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WNIJ announces ‘Flash Fiction,’ a new short story contest

September 6, 2016

WNIJ-Writing-Homepage-PortraitWNIJ 89.5 FM invites all to submit a short story to the Flash Fiction Contest. The contest, hosted by Dan Klefstad, will air interviews with the writers of the winning stories every morning at 6:50 and 8:50 a.m. beginning Monday, Oct. 3, during the station’s broadcast of Morning Edition.

Contest entrants must write a 500-word story using the following prompt:

The first sentence of your story must describe an outrageous, inexplicable situation, like Franz Kafka’s protagonist waking up to discover he’s a giant insect.

WNIJ invited prize-winning author Molly McNett to create the prompt and to select the winning stories. McNett’s writing has appeared in The Best American Short Stories, an anthology of some of the best fiction published during the calendar year; The Pushcart Prize and many literary journals. Her book, One Dog Happy, which won the John Simmons Short Fiction Award from the University of Iowa Press, was a 2012 selection in WNIJ’s “Read With Me Book Series.” McNett teaches writing at Northern Illinois University, and the station is proud to collaborate with her, one of the acclaimed authors in the region.

The contest deadline is 11:59 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 12, 2016. Learn more about the contest rules and how to enter at

WNIJ develops writing contests as a way to engage its listening audience with outstanding work by writers and writing enthusiasts across the region. Staci Hoste, director and general manager of the station, looks forward to the announcement of the winners: “We are privileged to serve our community with programming that showcases local talent and aims to connect our listeners with one another through literature. We are passionate about making WNIJ a gathering place for writers and readers alike.”

For more information about the Flash Fiction contest and other WNIJ literature programs, visit