"I like to read stories that touch the heart and mind, and that are wrapped up in language that surprises. I'm open to any type of tale, be it experimental, quirky or structured. The best stories are those that lodge in my head long after I've read them."
"In my normal vague, and possibly unhelpful, manner — what I look for in a submission is …. nothing. A beautifully written flash polished to perfection might fail to move me even though I know it should. At other times a single line in a piece that feels otherwise unfinished can take my breath away. So, I expect nothing and just wait for that heart-stopping moment when a flash bangs at my door demanding to be let in by virtue of its genius."
"As a lapsed Classicist my taste is eclectic. I like interesting compositions, elegant prose but I also want a hook that catches my attention from the very first line. I don't mind twists but they have to be clever. I want stories that carry a message of change. Also I'm a sucker for characters that are subversive and revolutionary. I don't shy away from political or social themes that need to be in the spotlight but only if they are progressive. For the V500 I want submissions that push the boundaries, so be daring."
"I want to be taken to new places, with fresh eyes from a different perspective. I love life’s oddities, the macabre and the strange, take me to these places but do it with style and panache."
"When I read flash fiction, I am hoping to be made to think in a different way to normal. To be taken to places I'm not aware of, outside my experience. To be shown sights, sounds and colours, situations both big and small. To be woken up, surprised, delighted, or made to feel sad or bereft. I should be putty in the hands of the writer, made to weave a pathway through my thoughts and be left, at the end, with the suspicion that somehow, ever so slightly, I've changed."
"I love great STORIES – your unexpected and unique, but not sold on mad twists in the last line.
My eyes glaze over at: relationship angst (unless see above); pretty words with no narrative drive; cats, and butterflies. Animal death as metaphor is a firm no from me.
Stop faffing about with your subjects and give me the story you’re afraid to tell."
"I'm looking for stories that show an implicit understanding of flash form: the capturing of a moment that nonetheless resonates with depth, despite its brevity. I love gutsy, honest writing that not only speaks to my experience but also enhances it, be that through language, structure or simply an unexpected perspective on the human condition."