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.
North American Review’s Torch Prize for Creative Nonfiction
offers a first prize of $500. Writers may submit only one piece of creative nonfiction, no longer than 30 pages. Entries close 1 April.
Grain Magazine’s Annual Short Grain Writing Contest
offers prizes for both fiction and poetry and is open to writers worldwide. A total of CA$4500 in prize money is on offer. Entries close 1 April.
Historical Novel Society’s New Novel Award
with a prize of £2000 (or US$3000), is for an outstanding unpublished or self-published novel. In a change from the 2013 Award, unfinished novels are now eligible for entry, though they must be completed by 1 October 2015 to be considered for the prize. Closes 1 April.
To the Lighthouse & Clarissa Dalloway Book Prizes
are awarded annually to one woman’s unpublished poetry collection and one woman’s “everything but poetry” manuscript. Winners of both prizes receive US$1000 and publication by Red Hen Press. Entries close 1 April.
Text Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing
is for unpublished manuscripts by writers from Australia and New Zealand. The winner receives AUD$10,000 and a publishing contract with Text Publishing. Entries close 2 April.
Little Bird Writing Contest
is open to stories up 2500 words but must incorporate one of the daily writing prompts from site. First prize is CA$1000. Entries close 5 April.
Waterman Fund Essay Contest
invites emerging writers to explore the question of who the stewards of wilderness are. Statistically, more men than women explore professional careers in the stewardship of wilderness and public land management. What, if any, bearing does the gender of stewards have on our shared and individual perceptions of, and relationship to, wilderness? The winning essayist will be awarded $1500 and published in Appalachia Journal. Entries close 15 April.
New South Writing Contest
will be judged by Roger Reeves in the genre of poetry and Rebecca Makkai in the genre of prose. The contest awards $1000 the winners in each category as well as two $250 runner’s up prizes. Entries close 15 April.
Event Magazine’s Non-Fiction Contest
is open to creative non-fiction up to 5000 words in length. There is US$1500 prize money available in addition to the regular publication payment. The $34.95 entry fee includes a 1-year subscription. Entries close 15 April.
John Gardner Memorial Prize in Fiction
is open to previously unpublished up to 8000. The winner receives US$500 and publication in Harpur Palate. Entries close 15 April.
Eyelands International Short Story Contest
has the theme ‘on the verge. The contest is open to unpublished stories of any genre up to 2500 words. The winner receives a one week holiday on the island of Crete and the top three entrants will be published in anthologies in both Greek and English. Closes 20 April.
is running two writing competitions: the Thomas J. Hrushka Memorial Nonfiction Prize is for writing up to 10,000 words and the Elinor Benedict Poetry Prize for poems up to 1000 words. Both competitions have a US$1000 first prize. Entries close 20 April.
Crab Orchard Review
is currently running three contests; fiction, poetry and literary non-fiction. Each has a first prize of US$2000 and publication, with prizes also offered for finalists. Entries close 21 April.
Bristol Short Story Prize
is open to stories up to 4000 words. Entries can be on any theme or subject and are welcome in any style including graphic, verse or genre-based (crime, science fiction, fantasy, historical, romance, children’s etc). Twenty stories will be shortlisted and published in the Bristol Short Story Prize Anthology Volume 8. Entries close 30 April.
FT/OppenheimerFunds Emerging Voices Awards
aims to recognise extraordinary artistic talent in three categories – fiction literature, film-making and art across more than 100 emerging market nations. The winner in each category receives US$40,000. Works of fiction may be entered from residents or passport holders from Africa and the Middle East. Entries close 30 April.
Writivism Short Story Prize
is an annual award for emerging African writers administered by the Center for African Cultural Excellence. All entries must be in English,and be between 2500 and 3500 words long. Closes 30 April.
Tom Howard/John H. Reid Short Story Contest
is open to original short stories and essays on any theme. The winner in each category receives US$1500 and there are a total of 10 minor prizes of $100. Entries should be a maximum of 6000 words. Closes 30 April.
Exeter Story Prize
is accepting entries up to 10,000 words and stories may be on any theme. The winner receives £500 and a trophy, and there is an additional prize on offer for best humorous story. Closes 30 April.
Redivider’s Beacon Street Prize
is open to fiction, poetry, and nonfiction. The winner in each category will receive $500 and publication in the winter 2015 issue of Redivider. The winning pieces will be selected by guest judges: James Scott (fiction), Laura Kasischke (poetry), and Susannah Cahalan (nonfiction). Closes 30 April.
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.
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.
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.
James Laughlin Award
is given to recognise and support a second book of poetry forthcoming in the next calendar year. The winner receives a prize of US$5000, an all-expenses-paid weeklong residency at The Betsy Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida, and distribution of the winning book to approximately one-thousand Academy of American Poets members. Entries close 15 May.
Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition
is dedicated to recognising and supporting the work of emerging writers whose fiction has not yet achieved success. Entries must be less than 3500 words and the competition is open to writers based anywhere is the world. The winner receives US$1500 and publication. The Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition first ran in 1981; entries for the 2015 prize close on 15 May (discounted entry available before 1 May).
Sonora Review Nonfiction Contest
is open to miniature non-fiction up to 800 words. First prize is US$1000 and all finalists will be considered for publication. Entries close 15 May.
Spokane Prize for Short Fiction
is open to book-length manuscripts of stories. Manuscripts must include at least three short stories and be no less than 98 pages. There is no maximum page count and stories may have been previously published in journals, anthologies or limited edition volumes. The winner receives US$2000 and publication of their manuscript by Willow Springs Editions. Entries close 15 May.
Raymond Carver Short Story Contest
is open to writers from around the world. First prize is US$1000 and this year’s guest judge is Andre Dubus III is the author of six books including House of Sand and Fog. Entries close 15 May.
A Very Short Story Contest
sets writers the challenge of creating a great short story in ten words or fewer. There is no entry fee and the winner receives a free writing class. Closes 18 May.
Griffith Review’s The Novella Project Competition
offers a prize pool of AUD$25,000. While there is no firm word length requirement, writers are advised that works between 10,000 and 25,000 words are preferable; 35,000 words is the maximum. Entrants must be from either Australia or New Zealand. Closes 29 May.
Frome Short Story Competition
is an international competition open to all unpublished and published writers. Stories on any theme of between 1000 and 2200 words are invited. The guest judge is Samantha Harvey and entries close 31 May.
Inspired by Gandhi International Writing Competition
is open to short stories, poems and reportage up to 400 words and all entries must be inspired by Gandhi. Writers can be from anywhere in the world and there is no entry fee. Closes 31 May.
Baltimore Review’s Summer Contest
has the theme ‘Crime’. Three winners will be selected from among all entries. There is a 3000 word limit for fiction and creative non-fiction, and one to three poems can be included per entry. All entries considered for publication. Closes 31 May.
Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction
is for manuscripts between 40,000 and 75,000 words and may include long stories or novellas. Two winning manuscripts receive US$1000 and publication by the University of Georgia Press under a standard book contract. Writers must be residents of North America. Entries close 31 May.
Grist: The Journal for Writers
is running its first annual contest: ‘Pro Forma.’ It welcomes submissions of unpublished creative work: fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, and/or hybrids that explore the relationship between content and form, whether the approach is experimental or conventional. First prize is US$750. Entries close 31 May.
Cinnamon Press’s Annual Short Story Competition
is open to all writers, published and beginners. First prize is £500 plus publication, with up to 10 runners-up also be published. Entries close 31 May
Australian/Vogel’s Literary Award
is one of Australia’s richest and the most prestigious awards for an unpublished manuscript. The winner receives publication by Allen & Unwin, with an advance against royalties plus prize money totalling AUD $20,000. Entrants must be aged under 35 and previous recipients include Kate Grenville, Tim Winton and Gillian Mears. Entries close 31 May.
For publication opportunities in April and May 2015 please click here.