News room: 13 Writing Competitions To Enter Before Easter

13 Writing Competitions To Enter Before Easter by Jessica Barrah

It’s that time again! We’ve gathered together 13 writing competitions (lucky for some) to enter before Easter. It’s April 14th this year, in case you were wondering. As ever, we wish you all the best of luck, and look forward to hearing all about your winning entries…

1. Lucy Cavendish College Fiction Prize

Details: A writing contests from the Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge, open to women over 21 who have not had a full-length novel published (women who have self-published can still enter). The competition is for novels combining literary merit with ‘unputdownability’. These can be literary or genre fiction, or novels for young adults or children. Submit 40 to 50 consecutive pages of the beginning of your story, plus a synopsis of the remainder (5 to 10 pages). See terms and conditions on the website for more details.
Entry Fee: £12
Deadline: 10th February 2017
Prizes: 1st Prize: £1,500. The shortlisted entrants will receive a consultation with one of the judges, literary agent Nelle Andrew. They will also be invited to the prize-giving dinner at the College.

2. Sceptre Loves Short Story Competition

Details: This competition is from publisher Hodder & Stoughton, for short stories between 5,000 and 10,000 words, on the theme of ‘Love’.
Entry Fee: Free
Deadline: 14th February 2017
Prizes: Editorial advice on your entry, plus a 2-hour editorial meeting with Emma Herdman of Sceptre to discuss your work and the publishing industry in general.

3. International Bath Flash Fiction Award

Details: A competition for short fiction of up to 300 words, on any theme.
Entry Fee: £9
Deadline: 14th February 2017
Prizes: £1,000, £300, £100.

4. Tethered by Letters Writing Competition

Details: An International contest from ‘Tethered by Letters’, an American literary publication and resource organisation, with three categories: short story, poetry and flash fiction. Stories should be between 1,000 and 7.500 words, while the poems can be up to three pages. Flash fiction has a word limit of 750.
Entry Fee: Stories – $15. Poems and flash fiction – $8 each, three for $12.
Deadline: 15th February (midnight PST)
Prizes: $1,000. Poetry – $300. Flash Fiction – $300. Winners will be published in F®iction, a triannually-printed collection of literature and art.

5. Chiplitfest Short Story Competition

Details:The publisher ‘Penny Shorts’ is running this competition as part of the Chipping Norton Literary Festival. It’s for stories of less than 5,000 words – and shorter stories have a cheaper entry fee!
Entry Fee: £5 for stories no longer than 2,500 words. £8 for up to 5,000 words.
Deadline: 20th February 2017
Prizes: £500, £100, £50.

6. Readers’ Digest 100 Words Competition

Details: A competition for stories exactly 100 words (excluding the title). There are three age categories: Adult, 12 to 18, and Under 12.
Entry Fee: Free to enter.
Deadline: 20th February 2017
Prizes: Adult – £2,000, £200, £200.
12 to 18 – A Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 and a Gear S2 watch, plus £150 for the winner’s school.
Two runners-up in this category will each receive £100.
Under 12 – A Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 and £100 for the school.
Two runners up will each receive £75.

7. Jane Austen Short Story Competition

This contest is part of the commemoration of the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death and has two categories: Adults and Children:

Adults (16 and over): Write a story of up to 2017 words based on the following quote from Mansfield Park: ‘Selfishness must always be forgiven you know, because there is no hope of a cure.’

Children in the age brackets 7-11 and 12-16: Write letter of 400 words or less on any subject addressed to ‘Dear friend’.

Entry Fee: Adults – £5. Children – Free to enter.
Deadline: 28th February 2017
Prizes: Adults – £1,000, £500. Children (in each age bracket) – £50 book token, £25 book token.

8. The White Review Short Fiction Competition

Details: A competition from literary magazine ‘The White Review’ for stories between 2,000 and 7,000 words. It is open to writers in Britain and Ireland who have not yet secured a publishing deal. They are looking for stories that ‘explore and expand the possibilities of the short story form’.
Entry Fee: £15.
Deadline: 1st March 2017
Prize: £2,500.

9. Margery Allingham Short Story Competition

Details: This competition from the Crime Writers’ Association is open to published and unpublished writers. It is for stories of up to 3,500 words which comply with Margery Allingham’s own definition of a mystery : a crime, a mystery, an enquiry and a conclusion, the conclusion providing reader satisfaction.
Entry Fee: £12.
Deadline: 1st March 2017
Prize: £1,000.

10. Rialto Nature and Place Poetry Competition

Details:poetry magazine The Rialto in conjunction with BirdLife International, the RSBP and the Cambridge Conservation Initiative, is for poems concerning Nature and Place, which can be taken in a broader sense. See website for more details.
Entry Fee: £6 for the first poem, £3.50 after that up to a total of 6 poems.
Deadline: 1st March 2017
Prizes: 1st – £1,000, 2nd – £500, 3rd – A place on a Ty Newydd writing course. Additional prizes : a tour of wildlife places in East Anglia with nature writer Mark Cocker, and a tour of Wicken Fen with naturalist Nick Davies. The winning poems will be published in The Rialto magazine.

11. Limnisa Short Story Competition

Details: An international short story competition, for stories up to 3000 words. See website for more details.
Entry Fee: Free
Deadline: 15th March 2017
Prizes: 1st – One week Writers’ Retreat or Workshop in 2017 or 2018, with full-board accommodation in a single room, at Limnisa writer’s centre in Greece with optional daily yoga sessions, literary evening, use of all Limnisa facilities (beach, bikes, library, etc). You will have to cover your own travel costs there. Alternatively you can have five online sessions of personal tutoring.
2nd and 3rd – 50% discount on the Writers’ Retreat or Workshop.
Alternatively you can have an online session of personal turtoring or feedback on written work.
Runners-up – 25% discount for Writer’s Retreat or Workshop.

12. Rubery Book Award

Details:An International award for self-published and independently published books of any type. See website for more details.
Entry Fee: £35
Deadline: 31st March 2017
Prizes: 1st – £1,500 and your book read by a top London literary agent. At least three category winners will each receive £150.

13. Wergle Flomp Humour Poetry Competition

Details:This competition is for published or unpublished humorous poems of up to 250 lines. It is advisable to check some of the past winners and judge’s comments (in the Contest Archives) to guide you as to what is/isn’t acceptable.

Entry Fee: None – free to enter. One entry per person.
Deadline: 1st April 2017
Prizes: 1st – $1,000. 2nd – $250. Runners-up (10) – $100. The top 12 entries will be published online.

Further reading:

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Written by
Jessica Barrah
Published on
Publishing, Self-publishing, Competitions, Writing, Authors, Short stories, and Novels