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

Sunday Times Short Story Award 2017

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 Stories can be either unpublished or published.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.

The 2016 Sunday Times Short Award was won by Jonathan Tel; this was the first time a British author had taken the top prize. The prize been previously won by Yiyun Li (2015), Adam Johnson (2014), Junot Diaz (2013), Kevin Barry (2012), Anthony Doerr (2011) and C.K. Stead (2010).

Entries for the 2017 award close at 6pm GMT on Thursday 29 September 2016. A longlist of up to twenty entries will be published in February 2017 and the winner will be announced in April. Full terms and conditions for the prize can be found here (PDF) and writers can access the entry form via the Short Story Award website.

Jonathan Tel’s winning story along with the other five works shortlisted for the 2016 prize are available here.

Watch Selina Lo read an extract from Jonathan Tel’s winning story.




  1. Alan Gent
    28 June 2016 / 10:04 pm

    So by the looks of things, if you’ve never had anything published anywhere, you’re not eligible. What a pity. That cuts out any newcomer. ‘Jobs for the boys’?

  2. Sane Sihiya
    30 June 2016 / 6:13 am

    hello. i would love to enter but i have not been published in the UK or Ireland. Does this totally disqualify me?. i believe my work is good and there is always a first time.

    kind regards

  3. Ssendawula Jessy
    2 July 2016 / 11:34 am

    I have not published my work yet, and even if I were to do it, I wouldn’t begin with Britain or Ireland, but writing is to me a freebie and I would love to write a short story specifically for this competition, does that rule me out completely, thanks.

  4. Eugenie Freed-Isserow
    26 July 2016 / 12:01 am

    I’ve had a book published in London and Toronto by Associated University Presses (and also in the U.S.A.). Does that qualify me to enter this competition? Most of my publications have appeared either in South Africa or in the U.S.A.

  5. Sasanka Nanayakkara
    26 July 2016 / 7:32 pm

    I had a novel published in Sri Lanka in 2015. ‘The Threshold’ published by Vijitha Yapa Publishers in Sri Lanka ( ISBN 9789556652574) I have a few short stories i have penned, each a little under 8000 words and less, I wish to submit. Kindly let me know the procedure. Can i submit a few or just one? please specify. Thanks in advance.

  6. Trish
    8 September 2016 / 7:44 am

    If published in the Commonwealth does that meet any broader criteria? Sounds a great contest just very limited for entry!

  7. 11 October 2016 / 8:49 am

    i have a self-published romance .Is it possible to enter?

  8. Minakshi
    15 October 2016 / 9:52 pm

    what happens if an Irish on line literary magazine has accepted two features? Is this a disqualification or qualification?

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