F.E. Clark
Chelsea Comeau (2)
Steven Crowell
Nancy Dassy
A. B. Emrys
Lisa Fransson
Michele Herman
Jude Higgins
Gaynor Jones
Darby Levin
Riley Krembil
Rick Krizman
Kathryn Kulpa
Larry Malchow
Emma Miller
Quentin Norris
Chris Panatier
Aeryn Rudel
Helen Rye
Christopher Stanley
Elizabeth Vegvary
Dianalee Velie
Debbi Voisey
Conor Watson
Matt Weatherbee
Alpheus Williams
Danielle Zaccagnino

The Top 10 that you’ll find below will be published in our forthcoming
Wild Flash mega-issue, which will appear by week’s end.

10 – “The Grove” by Aeryn Rudel
9 – “Sit, Stay, Play Dead” by Emma Miller
8 – “Caddisman” by Michael Carter
7 – “Agave Armageddon” by Wiebo Grobler
6 – “The Solemn Sequoia” by Alex Schweich
5 – “Spacious Skies” by Emily Livingstone
4 – “The Art of Dying” by Michael Nafekh

And now for those three stories
that really grabbed us…

3rd Place ($75)


by Alpheus Williams

2nd Place ($125)

“Ten Green Bottles”

by Jan Kaneen

1st Place ($250)

“Seasons in the Boneyard”

by Andrew Bourelle

Congrats to the winners and a huge thanks to everyone who participated in our Wild Flash contest! Always a pleasure to read your work, and we couldn’t host these contests without you.

Check back by week’s end our Wild Flash mega-issue!

Volume 10, Issue 5

26 Jul

Issue 10.5 is relentless.

This go-round we’ve got arctic abominations, otherworldly lake-dwellers, and aquatic sacrifices. 

Speaking of nature, our Wild Flash contest soft deadline is less than two weeks away. And we’re now open to submissions for our annual dark poetry contest, the Shadow Award. Hop to it.

The Thing That Came with the Storm

by Aeryn Rudel

What Lies Beneath (Thirteen Years On)

by Paul de Denus

The Water Roars

by Steve Campbell

Volume 10, Issue 4

12 Jun

Dive into Issue 10.4. Where else can you find a celestial candidate, a spectral Johnny Cash, and a sexy compound fracture?

Our new quarterly contest, Wild Flash, will officially open to submissions within a few days, but you can scope out the guidelines in the meantime and get working on ideas. Our annual poetry contest, The Shadow Award, will be opening in the near future as well, so keep an eye out for that.

And now, without further ado…

Slip the Collar

by Kelsey Ipsen

When the Man Comes Around

by Emmett Nahil

An Angel Runs for President

by Albert Haley