Carrie Etter


Judged by Carrie Etter

1st prize: £500. 2nd prize: £150. 3rd prize: £50

300 words max.

Microfiction, prose poetry and poetry have a lot in common. Where they differ is not voice or description, it’s plot. Or at least a narrative arc of action and reaction, with some kind of resolution, a change.

Create a conflict for your character(s). Engage a voice. Show and tell the story in mini-scenes. Take the reader right into the heart of your character or narrator, and illuminate what it is to be human, or not, as the case may be.

American expatriate Carrie Etter has published four collections of poetry, most recently The Weather in Normal (UK: Seren; US: Station Hill, 2018), a Poetry Book Society Recommendation. She has also published a critically acclaimed chapbook of flash fiction, Hometown (V. Press, 2016).

Her story, ‘Stephanie’, was named in the Best British and Irish Flash Fiction Awards, chosen as a finalist for Best of the Net, and nominated for the Pushcart Prizes, while her story ‘The Fog’ was nominated for Best Small Fictions. As David Gaffney remarks, “Etter’s stories climb into your head and reboot it from the inside, from the squealingly joyous to the darkly sad, some with gear changes that fling you backwards in your seat, some told in voices so strong you could lean against them, and then some fragile, as if the page held nothing but the faint impression of a delicate and long-dead insect. I can’t wait for more.”

Carrie is is a member of the Creative Writing faculty at the University of Bristol.

So, send Carrie your Microfiction. To be long listed (final 20) will be a peacock feather in your cap. To be shortlisted in the Top 10, may create a platform that literary agents will be interested in. To win, or place second or third, is a validation of your skills that might just get your work published in future.

“What I love about microfiction is akin to lyric poetry: every word counts. Where microfiction and poetry differ is in the microfiction's semblance of a narrative arc, a sense of movement through time and a conflict met. I can't wait to read the entries--the best work will surely energise me as it will many readers."

Carrie Etter

The Prizes

First Prize: £500

Second Prize: £150

Third Place: £50

Top 10

The 10 shortlisted entries will be published in The Plaza Prizes Anthology, which will be launched at our awards ceremony, August 2023.

Terms and Conditions



  • Deadline: 31st March 2023
  • Writers can enter any number of times. (£8.00 Subsequent entry: £4.00)
  • Microfictions can be in any style or form, but must be in English, and written for adults.
  • Entries must be submitted online. No email submissions. In exceptional circumstances, postal entry may be accepted, as long as a cheque made out for the correct entry fee is sent to The Plaza Prizes Ltd. (Postal address is on Contact Form.)
  • Enter the correct version of your work. If you make a mistake, entry fees will not be refunded. (You will have to enter again.)


Read the rules carefully before entering the competition. Entry implies acceptance of all the rules and failure to comply will result in disqualification.

All entries are judged anonymously. Please do not include your name, address, phone number, email, website, twitter handle etc on the document or in the file name or it will be disqualified.

Entries will be disqualified if they are over the word limit, sorry, there will be no refund.

Entries must be entirely your own work.

Entries must NOT have been traditionally published in book or magazine form. Work that has been self-published on a website, blog or online forum is eligible for entry.

Entries must NOT have won in any other competition. If your entry was long-listed or shortlisted in other competitions it is eligible.

Simultaneous submissions are allowed but if an entry wins a prize elsewhere, is published or scheduled for future publication, prior to the date of prize giving, you must inform us to withdraw immediately. Entry fees will not be refunded.


Maximum 300 words.


£8.00 per Microfiction. (Subsequent entry: £4.00)

Entries must be submitted online via Submittable. No email submissions.


  • Entries must be typed in Times New Roman 12 pt font, double-spaced with numbered pages and the Microfiction’s title on every page.
  • Save as a Microsoft Word document (.doc or .docx) or PDF file with the title as the file name. Do not include your name in the file name as this will lead to disqualification.
  • Max 2MB file. Include the word count for the Microfiction, top right, first page.
  • Do not add cover pages
  • No illustrated work


The judges’ decision is final. No individual correspondence can be entered into. Judges are unable to comment on individual entries. The Plaza Prizes reserves the right to change the judge without notice.


Copyright remains with the author, but The Plaza Prizes reserves the right to publish extracts from any of the 10 shortlisted Microfictions for publicity purposes.

Results & Awards

The Microfiction 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize-winners will be announced on the website and social media in June 2023. The 10 short-listed entries will be published in The Plaza Prizes Anthology, which will be launched at our awards ceremony in August 2023.

Bursary Scheme

In 2022-2023, we will be offering offering FREE ENTRY BURSARIES across all our competitions to writers on low incomes, and from underrepresented groups. You can apply for a bursary if low income, class, race, age, gender, sexuality, caring responsibilities, location, disability, or mental and physical health affects your writing. We want to encourage equality to discover quality new writing from diverse voices. Click here to apply for our Bursary Scheme.


The Plaza Prizes reserves the right to amend the rules, deadlines, and judges, where it deems necessary. Any changes to the rules will be posted on our website.

If you have a query about eligibility, please contact: hello@theplazaprizes.com

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