The Blue Frog

What is The Blue Frog?

Born out of celebration for our first birthday, The Blue Frog is Flash Frog’s annual flash fiction contest. Each year the contest features a theme based on what type of stories we would have liked to have seen more of in the past year. The Blue Frog awards a total of $700 in prize money as well as signed books and original art!

2023 Theme: “The Surreal”

We want to see those stories where the real world blends seamlessly with the uncanny, the absurd, the unbelievable. Oftentimes, this blurring of the real and the magical can reveal stronger truths than those stories existing only within the confines of reality.

And as always, we want the theme to be inspiring, not limiting. We are open to your interpretation of “the surreal.”


Contest submissions are open from January 1st – 31st.

Finalists are announced in mid February. Winners are announced in early March.


  • Fiction only.
  • 1,000 words max. This is a hard limit.
  • All submissions should be the author’s original work and not previously published elsewhere (this includes blogs, social media, etc.)
  • Multiple submissions are okay. But each entry needs to be submitted separately. There is no limit.
  • Simultaneous submissions are okay. But please notify us immediately if you need to withdraw. Please also note the quick turnaround time. The contest will not hold your story hostage. There are no submission entry refunds.
  • All previous Flash Frog contributors are also eligible to enter.
  • Publication rights: We ask for the right to display the work for the duration of the journal. Copyright remains with the writer in all cases. If your work is subsequently reprinted elsewhere, please acknowledge Flash Frog as the site of first publication.


1st Place: $500, publication in Flash Frog, signed copy of the Guest Judge’s book, and the original painting that accompanies your story.

2nd Place: $150, publication in Flash Frog, signed copy of the Guest Judge’s book, and the original painting that accompanies your story.

3rd Place: $50, publication in Flash Frog, signed copy of the Guest Judge’s book, and the original painting that accompanies your story.

Guest Judge: Aimee Bender

Aimee Bender is the author of six books of fiction, the most recent being The Butterfly Lampshade, longlisted for the PEN/Jean Stein Award. She lives in Los Angeles, and teaches creative writing at USC.

Guest Artist: Daegan Lunsford

Daegan Lunsford is a Toronto-based fine artist and curator. His work often explores aspects of traditional Americana and his own memories. His artworks are most often created using paint mediums such as gouache or acrylic, but he has also created significant projects using short video, new media and photography. He is currently the chief curator at the Corridor Gallery in Toronto, Ontario, and has been selling his own artwork to independent collectors since 2019. He has been illustrating for Flash Frog since May 2021, and hopes to continue for many more years to come.

Entry Fee

$5 per story.

How to Submit

**Please read all Contest Rules before submitting.**


  1. Email your story as an attachment to (.doc, .docx, .rtf only). Please use this format as the subject: CONTEST SUBMISSION: Story Title
  2. Please pay $5 using the button below. (If your name on payment is vastly different than on the submission, please note it in the submission email)

You will receive an email confirmation within 24 hours of both items being received.

Contest Submission Fee


Other Things to Know

  • All submissions will receive a response BEFORE finalists are announced.
  • All identifying information will be removed from the finalists’ stories, as the Guest Judge will read blindly.
  • 100% of all entry fees goes to Flash Frog writers and artists (with a small amount going to the Guest Judge and Guest Artist). Any money received beyond the prize money goes to paying Flash Frog writers and artists throughout the year.
  • Winners receive payment via PayPal on the day their story is published.
  • All contest submissions are also eligible for standard Flash Frog publication.

2022 Winners

1st Place: “Press 3 for Random Track” by Dri Chiu Tattersfield

2nd Place: “Alligator Girls” by María Alejandra Barrios

3rd Place: “Why I Say We’re Cousins” by Shih-Li Kow


Kathryn Aldridge-Morris

Eleonora Balsano

Rodney Evans

Rosie Garland

Sara Hills

Shareen K. Murayama

Hema Nataraju

Bayveen O’Connell

Maria Poulatha

Pip Robertson

Cherry Lou Sy

2022 Theme: “Around the World”

2022 Guest Judge: Tara Isabel Zambrano

2022 Guest Artist: Rob Kaniuk