Arvon is Running a Flash Fiction Twitter Competition

On Saturday February 27th, Arvon will run a science-fiction-flash-fiction twitter competition inspired by Bare Lit’s Afrofuturism panel.

Writers can submit their short-short-fiction (140 character or less) on Twitter by using the #6wordscifi hashtag or by visiting the Arvon stall at Bare Lit on Saturday February 27th. Writers are encouraged to write about utopiasdystopiaspossible futures and Afrofuturism.

The winner, who will be judged internally and announced on Tuesday March 1st, will receive a £100 Arvon gift voucher.

Besides your short short fiction, here are some other ideas for using the hashtag on the day but obviously the sky and your imagination are the only limits:

–         To raise awareness of any flash fiction courses, workshops, competition you might be involved in

–         To get involved in the Afrofuturism debate which will no doubt be sparked by the brilliant panel organised by Bare Lit

–         To share your favourite work of Flash Fiction


The hashtag to use on Saturday February 27th is: #6wordscifi

Happy writing!

Blogging and Social Media for Writers

Blogging and Social Media for Writers

Crescent Arts Centre

2-4 University Street

Belfast BT7 1NH

August 5th. 2pm-6pm

Tickets: here

Paul McVeigh has become of master of social media with over 9,000 followers on Twitter and a blog that gets 40,000 hits a month internationally –  his blog is fast approaching the 1 million visitor mark. During this time his short stories have been published in literary journals, commissioned by anthologies in the USA and by BBC Radio 4. He has also published his first novel ‘The Good Son’ to critical acclaim.


Find out how to build a social media platform from the ground up.

How to use that platform to help you get published, get reviewed, access to high profile authors, and get paid work! 

Get advice on what will work best for your specific needs and how to manage your time effectively.

Paul’s online presence has led to him be invited to set up the hugely successful international London Short Story Festival, become Associate Director of Word Factory the leading short story salon in the UK and being judge of prestigious literary prizes in the UK and Ireland. It has also gotten him invites to teach and read in Australia, Ireland, Switzerland, Mexico and Poland and access to interview authors such as Mary Costello, Kevin Barry and George Saunders.

This class has sold out in Writers Victoria Melbourne, Cork World Book Festival and Waterstones Piccadilly, London.

If you’d like to book for both classes that day (That Killer First Page) please email for combined package.

Feb Fortnightly Round-Up II

Welcome to February’s second fortnightly round-up. Here’s what’s been on a packed ShortStops blog over the past few weeks…
Tania x

Lit Mags

Octavius magazine has relaunched – and is now open to submissions. The Casket of Fictional Delights invites you to try out its Tubeflash Quizzes! Alt-Hist issue 7 is published and there’s a new issue of Jotters United, ‘Gotta Move on Out Now’. Bunbury Magazine gives us an update on the Things We ‘Ave Been Doing! Submissions are now open for Brain Of Forgetting’s 2nd issue, on the theme of ‘Poppies’.

February is ‘Otherworldly Originals Month’ over at Short Story Sunday! Shooter Literary Magazine is  calling for submissions for Issue #2, on the theme of ‘Union.’ . Neon Magazine has opened submissions for Battery Pack II, its second anthology of tiny stories.  Other mags still want your stories too: The Manchester Review has is calling for your submissions.

Competitions & Festivals
Holland Park Press is running a short story competition, I Is Another, deadline 31 August. Mslexia’s 2015 short story competition is accepting entries (women only), deadline March 16th. The Short FICTION short story prize is open for entries, deadline March 31st, as are the Felixtstowe Book Festival’s 2015 short story competition, deadline May 16th and The Moth’s International Short Story Prize, deadline June 30th.

Workshops and Courses
Paul McVeigh is running two workshops in March – on Social Media For Writers (London) and That Killer First Page – Submitting to Competitions & Journals (Belfast). Write Around Town, who are behind Writing Maps, are holding a series of writing workshops in London in April. Alison Clayborn is running a Flash Fiction workshop  on Feb 18th at the Brunel Museum in London.

Tips & Advice
Writing Short Fiction introduces some new February Faces on the site.

Live Lit

White Rabbit is having a Curioser and Curioser storytelling tea party on Feb 20th in London. Stand-Up Tragedy’s next event, Tragic Winter, is in London on Feb 28th and they are calling for submissions for the SUT blog. Words and Women are holding an event in Norwich to celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8thand to launch their new collection of short prose.

Last Minutes and Gentle Reminders
You have until Feb 28th to submit your short stories for an anthology inspired by Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity, to be published by Freight Books.

Coming Up
Keep an eye on the blog tomorrow (Tuesday) for details of lit mag Trafika Europe’s radio campaign!

If you are eager for even more short-story-related news, do follow ShortStops on Twitter where, when we should be writing, we spend (far too) much time passing on news from lit mags, live lit events, short story workshops and festivals! If you’d like to review an event or a publication, drop me a line.

Happy reading, writing, listening and performing!
Tania x

Social Media for Writers & That Killer First Page – Submitting to Competitions and Journals, London & Belfast

Social Media Masterclass for Writers with Paul McVeigh – 1st March


Led by Paul McVeigh, The Society Club, London, is pleased to host 750,000 PEOPLE CAN’T BE WRONG: A Social Media Masterclass for Writers.

Paul McVeigh will be discussing how social media is transforming the way writers communicate with each other, the industry and readers. From Facebook to Twitter, blogs to websites, having a social media presence is becoming more and more essential for writers at all levels. Paul’s blog has reached more than 750,000 people and through his efforts in social media, has led directly to becoming Associate Director at Word Factory, Director of the London Short Story Festival and his reading on Radio 5. His debut novel, The Good Son, will be published by Salt Publishing in April 2015

Paul McVeigh will explore how to improve your social media profile, plan more effective strategies and better connect with your audience and readers.

This is the class if you are looking to improve your social media profile, enhance the effectiveness of your current activity, grow your online audience or are new to social media and looking to get started.

WHEN: Sunday, March 1st, 2015
TIME: 1pm-6pm
WHERE: The Society Club, 12 Ingestre Place, Soho, London W1F0JF

Space is limited, please reserve your place now. Email


That Killer First Page – Submitting to Competitions and Journals March 8th

Crescent Arts Centre, 2-4 University Road, Belfast. BT7 1NH.

March 8th. 11am-4pm. Tickets

You’ll find out what competition judges and journal editors look for in a short story and how to avoid the rejection pile. You’ll write a short piece and get feedback on that crucial story opening. In a form where every word counts, get tips on staying focused on your story and where to start the action. You’ll also look at submission opportunities; how to find them and where you should be sending your stories.

How to get the attention of competition judges and editors
Writing fiction with emotional impact
Writing that killer first page
How to edit your story
Where to send your work

Paul McVeigh’s short fiction has been published in journals and anthologies and been commissioned by BBC Radio 4. He has read his work for BBC Radio 5, at the International Conference on the Short Story in Vienna, Belfast Book Festival and the Cork International Short Story Festival.

Reviews for his writing:
“Absolutely loved it. The voice of that story is so arresting.” Jackie Kay
“Beautiful and very moving.” Booker shortlisted Alison Moore
“How moving and stunning that story is. It’s so raw and incredibly human.” Costa shortlisted Jess Richards
“Its such a clever story, gentle, poignant, emotionally straight as a dart.” Vanessa Gebbie
“(one of) Ireland’s most exciting and talented writers.  Incredibly moving; poignant but utterly real, funny and beautifully observant.” BBC Radio 4
“Paul McVeigh’s story stands out. Funny, moving, poignant. Brilliant.” Metro Newspaper

Paul’s short story blog shares writing opportunities and advice and gets 40,000 hits a month internationally. He’s interviewed short story masters like Kevin Barry, Cate Kennedy and George Saunders and upcoming Laura van den Berg and Elizabeth McCrackin.

Paul is Director of London Short Story Festival and Creative Director at Word Factory, the UK’s leading short story literary salon. He is a reader and judge for national and international short story competitions.

This event sold out in Melbourne at Writers Victoria and Waterstones Piccadilly, London.

Comments on this class:

“Fantastic! Practical, targeted advice like this is wonderful!”
“This was my fav course yet! Informative, entertaining, and engaging. Hard to beat.”

“I emerged from the sleepy hamlet of my writing infancy last Saturday and was sky-rocketed, hurricaned, tsunamied, autobahned and g-forced out of my head by Paul McVeigh’s “That Killer First Page” Masterclass at Waterstones, Piccadilly. He’s on top of his game, gives instinctive, constructive criticism and in a few short hours, had conveyed the essence of how to make a story compelling and unputdownable from the first few lines. Not for the faint hearted – the pace is relentless – but get on one of his courses if you can.”

Paul’s debut novel ‘The Good Son’ is out with Salt Publishing in April.

‘A work of genius…’ Pulitzer Prize-winning Robert Olen Butler

‘Outstanding.’ Granta Best Young Novelist Toby Litt

‘I was blown away… A wildly important new talent.’ Laura van den Berg

‘One of those characters you believe in with all your heart.’ Booker shortlisted Alison Moore

‘Establishes McVeigh as an important new Irish voice.’ Lucy Caldwell

Places are limited to 20. For concessions please contact: