Congratulations to Corrie Adams,
winner of this year’s Little Bird Contest for her story “Paradise.”

Read the announcement here!
Or click here to become a Little Bird Stories subscriber. You’ll receive Little Bird Stories Vol. 1-5 right away, plus get all future volumes as soon as they’re released!

The Little Bird Writing Contest is an annual, international contest I created exclusively for innovative, emerging short fiction writers.

It began in 2010, when I started posting writing prompts on Twitter.  Now you can get those prompts delivered to your inbox every day. This contest is built to showcase the excellent stories that come from these prompts.

Winner: $1000
First runner up: $250
Second runner up: $250
Bonus prize won by a draw: Full scholarship to The Story Intensive

As well, the winning stories, selected by an author I respect and admire, are published in an annual short fiction anthology: The Little Bird Stories.


Neil Smithnew

The judge for our 5th Anniversary contest is Neil Smith!

Neil Smith grew up in the United States and Canada and now lives in Montreal. Smith published his debut collection, Bang Crunch, with Knopf Canada in 2007 and Vintage Books in 2008. It was chosen as a best book of the year by the Washington Post and The Globe and Mail. Writer Michel Faber wrote in The Guardian that the book had a “rare fusion of thematic boldness, humor, gravity, empathy, maturity, and first-rate prose.”

Neil-booksHis second book, a novel called Boo, will be published in May 2015 by Vintage in the United States, William Heinemann in Britain, and Knopf in Canada. The book is narrated by a young science geek named Oliver Dalrymple who finds himself in a heaven reserved exclusively for thirteen-year-olds. Already, Boo is slated to be translated into seven different languages.


Neil Smith Sarah SeleckyIn February 2015, I sat down to speak with Neil Smith, and in just under an hour we covered a breadth of topics, including what he’s looking for in the contest entries this year — and his answers might surprise you. Neil also offered to share his top short story recommendations, especially for Little Bird contestants. Find his recommendations on his Facebook page to read and study as you work on your story.

Enter your information below to listen to this year’s Little Bird Salon.

Send me the Little Bird Salon!


Subscribe to Little Bird Stories, and read what winning writers did with prompts in previous years! A subscription gets you all of the published volumes right away, and you’ll get future anthologies fresh off the proverbial press every year, forever. The 2015 volume is available now!

Become a Little Bird Subscriber

Get all published volumes of Little Bird Stories right now, and receive a new anthology of fresh short fiction every year.

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$5 from every subscription goes to the Pelee Island Bird Observatory, to help protect the real little birds out there.

LittleBirdStoriesVLittle Bird Stories Volume V

Contest Date: 2015

Stories selected by Neil Smith
Cover Design: Michel Vrana
Winner: Corrie Adams, for “Paradise”

Read the announcement on the blog


Little Bird Stories Volume IVLittle Bird Stories Volume IV

Contest Date: 2014

Stories selected by Rebecca Lee
Cover Design: Ryan Muscat
Winner: Rachel Ball, for “Woman In a Drawer”

Read the announcement on the blog


Short Story collectionLittle Bird Stories Volume III

Contest Date: 2013

Stories selected by Alix Ohlin
Cover Design: Ryan Muscat
Winner: Leslie Greentree, for “The Room of Pickled Things”

Read the announcement on the blog


Little Bird Stories Volume II

Contest Date: 2012

Stories selected by Zsuzsi Gartner
Cover Design: Michel Vrana
Winner: Frances Phillips, for “No Street Called Crow”

Read the announcement on the blog


Short Story Collection
Little Bird Stories Volume I

Contest Date: 2011

Stories selected by Matthew J. Trafford & Jessica Westhead
Cover Design: Carolyn McNeillie
Winner: Brittany Smith, for “Contrast Fluid”

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Thank you for joining me here, and celebrating writers who write short stories.


Write what you want to read.