Flash fiction has had a home on the interwebs since Al Gore first planted the flag in it – or something of the sort. So many writers submit and publish FanFic, Blog posts, etc. in mounds and there is never (thankfully!) a lack of material to read online if you’re looking for a fix.
However, one genre, in my opinion, has come to the top with the constant growth of super short online stories – horror!
With the help of forums like Reddit’s /r/NoSleep, any Average Joe can try their hand at being the next Stephen King (of the forums, at least) and submit their short creepy tale (under 40,000 characters) for the horror-reader world to read over and “upvote”. What makes it even better is that, specifically in /r/NoSleep, all posts are in first-person narrative…and it’s all TRUE! Kind of. They operate in a way that all stories, which are technically fiction, are all perceived as fact, making the horror even more close to home.
From the dark, dark depths of /r/NoSleep came the birth (and terrifyingly awesome growth) of the NoSleep Podcast, which chooses stories from the subreddit to read and produce. This writer has personally had two of his stories produced by NoSleep and trust me, hearing it through those horrifying folks kept even myself awake at night – and I wrote the darn stories! Along with NoSleep, there has been a – what a certain presidential candidate would call “HUUUGE” – rise of YouTube channels that read tales of terror. The most popular of these would probably be the infamous Mr. CreepyPasta, himself. With well over a million subscribers (You read that correctly – a horror channel pushes seven digits of subscribers! I said there was growth, right?), “MCP” has help force the world of horror flash fiction into the faces of the general public and average YouTube viewer, taking submissions regularly and producing three stories every week (again, even a few from this writer!).
Even if horror isn’t your favorite genre or maybe isn’t what you want to read or write, it is pretty obvious that, right now, the dead are rising, bumps in the night are growing louder, and yes, that was a small child’s giggle you heard down that dark hallway. It’s here, it’s horrifying, and all-around wonderful for all the folks who want to dive into a spooky story.