I thought there used to be a thread on non-boards writing competitions? I found it really helpful, so I'm going to try to start the tradition again. Feel free to delete this post if I'm breaking a rule.
Writing competitions are helpful in getting you to sit down and actually write. They're great for motivation. There are so many out there it's hard to keep track, so why don't we help each other out?
Post writing competitions you come across. Irish residents should be eligible for competitions you post. Post criteria, if possible, and closing dates, entry fees (if applicable), etc.
Telegraph Ghost Story Competition
Open to ROI residents. No entry fee.
Brief: Write a ghost story; 2,000 words or less.
Prize: A shortlist of six stories will be selected and published on telegraph.co.uk on December 4, and the winning story will be published in The Daily Telegraph on December 11. The winner will have his or her story published and illustrated in The Daily Telegraph Saturday Review, and will receive a unique specially bound copy of The Small Hand by Susan Hill.
Closing Date: November 20th.
Entry details found on the link above.
RTÉ Radio 1 Francis MacManus Short Story Competition.
Only open to people born in Ireland, or are usually resident there. No entry fee, as far as I know. One entry per person, in Irish or English, which must not have been published/broadcast before. Entry form here.
Brief: Write a short story for radio broadcast, between 1,800 and 2,000 words. Irish or English acceptable.
Prize: Last year the 25 best entries were read out on Radio One. First prize: €3,000; Second: €2,000; Third: €1,000.
Closing Date: 31st of December.
The Willesden Herald Short Story Competition.
Open to all aged 18 or over, regardless of nationality or country of residence. This is a great -- but quite competitive -- competition. It was judged by Zadie Smith for a few years.
Entry Fee: £3.
Brief: Write a short story, word limit 7,500. No set theme.
Prize: 1st place: £300 plus a one-off Willesden Herald mug inscribed "The Willesden Short Story Prize 2011". 2nd place: 2 x £150 (two runners-up)
Ten shortlisted stories will be included in "New Short Stories 5" to be published by Pretend Genius Press. Author compensation for inclusion in New Short Stories is limited to 2 complimentary copies of the anthology.
Winning stories normally gain national exposure as they are published in the Guardian newspaper.
Closing Date: 17th December, 2010. Full rules, entry details here.
And before you submit your entry: a very interesting article on common faults in short story competitions, which is useful to any writer irregardless of whether you enter.
The Inkwell Opening Chapters Competition
Brief: For unpublished writers aged 18 and over, working on a novel. Send on the first chapter (up to 3000 words) of an unpublished novel, plus a synopsis.
Fee: 10 euro
Prize: 100 euro plus an Inkwell Cafe page. The shortlist is judged by a literary agent and an editor from Penguin, which is part of the appeal of this one - it means you get your work/name in front of people in the publishing industry.
Closing date: 20th November 2010
Great idea, good to have all the info in one place
Opening Lines: BBC Radio 4.
Submission: October 29 - November 30 2010. I assume this is open to ROI residents, but I'm not 100% sure. If I find out, I'll update this post.
Submission Details: When submitting your work, please include an SAE and a brief covering letter giving your name, email address (if applicable), the story’s title, word count, and details of your writing track record.
We regret that we can only accept one submission per writer and if we intend to broadcast your story we shall contact you. Send entries to:
BBC Radio Drama Readings
South East Wing
This one is really fun:
Reader's Digest 100-Word Story Competition
No entry fee; open to ROI residents.
Brief: Write a short story in exactly 100 words. Entries should be original, previously unpublished and of exactly 100 words, excluding the title. Multiple entries allowed.
The adult competition is 18 plus (there are two other competitions for children 11 and under and children 12-18).
Entries must be submitted under author's real name. No pseudonyms allowed. Include name, address, phone, etc. with your entry. Entries can be submitted via the website or sent to: email@example.com
Prize: £5,000 for the adult category; £1,000 each for children's categories (plus £1,000 for the winners' schools).
Closing date: 31st of January.
I never realized how hard it was to write a really concise short story, but it's a fun exercise.
Wish I had heard of Readers Digest one before, sounds really fun. I always write very short stories but even then they're at least a few hundred words long.
Finally a story contest you can start writing for 4 seconds before the end and still have time for an edit!
Game on - as a comedian I have to keep my stories short and sweet. 100 word story sounds like fun.
I've written a couple of entries in the Reader's Digest one. It definitely gets easier with practice. It's quite amazing how deep you can go in a hundred words, yet it can also feel as though you're simply describing a painting.
I also entered the Francis MacManus last year, after seeing it in this thread. Thanks for keeping it updated, St._Andalou!
The Molly Keane Creative Writing Award
For the 14th year the Arts Office of Waterford County Council is pleased to announce details of this award. The late writer who lived until her death in 1996 in Ardmore, Co. Waterford started writing at a young age to "supplement her dress allowance".
One entry per person; no entry fee.
Brief: Submit a short story, previously unpublished, 2000 words maximum. There is no restriction on subject matter. (Do not bind or staple your entry; use paperclips only.) See website link above for entry form and entry address.
Closing date: 5pm on Thursday 24th March 2011
No worries. Glad it's helping.
I've found that using competitions as deadlines are a great way to motivate yourself to write. It would be great if this thread was stickied