Flash Fiction Contest | European Winner 2022

After a always challenging journey, with more than 2000 texts running from the beginning of the competition, this year again, our EACWP Jury has finally come to a consensus for the final results of the fifth edition of our Flash Fiction Contest. The two authors representing German and Spanish are the 2022 winner and runner-up and the three authors representing  Portuguese, Danish and Catalan are our 2022 European finalists

For three consecutive years, we have kept the record of more than 2000 texts participating in this new edition of our European Flash Fiction Contest.  After a tight and competitive race, the EACWP 2022 Jury is delighted to officially announce the final results of the fifth edition of our  Flash Fiction Contest.

Taking Eurovision’s voting system as a model, this year, five European authors have reached the final stretch to the honour roll: one final winner, one runner-up and three finalists.

With 71 points, the 2022 winning text is the one entitled Interiorising Earth’s Interior, by Jeremias Heppeler from Germany.  And with 62 points the 2022 runner-up text is Children’s Game, by Francisco Javier Cano Santa Bárbara from Spain. You can review the full contest results here.

Additionally, this year, the popular vote has been awarded to The Door to the Cellar, by Jana Sarasvatí Lukešová, representing the Czech language. Congratulations, Jana!

On behalf of the EACWP family, we would like to thoroughly congratulate Jeremías, our European winner 2022 and Francisco Javier, our runner-up 2022, as well as the three European finalists along with all the participanting authors. Ultimately, we would also like to deeply thank the valuable and voluntary work of the jury, the translators and the different participating institutions for their engagement over the full process of the contest. Thank you all for heeding the call and for accepting the challenge of continuing to  dream and write Europe!

See you in our next edition!

European Winning Flash Fiction Text 2022

German

Erinnere das Erdinnere

Im Kindergarten haben wir angefangen ein Loch zu graben.

Einfach so. Kinder halt. Als wir dann den ersten Belag des Sandkastensandes abgetragen hatten und auf Lehm stießen, machte das etwas mit uns.

Das Spiel wurde zur Arbeit. Wir teilten uns in Schichten. Entwickelten Hierarchien.

Im ersten Monat war ich Bauleiter, im siebten stieg ich zum Bandenchef auf. Ich wurde manisch.

Wir gruben und gruben. Schicht nach Schicht. Umkreisten Rohre. Skelette. Schätze. Kinder gingen verloren, Häuser rutschten in den Schlund. Wir weckten jahrtausendealte Flüche.

Im dritten Jahr durchbrachen wir die Dunkelheit und ein Gleißen, das alle Frage beantwortete, verschluckte uns. Licht!

Interiorising Earth’s Interior

In nursery school we began digging a hole.

Just like that. As kids do. Then when we had removed the first layer of sand from the sandpit, and struck clay, it did something to us.

Play became work. We divided ourselves up into classes. Developed hierarchies.

In the first month, I was site supervisor, in the seventh I rose to gang leader. I became manic.

We dug and dug. Layer after layer. Cleared around pipes. Skeletons. Treasures. Kids went missing, houses slid into the gorge. We awakened curses that were thousands of years old.

In the third year we broke through the darkness and were swallowed by a glow which answered all questions. Light!

  • Author: Jeremias Heppeler
  • Translator: Peter Waugh 

European Runner-up Flash Fiction Text 2022

Spanish

Juegos infantiles

Cuando el ogro se va empieza el mejor momento del día. Jugamos a la gallinita ciega, a la rayuela pintada en el suelo bajo el colchón. También saltamos a la comba con las cadenas, cronometramos con la mente a ver quién se suelta antes los grilletes y, según el día, nos entretenemos jugando a las tabas con nuestros dientes. Hoy, Luisito ha visto un manojo de llaves en el suelo del sótano. Nos hemos liberado y le he dicho que escapemos, pero él no quiere irse sin echar otra partida.

Children’s games

When the ogre leaves, the best part of the day starts. We play Blind Man’s Buff and hopscotch on the floor underneath the mattress. We skip with the chains, in our heads we time who can get rid of their shackles first and depending on the day we have fun playing Jacks with our teeth. Today, little Luis saw a handful of keys on the floor of the cellar. We freed ourselves and I told him we should escape, but he wants to play another game before going.

  • Author: Francisco Javier Cano Santa Bárbara

Finalists’ Texts 2022

Finalist # 1

Portuguese

O Combate

É um dos poucos santuários de diversão que ainda resta nesta cidade apática. A entrada faz-se por um alçapão desengonçado que se abre a uma larga cave húmida, iluminada por inúmeras lâmpadas despidas caídas do teto. Não me venham falar em riscos, perigos ou proibições. Preferia a vida no cárcere a ter de abdicar da emoção das vitórias. Percorro o espaço estreito entre os bancos já ocupados até encontrar um lugar livre. Ouve-se o acelerar dos corações antes de se iniciarem as hostilidades. Sento-me, tiro o relógio, fito o meu oponente e começo. Avanço o peão do rei duas casas.

Combat

It’s one of the few sanctuaries for fun left in this apathetic city. The entrance is through a loose trapdoor that opens onto a large damp basement, lit by countless naked lamps that hang from the ceiling. Don’t tell me about the risks, dangers or prohibitions. I’d rather spend my life in prison than to give up the thrill of victory. I make my way through the narrow space between the already occupied benches until I find a free seat. Heartbeats can be heard before hostilities break out. I sit down, take off my watch, stare at my opponent and start. I move the king’s pawn two squares.

  • Author: Nuno Gonçalves

Finalist # 2

Danish

Fremtiden

Det vi gemmer i buskene i parken, vil forsvinde og derefter buskene og siden parken. Der vil bygges boliger hvor den lå, jorden vil skifte form og farve, kommunale træer vil rejse sig fra grunden, gro sirligt i cirkler og siden alléer og senere vælte i en storm. Dine hænders årer vil forgrene sig mens du leder efter noget i en lomme af dagen, på den yderste spids af april.
Beton vil skyde op gennem græsset; gråt over grønt, og til sidst forsvinder du, eller: du vil sidde langt herfra, bag et andet vindue end vores, snart helt visket ud.

The Future

What we hide in the bushes in the park will vanish, then too the bushes, then the park. Housing will be built where it used to be, the land will change shape and colour, municipal trees will rise from the ground, grow immaculately in circles, later in avenues and subsequently topple in a gale. The veins of your hands will branch apart while you search for something in a pocket of the day, at the furthest tip of April. Concrete will sprout through the grass, grey over green, and eventually you too will vanish, or else will sit far from here, behind a different window than ours, soon completely erased.

  • Author: Mette Norrie

Finalist # 3

Catalan

Sintonia perfecta

El ding-dong estrident del timbre va sobresaltar en Bruc, que jeia endormiscat als peus de la Margot. Abans d’obrir la porta va ordenar-li que baixés al soterrani; ell va obeir. El convidat es deixà guiar per una Margot nua i juganera. Uns gemecs eixordadors i l’esclat de plaer, foren el senyal per irrompre a l’estança; el tentacle, llefiscós i infinit, envoltà l’home per la cintura i l’arrossegà passadís enllà fins a fer-lo desaparèixer. Després, silenci; trencat, només, per un estrèpit breu i ronc sorgit de les profunditats de la casa. «Bon profit, Bruc!», digué la Margot amb un somriure murri.

Perfect Harmony

The shrill ding-dong of the doorbell startled Bruc, who laid dozing at Margot’s feet. Before opening the door, she ordered him down to the cellar; he obeyed. The guest let himself be guided by a naked and playful Margot. Thunderous moans and the explosion of pleasure were the signal to burst into the room; the tentacle, slimy and infinite, wrapped around the man’s waist and dragged him down the corridor until he disappeared. Then silence, broken only by a short, hoarse clatter from the depths of the house. Bon appétit, said Margot with a mischievous smile.

  • Author: Núria Pelegrí Bobet
  • Translator: Franco Chiaravalotti