The Missing Girl – winners announced!

Congratulations to John C Steele, we’ve chosen him as the winner of The Missing Girl Contest! Awesome job, John.

The runner-up is Kelsey Coyne with A Thousand Miles Away.

Thanks to everyone who entered, and congrats to John, Kelsey, and all of our 10 finalists (below)!


Our finalists, in no particular order, were:

1. A Thousand Miles Away by Kelsey Coyne
2. The Polaroid by Magggie H.
3. Losing the Lost by Anna Browne
4. The Fourth Balloon by Becky Hill
5. Letter of Ebony by Mary Grace
6. Everything You Ever Wanted by John C Steele
7. The Girl who Disappeared by Brandon Berman
8. Letting Her Go by Sofia Braunstein
9. Rain Or Shine by Amara T
10. The Runaway by Rana Abuhilal

Darkened streets. Fog. A black Cadillac, hidden in an alley. A woman in a red dress. A shout – a gunshot – the sound of a car starting…

This week, we’re hosting a contest inspired by film noir (“cynical, malevolent characters in a sleezy setting and an ominious atmosphere that is conveyed by shadowy photography and foreboding background music”*). Although the genre had its hayday in the 50’s, it’s far from outmoded; modern writers continually evoke the genre in fresh and surprising ways (like Orion You Came And You Took All My Marbles by Kira Henehan, which you can read the first 18 chapters of on Figment).

We begin with a photograph. This is the last photograph taken of a girl who has gone missing. Who is she? What happened to her? Where did she go? These details that are left to you. Write 1000 words or less with this as your inspiration. Our one stipulation: the story must be written from the point of view of the person looking for this girl. It doesn’t have to be in noir style.

Instructions on how to enter:
-Create a new writing with your entry
-Tag it as “missingcontest” (one word)
-Be sure to press “Publish Now”
-Wait the hour or so it sometimes takes for entries to show up BELOW.

The deadline is MONDAY, JANUARY 24th at 9PM EST. Entries will be accepted immediately. One entry per person. Then YOU decide the finalists by voting on your favorite entries; you can vote until THURSDAY, JANUARY 27th at 9PM EST. The top 10 hearted entries will become finalists. The winner will receive a copy of Henehan’s book, some Figment swag, and will be featured on our blog and newsletter. Good luck, Figmenters!

*Thanks for the definition, Mr. Merriam-Webster:

53 thoughts on “The Missing Girl – winners announced!

  1. I kinda have this problem, I wrote over 1000 words, and realy, I don’t think I could rewrited it. So, I was wondering, is my entry still taking part, or…

    • To be fair to everyone, we have to be strict about the thousand-word limit. You can edit your entry until the last day to enter though, so in order to participate, try and get your story under the thousand word mark.

  2. When you say “from the point of view of the person looking for this girl”, do you mean the piece needs to be first-person, or is third-person limited okay?

    • The contest prompt is to use the picture of that missing girl to create a story. Someone else could be missing as well, but that picture should serve as inspiration for the story.

  3. Does the story have to be about the aftermath of the girl’s disappearance? I wrote mine about the last time the narrator saw/interacted with the girl.

  4. i tagged my story wid ‘missingcontest’ and it hasnt shown up in the contest entries, though its been like a day…did i do something wrong??

    • I’m having the same issue. I published mine last night and tagged it “missingcontest” and I still haven’t seen it. I’ve been through every page and it’s definitely not there. I’m absolutely positive that it’s tagged correctly (checked several times.)

      • Rachel, here’s what happened: your entry was published before the contest started. The page will only list entries that were created (not just updated) on or after 1/17. You’ll have to start a new writing with your contest entry. Hope this helps!

  5. Hey, i wrote a story for this, and published it under the guidelines and everything. But it hasn’t shown up on here, i looked at all the pages.

    Any ideas on how to resubmit it or fix it or something?


    • Both of your entries are titled “missingcontest”, but are not tagged as “missingcontest.” Just put “missingcontest” in tags and you should be all set!

    • Because this intrigues me, I say it can be something else. It must be the point of view of the animal, vegetable, or mineral looking for her.

    • In the edit page of your story, on the right is a bar for entering tags. Enter “missingcontest”, all one word, for your story to join the entries.

  6. I am a newbie on Figment. I’d like to enter the contest, but I still don’t see where or how to enter. There is no link, recognizable to me at least, to click and submit entries. How have others done it? I have browsed back and forth; even read some good entries along the way. Help!

    • Make a new story, title it whatever you’d like, but make sure to include “missingcontest” as a tag. Let me know if you have any other questions!

  7. I published “Stolen From Me” two days ago, but it still hasn’t shown up, and I’m sure I tagged it in “missingcontest”. Help please?

  8. On the self promotion thread in the forum it says contest entry promotion is not allowed. Is there anywhere where it can be promoted on?

    • Not on Figment. But if you want to promote it on your personal sites (blog, twitter, facebook), that’s fine. We just want to keep the wins as merit-based as possible.

  9. I wrote my story and published published the other day and it still hasn’t shown up. I realized that I titled it missingcontest instead of tagged it, but I fixed it earlier this evening and it still hasn’t shown up yet. Did I do something wrong? I’m new to the site and this is the first contest I’ve entered, is there a different spot to post for contests or do you just post it in your regular spot with your regular writing?

  10. So I am new to Figment (less than a week) and I published my story “Abigail” in the contest. Since I am still new, I do not have many followers, which is understandable.

    However, my concern is that my story will not have a great advantage in the competition since many others do not know my work yet. Is there a way I can promote it in some way, shape, form on the website?

    • Hi Rashon

      You can promote your contest entry on other sites, personal blogs, personal Facebook/Twitter accounts and with your friends. But you cannot promote a contest entry anywhere on Figment, or on anything Figment related (like the Figment Facebook/Twitter pages).


      • I can promote the story on other sites but one can not “like” the story if theyre not apart of the figment community.

  11. So, now that the contest is closed- can I edit my entry? I noticed a while ago that I missed a quotation mark, and I want to fix it… But if I do, do I become disqualified?

  12. Hey. I never received my prize for this contest and I’ve been trying to contact Lindsay through email about it but haven’t gotten a hold of her (for good reason I’m sure, running such a busy and popular website must be time-consuming). Am I ever going to get it? Do I need to do anything to get it? I’m just a little lost haha.
    You can reach me any day through email! Thanks for your time!

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