The Moth International Short Story Prize 2015

The Moth International Short Story Prize is now accepting entries from writers around the world. First prize is €3000 (US$3260), second is a week-long writing retreat at Circle of Misse in France (including €250 travel expenses) and the third prize winner will receive €1,000. All three stories will be published in autumn issue of The Moth.

Eligible stories may be up to maximum of 6000 words and all entries must be previously unpublished (including self-published).

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Write a House 2015: Write A House 2015: Win a House in Detroit

This two-bedroom home in Detroit will be given to one writer to live in permanently / via Write A House

We are all familiar with the idea of a writer needing “a room of one’s own”, but what about a house of one’s own? Described as a different kind of writer’s residency, Detroit’s Write A House program gives newly renovated homes to writers to live in permanently, with the aim of helping to regenerate the city’s literary scene.

The initiative attracted widespread media attention in late 2013 when it ran its first application round, with coverage in the New Yorker and LA Times among many others. This week Write A House announced it was again inviting applications from writers wishing to build a new life in Detroit.

The winning writer will receive a two-bedroom, 1100 square foot bungalow in the Banglatown neighbourhood, north of the city centre. The successful candidate will need to commit to living full-time in the city and to engaging with the literary community of Detroit. After an initial two-year probationary period, the deed to the home will be signed over to the writer.

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Competitions for Writers in May and June 2015

Competitions from around the world for both established and emerging writers.

Please check the relevant websites for all terms and conditions and be aware that entry fees are payable in many cases. 

Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize
is one of Australia’s most lucrative prizes for an original short story. Open to writers worldwide, the prize is worth a total of AUD$8000 with a first prize of $5000 and supplementary prizes of $2000 and $1000. Entries close 1 May.

Conium Review Innovative Short Fiction Contest
is for new writing that takes risks. Submission may include any combination of flash fiction or short stories up to 7500 total words.The winner receives US$500 and publication. Entries close 1 May.

Notting Hill Editions Essay Prize
is a biennial competition for the best essay in English between 2000 and 8000 words. Entries may be published or unpublished, and on any subject. The winning essay receives £20,000 and there are five runners-up prizes of £1000. Entries close 1 May.

Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting
award up to five fellowships of US$35,000 each year. This international screenwriting competition is open to writers based anywhere in the world, regardless of citizenship. The regular entry deadline is 10 April, with late entries accepted until 1 May.

David Nathan Meyerson Prize for Fiction
is only open to writers who have not yet published a book of fiction, either a novel or collection of stories. The winner receives US$1000 and publication in Southwest Review. Stories can be up to 8000 words in length and all entries will be considered for publication. The deadline for entries is 1 May.

We Need Diverse Books Short Story Contest
is open to emerging diverse writers from all diverse backgrounds (including, but not limited to, LGBTQIA, people of colour, gender diversity, people with disabilities, and ethnic, cultural and religious minorities) who have not been published in a traditional print fiction book format, including self-published, independents, small and medium publishing houses, in all genres whether for the children’s or adult market. The winner receives US$1000 and publication in the “Stories For All Of Us” anthology. Entries open on 27 April and close on 8 May.

Legendary Women
is an organisation devoted to promoting the empowerment of women, both in the media and in their everyday lives and endeavors. It’s second literary contest is open to stories between 1000 and 3000 words that have a woman protagonist. The winner will receive US$125, publication and have a long form interview featured on the Legendary Women website. Closes 8 May.

Creative Nonfiction
is seeking new work for an upcoming issue dedicated to the theme ‘weather’.The magazine’s editors will award US$1000 for Best Essay and $500 for Runner-up and all entries will be considered for publication. Essays must be previously unpublished and no longer than 4000 words. Entries close 11 May.

Ploughshares Emerging Writer’s Contest
is open to writers of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry who have yet to publish a book. The winner in each genre will be awarded US$1000. Entries close 15 May.

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The London Magazine Poetry Competition 2015

The London Magazine is England’s oldest literary periodical, with a history stretching back to 1732. It has published the likes of William Wordsworth, Sylvia Plath, Dylan Thomas and John Keats. More recent contributors include Christopher Reid and Orange Prize winner Helen Dunmore.

A current competition is offering emerging writers the chance to be published in this prestigious magazine.

The London Magazine Poetry Competition is open to original poems up to 40 lines on any subject or theme. All works must not have been published before in any form (including being self-published or published online) and entrants can be based anywhere in the world.

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Publication Opportunities for Writers: May and June 2015

Over 50 publication opportunities for both established and emerging writers.

Please check the relevant websites for all terms and conditions. 

The O. Henry Prize Stories
is an annual collection of the year’s twenty best stories published in American and Canadian magazines. Entries must be submitted by the magazine’s editors and should reach the series editor, Laura Furman, by 1 May. The 20 stories selected for the 2014 O. Henry Prize collection are available here.

Prairie Schooner
was established in 1926. Its intention is to publish the best writing available, both from beginning and established writers. Submissions close 1 May.

Diverse Voices Quarterly
aims to be an outlet for and by everyone: every age, race, gender, sexual orientation and religious background. Submissions received by 1 May will be considered for the August/September issue.

Southampton Review
is dedicated to “discovering new voices and visions while savoring long-standing favorites”. Some of the established writers it has published include Billy Collins, Meg Wolitzer, Frank McCourt and David Rakoff. The current reading period closes on 1 May.

Pilcrow & Dagger
is accepting submissions for its July 2015 issue. The theme is A Mid Summer’s Night Dream and pieces may be up to 5000 words.

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Top Ten Tips for Writing Novellas

A guest post Dan Peacock, 2014 Project Coordinator for The Novella Award.

1. Plan, plan, plan

Many writers think that because of their length, novellas are something they can just sit down and write. This is not the case. As with the novella’s longer cousin, the novel, it needs to be planned thoroughly beforehand. What’s the point of writing ten thousand words only to realise the story has reached its conclusion? Forward planning using any stimulus such as the snowflake method or a simple brainstorm can make the difference between a novella and another short story.

2. Describe your novella in one sentence

Novellas have simple plots and minimal characters. If it is not possible to describe this in a single sentence, the idea will likely become a full-blown novel when written. The key aspects of a novella are its simple plot and few central characters. If the plot can’t be described in a sentence, the idea may be suited more for a novel than a novella.

3. Start with conflict

Creating a conflict in the first few pages of a novella will draw in the reader and encourage them to continue reading. This could be anything from a battle of life and death or something going missing. Create a conflict that the character must face early on and the reader will be enticed to find out how this conflict is resolved, if at all.

4. Consider writing in the first person

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Buzzfeed Announces $12,000 Emerging Writers Fellowships

Popular news and entertainment website BuzzFeed has announced it will be offering $12,000 fellowships to emerging writers. The selected writers will spend four months working with BuzzFeed News’ senior editorial staff in New York City.

The program is designed to open the gates to writers traditionally locked out of opportunities in the media. In an interview with Electric Literature, BuzzFeed’s newly appointed Literary Editor Saeed Jones explained “when we expect young writers to get experience via unpaid internships, we’re actually saying we want only wealthy people writing about American culture in an influential way. That’s what we get, right? Or rather, that’s what we’ve gotten used to accepting as normal when in fact, it’s a kind of fiction. Diversity is reality. So, in order to do my part to support being in step with reality, I’m really excited about creating an opportunity for emerging writers to get experience and mentorship while also receiving financial support.”

The writers accepted into the program will receive training and experience aimed at ensuring they are equipped to thrive as freelance writers or in staff roles at media organisations.

The successful fellows will start work in these full-time fellowship positions in January 2016 and all applicants must be authorised to work in the United States.

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