Million Writers Award
Notable Stories of 2004

Here they are: The notable online short stories of 2004.

Whether you are just beginning to explore the world of online fiction or are an old-hand to the realm, you will find much to enjoy here. All genres of short stories are represented below. All types of writing styles are on exhibit. Journals from around the world are highlighted. The only criteria used to select these stories was excellence and, as you will see, there is plenty of excellence to be found among online journals and magazines.

Thanks to everyone who nominated a story (there were just over 1,200 nominations in all). And a big thanks to the preliminary judges who helped screen the nominations or nominated their own lists of favorite stories: Sefi Atta, Rusty Barnes, Scott Esposito, Megan Powell, Dan Wickett, and the two additional judges who wished to remain anonymous.

In addition, Eclectica Magazine is the winner of this year's Million Writers Award for best online publication by having 11 of their stories selected as notable stories of the year. The King's English wins the Million Writers Award for best publisher of novella-length fiction (something that up until now has been in short supply on the web), and Narrative Magazine wins the Million Writers Award for best new online magazine or journal.

Thanks to everyone for helping to support online literature. And I encourage everyone to check out the Top Ten Stories of 2004, which I selected from the list below.

Jason Sanford
fiction editor and publisher

Notable Stories of 2004:


Absinthe Literary Review

Adirondack Review


Arriviste Press

The Barcelona Review


Bullfight Review

Blithe House Quarterly: queer fiction lives here




dead drunk dublin

Dead Mule


Drunken Boat

Eclectica Magazine

Exquisite Corpse



Fiction Attic

Fiction Warehouse

Fortean Bureau

FRiGG: A Magazine of Fiction and Poetry

Gator Springs

Gowanus Books

Hardluck Stories


Identity Theory

Infinity Plus

In Posse Review

Kennesaw Review

The King's English

Literal Latte

Literary Mama

Me Three

Mississippi Review


Narrative Magazine

The New Yinzer

Outsider Ink

(parenthetical note)

Paumanok Review


Plaztik Press Literary Magazine

Plots with Guns


The Quarterly Staple

Reflection's Edge

Retort Magazine

Rouse Magazine


SHOTS Magazine

Shred of Evidence

Small Spiral Notebook

Smokelong Quarterly

Socialist Review

Spillway Review

Spoiled Ink

Stickman Review

Strange Horizons

The Summerset Review

Taint Magazine

Three Candles

Thieves Jargon

The Thrilling Detective Web Site


Velvet Mafia

View Unplugged

Weekly Reader

Word Riot

Preliminary Judges for the 2004 Million Writers Award:

Sefi Atta was born in Lagos, Nigeria and lives in Meridian, Mississippi. She was a finalist for the Million Writers Award in 2003 and her novel, Everything Good Will Come, was recently published.

Rusty Barnes co-founded and oversees Night Train.

Scott Esposito is a writer living in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has written for various publications, including Rain Taxi Review of Books. His literary blog is Conversational Reading.

Megan Powell spends an awful lot of time reading, writing, and puttering on the computer. Her online editing efforts include the webzines Shred of Evidence and Fables. Megan's most recent anthology, Crossings, was published last summer and her novel Waxing is scheduled for release this year.

Dan Wickett reads vast quantities of literary fiction and runs the Emerging Writers Network.

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