Miniature* 2024

The standard of writing for entries of the 2024 “Miniature* Very Short Story Competition” were so high, it was both a delight and a torment for our esteemed judges. But a winner must be selected.

Below are the Bios of the 2024 Miniature* Winner and the four highly commended stories.

Winner: Elisa Hall

I’ve been writing for about seven years. I love short stories and limited word counts because they encourage me to be careful and precise. I also paint pictures and the two go together well. Writing to me is painting pictures with words.
I live in the country now with my kid and whippets, but I’m so glad to have had my time in the queer community in the city as it was instrumental in making me who I am.

Elisa Hall – Heatwave 1994
That summer sweat droplets rolled across my skin mingling with yours. The air was thick with humidity as we slept, hair sticking to us, dreams making you twitch. A song, ‘Protection’, drifted up the stairs, which was what we needed as boys were thrown from the cliffs.
Highly Commended: Seth Malacari

Seth Malacari (he/they) is a trans author and editor. His first book An Unexpected Party (2023) was published by Fremantle Press. They are currently undertaking a creative writing PhD at University of Western Australia.

Seth Malacari – Christmas Day

Christmas Day is in full swing. High thirties, no breeze. Nan is complaining, Mum is in the pool, Dad is sweating in the kitchen, Uncle Mick is drunk, and I am treading carefully through the wrapping paper holding my girlfriend’s hand, hoping my family sees this love as a gift.

Highly Commended: Kristof Mikes-Liu

Kristof lives on Gadigal land with his partner Brendan. He enjoys writing in his own time, including on the train ride to and from work on Darug, Gundungurra, and Wiradjuri land. He is a public sector psychiatrist & has an interest in dialogical practice.
Mid-July, Evening Mass
It’s cold. Like seasonal heating, my longing breeds sinfulness.
I fumble prayer. My supplications freeze.
His arm brushes mine. Fleece-lined coats separate our flesh.
I savour the idea of a man’s body against my own.
This man’s body.

A midwinter heatwave erupts inside my skin.

Highly Commended: Sam Elkin

Sam is a writer, lawyer, and host of the 3RRR radio show Queer View Mirror. Born in England and raised on Noongar Land, he now resides on unceded Wurundjeri Land. HIs essays have been published in Kill Your Darlings, Overland, and the Griffith Review. His debut book Detachable Penis: A Queer Legal Saga will be released by Upswell Publishing in May 2024.

Sam Elkin – Hoctapod
‘My tattoo’s gone!’ Miffy screamed.
I examined her shoulder. The swirling electric pink and blue Octopus, whose tentacles had once run from her elbow to collarbone was missing.
Moments later we found it in the sink, cooling off in last night’s dish water.

‘More of your trans magic?’ I asked.

Highly Commended: Antony Phan

Antony Phan – Purple Crown
Grandfather’s gate in Vietnam was ablaze with purple bougainvillea.
On our last day there, we took a cousins-only group photo.
Someone suggested we hold the fiery flowers to our ears for fun.
My mother hissed.
In the photo, everyone holds bright purple crowns.
My gay hands hold nothing.

Congratulations to our winners, we would like to express our heartfelt thanks to all the writers who submitted their wonderful stories this year.