contests

Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award 2018 Now Open for Entries

Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award 2018 Now Open for Entries

Here’s a writing competition with a prize worth winning!

The Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award 2018, with a £30,000 first prize, is now open for entries.

The contest is open world-wide, though you do have to have had work published professionally in the UK or Ireland. More information from the contest website is copied below…

The prize, worth £30,000 to the winner, is an international award, founded in 2010, that is open to any story of up to 6,000 words written in English. Stories need to have been either previously unpublished or only published after 31 December 2016. Five other authors shortlisted for the award will each receive £1,000. The prize is administered by the Society of Authors. To be eligible, the author must simply have a record of prior publication in creative writing in the United Kingdom or Ireland.

Full terms and conditions for the prize can be found here (PDF) and you can access the entry form via the Short Story Award website

The winning story from last year’s contest by American Bret Anthony Johnston, along with the other five works shortlisted for the 2017 prize, can be read in this low-priced Kindle e-book. The closing date for entering this year’s contest is Thursday 28 September 2017.

Good luck if you enter this contest. Even being long-listed would be a considerable feather in any writer’s cap. And if you win the top prize, remember who told you about it!

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Daily Mail Penguin Random House New Crime Novel Contest Now Open

If you’re an aspiring crime/thriller novelist – and you live in the UK or Republic of Ireland – here’s a contest you should definitely consider entering.

The Daily Mail Random House New Crime Novel Competition is free to enter. The winner will receive a £20,000 advance fee, the services of a top literary agent, and guaranteed publication by Penguin Random House UK.

Your story can be detective novel, crime or spy thriller, or psychological chiller. Entrants must never have had a novel published before (in any format, including ebook or self-published) and must be 16 or over.

You don’t need to submit the finished novel, just the first 5,000 words plus a 600-word synopsis of the complete work. The deadline is 5 May 2017, so at the time of writing you have just over a fortnight to get your entry written, polished and submitted.

All entries have to be typed and printed on A4 paper with double spacing in font size 12 point, Times New Roman. They must be posted or couriered to Daily Mail First Crime Novel Competition, c/o Penguin Random House Group, 20 Vauxhall Bridge Road, London SW1V 2SA. All entries must include the entrant’s full name and contact details (including their home and email address) and confirmation they have agreed to the full terms and conditions.

For more information about the contest, including tips for would-be authors, visit this page of the Daily Mail website. For the full terms and conditions and details of how to enter in PDF format, click on this link.

Good luck, and happy crime writing!

 

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Next Great Horror Writer Contest

The Next Great Horror Writer Contest

If writing horror fiction is your thing, here’s a contest you won’t want to miss.

The Next Great Horror Writer Contest is open to any aspiring horror writer over the age of 18. The contest is for new writers, so you must not have had a story of over 10,000 words published by a publishing house already (although self-published authors are eligible).

The contest is being run by the HorrorAddicts.net website, and is free to enter. It is being judged by a panel of professional horror writers, publishers and editors.

The first prize is pretty impressive. The winner will receive:

  • a novel/book contract with leading indie publishers Crystal Lake Publishing
  • a free edit of a novel up to 50,000 words
  • a short story contract with the HorrorAddicts.net “Horror Bites” series
  • a horror writer gift box – ‘supplies and inspiration for the Next Great Horror Writer’

There are other prizes as well, including audio drama production, podcast interviews, more short story contracts, and so on. The contest will proceed through a series of ‘challenges’ designed to select the final winner, with prizes being awarded to the winners of each stage. The challenges will take place from March 2017 to October 2017.

The closing date for entering The Next Great Horror Writer is 1 March 2017. At this stage you simply have to submit the online entry form and a 100-word story. The rules say you must ‘have a full-length novel or novella ready to pitch to a publishing house’ but you aren’t required to submit this with your entry. Clearly, you should have a novel at least in progress so you will be in a position to benefit if you are lucky enough to win the first prize. However, definitely don’t be put off if you don’t have a full-length novel ready to submit now!

For more information about The Next Great Horror Writer Contest, click through any of the links in this post. You can also complete the online application form on the web page.

If you have any comments or questions about this post, as always, feel free to leave them below. I wish you the very best of luck if you decide to enter this contest. 🙂

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Win an iPad Pro in this Free Contest from Aweber

As part of their current Today Is Your Day promotion, my colleagues at the autoresponder service Aweber are running a free giveaway with an iPad Pro as the top prize.

It’s effectively a prize draw. You can get one entry just by signing up to their This Is Your Day mailing list, and a further four entries by sharing your own Today Is Your Day story on social media. Some examples of existing entries are shown in the screen capture from the website below.

This Is Your Day examples

As you may gather, the idea behind Today Is Your Day is to inspire people to try something new, whether to grow their business or start a money-making sideline (or side hustle in the modern parlance).

Aweber are also offering free mini-guides to a range of projects that could fit this description, from starting a podcast to creating your own online course. My earlier post Today Is Your Day: A Free Resources Set for Entrepreneurs from Aweber discusses this in more detail, of course.

As well as the chance of winning an iPad, every entrant can also download a range of free smartphone, desktop and tablet wallpapers to help keep them focused and inspired.

Enter your email address on the contest page and as well as one entry in the giveaway you will also receive an email with a link to the free wallpapers. The contest ends on September 30, 2016, with the winners to be announced on October 3, 2016.

The contest and wallpapers are provided free and without obligation, although obviously Aweber hope that you will sign up to their service if you haven’t already. As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I do recommend Aweber if you are looking for a service to help run an email list or newsletter on your behalf.

Good luck in the Today Is Your Day contest and, as ever, if you have any queries or comments, please do post them below.

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World’s Richest Short Story Award Now Open for Entries!

Here’s a writing competition with a prize worth winning!

The Sunday Times Short Story Award 2017, with a £30,000 first prize, is now open for entries.

The contest is open world-wide, though you do have to have had work published professionally in the UK or Ireland. More information from the Aerogramme Writers’ Studio website is copied below…

Writers from around the world are invited to enter the 2017 Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award. The winner will receive £30,000 (approx US$40,000), making this the most valuable prize in the world for a single short story.

The prize is for stories up to 6000 words in length and there is no entry fee. Stories can be either unpublished or published. If published, the work must have first appeared after 31 December 2015.

Writers can enter regardless of their nationality or residency but they must have an existing record of publication in the United Kingdom or Ireland.

Source: The Sunday Times Short Story Award 2017: Entries Now Open for the World’s Richest Short Story Prize

Full terms and conditions for the prize can be found on this page (PDF) and you can access the entry form via the Short Story Award website

The winning story from last year’s contest by UK author Jonathan Tel, along with the other five works shortlisted for the 2016 prize, can be read in this low-priced Kindle e-book. The closing date for entering this year’s contest is 29 September 2016.

Good luck if you enter this contest. Even being longlisted would be a considerable feather in any writer’s cap. And if you win the top prize, remember who told you about it!

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The Bridport Prize Now Open for Entries!

One of the UK’s most prestigious (and best paying) writing contests, The Bridport Prize is open for entries until 31 May 2016.

The Bridport Prize was founded by Bridport Arts Centre in 1973. They say their mission is to encourage emerging writers and promote literary excellence through their competition structure.

This year there are separate contests for poems, short stories, flash fiction (under 250 words), and novels. There is a fee of £8 to £10 per entry (£20 for the novel award).

A total of over £16,000 (around $23,000) in prize money is on offer, with entry open open to all nationalities aged 16 years and over. To quote from the website…

The poem and short story categories each have a first prize of £5,000, second prize £1,000 and third prize £500. An additional 10 supplementary prizes (for each category) of £100 each are awarded.

A new category for flash fiction with a prize of £1,000 was launched in 2010. There is a second prize of £500, 3rd prize of £250 and 3 supplementary prizes of £100.

In 2014 the Peggy Chapman-Andrews first novel award, named after the Prize’s founder, was launched. The first prize is £1,000 plus a up to a year’s mentoring from The Literary Consultancy through their Chapter & Verse scheme. A runner-up prize of £500 is also offered. Three shortlisted writers will receive £100.

The Dorset Award is a prize specifically for Dorset writers. Thanks to the sponsorship of The Book Shop of Bridport, £100 is awarded to the highest placed Dorset writer in the Bridport Prize each year.

You can enter by post or via the Bridport Prize website, where further information is also available. The closing date is 31 May 2016, so don’t hang about!

 
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Three Great Fiction Writing Contests for UK and Irish Writers

With apologies to my readers elsewhere in the world, in this post I’m sharing details of three current fiction writing contests with big cash prizes that are open to writers in the UK and Ireland.

The first of these is the Richard and Judy Search for a Bestseller 2016, run by the Richard and Judy Book Club. On their website they say:

‘Search for a Bestseller’, supported by WHSmith, will be accepting manuscripts from unpublished authors from 10th March 2016 – 31st May 2016. Richard and Judy will then be leading the selection process, helped by editors and agents, to choose a winner who will receive a £50,000 publishing deal with Bonnier Zaffre and specialist advice from literary agency Furniss Lawton.

Richard Madeley commented: “Judy and I are so excited to host the “search for a bestseller” competition, it gives us a chance to keep doing what we both love- reading and discovering a fantastic title for our devoted Book Club audience. We can’t wait to read the submissions!”

To enter Search for a Bestseller, aspiring authors must submit 10,000 words of original fiction aimed at adults, as well as a synopsis of the full novel, via the entry form below. Good luck!

For anyone who may not know, Richard and Judy are UK TV personalities Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan. Their book club is said to be the largest in the UK. As well as the huge cash prize, the winner can therefore expect to get lots of publicity!

The closing date is 31 May 2016. For more information, here is a link to the contest website.

The second contest is the Daily Mail First Novel Contest. The winner of this one will receive a £20,000 advance fee, the services of a top literary agent, and guaranteed publication by Penguin Random House UK.

To enter this competition you have to send the first 5,000 words of your novel plus a 600-word synopsis of the complete work. The story can be a romance, a thriller, a sci-fi adventure, a contemporary tale or a historical one, as long as it is aimed at adults (not children) and is previously unpublished.

The closing date for this one is 16 April 2016. Full information, including how to submit your entry, can be found on this page of the Daily Mail website.

Finally, if you’re a young writer between 18 and 35, you might be interested in entering the Sunday Times/Peters Fraser and Dunlop Young Writer of the Year Award.

The top prize of £5,000 is awarded for a full-length published or self-published (in book or ebook formats) work of fiction, non-fiction or poetry, by a British or Irish author aged 18-35 years. There are also three awards of £500 each for runners-up.

The work submitted must have been first published in the UK and/or the Republic of Ireland, in the English language, between 1 July 2015 and 1 May 2016. Ebooks must be submitted in PDF format.

The closing date for this one is 1 May 2016. For more information, click through to this page of the Society of Authors website.

Good luck if you decide to enter any of these contests. If you win, remember that you heard about it here!

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Two Free Flash Fiction Contests With Awesome Prizes!

Flash fiction contests are always popular, so here are two with generous prizes that caught my eye recently…

The Florida Keys Flash Fiction Contest is a free-to-enter competition for an unpublished short story of up to 500 words.

The winner will be offered a three-week writing residency at the Studios of Key West, spending up to ten days writing in Ernest Hemingway’s private study at the Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum.

The prize includes accommodation for up to 21 days in a residency cottage, an Air Travel Card up to $1,500 and a meal allowance. The total value of the prize is $6,950 USD.

The residency must be taken between 5 and 31 July, and the closing date is 31 March 2016.

This contest is open to residents of the United States, Canada excluding Quebec, the United Kingdom excluding Northern Ireland, and Austria, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland. For further information, click on this link to the contest website.

The other contest is the Reader’s Digest 100 Word Story Competition. This one is only open to residents of the UK and Ireland, but it is free to enter and has a £2000 top prize.

On the Reader’s Digest UK website, they say:

There are three categories—one for adults and two categories for schools: one for children aged 12–18 and one for children under 12.

Your stories should be original, unpublished and exactly 100 words long—not even a single word shorter or longer!

Entries must be in by February 20 2016.

The editorial team will then pick a shortlist of three in each category and post them online on March 6.

You can vote for your favourite, and the one with the most votes will scoop the top prize. Voting will close on March 27 and winning entries will be published in our June issue.

Entry is open only to residents of the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man and Republic of Ireland.

What you could win

In the adult category:

The winner will receive £2,000, and two runners-up will each receive £200.

In the 12–18s category:

The winner will receive a Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 (8.0, WiFi) and a Samsung Gear S watch (choice of colour), plus £150 for their school. Two runners-up will each receive £100.

In the under-12s category:

The winner will receive a Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 (8.0, WiFi), plus £100 for their school. Two runners-up will each receive £75.

For more information, click here to visit the contest website.

Good luck if you decide to enter either of these contests. Remember where you heard about them if you end up winning!

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Creative Writing

Two New Writing Competitions From The Writers Bureau

As some of you will know, for several years I was a tutor for The Writers Bureau, the UK’s leading distance learning institution for writers. I also wrote their Complete Copywriter course, and some sections of their Comprehensive Creative Writing course.

I thought you might therefore like to know that they are running two writing competitions at the moment. One is inexpensive to enter, and the other is absolutely free!

The first is their annual Short Story Writing Competition. This is for an unpublished short story on any theme of 2000 words or under. The entry fee is £5 per story for up to three stories. There is a £1 discount for entrants who are also subscribers to the Writers Bureau’s Freelance Market News newsletter.

The prizes are as follows: 1st £300, 2nd £200, 3rd £100, and 4th £50. In addition, all winners will receive a Writers Bureau course of their choice. The contest is open world-wide, and the closing date is 30 November 2015. You can enter by mail or via the Writers Bureau website.

Incidentally, this competition is being judged by my old friend (and former Writers Bureau colleague) Iain Pattison. I strongly recommend reading this recent post from his blog in which he talks about what he looks for when judging writing contests!

The other contest the Writers Bureau is running right now is for a flash fiction romance aimed at men. It’s free to enter, and the winner will receive a Writers Bureau fiction writing course.

Your story must be no more than 500 words, and it must be submitted by email by 14 October 2015. For full details, including how to enter, visit this page of the Writers Bureau website.

Good luck!

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Entries Open for the World’s Richest Short Story Prize!

Here’s a writing competition with a prize worth winning!

The Sunday Times Short Story Award 2016, with a £30,000 (US$46,500) first prize, is now open for entries.

The contest is open world-wide, though you do have to have had work published professionally in the UK or Ireland. More information from the Aerogramme Writers’ Studio website is copied below…

Writers from around the world are invited to enter the 2016 Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award. The winner will receive £30,000 (US$46,500), making this the most valuable prize for a single short story in the world.

The prize is for stories up to 6000 words in length and there is no entry fee. Stories can be either unpublished or published. If published, the work must have first appeared after 1 January 2015.

Writers can enter regardless of their nationality or residency but they must have an existing record of publication in creative writing in the UK and Ireland. In 2015 the award went to Chinese-American author Yiyun Li. Other past winners include Junot Diaz, Adam Johnson and CK Stead.

Entries for the 2016 award close at 6pm GMT on Thursday 24 September 2015. A longlist of twenty entries will be published in February 2016 and the winner will be announced in April.

Source: The Sunday Times Short Story Award 2016: Entries Now Open for the World’s Richest Short Story Prize

Full terms and conditions for the prize can be found on this page (PDF) and you can access the entry form via the Booktrust website. Yiyun Li’s winning story along with the other five works shortlisted for the 2015 prize are available here.

Good luck if you enter this contest. Even being longlisted would be a considerable feather in any writer’s cap. And if you win the top prize, remember who told you about it!

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