Archives For Competitions

The 25th International Radio Playwriting Competition 2016

Writers from around the world are invited to enter the 25th International Radio Playwriting Competition. The competition is presented by the BBC World Service and the British Council, in partnership with Commonwealth Writers and co-produced by the Open University. Three winners will receive fully paid trips to London and there are two cash prizes of £2200 (US $3350).

To be eligible to enter the competition, writers must be over the age of 18 and be living outside the UK. Entries are encouraged from both new and established writers.

The competition has two first prizes – one for writers with English as a First Language and another for writers with English as a Second Language. Both winners will receive £2200, be flown to London to attend an award ceremony and see their plays recorded for broadcast on the BBC World Service.

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Win a Writers Retreat in Iceland

Reykjavik from above by Johannes Martin via Creative Commons

Iceland Writers Retreat is offering one talented writer plane tickets to Iceland and a free delegate’s ticket to its April program.

In addition to a round-trip airfare, the winner will receive a full retreat package including accommodation, tours, most meals and all workshops for the duration of the retreat which runs from 13 to 17 April 2016. The flights must be from a direct destination and the package does not include airport transfers, travel insurance or visas (if required).

The successful candidate must demonstrate that he or she does not have the financial means to attend the conference without this award. Candidates do not need to be professional writers, but should be serious about the craft and interested in developing their skills and contacts.

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15 Short Story Competitions to Enter Before the Year of the Year

Boston Review’s Aura Estrada Short Story Contest
is one of three contests run each year by the literary magazine.The winner of the contest will receive US$1500 and have his or her work published in the July/August 2016 issue of Boston Review. The runners-up stories may also be published. Entries close 1 October.

Calvino Prize
is an annual fiction competition sponsored by the Creative Writing Program at the University of Louisville. The prize is awarded for writing in the fabulist experimentalist style of Italo Calvino. First prize is US$1500 and publication in Salt Hill Journal. Stories must be less than 25 pages in length. Entries close 14 October.

Margaret River Short Story Writing Competition
is open to all authors of any age or nationality. Winning and shortlisted stories will be selected for publication. First prize is valued at AUD$1000 and includes $500 cash and $500 contribution towards an airfare to attend the Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival in Western Australia plus a two-week residency in Margaret River to be taken up at any time .Entries close 14 October.

London Magazine
is England’s oldest literary periodical, with a history stretching back to 1732. Entries for the magazine’s prestigious short story competition are welcomed from writers around the world. The winner will receive £500 and publication. Entries close 31 October.

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Boulevard Short Fiction Contest for Emerging Writers 2015

Boulevard is accepting entries for its annual short fiction contest for emerging writers. The winner will receive US$1500 and have their story published in the magazine.

Boulevard is an American literary magazine established in 1985 and based at St. Louis University in Missouri. Boulevard aims to publish the finest in fiction, poetry and non-fiction and was described by Poet Laureate Daniel Hoffman as ‘one of the half-dozen best literary journals’. The magazine has been edited throughout its history by Richard Burgin, a five-time Pushcart Prize winner.

Boulevard’s Short Fiction Contest for Emerging Writers is open people who have not yet published a book of fiction, poetry or creative non-fiction with a nationally distributed press. Stories may be up to 8000 words and must be previously unpublished.

The 2014 contest was won by Courtney Sender for her story ‘The Disappearance of J. Frank Donaldson’.

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

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.

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Entries for Boston Review’s 2016 Short Story Contest Are Now Open

Boston Review is now accepting entries for the Aura Estrada Short Story Contest 2016.

Founded in 1975, Boston Review is one of America’s most prestigious literature and politics magazines. Past contributors include Saul Bellow, Jhumpa Lahiri and John Updike.

Boston Review’s Aura Estrada Short Story Contest is open to all writers, regardless of citizenship or publication history. The winner of the contest will receive $1500 and have his or her work published in the July/August 2016 issue of Boston Review. The runners-up stories may also be published.

The 2016 contest will be judged by Jennifer Egan, winner of the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for A Visit from the Goon Squad.

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Literary magazine Bartleby Snopes was founded by Nathaniel Tower in 2008. In 2010 it was named as one of Flavorwire’s ‘Top Ten Online Literary Magazines You Should Be Reading’. Bartleby Snopes currently publishes two stories per week and holds a regular Story of the Month competition. Bartleby Snopes also publishes a free downloadable magazine every January and July.

In 2015 Bartleby Snopes is running its 7th Annual Dialogue Only Writing Contest. Entrants are asked to create an original story of up to 2000 words composed entirely of dialogue. To help writers meet this challenge, the editors have composed the following very useful tips. 

Dialogue Writing Tips from Bartleby Snopes

Every year, Bartleby Snopes Literary Magazine hosts a dialogue-only writing contest. Submissions must consist of nothing but dialogue. You can have as many characters as you want, but you can’t have any tag lines or any narration. If it sounds easy, then you are probably doing it wrong.

During the six years we’ve hosted the contest, we have read hundreds of dialogue stories. Here are some things we have learned in the process. Even if you don’t plan to submit to the contest, we think these tips will help you create stories with great dialogue. 

Good Dialogue Should Feel Real
Many authors try to force the story to move through the dialogue. They will attempt to “cheat” by making the characters say unnatural things in order to paint the scene better. A character might say “I am going to pick up this gun right here off this table that is right next to me.” In most stories, the character would probably just pick up the gun. When you are telling a story through dialogue, you must remain true to your characters. Don’t force them to say things they wouldn’t just because it will move your plot along or paint a better picture in the reader’s head (it probably won’t). Before you start penning your dialogue-only story, take some time to listen to an actual conversation. After you’ve written your story, read it out loud and ask yourself if it actually sounds like people talking. If you can’t imagine someone saying it, then the story probably isn’t going to work. 

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