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: 2014 Writers-Editors Network Competition (2015 Winners will be posted by May 31)


Writing to Win by Moira Allen
The Colossal Guide to Writing Contests details on more than 1200 contests
Kindle edition


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

FanStory offers monthly contests: fiction, poetry and more, judged by members of the community.May's contests include Flash Fiction, Tanka Poetry, Fan Fiction, Advice Column, Horror. Awards: $100 per contest. Entry fee: $6.50 for the month, includes all contests that month. Deadlines: Vary during the month. Info: www.fanstory.com/index1.jsp?fif=1

Sentinel Literary Quarterly Poetry Competition for original, previously unpublished poems in English language, on any subject, in any style up to 50 lines long. Awards: 200, 75, 50, 20 x 3 (High Commendation) plus publication in Sentinel Literary Quarterly magazine. Entry fees: 4/1, 7/2, 9/3, 11/ 4, 12/5, 16/7, and 22 for 10 poems. Deadline extended: May 31, 2015. Info: www.sentinelquarterly.com/competitions/poetry

Sentinel Literary Quarterly Short Story Competition for original, previously unpublished short stories, on any subject, in any style up to 1500 words long. Awards: 200, 75, 50, 20 x 3 (High Commendation) plus publication in Sentinel Literary Quarterly magazine. Entry fees: 4 per story, 8 for 2, 10 for 3, 12 for 4. Deadline extended: May 31, 2015. Info: www.sentinelquarterly.com/competitions/short-stories

WOW! Women On Writing Spring 2015 Flash Fiction Contest. Seeking short fiction of any genre between 250 and 750 words. Awards: $350 and The Complete Publishing Package from BookBaby ($579 value); $250; $150; 7 Runners Up receive $25 Amazon Gift Cards; and 10 Honorable mentions receive $20 Amazon Gift Cards. Top 10 stories are published in the WOW! Women On Writing e-zine, and contestants are interviewed on WOW's blog, The Muffin. Entry fee: $10. Deadline: May 31, 2015. Info: http://wow-womenonwriting.com/contest.php

Tethered by Letters' Spring 2015 Literary Contests - Short story contest (1,000 to 7,500 words, open genre), flash fiction contest (55, 250, or 500 words), and poetry contest (max of three pages per poem). TBL strives to publish writers with engaging stories, vivid characters, and fresh writing styles. Multiple entries accepted. International submissions welcome. Awards: $500 for Short Story, $150 for Flash Fiction, $150 for Poetry. All winners will be published in F(r)iction. All finalists will receive free professional edits on their submission and be considered for later publication.  Entry fees: $15 per Short Story; $7 per Flash Fiction OR $15 for three Flash Fictions; $7 per poem OR $15 for three poems. Deadline: May 31, 2015. Info: http://tetheredbyletters.com/submissions/contest-submission

The London Magazine Poetry Competition 2015. 40 lines on any theme or topic. This is a fantastic opportunity for writers across the world to get published in the most prestigious literary journal in the UK plus winning a cash prize. Awards: 200, 150, 100. The winning poem will be published in an upcoming issue of The London Magazine and the runner-ups will be published on our website. Entry fee: 5 per poem. Deadline: May 31, 2015 (applications open April 1,  2015). Info: http://thelondonmagazine.org/tlm-competition/tlm-poetry-competition-2015/

Writer's Digest 23rd Annual Self-Published Book Awards. Categories: Mainstream/Literary Fiction, Genre Fiction, Nonfiction, Inspirational (Spiritual, New Age), Life Stories (Biographies, Autobiographies, Family Histories, Memoirs), Children's/Picture books, Middle-Grade/Young Adult books, Reference Books (Directories, Encyclopedias, Guide Books), Poetry. Awards: $8,000 in cash, national exposure for your work, the attention of prospective editors and publishers, a paid trip to the Writer's Digest Conference. Entry fees: $110 for the first entry, and $85 for each additional entry. Deadline: June 1, 2015. Info: www.writersdigest.com/competitions/selfpublished

84th Annual Writer's Digest Writing Competition - 10 categories. Awards: $5,000, $1,000, $500, $250, $100 plus more. Entry fee: Poems $20, $15; other entries $30, $25. Deadline: June 5, 2015. Info: www.writersdigest.com/competitions/writers-digest-annual-competition

Boroughs Publishing Group Romance Writers' Contest. Celebrates all who are different - and those who might learn to love them. For unpublished manuscripts between 45,000 and 100,000 words. Sub-genres/categories: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, Fantasy, Historical, LGBT, Multi-cultural, Paranormal, Regency, Romantic Suspense/Thriller, Urban Fantasy, Young Adult. AQward: Winner will be offered a contract to publish the winning submission. No entry fee. Deadline: Entries must be received via email before midnight in California, June 15, 2015. Info: http://boroughspublishinggroup.com/content/outside

North Street Book Prize for self-published books. Categories: Mainstream/Literary Fiction, Genre Fiction, Creative Nonfiction. Length limit 150,000 words. Submit an e-book or a printed book. Awards: The top winner in each category will receive $1,500, a marketing analysis and one-hour phone consultation, a $300 credit at BookBaby, and 3 free ads in the Winning Writers newsletter (a $450 value). Two honorable mentions in each category will receive $250. Entry fee: $50 (includes a book on promotion and self-publishing guides. Deadline: June 30, 2015. Info: http://winningwriters.com/our-contests/north-street-book-prize-alt

International Call For Writers by ArtAscent - This call theme is "Still Life." Unique arrangements of commonplace things and found objects have been portrayed with realism and sometimes symbolism. What is your take on still life? Is it modern, traditional, abstract or something else entirely? Share your vision of Still Life. Entries may include fiction, poetry, short stories and other written explorations (up to 900 words). Previously published or unpublished are eligible. Awards: The Gold writer will be featured in the ArtAscent Art & Literature Journal complete with a profile review written by our art writer. From three to seven writers in total will be published in ArtAscent Art & Literature Journal; showcased, along with website links, in an online exhibition on the ArtAscent website for at least two years; and, promoted on the ArtAscent Facebook and Twitter feeds. Entry fee: $10. Deadline: June 30, 2015. Info: https://artascent.com/the-call-for-artists-and-writers/

Annual Knoxville Writers' Guild writing contest several categories including poetry, creative nonfiction, novel excerpt, genre fiction, and literary fiction. Awards: $100, $50, $25. Entry fees: From none to $10 KWG members, $20 non-members, $5 young writers. Deadline: June 30, 2015. Info: www.knoxvillewritersguild.org/contest

Weta Nichols Writing Contest sponsored by Ozarks Romance Authors (ORA) - submit the first chapter (up to 2,500 words) of your unpublished novel plus 200 words of flap copy. Categories: Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal/Sci-Fi and Young Adult/Middle Grade. Entries are open genre and not required to contain romantic tones. Awards: Three prizes in each category: $75 and a 1-year ORA membership, $50, $25. Entry fee: $25. Deadline: July 15, 2015. Info: http://ozarks-romance-authors.com/annual-contest/2015-weta-nichols-writing -contest/

2015 InkTears Flash Fiction Competition 500 words or less, any theme. Stories may have been previously published, providing the author still owns the copyright and there is no exclusivity with the prior publication, or unpublished. Awards: 250, 50, 4 x 25. All prize winners will have their story published to the InkTears Readership and their bio published on the InkTears website. Entry fees: 1 entry 3 GBP, 2 entries 5 GBP, 3 entries 6.50 GBP, 4 entries 7.50 GBP. Deadline: July 31, 2015. Info: www.inktears.com/Inktears/WritersNewWritersContest.html

Dream Quest One Poetry & Writing Contest Open to anyone who enjoys expressing innermost thoughts and feelings into the beautiful literary art of poetry and/or writing a story that's worth telling everyone! Write a poem, 30 lines or fewer on any subject and/or Write a short story, 5 pages maximum length on any theme. Awards: Poetry Contest: $250, $125, $50; Writing Contest: $500, $250, $100. Entry fees: $5 per poem, $10 per story. Postmark deadline: July 31, 2015. Mail entries/payable to: "DREAMQUESTONE . COM," PO Box 3141, Chicago IL 60654. How to enter online, visit: www.dreamquestone.com

Publish or Perish Contest: Celebrates Authors as Marketers. Requires a manuscript submission and a marketing plan for the book. Award: $2,000 advance and a publishing contract. No entry fee. Deadline: August 15, 2015. Info: www.PublishOrPerishContest.com

Aesthetica Creative Writing Award 2015. Two categories: Short Fiction (maximum length 2,000 words each) and Poetry (maximum length 40 lines each). Awards: 500, Publication in the Aesthetica Creative Writing Annual, One year subscription to Granta, Selection of books courtesy of Bloodaxe and Vintage, Complimentary copy of the Aesthetica Creative Writing Annual. Entry fee: 15 plus VAT if in European Union. Deadline: August 31, 2015. Info: www.aestheticamagazine.com/creativewriting

Past Loves Day Story Contest. Write your true story of a former sweetheart, in 700 words or less. Awards: $100, $75, $50. No entry fee. Authors retain all rights. Deadline: September 17, 2015. Info: www.ourpastloves.com/contest

Annual Writers-Editors International Writing Competition. Nonfiction (Previously Published and Unpublished); Fiction (Short Story and Novel Chapter); Children's Literature; Poetry. Awards: $100, $75, $50. Entry fee: $3$20. Deadline: March 15, 2016. Info: Click for Guidelines and Entry form


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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