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Returning September

Lincoln Book Festival Flash Fiction Competition 2017

One genre. Fifty words. Endless possibilities.

Writers of any age and ability were encouraged to enter the Lincoln Book Festival Flash Fiction Competition 2017.

The competition aimed to uncover new storytelling talent by showcasing concise, compelling, creative writing in the Gothic genre which is the theme for 2017’s Lincoln Book Festival.

Entries were:

  • Exactly 50 words long – no more, no less!
  • In the Gothic fiction genre
  • Your own original, unpublished work

The Lincoln Book Festival Flash Fiction Competition 2017 is organised by Lincoln Book Festival Trust in association with the University of Lincoln and Bishop Grosseteste University.

2017 Winners

The competition winners received £30 in book vouchers and had their work read at the 2017 Lincoln Book Festival.


Primary (age 10 years and below)

1st Prize: On the Edge

Standing alone, on the edge of the void. Ravens mock and harass me. Iniquity shrouds the final light; all hope is eradicated. If I were you I wouldn’t save me: this is my destiny… I leap…The joy of heaven inches closer the water rushes up … impact …pain …agony …death.

Aide Turner, Skegness Junior Academy

2nd Prize: The Attack!

The last thing I heard was its demonic, sinister laugh. I had entered its domain of inhumane spirits. Shadows danced on the walls. Everything that surrounded me looked dim and disfigured. I felt something firmly griping my neck but I was unsure what it was. The darkness slowly consumed me.

Nicole Katie Attenborough, Skegness Junior Academy

3rd Prize: The Abandoned Mansion

The hideous monster and the ghastly ghost were trying to invade the abandoned mansion. Brutally, the monsters gathered a gigantic rock and threw it into the dilapidated mansion and that caused it to collapse. They sprinted back to their secret, bloody lair to be secure and protected. Will they survive?

Patrick Lacey, The Bluecoat School, Stamford


Secondary (11 to 16)

1st Prize: Eliza Grey

Flowers shielded rows of abandoned gravestones.
A news article; beaten into the swollen ground by foot.
The news of a girl, Eliza Grrey, found tortured to stone cold silence, dead.
I watched pale faces, cold voices visit her grave.
I hovered over watching as they cried for me, Eliza Grey.

Libbi Barton, William Farr School, Welton

2nd Prize: My Monster Husband

He was staring at me. I just stood there waiting for him to say ‘I do’. Panic filled his eyes. His skin started to fall from his body. Within minutes he was dangerous. Furiously ripping the church apart. He turned, came towards me. ‘Till death do us part’ I thought.

Elena Ailward, Edwinstowe, independent entry

3rd Prize: The Gargoyle

A stony footpath winds through the blackened forest leading to an ancient graveyard. Sadly, the lonely gargoyle sits atop of the gravestone, waiting for the usual visitor – a young girl. She sits in black with huge boots and a spiked collar sobbing in the cobweb infested, dark fog. He sighs.

Olivia Sherratt, Vale Academy, Brigg


Adult (17 and above)

1st Prize: Death Grip

She paused in the crumbling entrance to Lucy Tower; examined the graves. Sky pressed down, a dark grey hand, and the gravestones kept their secrets, encircled by ancient stone, the tree looming. A movement behind her. Stale breath in her ear and suddenly, a hand of bone, clasping her shoulder.

Helen Fielding, Corby Glen

2nd Prize: The Girl in Black

At the old mansion door, brochures in my sweating hands, hardly wanting a reply.
I hear soft singing.
Behind me a small girl, dressed in black, dark hair to her waist. Cold eyes.
“Are your parents home?” I ask.
I knock again, hoping that when I turn, she’ll be gone.

Tricia Lowther, Durham

3rd Prize: Dark Night, Fens

Dark night on the fens. A traveller strikes out, wending her way through treacherous marsh. Lost, she sees far in the distance a pale green light. Onwards then. Dense sludge sucks at her ankles. The light beckons, deeper into quagmire. She stops to catch her breath but finds herself caught.

Kaja Franck, London

Download Entry Form

To enter the Lincoln Book Festival Flash Fiction Competition 2017, with the chance to win £30 in book vouchers, please download and complete the entry competition form. Click the following links to download the form as either a Word or PDF document.

Submissions should be sent by email only as Word or PDF file attachments to with “Lincoln Book Festival Flash Fiction Competition 2017” in the subject line. Full Terms and Conditions can be found here.