On my blog’s Competitions page is a list of some writing competitions by closing date (month by month) then by regularity, followed by competition websites.
If you would like your competition listed please email me the details as per the format below (i.e. one line per competition) ensuring that it starts with the type of competition it is and highlighting the month it closes. Thank you.
As we’re over halfway through April already, below are the May deadlines (by format). If you find any information out of date, please do let me know (or leave a comment below). Thank you.
- Children’s: bookweek.ca/information-artists
- Flash Fiction: Indies Unlimited hosts a weekly 250-word max. prompt competition – also see Indies Unlimited and ‘Short stories’ below.
- Flash Fiction: Weekly challenge on theironwriter.com.
- Flash Fiction: Each month the Scottish Book Trust provides a prompt to get you started, but where the <50-word story goes from there is entirely up to you. Their favourite story will be published on their page and the writer will receive a lovely Novel Poster from The Literary Gift Company. You can submit your story in the body of an email or as an attachment and remember to include your full name with your entry. They also welcome entries in Gaelic or Scots.
- Flash Fiction: 16th May is National Flash Fiction day and you can find some competitions (various dates) on nationalflashfictionday.co.uk/competitions.html.
- Flash Fiction: The Writing Competition is a short story competition hosted by Jeni Durlston-Powell. This writing contest offers writers the chance to win cash and publication, and is currently run quarterly (late Feb, late May, late Aug, late Nov). Short Stories up to 500 words. Titles to be limited to 10 words. Open theme and genre. Entry fee: £4. Prizes: £100, £75, £50. See http://www.writingcompetition.org.uk and http://www.shortstorycompetitionhq.com/the-writing-competition-writing-competition for details.
- Flash Fiction: The Bridport Prize. Poems 42 lines max, short stories 5,000 words max, flash 250 words max. £15,000+ prize fund, closing date 31 May. See bridportprize.org.uk.
- Flash Fiction: Erewash has a 1,000 words maximum with free mini-crit feedback for all entrants. First Prize £50, Second Prize £25. Closing date: 2nd May.
- Flash Fiction: The NLG Flash Fiction Competition (that I am Head Judge of) is open – see ‘June’ for full details.
- Flash Fiction: The New Writer Annual Prose & Poetry Prizes launches every April. £2,000 in prizes. Closing date 30th November. Short stories, flash fiction and poetry.
- Flash Fiction: Tethered by Letters’ Spring 2015 Flash Fiction Contest is “currently accepting flash fiction submissions of 55, 250, or 500 words in length. The flash fiction contest winner will be published in F(r)iction. Three finalists will be considered for subsequent quarterly journal publications or a TBL online monthly feature. Each finalist will also receive free professional edits on their submission. International submissions welcome.” Deadline: May 31, 2015. Prize: $150 and publication in the quarterly journal. Entry Fee: $7 per entry OR $15 for three entries. URL: http://tetheredbyletters.com/submissions/contest-submission. Contact Info: Joe Reinis, email@example.com.
- Flash Fiction / Short Stories: The Writer’s Notebook is a monthly, free to enter short story competition. Each month has a set theme, and each writer can submit up to 2 stories per month. A new theme opens on the 1st of each month, and the deadline for entries is the 28th of each month. Future themes are available to view on our webpage. The prize is publication of the short story in our Anthology at the end of the year, and an equal share of sale profits of said Anthology. It is an experimental idea for a free to enter writing competition, relying on social media to drive sales of the Anthology and increase the prize. Stories should be 400-1500 words. A short list of three stories will be published on our blog for our readers to vote for a winner. For more information please see http://thewritersnotebookgroup.blogspot.com.
- Memoir: Lightship Short Memoir Contest. Tell your own story, or an episode of it. 1st prize £1,000, judge Rachel Cusk. Closing date 1 May. lightshippublishing.co.uk/competition/the_lightship_short_memoir_contest.
- Mixed: Submission to the non-fiction and fiction Shirley You Jest Book Awards opens 20th May 2015 (closes 22nd July 2015). I’m one of the sponsors!
- Mixed: Winchester Writers’ Conference has opened their mixed writing competitions (deadline 24th May). Details in their competitions brochure. £7 per entry if attending, £9 if not.
- Mixed: The International Yeovil Literary Prize has a closing date of 31st May and there are three categories: THE NOVEL – Please send the synopsis with opening chapters (up to 15,000 words in total) : Prizes: 1st = £1,000; 2nd = £250; 3rd = £100. Fee £11. THE SHORT STORY – Up to a maximum of 2,000 words. Prizes: 1st = £500; 2nd = £200; 3rd = £100. Fee £6. POETRY – A poem with a maximum of 40 lines. Prizes: 1st = £500; 2nd = £200; 3rd = £100. Fee £6, two for £9, three for £11. The Yeovil Literary Prize can be entered online or by post. The judges are all professional writers and publishers. For details see the website (yeovilprize.co.uk) or write to: Yeovil Literary Prize, The Octagon Theatre, Hendford, Yeovil, BA20 1UX.
- Mixed: globalfeelgoodcompany.com/competition (opens May, closes 30th September – see ‘September’ for full details).
- Mixed: Christian magazine Pockets has a different theme per month.
- Mixed (novels & short story collections): iWriteReadRate and Cornerstones Literary Consultancy (voteformyebook.com) are offering a monthly social competition to members of the community – see ‘Monthly’ towards the end of this page.
- Non-fiction: another non-fiction competition is FBFT Sports Writing.
- Novels: The Flash 500 Novel Opening Chapter & Synopsis Competition, established 2013, is an annual competition, opening for entries on 1st May and closing on 31st October. The judges for this competition will be the senior editors at Crooked Cat Publishing. Entry fee: £10. Prizes: £500 first prize, plus a runner’s up prize of £200.
- Novels: Novel Rocket runs an annual Launch Pad Contest: Boosting You Out of the Slush Pile. Entries will be accepted in all genres beginning mid-January. The deadline for submission is different for genre categories according to the following schedule. In each case, entries must be received by 11:59 PM EST on the 10th day of the month (April to September) listed on novelrocket.com/p/launch-pad-contest.html. They also post a new writing-related article seven days a week, from author interviews to marketing discussions to articles about the craft of writing. NB. The entry fee is $45 so give this very careful consideration.
- Novels: Words With JAM is running a ‘First Page Competition’ where you can enter the first page of a finished novel, work in progress or page specifically written for the competition. Closing date 31st May. Prizes £500 / £100 / £50 with fee of £6 first entry, £4 per entry thereafter. See wordswithjam.co.uk/#/first-page-competition-2013/4573741026 for details.
- Playwriting: RealDeal Theatre is looking for 10-15 minute scripts for its new event, Popcorn Saturday!, short plays inspired by the movies, to be held late June to be held at Westminster Reference Library, off London’s Leicester Square. Entries to firstname.lastname@example.org. A link straight to the entry details realdealtheatre.webs.com/scripts.htm.
- Playwriting: Lightship First Act Competition. Judges: Micheline Steinberg, Dave Whybrow, Anthony McCarten. Maximum 6,000 words, closing date 31 May. See lightshippublishing.co.uk/competition/lightship_first_act_competition.
- Playwriting: Pint-sized Plays. Scripts should be capable of being staged in a pub with a running time of 5-10 mins, closing date 31 May. See pintsizedplays.org.uk.
- Poetry: Email received from The Pen Company.co.uk: With the start of Spring fast approaching, The Pen Company have launched a competition to win a Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche Fountain Pen in the colour of your choice. All the details to enter the competition can be found here: thepencompany.com/blog/competitions/spring-poetry-competition (deadline 1st May). We look forward to seeing your entry. Take care, Anna, Marketing Assistant, The Pen Company.
- Poetry: The Poetry London Competition is in its 14th year. Judge Pascale Petit. 1st Prize £1000, max 80 lines. Closing date 1 May. See poetrylondon.co.uk/competition.
- The Poetry Box International Dark & Horror Poetry Silver Cup Trophy Award – Poetry Competition – Deadline: 1 May: The Poem/s Must Be Dark, Horror, Gothic, Gothic-Horror, Fantasy or Satire-Themed. Prizes: First Prize Winner – the elegant, generously-sized and engraved ‘The Poetry Box International Dark & Horror Poetry Silver Cup Trophy’ and the decorative ‘Winner’ Award-Winning Certificate. 2nd and 3rd Place Finalists – will receive decorative Award-Winning Certificates and Prize Cheques of £50.00 and £30.00 each respectively. The ‘Judge’s Special Commendation Award’ winning Entries will receive decorative ‘Judge’s Special Commendation Award’ Certificates and ‘Highly Commended Award’ winning Entries will receive decorative ‘Highly Commended Award’ Certificates. ALL Prize Winners and Finalists will receive a copy of the Special ‘Winners & Finalists’ Edition of ’The Poetry Box Dark & Horror Poetry Magazine Monthly’ which will include their published Winning Entry/ies. Entry Fees: GBP £5.00 for 1 Poem – GBP £10.00 for 3 Poems – GBP £14.00 for 4 Poems, up to a maximum of 4 Poems per Entrant. Entry Fees are Payable By Personal Cheque Drawn Against a British Bank Only to: LK Robinson – or – via Paypal to Account: NLKROBINS@aol.com. Entry Form available via The Poetry Box website ThePoetryBox.co.uk. Postal Entries, Entry Forms and Enquiries to The Poetry Box Magazine and Studio Address: The Poetry Box, ‘Ramshackles’ 2 Downview, Nyewood, Petersfield, Hampshire GU31 5JA, England. Tel: 01730 821030 Email: FairyTaleRhymes@aol.com.
- Poetry: Templar Poetry Pamphlet & Collection Awards closes for submissions on 7th May.
- Poetry: Northampton Literature Group usually runs a yearly poetry competition with a mid-May deadline but it’s currently on hold and the group is running a flash fiction competition instead!
- Poetry: The Montreal International Poetry Prize has a top prize $20,000 CDN, single poem, max 40 lines. Closing date 15th May. See montrealprize.com.
- Poetry: The Welsh Poetry Competition. £4 entry per poem. Prizes: £400, £200, £100. The deadline is 26th May. Poems in English, 50 lines, unpublished. See welshpoetry.co.uk for entry forms and rules.
- Poetry: The second ‘Poems Please Me’ Poetry Competition has a deadline of 31st May. Entry is by subscription to the site and the example given is a ‘single’ at £12 which entitles you to three entries to the competition. See poemsplease.me/?page_id=118 for more details.
- Poetry: The fourth Battered Moons Poetry Competition is now open to all UK residents aged 18 or over and accepts poems on any topic and style of up to 40 lines. Main judge Alice Oswald and Cristina Newton will read all the poems. The 3 winners and 4 commended poets will be invited to read their poems at the Swindon Festival of Poetry early October. Winning and commended poems will appear in the Battered Moons pamphlet and website. First prize, £300; second, £150; third, £75. Entry fee: £3 each poem or £10 for 4. Closing date for entries is 31st May. Online and postal entries accepted. For further information and to enter, visit batteredmoons.com. Queries to Cristina Newton on email@example.com. Supported by Swindon Artswords, the Swindon Festival of Poetry, and Arts Council England.
- Poetry: David Burland International Poetry Prize – in either French or English – closing date 31st May, 1st prize £200 + website publication. See davidburlandpoetryprize.com.
- Poetry: The Bridport Prize. Poems 42 lines max, short stories 5,000 words max, flash 250 words max. £15,000+ prize fund, closing date 31st May. See bridportprize.org.uk.
- Poetry: The Frogmore Poetry Prize has been annual since 1987. You can win 200 guineas and 2-year sub to The Frogmore Papers. Max 40 lines, closing date 31st May. See frogmorepress.co.uk.
- Poetry: Tethered by Letters’ Spring 2015 Poetry Contest is “currently accepting poetry submissions of all genres and styles—from traditional form to free verse. Length requirements are no more than three pages per poem, single-spaced with double spacing between stanzas. The poetry contest winner will be published in F(r)iction. Three finalists will be considered for subsequent quarterly journal publications or a TBL online monthly poetry feature. Each finalist will also receive free professional edits on their submission. International submissions welcome.” Deadline: May 31, 2015. Prize: $150 and publication in the quarterly journal. Entry Fee: $7 per entry OR $15 for three entries. URL: http://tetheredbyletters.com/submissions/contest-submission. Contact Info: Joe Reinis, firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Poetry: Another 31st May deadline is Wigtown Poetry Competition. First Prize: Main Prize £2000. Runner-up £400. Gaelic Prize £250. Scots Prize £250. Eight additional prizes of £25 each. The first poem submitted costs £7.00. Multiple entries: the first three poems cost a total of £19.00. Each subsequent entry after the first three costs £5 or a total of £14 for every additional block of 3, ie: 1 poem £7; 2 poems £14; 3 poems £19; 4 poems £24; 5 poems £29; 6 poems £33; 7 poems £38; 8 poems £43; 9 poems £47; 10 poems £52; 11 poems £57; 12 poems £61 etc. Main Prize Judge: Robin Robertson, Gaelic Prize Judge: Meg Bateman, Scots Prize Judge: Liz Niven. Winners will be invited to read their poems at the Wigtown Book Festival (late September to early October). Winning poems will be published on the Festival website. For further details, rules and entry form, visit: wigtownbookfestival.com/poetrycomp.
- Poetry: The Writers’ Forum Poetry Competition is a monthly contest for poems of up to 40 lines. Closing: Monthly. Entries arriving too late (after the 15th) for one month go forward to the next. Prizes: 1st – £100. Runners-up – A Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. Entry Fee: £5 each, £3 each thereafter. Includes a critique (sae required if entering by post). Comp Page: writers-forum.com/poetrycomp.html.
- Poetry: The New Writer Annual Prose & Poetry Prizes launches every April. £2,000 in prizes. Closing date 30th November. Short stories, flash fiction and poetry.
- Poetry: Other poetry competitions include Bridport Prize (also shorts / flash), Northampton Literature Group (on hold for 2013 but flash fiction instead), Partners, Templar Poetry Pamphlet & Collection Awards, Writing Magazine (WM: subscriber-only theme: poetry for children), Stephen Spender.
- Screenwriting: Canada-based Wildsound run monthly screenwriting competitions.
- Scriptwriting: Mini Operas scriptwriting competition opens March closes May.
- Scriptwriting: The 10th Annual Screenwriting Challenge is a competition open to screenwriters around the world. There are 3 rounds of competition. In the 1st Round (June), writers are placed randomly in heats and are assigned a genre, subject, and character assignment (see examples of past assignments here). Writers have 8 days to write an original short screenplay no longer than 12 pages. The judges choose a top 5 in each heat to advance to the 2nd Round (July) where writers receive new assignments, only this time they have just 3 days to write an 8 page (maximum) short screenplay. Judges choose a top 25 from the 2nd Round to advance to the 3rd and final round of the competition where writers are challenged to write a 5 page (maximum) screenplay in just 24 hours (August). It’s easy to register. First, download and read the Official Rules and Participation Agreement. Once you have read, understood, and agree to the terms, you are ready to register by clicking here. The entry fee is USD $39* until the Early Entry Deadline of mid-May and USD $49* until the Final Entry Deadlline of mid-June.
- Short Stories: Tethered by Letters’ Spring 2015 Short Story Contest is “currently accepting short stories of any genre ranging from 1,000 to 7,500 words. The short story contest winner will be published in F(r)iction. Five finalists will be considered for subsequent journal publications or a TBL online monthly feature. Each finalist will also receive free professional edits on their submission. International submissions welcome.” Deadline: May 31, 2015. Prize: $500 and publication in the quarterly journal. Entry Fee: $15 per entry. URL: http://tetheredbyletters.com/submissions/contest-submission. Contact Info: Joe Reinis, email@example.com.
- Short stories: The Writers’ Forum Short Story Competition is a monthly no-theme contest for stories between 1,000 and 3,000 words. Closing: Monthly. Entries arriving too late (after the 15th) for one month go forward to the next. Prizes: £350, £150, £100 and publication in Writers’ Forum magazine (and possible anthology). Entry Fee: £3 per story for subscribers, £6 each non-subscribers. £5 extra for a critique (sae required if entering by post). Comp Page: http://writers-forum.com/storycomp.html.
- Short stories: Curry Mallet History Festival Short Story Competition judge is novelist Amelia Carr, max 2500 words with the title The Reunion or The Journey or The Letter, 1st prize £100, closing date 17 May. See currymallet.org/short-story-competition.
- Short stories: The Bridport Prize. Poems 42 lines max, short stories 5,000 words max, flash 250 words max. £15,000+ prize fund, closing date 31 May. See bridportprize.org.uk.
- Short stories: The Fiction Desk Ghost Story Competition welcomes ghost stories from 2,000 – 5,000 words. Closing date: 31st May. (Annual competition). Prizes: First prize £500, second prize £100. Entry fee: £6 for one story; £9 for two stories submitted together. For more details, see: thefictiondesk.com/submissions/ghost-story-competition.php.
- Short stories: Glimmer Train (different category each month), The Lorian Hemingway, Writing Magazine, Biscuit Publishing.
- Short stories: Hayley Sherman also runs a monthly short story competition for submissions on any subject up to 2,000 words. The winners are published on the website, promoted online and receive a £10 First Writer voucher. All entrants are also considered for publication in The New Short Story Annual at the end of the year. Deadline 25th of the month. Heather Marie Schuldt runs a similar contest, although 500-750 words max., but with the same deadline.
- Short stories: Saga is running a ghost short story competition. Max 3,000 words. Deadline: 31st May.
- Short stories: The New Writer Annual Prose & Poetry Prizes launches every April. £2,000 in prizes. Closing date 30th November. Short stories, flash fiction and poetry.
- NB. Don’t forget to check out the ongoing competition websites listed at the end of this blog’s Competitions page.
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