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Writing competitions: May 2016 deadlines

Hello everyone. If you’re looking to enter a writing competition (or even if you weren’t), there are some listed below, taken from this blog’s Competitions page. There are also regular (weekly, monthly etc) competition on that page so do take a look at those.

And if you’d like some advice on entering competitions, take a look at my online creative writing courses page for my ‘Entering Writing Competitions’… currently half price (using a coupon code)!

Now, here are the competitions that finish this month. Most competitions roll over from year to year but if you find any aren’t running this year, please leave a comment in the box below. Thank you.

MAY
  • Children’sbookweek.ca/information-artists
  • Flash Fiction: I now run a free monthly 100-word competition (different theme each month – month-end deadline – you could win my up to three of my Online Courses each month) and 500-word challenge (where you challenge me to write a story, giving me the prompts – you could win up to 5,000-word free editing – deadline 15th of the month).
  • Flash FictionIndies 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 Fiction16th 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: Tethered by Letters’ Spring 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 31st. Prize: $150 and publication in the quarterly journal. Entry Fee: $7 per entry OR $15 for three entries. URLhttp://tetheredbyletters.com/submissions/contest-submissionContact Info: Joe Reinis, jreinis@tetheredbyletters.com.
  • Flash Fiction / Short StoriesThe 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.
  • Flash fiction: An ongoing competition is the NAWG’s ‘100’ competition. The task is to write a 100-word story exactly (usually excluding the title) and when they have 100 stories in, the judge picks his / her favourite and awards £75 to the winner and £25 to the runner-up. Entry is £3 for the first story, £5.50 for two or £8 for three. Details on http://www.nawg.co.uk/3805.
  • Mixed: The Pen Cove Award (see ‘January’).
  • 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 Hourglass Literary Magazine Writing Contest has a 31st Maydeadline and runs three competitions: Best Short Story, Best Essay, and Best Poem. Awards: The winning entry in each category (short story, essay and poem) will receive US$1000 as prize money, apart from a symbolic artifact (clepsydra), digital stamp and diploma. The jury, comprising highly respected authors Sibelan Forrester, Jelena Lengold and John K. Cox has the right to give a special prize (US$ 500 for entry in each category). Ten Finalists in each category will be published in the first issue of the literary magazine. All published works will be financially compensated and finalists will be provided with one copy of the printed edition of the Hourglass Literary Magazine.  Deadline: 11:59, 31st May 2016 (US Central time). Entry Fee: $13.59, $20 for up to three pieces (except for poetry where up to three submissions are accepted for $13.59). Winning Entry Published? Yes. Accepts Simultaneous Submissions: Multiple submissions are allowed (as well as simultaneous submissions). Theme: There are no theme, or genre limitations and boundaries. Helpful Hints: “Manifesto” of the literary magazine can be found here – http://www.hourglassonline.org/about/ . Participants at any time may contact the editorial office via email: contest {at} hourglassonline.org. Names of finalists will be published on the Internet at: http://www.hourglassonline.org and/or the Hourglass Monthly Newsletter and also through our media sponsor (ELTA TV) at the official press conference scheduled for July 2016. Works can be sent in .doc, .docx, .rtf, .odt and .pdf format, with font size not exceeding 12 points. Contest is anonymous and will be blind judged. The submission page is http://hourglass.submittable.com.
  • 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.
  • Mixedglobalfeelgoodcompany.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: Legend Press, the leading independent publisher in the UK has an annual bursary prize for writers called the Luke Bitmead Bursary. “The prize was set up in honour of Luke Bitmead. His debut novel was the first novel Legend Press published but sadly, after struggling with depression, Luke committed suicide. The award has been set up by his mother in partnership with us to support and encourage the work of struggling writers, and is the UK’s biggest prize for unpublished authors. This is an award that we are very proud to run and I am emailing you today to let you know about it in case any of your writers would be interested in entering. Submissions must be adult fiction, and only completed novels will be considered. Full guidelines can be found on our websiteClosing: Submissions open 1st May until 1st AugustPrizes: A publishing contract with Legend Press and a £2,500 cash bursary. Entry Fee: £10 per entry to support the prize.”
  • NovelsNovel 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 scripts@realdealtheatre.org.uk. 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: You are invited to enter the Annual Artists Embassy International Poetry Contest. Deadline: mid May. Cash Awards: First, Second & Thirds Prizes. For information and rules… http://www.dancingpoetry.com/dpfpoetrycontestrules.html.
  • PoetryTemplar Poetry Pamphlet & Collection Awards closes for submissions on 7th May.
  • 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.
  • PoetryThe 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 cristina.ne.newton@gmail.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 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 31st. 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, jreinis@tetheredbyletters.com.
  • Poetry: The Wigtown Poetry Competition has a 29th May deadline. First Prize: Main Prize £1,500. Runner-up £400. Gaelic Prize £250. Scots Prize £250*. Eight additional prizes of £25 each. See the website for fee structure (first poem £6.50, less per poem for multiple entries). 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. Also www.facebook.com/WigtownPoetryComp or telephone 01988 402036. * “Scotland’s International Poetry Prize, Open to All”
  • 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: Other poetry competitions include Bridport Prize (also shorts / flash), PartnersTemplar Poetry Pamphlet & Collection AwardsWriting Magazine (WM: subscriber-only theme: poetry for children), Stephen Spender.
  • Screenwriting: Canada-based Wildsound run monthly screenwriting competitions.
  • ScriptwritingMini Operas scriptwriting competition opens March closes May.
  • ScriptwritingThe 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 Deadline of mid-June.
  • Short Stories: Tethered by Letters’ Spring 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 31st. Prize: $500 and publication in the quarterly journal. Entry Fee: $15 per entry. URL: http://tetheredbyletters.com/submissions/contest-submissionContact Info: Joe Reinis, jreinis@tetheredbyletters.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 storiesGlimmer Train (different category each month), The Lorian HemingwayWriting MagazineBiscuit Publishing.
  • Short storiesHayley 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 storiesSaga 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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Writing competitions: April 2016 deadlines

Hello everyone. If you’re looking to enter a writing competition (or even if you weren’t), there are some listed below, taken from this blog’s Competitions page. There are also regular (weekly, monthly etc) competition on that page so do take a look at those.

And if you’d like some advice on entering competitions, take a look at my online creative writing courses page for my ‘Entering Writing Competitions’… just £1 (using a coupon code) until 3rd April!

Now, here are the competitions that finish next month. Most competitions roll over from year to year but if you find any aren’t running this year, please leave a comment in the box below. Thank you.

APRIL
  • Children’spuffindigitalprize.co.uk.
  • Children’sSmall but Mighty Writers runs free-to-enter writing competitions for authors aged 7-11 and 12-15, as well as being a ‘creative writing community for young writers’. Competitions currently close 1st January, 1st April, 1st July, and 1st October. The results will be released on the 14th of each of those months. 1st prize: A bundle of writing goodies and their entry published on their website. Two runners up: £5 book vouchers.
  • Flash Fiction: I now run a free monthly 100-word competition (different theme each month – month-end deadline – you could win my up to three of my Online Courses each month) and 500-word challenge (where you challenge me to write a story, giving me the prompts – you could win up to 5,000-word free editing – deadline 15th of the month).
  • Flash FictionIndies Unlimited hosts a weekly 250-word max. prompt competition – see Indies Unlimited. Also see ‘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: 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 / Short StoriesThe 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.
  • Flash fiction: An ongoing competition is the NAWG’s ‘100’ competition. The task is to write a 100-word story exactly (usually excluding the title) and when they have 100 stories in, the judge picks his / her favourite and awards £75 to the winner and £25 to the runner-up. Entry is £3 for the first story, £5.50 for two or £8 for three. Details on http://www.nawg.co.uk/3805.
  • Mixed: The Pen Cove Award (see ‘January’).
  • Mixed: Winchester Writers’ Conference has opened their mixed writing competitions (deadline late May). Details in their competitions brochure. £7 per entry if attending, £9 if not.
  • 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-fictionWriter’s Drawer is running a travel-writing competition ending mid April.
  • NovelsNovel 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 / Non-FictionRubery Book Award First Prize is £1,000 (approx US$1,590 / €1,277) and the winning book is guaranteed to be read by a top London literary agent, plus a minimum of the three category winners each winning £100 (approx $159 / €127). Entry fee details and entry form all on the website: www.ruberybookaward.com. Deadline 30th April.
  • Playwriting: The King’s Cross Award For New Writing. Up to two full-length plays may be entered per writer, unpublished and unperformed scripts only. £5,000 prize. Closing date 30 Aprilthecourtyard.org.uk/content/25/writers-group.
  • Poetry: Poetry-Next-The-Sea Open Competition. Judge Heidi Williamson, max 40 lines, £100 first prize, closing date 6 Aprilpoetry-next-the-sea.com/index.html.
  • Poetry: UK’S First Bug Poetry Competition marking Buglife’s tenth year as the only conservation charity in Europe devoted to the conservation of all invertebrates, closing date 8 April.
  • Poetry: Buxton Poetry Competition History and Heritage theme, all ages, judge Philip Wells, 40 lines max, closing date 8 Aprilderby.ac.uk/buxtonpoetrycompetition.
  • 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: other poetry competitions include Nonsense Poetry & Flash FictionVerWriting Magazine (WM: open to all theme: horror), poetrypf.co.ukswconline.co.uk.
  • Poetry & Short stories: Deddington Writers’ Group Open Writing Competition Short Story or Poem. Competition information and entry forms available from website end January or send SAE to: 7, The Daedings, Deddington, OX15 ORT. 1st prize: £100, 2nd: £50,  3rd: £25, awarded in both categories. Closing date 13 April. See deddington.org.uk/community/arts/writing or deddingtonfestival.org.uk.
  • Poetry: The Royal Berkshire Poetry Competition open to all, 40 lines max, 1st prize £200, closing date 14 Aprilglowmagazine.me/poetry-competition.
  • Poetry: Poetry on the Lake International Poetry Competition has a theme of ‘metal’. Top prizes of €200, judges include Anne-Marie Fyfe, closing date 22 April. See poetryonthelake.org.
  • Poetry: Ver Poets Open Competition. 1st prize £600. 30 lines max, closing date 30 April. See verpoets.org.uk/news/competitions.
  • Poetry: Ware Poets Open Poetry Competition. Prizes: £600, £250, £100. £100: The Ware Sonnet Prize. Anthology publication for winners and shortlisted poets (£3.50 pre-ordered). Closing date 30 April. Informal prize-giving ceremony at Ware Arts Centre in July. Fee: £4;  4 poems for £12, then £3 per poem (in the same submission). Length:  up to 50 lines. Sole judge: Susan Utting. Include contact sheet with usual details. Download flyer from website, or send SAE: The Competition Secretary, Ware Poets Competition, 21 Trinity Road, Ware, Herts. SG12 7DB or email: warepoets_competition@hotmail.co.uk and see poetrypf.co.uk/images/compware13.pdf.
  • Poetry: Southport Writers’ Circle International Poetry Competition. First Prize £150, Second Prize £75, Third Prize £25 A maximum of 40 lines per poem is allowed. Closing date 30 April. See swconline.co.uk/n1/?cat=5.
  • 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.
  • Screenwriting: Canada-based Wildsound run monthly screenwriting competitions.
  • Screenwritingoscars.org/awards/nicholl/apply.html is a screenwriting competition with a late Aprildeadline.
  • Script: The Ticket to Write Beatles-themed Festival playwriting contest is now open for entries for the fourth year. “We are currently exploring several venues and slots in Liverpool to perform the selected plays.
    As usual the plays can be about the people, stories inspired by songs and song-titles or any genuine connection with The Beatles. The script should be 40 – 45 minutes long and able to be performed by a maximum of four actors. More characters are allowed if it is practical to multi-role. The winner gets a tasty £150 and it costs only £10 to enter. Entries must be in by early April. All plays will be assessed anonymously by a theatre professional and three will go forward to be performed. Professional judges and the audience vote will count towards the final result. All entries will receive a considered written critique from the assessor who will receive all of the £10 entry fee. A windfall has enabled us to fund the prize money.
    Full details are under ‘How To Enter’ on our website acedrama.co.uk.”
  • Scriptwriting: The Nick Darke Award is open to all writers – stage play screenplay or radio play – prize fund £6,000. Closing date 29 Aprilfalmouth.ac.uk/nickdarkeaward.
  • Short stories: William Trevor / Elizabeth Bowen International Short Story Competition 1st prize €3,000, closing date 5 Aprilmitchelstownlit.com/index.html.
  • Short stories & Poetry: Deddington Writers’ Group Open Writing Competition, Short Story or Poem. Competition information and entry forms available from website end January or send SAE to: 7, The Daedings, Deddington, OX15 ORT. 1st prize: £100, 2nd: £50,  3rd: £25, awarded in both categories. Closing date 13 April. See deddington.org.uk/community/arts/writing or deddingtonfestival.org.uk.
  • Short stories: The Limnisa Short Story Competition 2016 is an international contest open worldwide and is for short stories on any subject up to 3,000 words. Closing: April 15, 2016. 1st Prize: One week Writers’ Retreat or Workshop in 2016 or 2017 at Limnisa, our seaside location near Agios Georgios, Methana, Greece: http://www.limnisa.com. All inclusive: Full board, 7 nights accommodation in single room, optional daily yoga sessions, literary evening, use of all Limnisa facilities: beach, bikes, international library etc. OR five online sessions of personal tutoring. 2nd and 3rd Prize: 50 % discount on the Writers’ Retreat or Workshop (see above). OR a free online session of personal tutoring or feedback on written work. 2 Runners up: 25% discount on the Writers’ Retreat or Workshop (see above). Questions regarding entries should be directed to: entries@limnisa.com. Entry Fee: FREE. Please like and share our Facebook page. Competition Page: http://www.limnisa.com/#!competitions/mw0t7.
  • 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: The Fowey Festival of Words and Music (formerly the Daphne du Maurier Festival) has announced the launch of the Short Story Competition. First Prize is £100 and Runner-up £75. Entry is £6.00 and entry form and full details at foweyfestival.com/the-du-maurier-festival-society-short-story-competition. The closing date is 19th April.
  • Short storiesGlimmer Train (different category each month), The Moth-Altun Short Story PrizeNonsense Poetry & Flash FictionNottingham Writing Magazine (WM: open to all theme: horror / subscriber-only theme: food), francobritishcouncil.org.ukwest-linton.org.uk/content/pentlands-writers-group. Also see Deddington in ‘Poetry…’ above.
  • Short storiesHayley Sherman 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: Young Writers’ Competition. The annual Young Writers’ Competition at Jane Austen’s House Museum is entering its fourth year and is now open for entries. Annalie Talent, Education Officer said ‘Next year is the 200th anniversary of publication of Pride and Prejudice and so we have made the theme of the competition First Impressions which was the original title of Jane’s best-loved novel.’ Entries should be short stories of 300-400 words and entrants can interpret the theme in any way they want. Entry is open to all UK school pupils in school years 7-11. There are two categories: years 7 and 8 and years 9, 10 & 11. The competition will be judged by Professor Kathryn Sutherland of St Anne’s College Oxford and the Museum’s previous Writer-in-Residence, Rebecca Smith. Closing date 26 April. See jane-austens-house-museum.org.uk for details.
  • Short stories: first Annual Sara Park Memorial Short Story Competition. Theme Journeying, max 2000 words, closing date 30 Aprilredsquirrelpress.com/SquirrelCOMP.html.
  • Short stories: The James Plunkett Short Story Award for new and emerging writing talent, open to all writing in English who have not had a short story collection published. 1st prize €2,000, max 3000 words. Next closing date 30 April. See ireland-writers.com/index.htm.
  • Short stories: The Bristol Short Story Prize is open to all writers internationally over 16 years of age. Stories can be on any theme or subject and entry can be made online via the website or by post. Entries must be previously unpublished with a maximum length of 4,000 words (There is no minimum). Entry fee £8 per story. Closing date 30 April. 1st prize £1,000. Second placed £700. Third £400. The next 17 runners up will receive £100 each. All 20 shortlisted will have their stories published in the next Bristol Short Story Prize Anthology and be invited to the prize-giving (in Bristol, South West England) in October. See bristolprize.co.uk.
  • Short storiesMassacre Magazine runs a quarterly horror 250-word max short story competition. Deadlines end April, July, October, January. “We will pick one winner who will receive a £15/$20 Amazon voucher and have their story published in the summer issue of Massacre Magazine. Our decision is final, any moaners will be mangled.” :)
  • 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 the Competitions page.

 

 

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Writing competitions: March 2016 deadlines

competitions 677265Hello everyone. If you’re looking to enter a writing competition (or even if you weren’t), there are some listed below, taken from this blog’s Competitions page. There are also regular (weekly, monthly etc) competition on that page so do take a look at those. For now, here are the ones that finish next month…

MARCH
  • Children’sAcademy of Children’s WritersCrystal Magazine.
  • Flash Fiction: I now run a free monthly 100-word competition (different theme each month – month-end deadline – you could win my up to three of my Online Courses each month) and 500-word challenge (where you challenge me to write a story, giving me the prompts – you could win up to 5,000-word free editing – deadline 15th of the month).
  • Flash FictionIndies Unlimited hosts a weekly 250-word max. prompt competition – see Indies Unlimited. Also see ‘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: Flashbang is now open to entries: flashbangcontest.wordpress.comSponsored by CrimeFest. £2 entry fee. 150 words maximum. Deadline 1st March. First prize is two passes to CrimeFest. Shortlisted and winning stories published online. Full details are here.
  • Flash Fiction: Erewash has a free flash fiction competition. Deadline noon (UK time) 21st March. Full details here.
  • Flash Fiction: The Berkhampstead Writing Competition has a 31st March deadline.
  • Flash Fiction: The Flash 500 Fiction Competition, established 2009, is a quarterly open-themed competition for fiction up to 500 words has closing dates of 31st March, 30th June, 30th September and 31st December. Entry fee: £5 for one story, £8 for two stories. Prizes: £300 plus publication in Words with JAM, £100 and £50.
  • Flash Fiction / Short StoriesThe 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.
  • Flash fiction: An ongoing competition is the NAWG’s ‘100’ competition. The task is to write a 100-word story exactly (usually excluding the title) and when they have 100 stories in, the judge picks his / her favourite and awards £75 to the winner and £25 to the runner-up. Entry is £3 for the first story, £5.50 for two or £8 for three. Details on http://www.nawg.co.uk/3805.
  • Mixed: Winchester Writers’ Conference has opened their 17(!) mixed writing competitions (deadline 24th May). Details in their competitions brochure. £7 per entry if attending, £9 if not.
  • Mixed: Words for the Wounded (W4W) is a new charity that raises money via writing prizes and donations for the rehabilitation of wounded servicemen and women. All proceeds will be passed to projects such as Battle Back, funded by Help for Heroes, which uses sports rehabilitation to help wounded service personnel gain independence and confidence. W4W launches its writing prizes on Armistice Day, November 11, and is calling for all non-writers, aspiring, and experienced writers to enter. Entries can be up to 400 words, written in poetry or prose, fiction or life story tale. Winners will receive a small cash prize and their entries will be published in the monthly writers’ magazine Writers’ Forum (writers-forum/com). Entry costs £4.50 and the deadline is March 11, winners will be announced on 6 June (D Day). They are also running an Independent Author Book Award for fiction or memoir over 45,000 words. For more information on these awards, see wordsforthewounded.co.uk or follow them on Twitter @Words_4_Wounded.
  • Mixed: Christian magazine Pockets has a different theme per month.
  • Mixedhelenwhittaker.net/phpBB2 (shorts & poetry).
  • 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.
  • NovelsNovel 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: other March-deadline competitions include Dundee International Book Prize and The Next Big Author.
  • PlaywritingWindsor Fringe Kenneth Branagh Award for New Drama. and sohotheatre.com (Verity Bargate Award).
  • Playwriting: Cambridge Theatre Challenge: Would you like to write a one act play for the stage and enter it in a competition where short listed plays are given full performance, judged by the audience, considered for publication and given a written assessment by a publishing company? The winning playwright will also receive a cash prize of £200. Every play will be read in its entirety by a minimum of two judges and entrants will receive two lots of feedback on request, at no extra charge! A shortlist of up to ten plays will be drawn up and posted on the Sky Blue website.  Local actors and a production team will be assembled by professional directors to rehearse the plays for performance at the Junction Theatre in Cambridge early July where the audience will vote for the winner. Closing date for submissions is 30th March. Plays must be submitted on line and full details can be found on our website skybluetheatre.com/newplaywriting.php.
  • 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 Flash 500 Humour Verse Competition, established in 2010, welcomes any form of humour verse will be accepted, from a limerick to a poem of 32 lines. This is also a quarterly competition with closing dates of 31st March, 30th June, 30th September and 31st December. Entry fee: £3 for the first poem, £2.50 for each poem thereafter. Prizes: £150 plus publication in Words with JAM, £100 and £50.
  • Poetry: The Neil Gunn Writing Competition is open for entries until early March. There are two sections open to writers worldwide – short story and poetry. This year there is a choice of three themes, all of which are quotes from Neil Gunn’s writing: · “For love is the creator and cruelty is that which destroys” · “The secret loveliness and laughter in things” · “The extra magic of distance” Full details of the competition including the entry rules and forms can be found at www.highlifehighland.com/neilgunn.
  • Poetry: other poetry competitions include Cardiff InternationalFish Prize for PoetryLiterature WalesMAGMichael Marks (pamphlets), Northern Writers’ AwardsWriting Magazine (WM: open to all theme: creative acrostic mini), davidburlandpoetryprize.comtreehousepress.co.uk (Three-in-One), towerpoetry.org.ukfirebirdpoetry.comscottishbooktrust.com/familylegends.
  • Screenwriting: Canada-based Wildsound run monthly screenwriting competitions.
  • Scriptseuroscript.co.uk.
  • Short stories: The Neil Gunn Writing Competition ends early March. There are two sections open to writers worldwide – short story and poetry. This year there is a choice of three themes, all of which are quotes from Neil Gunn’s writing: · “For love is the creator and cruelty is that which destroys” · “The secret loveliness and laughter in things” · “The extra magic of distance” Full details of the competition including the entry rules and forms can be found at www.highlifehighland.com/neilgunn.
  • 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: Mslexia Women’s Short Story Competition. 1st prize £2,000. Closing date 18th Marchmslexia.co.uk/whatson/msbusiness/scomp_active.php.
  • Short stories: Graffiti Magazine Short Story Competition has a closing date 30 March 2016.  Entries must be in English and be the writer’s own unpublished work. They must not be on offer for publication or entered in any other current competition

    . Maximum length 1,500 words. Each piece of work, with its title, must be in clear type on one side of A4 sheet(s). The name and address of the writer and the titles of all entries should be typed on a separate sheet of A4 paper. The prize-winner will be notified by post, if SAE provided, or by email if email address is provided. Entries are only accepted by post. Please keep a copy of your work, as entries will not be returned.  The fee is £3 per story. Cheques/Postal Orders in sterling only, should be made payable to:  Catchword Writing Group.  All entries that arrive on time will be considered by the adjudicator, whose decision is final. No correspondence will be entered into concerning the result. Competitors wishing to be informed of the results should enclose an SAE marked ‘Results’ or provide an email address. Graffiti Magazine Writing Competition, c/o 33 Sandford Leaze, Avening, Gloucestershire GL8 8PB. Prize: £50. The winning entry and short listed stories will be published in Graffiti.

    For more information / to subscribe to the magazine, email: graffiti.magazine@yahoo.co.uk.

  • Short storiesHayley Sherman 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 storiesThresholds International Short Story Forum Feature Writing Competition. Free to enter, international, max 1500 words, 1st prize £500, closing date 27 March.
  • Short stories: The Bath Short Story Award opened for entries in October. This new international competition welcomes stories of up to 2,200 words on any theme or subject from published or unpublished writers. Prizes are as follows: 1st £500, 2nd £100, 3rd £50, and a local prize of £50. The competition closes March 30th. For further details see bathshortstoryaward.co.uk.
  • Short storiesWriters’ Village runs a quarterly short story competition which attracts entrants worldwide. Click here for the rules… and every entrant receives invaluable critique! Their spring deadline is 31st March.
  • Short stories: The Yellow Room Spring Short Story Competition has a max 1,000 words, any theme, first prize £100, closing date 31 March.
  • Short stories: Stringybark Erotic Short Fiction Award. International, max 1800 words. Closing date 31 March. Find out more about the award here.
  • Short storiesLightship One-page Short Story Competition. Max 300 words. Closing date 31 March.
  • Short stories: Exeter Writers Short Story Competition. The first prize is £500, 2nd and 3rd are £250 and £100. There is also an additional prize of £100 for a writer living in Devon. Stories can be in any genre except for children, they can be up to 3,000 words and the entry fee is £5 per story. The closing date is 31st March.  Rules/entry form: exeterwriters.org.uk or you can send a stamped self-addressed envelope (SAE) to Competition, 4 Albion Place, Exeter EX4 6LH.
  • Short stories: Short Fiction, The Visual Literary Journal. Annual Short Story Competition 1st prize £500 plus publication, max 5,000 words. Closing date 31 March.
  • Short storiesThe Moth Magazine Short Story Prize. Judge Martina Evans, 1st prize €1,000 + publication, closing date 31 March.
  • Short stories: One of the UK’s largest and oldest writing groups, West Sussex Writers, is running its second national short story competition. With an open theme, generous word count and final judge, Pam Weaver. West Sussex Writers hopes to attract the cream of the UK’s short story writers. Max 3000 words. Closing date 31 March. 1st prize £200; 2nd prize £75; 3rd prize £50.
  • Short stories: Five Stop Story runs a quarterly short story competition (end March / June / September / December). Membership to the site is £25 but you get to enter up to five stories in each competition. Further details at fivestopstory.com/write.
  • Short stories: Other March short story competitions include CalderdaleChapter One RomanticDark TalesExeter WritersFish Prize for Flash FictionGlimmer Train (different category each month), Meridian WritingMslexiaNorthern Writers’ AwardsRider HaggardWriting Magazine (WM: open to all open: 750-words max / subscriber-only theme: last line ‘Out she walked with a spring in her step.’), and Wyvern.
  • NB. Don’t forget to check out the ongoing competition websites listed at the end of this page.

Do take a look at the blog’s Competitions page for more details.

 

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Book review – for readers and writers – no.143: Morgen Bailey reviews Michael Connelly’s crime novel The Poet

Today’s book review of a crime novel is brought to you by yours truly, Morgen Bailey. If you’d like your book reviewed (please note I’m usually booked up several months in advance) and / or to send me a book review of another author’s book, see book-reviews for the guidelines. Other options listed on opportunities-on-this-blog.

Being a writer and editor, I read and review books with both hats. If you’re a writer reading this review and found it useful, do let me know.

The Poet by Michael Connelly

The Poet coverSynopsis: The apparent suicide of his policeman brother sets Denver crime reporter Jack McEvoy on edge. Surprise at the circumstances of his brother’s death prompts Jack to look into a whole series of police suicides, and puts him on the trail of a cop killer whose victims are selected all too carefully. Not only that, but they all leave suicide notes drawn from the poems of writer Edgar Allan Poe in their wake. More frightening still, the killer appears to know that Jack is getting nearer and nearer. An investigation that looks like the story of a lifetime might also be Jack’s ticket to a lonely end.

This novel is available via http://www.amazon.co.uk/Poet-Michael-Connelly-ebook/dp/B0037471VC and http://www.amazon.com/Poet-Michael-Connelly-ebook/dp/B0037471VC.

Review (of the audiobook)

Information is trickled to the reader throughout the novel and we switch from the first-person point of view Jack and the criminal, written via the narrator in third person. He certainly is creepy. We feel sorry for Jack from the beginning because of what happened to his brother so we’re going to want him to be OK, and stories written with deadlines is inevitably going to be pacey. The ending, after some twists, was unexpected and not unbelievable.

There is plenty to like about this novel – especially how it was narrated by Buck Schirner – but needless to say, I have found some to pick!…

  • A lot of (far too many) ‘began to’ / ‘started to’ before verbs. If something is happening then the ‘began to’ etc. can be chopped.
  • Other words that can you be dropped include completely (we have here ‘completely avoided’), totally etc.
  • There are a fair number of dialogue tags, e.g. he said / she said, where they are not needed. For example, when it has been established who the characters are and there are only two having a conversation, we don’t need to know so often who is speaking – especially where one of the characters names is mentioned by the other.
  • Unless you are just starting out, most writers know to avoid adverbs wherever possible, especially after dialogue and some examples in this novel are, “F***k the lawyer,” Sweetzer said angrily, “Give it to me!”, she said angrily, “You weasel,” Thorson said angrily. (Michael likes his angrilys, doesn’t he.) These are examples where you are telling the reader how the character is feeling rather than showing. Another example is ‘cheeks were hot with anger’ yet we know why his cheeks would be hot because of what led up to that. As long as the set up context of what you are writing is clear, you don’t need to include additional detail explaining what has happened before.
  • I have never been keen on the phrase ‘a long moment’ and there were two close together about halfway through the novel and a couple more later but I think it’s more of an Americanism than Britishism.
  • There is a lot of unnecessary repetition, especially noticed again around the halfway mark including ‘I started slowly to look about. I moved slowly through the house…’, ‘into a trailer park. Several inhabitant of the park… (where ‘several inhabitants’ would have done because we already know where they are), ‘walked through. Rachel walked…’, ‘The phone rang. Rachel yanked the phone out of the cradle.’ This could easily have been replaced by handset. Other examples include ‘…a back office. He came back…’ where the second back could have been replaced by ‘returned’, and finally, “It’s obviously sent to you… obviously been waiting for me…” What made this more annoying was that many of these instances are within the same chapter.

Conclusion

A very enjoyable novel, with a gripping the plot, only losing a point because of its need for a more thorough editing.

This novel was written and first published in the mid 1990s so presumably early in Michael’s career so as not as well written – or at least not as well edited – as his later novels so partly forgiveable, but the errors I have mentioned here certainly should have been picked up by a professional editor.

Rating: 4 out of 5

*

Based in Northamptonshire, England, Morgen Bailey (“Morgen with an E”) is a freelance editor, online tutor, prolific blogger, 2015 Head Judge for the annual H.E. Bates Short Story Competition, Head Judge for the NLG Flash Fiction Competition, RONE 2015 Judge, and teaches creative writing (and writing-related I.T.) for her local county council and online. She is also a freelance author of numerous ‘dark and light’ short stories, novels, articles, and very occasional dabbler of poetry. Like her, her blog, https://morgenbailey.wordpress.com, is consumed by all things literary. She is also active on Twitter, Facebook along with many others (listed on her blog’s Contact page) and has created five online writing groups. She also runs a free monthly 100-word writing competition where you can win her online creative writing courses!

Her debut novel is the chick lit eBook The Serial Dater’s Shopping List ($0.99 / £0.77) and she has nine others (mostly crime) in the works. She also has eight collections of short stories available (also $0.99 / £0.77 each) – detailed on https://morgenbailey.wordpress.com/books-mine/short-stories.

She also helps other authors with an inexpensive freelance editing and critiquing service (free 1,000-word sample), and welcomes, and actively helps to promote, guest authors on her blog – see opportunities.

***

If you would like to send me a book review, see book-reviews for the guidelines. Other options listed on opportunities-on-this-blog.

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You can contact me and find me on the internet, view my books (including my debut novel The Serial Dater’s Shopping Listvarious short story collections and writer’s block workbooks) and If you like this blog, you can help me keep it running by donating. Thank you.

Morgen Bailey Cover montage 2I now run online courses – details on Courses – and for anyone looking for an editor, do take a look at Editing and Critique.

If you would like to send me a book review of another author’s books or like your book reviewed (short stories, contemporary crime / women’s novels or writing guides), see book-reviews for the guidelines. Other options listed on opportunities-on-this-blog. And I post writing exercises every weekday on four online writing groups.

 
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Posted by on February 13, 2016 in critique, novels, review, tips, writing

 

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Writing competitions: February 2016 deadlines

Hello everyone. If you’re looking to enter a writing competition (or even if you weren’t), there are some listed below, taken from this blog’s Competitions page. There are also regular (weekly, monthly etc) competition on that page so do take a look at those. For now, here are the ones that finish next month…

February-deadline competitions

  • Children’sKelpies Prize.
  • Flash Fiction: I now run a free monthly 100-word competition – details here.
  • Flash FictionIndies Unlimited hosts a weekly 250-word max. prompt competition – see Indies Unlimited. Also see ‘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 / Short StoriesInkitt.com is a website where aspiring authors release their most brilliant stories to watch their first steps and first words and first huge gusts of flame pouring from their gullets. Starting from 2nd February 2015, they run free competitions with all the entries being posted on their site.
  • Flash Fiction / Short StoriesThe 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.
  • Flash fiction: An ongoing competition is the NAWG’s ‘100’ competition. The task is to write a 100-word story exactly (usually excluding the title) and when they have 100 stories in, the judge picks his / her favourite and awards £75 to the winner and £25 to the runner-up. Entry is £3 for the first story, £5.50 for two or £8 for three. Details on http://www.nawg.co.uk/3805.
  • Mixed: Christian magazine Pockets has a different theme per month.
  • Mixedsumlitsem.orgscpsw.co.ukgracedieuwriterscircle.co.uk.
  • 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.
  • Novels: Started in 2014, the Bath Novel Award has a closing date of 28 February and a top prize of £1,000. They’re also on Twitter.
  • NovelsNovel 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. NB. The entry fee is $45 so give this very careful consideration.
  • Novels: other competitions include Acorn Independent Press Crime NovelCrime Writers Association Debut Dagger.
  • Poetry: Edge Hill University runs an online literary magazine, The Crooked Quill. “We have free to enter short story and poetry competitions that are currently open, but at the moment we really need more submissions. If possible, could you please add us to your list of competitions? There are Amazon vouchers for the top three winners in each category and all winners (as well as the shortlisted stories/poems) will be published online. The link to the competition page is: http://crookedquill.wix.com/magazine#!competition/j47wf and it closes 15th February. We would be very grateful for any help you could provide in spreading word of our competition. Thank you for reading! Heather Redhead.”
  • 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: Other poetry competitions include Hungry Hill WritersNorwich Writers’ Circle Annual OpenStraid Collection AwardWriting / Writers’ News magazinestemplarpoetry.co.uk/awardswardwoodpublishing.co.uk (Lumen/Camden Poetry Comp).
  • Screenwriting: Canada-based Wildsound run monthly screenwriting competitions.
  • ScriptThe Imison Award and comedy.co.uk/sitcom_mission.
  • Short stories: Edge Hill University runs an online literary magazine, The Crooked Quill. “We have free to enter short story and poetry competitions that are currently open, but at the moment we really need more submissions. If possible, could you please add us to your list of competitions? There are Amazon vouchers for the top three winners in each category and all winners (as well as the shortlisted stories/poems) will be published online. The link to the competition page is: http://crookedquill.wix.com/magazine#!competition/j47wf and it closes 15th February. We would be very grateful for any help you could provide in spreading word of our competition. Thank you for reading! Heather Redhead.”
  • 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 storiesHayley Sherman 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 storiesBBCCremonaEmerald Flash FictionGlimmer Train (different category each month), and Writing Magazine.
  • NB. Don’t forget to check out the ongoing competition websites listed at the end of this page.
Do take a look at the blog’s Competitions page for more details.
 

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