Southeast Missouri State University Press

Big Muddy Announces Winner and Finalists of Wilda Hearne Flash Fiction Prize

We are excited to announce the winner and finalists for the Wilda Hearne Flash Fiction Contest. The winner will be published in the upcoming issue of Big Muddy, and will receive $500. Picking a winner this year was quite difficult due to the many, many, many excellent stories we received. 

This year’s winner is:

“I Haven’t Forgotten You” by Leslie Blanco

Leslie Blanco’s fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in The Kenyon Review, PANK, Calyx, finemediumandbroad, The Coachella Review, and TransAtlanticPanorama, among others. Her story “Cuba Si, Yanqui No” won an Honorable Mention from Glimmer Train‘s Short Story Award for New Writers in 2017. “The Lion” was named “First Runner Up” in Los Angeles Review‘s Literary Awards Short Fiction category in 2016, and was a semi-finalist for American Short Fiction‘s Short(er) Fiction Contest in 2015. She is the recent and very grateful recipient of a Vermont Studio Center fellowship, a Hedgebrook fellowship and a Rona Jaffe fellowship. She is the proud holder of an MFA from The Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. She loves travel, the diverse and universal feast of spiritual possibility, and speaking to children through invented characters born when said children press her belly button. She lives in Southern California with triplet daughters, two dogs and one husband.

And this year’s finalists were:

“Shades of Tippi Hedren Headed For a Phone Booth” by Pamela Balluck
“Eli” by Elizabeth Enochs
“Bitten” by Barney Haney
“On the Fly” by Daryl Scroggins

Now, this is usually the part where I’d encourage everyone to submit again for this year’s contest. Unfortunately, we won’t be running the contest in 2020. Reading contest submissions on top of non-contest submissions, and keeping up with other work for Big Muddy and Southeast Missouri State University Press is…a lot. This isn’t a financial decision at all, as these contests pay for themselves. Once we’ve had a bit of a breather, the contest will likely come back, but for the time being, we need a break! Thank you all for sharing your wonderful words with us, and I hope to read more from you all in the future.


The Big Muddy Editorial Team