August 25, 2023
Flash Creative Nonfiction Contest (For Writers Ages 13-15)
$200, $100, $50
This contest is for writers ages 13-15 from anywhere on planet Earth. The first, second, and third-place winners will be published in an issue of the magazine. There is no submission fee, and each writer can submit up to 2 pieces.
The judge is Alexandria Peary, Editor-in-Chief of Under the Madness Magazine. Alex is the author of nine books, and her creative nonfiction has appeared in magazines including The Gettysburg Review, New England Review, Southern Humanities Review, Brick, Green Mountains Review, and elsewhere. Her essays have been nominated for Best of the Net 2019 and 2020 and a Pushcart Prize and received Notable Essay in Best American Essay 2015 and 2021.
First prize: $200
Second prize: $100
Third prize: $50


Your flash nonfiction submission must be under 1,000 words and respond to one of the below prompts. In your cover email, tell us which prompt or prompts (if you're submitting 2 essays):

1. Connect a harsh experience you overcame to a tree that normally grows in a harsh weather climate.
2. Develop an essay based on a spring flower blowing in the wind along a river, connecting it to an emotion or experience. Use the spring flower as a metaphor for you.  
3. Write an essay about what you think your pet thinks, feels, smells, etc. (Try observing your pet throughout the day to gain inspiration)
4. Using only one of your senses, describe one of your current settings so vividly that a family member living 200 years from now could picture the time and place in which you live.
Send your flash nonfiction submission to by August 25. In the Subject Line of your email, put FLASH CREATIVE NONFICTION CONTEST SUBMISSION. Tell us your age and place of residence and attach the contest submission as a Word-friendly document or PDF. We're looking forward to reading your work!

"typewriter Underwood" by Daniele Leoni is marked with Public Domain Mark 1.0.

"Under the Madness lies literature" - Unknown
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A magazine for teen writers—by teen writers. Under the Madness brings together student editors from across New Hampshire under the mentorship of the state poet laureate to focus on the experiences of teens from around the world. Whether you live in Berlin, NH, or Berlin, Germany—whether you wake up every day in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North or South America—we’re interested in reading you!