Writing Contests

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Submit your contest for possible posting. But first, please read what we DON'T post. Then if your contest appears to meet our guidelines, submit your contest. (We need the basics: Name of contest, brief description of what is to be submitted, awards, entry fee, deadline, website URL, and contact email for our follow-up questions.)

Most recently added contest(s) noted in pink -- Contests posted by deadline date.

Read Writing Contest Cautions by Dana K Cassell.


Learn when contests are posted - Follow https://twitter.com/danakcassell


Winners List:  2018 Writers-Editors Network Competition


Award and Contest Ratings - from The Watchdog Desk of The Alliance of Independent Authors


Contest judges reveal how they pick the winners - and mistakes you want to avoid with your next contest entries.
Judges Q & A posted here.


2019 Cosmonauts Avenue Poetry Prize. Two poems per submission. Poems may be of any length or form and must be previously unpublished. Awards: $500 and publication in Cosmonauts Avenue. Entry fee: $14. Deadline: February 27, 2019. Info: http://cosmonautsavenue.com/prizes/

31st Annual Apex Awards for Publication Excellence. 100 categories under 12 headings: newsletters; magazines, journals and tabloids; annual reports; print media; electronic media; social media; apps; websites; campaigns, programs and plans; writing; design and illustration; and one-of-a-kind publications. Entry fee: $179. (Note: Because of the prestige awards like this hold, the publication or client may enter your work if you talk to them about it.) Deadline extended: February 28, 2019. Info: www.apexawards.com

ArtAscent International Call for Entries -- Theme: "Beauty." Beauty, allure, style, refinement, symmetry, perfection. People are drawn to others or things that are attractive and visually pleasing. Beauty is studied as part of aesthetics, culture, social psychology, philosophy and sociology. Concepts and definitions of beauty are debated, and change with time and culture. What is beauty really? Is beauty important? Share your take on beauty with words or images. Entries may include 2- and 3-dimensional media, such as paintings, drawings, photography, mixed media, installations, ceramics, jewelry, fabric, sculpture, photos of performance art, fiction, poetry, short stories and other written explorations (up to 900 words). Awards: Publication in ArtAscent and online 2-year exhibition. Four top applicants will receive a feature section with a profile written about them. Up to 40 applicants will be selected for the full exhibition, all to be showcased in the magazine and the juried online exhibition. Entry fee for written entries: $15 per story or poem. Deadline: February 28, 2019. Info: https://ArtAscent.com/themed-call-application-information/

WOW! Women On Writing Winter 2019 Flash Fiction Contest judged by Literary Agent Kari Sutherland with Bradford Literary Agency. Seeking short fiction of any genre between 250 - 750 words. The mission of this contest is to inspire creativity, communication, and well-rewarded recognition to contestants. Awards: $400, publication, interview, and $25 Amazon Gift Certificate; $300, publication, interview, and $25 Amazon Gift Certificate; $200, publication, interview and $25 Amazon Gift Certificate; 7 Runners Up receive $25 Amazon Gift Cards, publication and interview; and 10 Honorable mentions. Top 10 stories are published in the WOW! Women On Writing e-zine, and contestants are interviewed on WOW's blog, The Muffin. Electronic submissions via email only; reprints are okay; multiple submissions are okay as long as they are submitted in their own individual email. Open internationally. Limit: 300 entries. Entry fee: $10; critique option for an additional $10. Deadline: February 28, 2019. www.wow-womenonwriting.com/contest.php

SLS 2019 Literary Contest: Send us your best Fiction, Poetry, Essay, Flash Fiction, or First Chapter for a chance to publish, travel, and further develop your craft with Summer Literary Seminars. Awards: for Fiction & Poetry: 1st place in each category—free airfare, tuition, & accommodations for a 2019 SLS program of your choice, and publication in Fence Magazine. 2nd place in each category—a full tuition waiver for a 2019 SLS program of your choice. 3rd place in each category—a 75% tuition discount for a 2019 SLS program of your choice. For the new First Chapter contest: 1st place winner will receive a full tuition waiver for a 2019 SLS program, and online publication with Graywolf Press. For the new Essay and Flash Fiction contests: 1st place in each category will receive a full tuition waiver for a 2019 SLS program, and online publication with Scoundrel Time. Additionally, a number of fellowships will be offered to participants across all categories based on the quality of their submissions. Entry fee: $17. Deadline: February 28, 2019. Info: http://sumlitsem.org/contests/ and https://sumlitsem.submittable.com/submit

The Writer's 2019 Essay Contest - Write a 2,000-word essay about any aspect of the writing life -- writing as an art, lifestyle, or business. Award: $1,000 and publication; however, every submission will be considered for paid publication in The Writer. Entry fee: $25 first entry; $15 each succeeding entry. Deadline: March 1, 2019. Info: https://writermag.submittable.com/submit/131346/2019-essay-contest

2019 International Rubery Book Award for Book of the Year for self-published and independently published books. We accept fiction (all genres), young adult, children's, biographies, nonfiction, self-help, cookery, poetry, photography, etc. Awards: Book of the Year £1500 (approx. $2000 US; 1800 €). The winning book will be read by a top London literary agent. A minimum of three category winners each win £150 (approx $200 US). Entry fee: £37 or $60 US. Deadline: March 31, 2019. Info: www.ruberybookaward.com

Writer's Digest 27th Annual Self-Published Book Awards. Categories: Mainstream/Literary Fiction, Genre Fiction, Nonfiction/Reference, Inspirational, Life Stories (Biographies, Autobiographies, Family Histories, Memoirs), Early Readers/Children's Picture books, Middle-Grade/Young Adult, Poetry. Awards: $8,000 grand prize, $1,000 category winners, national exposure for your work, a paid trip to the Writer's Digest Conference, and more. Entry fees: Early-bird entry fees are $99 for the first entry, and $85 for each additional entry. Regular entry fees are $125 for first entry, and $95 for each additional entry. Deadlines: Early-bird April 1, 2019. Regular May 1, 2019. Info: www.writersdigest.com/writers-digest-competitions/self-published-book-awar ds

Tenth Annual Gemini Magazine Short Story Contest. No restrictions on genre or length. Awards: $5,000, $250, three at $50. All five finalists will be published online in June 2019 issue. Entry fee: $10 per story. Deadline: April 1, 2019. Info: www.gemini-magazine.com/contest.html

Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest for published or unpublished work. Awards: $1,000, $250, 10 HM's at $100 each. No entry fee. Deadline: April 1, 2019. Info: https://winningwriters.com/our-contests/wergle-flomp-humor-poetry-contest-f ree

WrEN Award for Poetry - our own contest and a NEW one! Submit 3-5 pages of poems in any one of three categories per entry. Awards: $200 Top Poet; $25 each category winner. Entry fee: $10 (members); $15 non-members per entry. Deadline: April 30, 2019. Info: Click or tap for guidelines.

Cygnus Awards for Science Fiction Novel Writing -  books featuring space, time travel, life on other planets, parallel universes, alternate reality, and all the science, technology, major social or environmental changes of the future that author imaginations can dream up. Hard Science Fiction, Soft Science Fiction, Apocalyptic Fiction, Cyberpunk, Time Travel, Genetic Modification, Aliens, Super Humans, Interplanetary Travel, and Settlers on the Galactic Frontier, Dystopian. Awards: Approximately $30,000.00 worth of cash and prizes. Entry fee: $75. Deadline: April 30, 2019. Info: https://www.chantireviews.com/services/Fantasy-and-SciFi-Blue-Ribbon-Awar ds-Writing-Contest-p21521218

Journey Awards for Narrative Non-Fiction books featuring true stories about adventures, life events, unique experiences, travel, personal journeys, global enlightenment, and more. Awards: Approximately $30,000.00 worth of cash and prizes. Entry fee: $75. Deadline: April 30, 2019. Info: https://www.chantireviews.com/services/Narrative-Non-fiction-Blue-Ribbon-A wards-Writing-Contest-p21521217

The Mystery & Mayhem Awards ~ Cozy Mystery Novel Writing Contest - books featuring "mystery and mayhem", amateur sleuthing, light suspense, travel mystery, classic mystery, British cozy, hobby sleuths, senior sleuths, or historical mystery, perhaps with a touch of romance. Awards: Approximately $30,000.00 worth of cash and prizes. Entry fee: $75. Deadline: April 30, 2019. Info: https://www.chantireviews.com/services/Cozy-Mystery-Novels-Writing-Contes t-p21521076

2019 Bristol Short Story Prize – Stories can be on any theme or subject, to 4,000 words. Awards: £1000, £500, £250; 17 further prizes of £100 for shortlisted stories. All 20 short-listed writers will have their stories published in the Bristol Short Story Prize Anthology Volume 12. Entry fee is £9 per story. Deadline: May 1, 2019. Info: www.bristolprize.co.uk

88th Annual Writer's Digest Writing Competition – 9 categories. Awards: $5,000, $1,000, $500, $250, $100 plus more. Entry fees Early-bird/Regular:  Poems $20, $25; other entries $30, $35. Deadlines: Early-bird May 6, 2019. Regular June 3, 2019. Info: www.writersdigest.com/writers-digest-competitions/annual-writing-competitio n


Our Contest Posting Rules & Guidelines

We will NOT knowingly post or leave posted contests that retain all rights to either submitted or winning entries. Nor will we knowingly post contests that retain ownership to all entries or assume the right to publish all entries, either on the Web or in print, thereby costing the creators the ability to eventually sell first rights. Such contests are simply attempting to get free content or, even worse, are getting the writers to pay for their content. If winners only are posted or published, the writer can determine prior to entering whether or not the winning prize money is sufficient for transferring first or one-time rights.

Thus, we will not post contests where entries are posted for general judging by site visitors.

We do not post "sweepstakes" - or contests where winners are determined by drawings or chance. Our intent is to publish only those contests where the writing itself is judged against other entrants; not where the luck of the draw determines winners.

Similarly, we will not post contests where the entrants must post their entries on their own sites or blogs, or get them published on others' sites or blogs, with the intent of linking back to the sponsor's directed Web site or blog, and particularly using key words that will be of benefit to the sponsor. Our feeling is that if an author or Web site owner wishes to use others' material to drive traffic to them, or to rev up their ad click revenues, they should simply pay writers for their promotional or content writing.

Also, we do not post contests sponsored by book publishers that have entry or reading fees, with the reward being a published book and/or advance. Viable publishing houses treat manuscript reading and advances as costs of doing business, and do not charge authors for submissions.

We do not knowingly post contests sponsored by or promoting websites or services that offer writing of academic essays, term papers, or other assigned papers for enrolled students or applicants for enrollment..

We also do not knowingly post contests requesting material that is pornographic or promotes violence.

We do not post contests where the "prize money" is really a certificate or credit toward products or services that will cost the writer additional money in order to accept the prize.

We post literary contests that offer cash, publication, or book (or related) prizes, but not those where the prize is a house or other property. These contests are illegal in a number of locations.

We may post "Calls for Anthology Submissions" on our Contests page; however, we will not post anthology notices if (1) there is a submission fee required, (2) rights to *entries* are retained, or (3) rights to *winning entries* extend beyond one-time use in that anthology. This also applies to magazine contests with the "prize" being publication in an upcoming "contest" issue.

If your contest appears to meet our guidelines, submit the following basic information: Name of contest, brief description of what is to be submitted, awards, entry fee, deadline, website URL, contact email in case we have follow-up questions, to contestadd@writers-editors.com.


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