April 20, 2024

Summer Writing Contest: The Flash/Flesh 500

We want your writing about the flesh in flash form. We want your writing that contorts and inverts the body as vessel for, or manifestation of, the mind. Reflections that zip along the tug-of-war tightrope between confidence and shame, or beauty and dysfunction, past the point when one side slips and collapses into the mud. Approach the body as an evolving experiment: how is that surgery scar healing beneath the cast? Or a socio-political trap: why doesn't anyone construct ballet shoes for broad feet? De- and re-mystify the body with radiographs and esoteric medical-chart jargon. Accentuate it with tattoo-splatters; pierce it metallic. Depersonalize it, then combat with it for control over a life.

Winner: $750 + publication

Runner-Up: $250 + publication

Entry: $15. Includes 1-year subscription to Booth, including the Flash/Flesh 500 prize issue

Guest Judge: Kim Addonizio

Kim Addonizio is the author of seven poetry collections, two novels, two story collections, and two books on writing poetry: The Poet’s Companion (with Dorianne Laux) and Ordinary Genius. Her poetry collection Tell Me was a finalist for the National Book Award. She also has two word/music CDS: Swearing, Smoking, Drinking, & Kissing (with Susan Browne) and My Black Angel, the companion to My Black Angel: Blues Poems and Portraits, a collaboration with woodcut artist Charles D. Jones. Addonizio’s awards include two fellowships from the NEA, a Guggenheim, two Pushcart Prizes, and other honors. Her latest books are the poetry collections Mortal Trash and Now We’re Getting Somewhere and a memoir, Bukowski in a Sundress: Confessions from a Writing Life.

Submissions open from May 1 – June 30


  • One submission per writer
  • Prose - No more than 500 words
  • Poetry - One poem no more than two pages

All submissions considered for publication.

If you are a writer currently experiencing financial hardship, please reach out to us at booth@butler.edu and we will invite you to submit to this contest free of charge.

See our Submittable page starting May 1 to enter.