Science Fiction Writing Contest
No Entry Fee
Word limit: 750
Deadline: JANUARY 15, 2016
Submissions: email to

50 euro first prize (or equivalent amount in your currency)
25 euro second prize
15 euro third prize
Judge: Dr. Erin Macdonald
Astrophysicist & Sci-Fi Lecturer

Erin Macdonald

Judge: Dr. Erin Macdonald
Astrophysicist & Sci-Fi Lecturer

Erin Macdonald holds a PhD in Astrophysics from the University of Glasgow. After working as a postdoctoral researcher for the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, she moved back to her roots in Colorado to pursue science education. She has worked as an educator at the Denver Museum for Nature and Science, as well as an adjunct professor in the Colorado Community College System.

Her true passion lies in dissecting the science in popular science fiction and she has given talks at various science fiction and fantasy conventions on the Science of Mass Effect, Star Wars and Star Trek. Currently she is working on a popular science astronomy book as well as a book on the Science of Mass Effect. Additionally, she works as a voice actress for independent animation and video games.

About the contest, Erin says: I am interested in stories with a developed world, thought-out science fiction and strong characters. Above all, I like to be emotionally invested.

What is science fiction?

Hugo Gernsback: Science fiction is “a charming romance intermingled with scientific fact and prophetic vision.”

Rod Serling: “Fantasy is the impossible made probable. Science fiction is the improbable made possible.”

Robert A. Heinlein: “A handy short definition of almost all science fiction might read: realistic speculation about possible future events, based solidly on adequate knowledge of the real world, past and present, and on a thorough understanding of the nature and significance of the scientific method.”

Contest Guidelines:
Only one entry per author. No simultaneous submissions for this contest.

Paste story in body of email and attach as .doc – email to

No poetry, no fan fiction, please.

All entries must be original and unpublished elsewhere. This means submissions that have been accepted for publication anywhere else, including anywhere on the internet, blogs, personal web pages, etc., are not eligible. Entries of more than 750 words or entries found to be published anywhere else will be immediately disqualified.

All winning entries (including shortlisted stories) will be published in the January issue of Brilliant Flash Fiction.


  1. Respected Editor, Can I re-enter the story named Real or Anything Else for science fiction writing contest? It is previously sent and edited by you, Regards, Soma Bose.

    1. Yes. 🙂 Can’t wait to read the sci-fi stories coming my way. Please remember, however, that this time there is only ONE entry per writer. Deadline is 15 January, so take your time and polish your prose.

  2. Question:
    I notice the prizes are listed in Euros. Is this a world-wide competition, or just European? I’m not sure I could get technical enough with the hard science requirements in your post (see the quote by Robert A. Heinlein). I could craft a fiction tale with machines (without schematic descriptions), but it would be heavy with fantasy.

    I wish all who do enter the best! I know there are some fabulous Authors who remain unknown. May some be discovered from this competition!

    As for my writing; I don’t need to know how it works, as long as it does, and there’s someone written in to fix what breaks.

    1. Yes, this is an international contest. Prizes are awarded in whatever currency applies. Writers should look at the judge’s requirements: About the contest, Erin says: I am interested in stories with a developed world, thought-out science fiction and strong characters. Above all, I like to be emotionally invested.

      1. “… About the contest, Erin says: I am interested in stories with a developed world, thought-out science fiction and strong characters. Above all, I like to be emotionally invested ”

        I have the germ of an idea for this but achieving all the things mentioned in 750 words looks daunting. To hell with it, I’m going to give it a bash :).

  3. Is it clear that the copyright to a story submitted belongs to the author who may, after publication or not by Brilliant Flash Fiction, enjoy full ownership rights over his creation?

    1. Dimis, this is what it says under the “submissions” tab at the top of the page:

      “Authors whose submissions are accepted will retain all rights to their work after publication.”

      Rgds, p8r.

  4. Hi
    I would like to know if the writings need to be written to the mail id or attached as a document and sent to the mail id above.. Confused..

  5. I’m fairly new to this sort of thing. My submission will be a snippet of something larger that I’d like to keep working on. Will my story remain mine to continue and expand upon later?

  6. Is there any other rule like any double spacing or what style or font of writing you enquire?

  7. Do I need to drop my own name and other personal information in the body of the email? And what font size and text should I use?. Also, when would the winners be contacted?

    1. I hope this will answer your questions: Yes, please drop your name when entering our Sci-Fi writing contest so that we will know who you are. It doesn’t matter what font or size of type you use as long as you send us an excellent (750-word-limit) story. Winners will be announced by Jan. 31, 2016. If you subscribe to our magazine (no fee), you will receive an email notification when the results are posted. I have been on vacation and delayed answering these questions, for which I apologize. —Aurore Lebas, Editor

    1. Hi Iona it’s hard to cut down a story. How about this way of editing ? Sit down with a blank sheet of paper. Now start writing your story, not copying just write whatever you remember. Your memory has acted as an editor, the good bits will have stuck and be remembered. Or the bits you can’t do without will remain. I bet your 1000 words will be a little less. Now look critically for any words or sentences you really really wish you had included. This is your new story. Hopefully the story is now less than 750 500 or even 300 words.
      Cut a story it’s like chopping an arm of your child, something you can’t do.

      1. Hello, Allan! Thank you for your advice! I cannot erase anything, anymore, because nobody would understand it no more. I guess I will keep this story for another competition and write another one instead.

  8. I like the discipline of micro fiction. Why I find novel length difficult, when I can talk for hours, I don’t know. However I am aware of a readers attention span.There is another thing, it’s quite mindful writing about a single moment and using that moment to create a story. A story can be the culmination of years of back story, but writing flash can be about concentrating on this one moment.I’m not a pruner, although hard editing can make a story bloom just like a fragrant rose. In general my ideas can be expressed simply and briefly, if the story needs longer to tell it becomes a short story a novella which reminds me the novel demands resolving finishing.

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