News room: 12 Writing Competitions for Winter 2015

12 Writing Competitions for Winter 2015  by Jessica Barrah

As the nights get shorter and the weather gets chillier, what better time to stay indoors and get writing? In our final round-up of competitions of the year, we’ve got something for everyone – writers of poetry, short stories and novels for all age groups. So fire up your imagination, warm up your laptop, and get those fingers flying over the keys!

1. Bath Children’s Novel Award

Details: A new international prize for novels written for children or young adults. Entries are invited from unpublished and independently published writers. Send the first 3,000 words of your story, plus a one-page synopsis and a separate covering page.The judge is literary agent Sallyanne Sweeney.

Deadline: 11th October 2015

Prize: £1,000 and a trophy

Entry Fee: £20

2. Troubadour International Poetry Prize

Details: An annual contest for poems of up to 45 lines, fitting on one side of an A4 page. The judges this year are Adam O’Riorden and Jean Sprackland.

Deadline: 19th October 2015

Prizes: £5,000, £1,000, £500. Runners-up (20) – £25.

Entry Fee: £5/$8/€6

3. Ruth Rendell Short Story Competition

Details: This biannual contest from the charity, InterAct Stroke Support, is for stories of up to 1,000 words in any genre.

Deadline: 29th October 2015 (5pm)

Prize: £1,000 and a commission to write four more stories for InterAct Stroke Support.

Entry Fee: £15.

4. Fish Young Adult Novel Prize

Details: Submit a first chapter or the first 5000 words of a novel aimed at readers aged 14 or over.

Deadline: 30th October 2015

Prize: Publication by Fish Publishing

Entry Fee: €20

5. Earlyworks Press Short Story Competition

Details: A competition from Earlyworks Press, for previously unpublished short stories of up to 8,000 words.

Deadline: 31st October 2015

Prizes: £100 for the winner and publication in an anthology for the best entries.

Entry Fee: £5 for up to 4,000 words, £10 for between 4,000 and 8,000.

6. Poetry Society National Poetry Competition

Details: A poetry competition with very generous prizes. Poems can be of up to 40 lines, and should not have been previously published.

Deadline: 31st October 2015

Prize: £5,000, £2,000, £1,000. Runners-up (7) – £200. The top three winners will be published in Poetry Review.

Entry Fee: £6.50 for the first poem, £3.50 thereafter.

7. The London Magazine Short Story Competition

Details: This annual, international contest from The London Magazine (first published 1732) is for short stories of up to 4,000 words.

Deadline: 31st October 2015

Prizes: £500, £300, £200. The winner will be published in the magazine, and the runners-up on the website.

8. Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Competition

Details: An annual competition from the US-based Writer’s Digest, for short stories of up to 1,500 words.

Deadline: 16th November (11.59pm EST) or pay another $5 and extend the deadline to 14th December 2015.

Prize: 1st – $3,000. 2nd – $1,500. 3rd – $500. 4th to 10th – $100.
11th to 25th – $50 gift certificate for Writer’s Digest books.
The top 10 winners will be published in Writer’s Digest.

Entry Fee: $20, or 14th December entries, $25

9. Templar Quarterly Pamphlet Awards

Details: A competition for short poetry collections of between 10 and 12 pages.

Deadline: 30th November 2015

Prize: Your collection will be published as a Templar Pamphlet with a dedicated page on the website. You get 25 free copies of the pamphlet and an offer of further copies at a discount price. You also get a Templar Poetry publishing agreement with the option to submit a full collection for possible publication.

Entry Fee: £10

10. Atlantis Short Story Competition

Details: This international American contest is for stories of up to 2,500 words on any theme. Stories can be fiction or based on true events.

Deadline: 31st November 2015

Prizes: $100, $100, $50. The three winners also receive in-depth feedback.

Entry Fee: $10

11. St. Martin’s Minotaur/Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Competition

Details: An international contest from the USA, for previously unpublished or self-published authors. Submit a crime story of not less than 220 pages (60,000 words).

Deadline: 14th December 2015 (11.59pm EST).

Prize: Publication by Minotaur Books, with a $10,000 advance.

Entry Fee: Free (one entry per person).

12. The Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition

Details: An annual competition for stories suitable for a worldwide audience of readers of between 7 and 18 years old. Your manuscript should be between 30,000 and 80,000 words. Include a brief synopsis, a plot plan (as described on the website) and a letter explaining the book’s appeal to children.

Deadline: 18th December 2015

Prize: A publishing contract with an advance of £10,000, plus representation by a top children’s literary agent.

Entry Fee: £15

Good luck, and let us know how you get on!

Further reading:

3 Posts

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Written by
Jessica Barrah
Published on
Writing competitions, Winter, 2015, Contests, Win, Prize, and Deadline