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.

 

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Winners List: 2016 Writers-Editors Network Competition

 

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.

 

The Stringybark Seven Deadly Sins Short Story Award 2017 -- The Stringybark Seven Deadly Sins Award is our second celebration of Pope Gregory I's attempt at categorizing human frailties. He reckoned there were seven major sins: wrath, gluttony, lust, greed, pride, jealousy and sloth.  Stringybark invites you to write a short story of up to 1500 words that addresses one (or more) of these sins in your story. We last ran this competition in 2012 and it led to a fabulous anthology of short stories published in The Seven Deadly Sins (2012).  Awards: Over $1000 in cash and books. International entries most welcome. Entry fees: One story - A$12.00; Two stories - A$22.00; Three stories - A$30.00. Deadline: April 23, 2017. Info: www.stringybarkstories.net/competitions/open-competitions.html

The New Michigan Press / DIAGRAM chapbook contest. What we want: Interesting, lovely unpublished work (unpublished as a whole; individual pieces may be published already, of course), prose or poetry or some combination or something between genres, 18-44 manuscript pages. Award: $1000 plus publication; finalist chapbooks also considered for publication (in 2016 we published five). Entry fee: $19. Deadline: April 28, 2017. Info: http://thediagram.com/contest.html#2017chapbookguidelines

"Orange" International Call For Writers by ArtAscent Theme: The color between red and yellow in the visible spectrum, orange is associated with meanings of warmth, optimism, enthusiasm, transition, health, happiness, fun, creativity and freedom. Orange is stimulating, vibrant and flamboyant. It is the colour of vivid sunsets, fire, vegetables, flowers, fish, citrus fruits, marmalade, traffic cones, life rafts and Cheetos. Orange is the color of prison uniforms in the U.S. Orange (saffron) is a sacred and auspicious color in Hinduism. The middle traffic light is orange in France. Orange is all around and within us. Reveal your shade of ORANGE. May be fiction, poetry, short stories etc. to 900 words; previously published or unpublished. Awards: Winner will be featured in the ArtAscent Art & Literature Journal with a profile review. Up to nine writers will be published; showcased, along with website links, in an online exhibition on the ArtAscent website for at least two years. Entry fee: $10. Deadline: April 30, 2017. Info: https://ArtAscent.com/the-call-for-artists-and-writers/

CA Inaugural Nonfiction Prize for previously unpublished essays; maximum 15 double-spaced pages. Award: $500 and publication in Cosmonauts Avenue. Entry fee: $12. Deadline: May 1, 2017. Info: http://cosmonautsavenue.com/contests/

Writer's Digest 25th 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: $110 for first entry, and $85 for each additional entry. Deadline: May 1, 2017. Info: www.writersdigest.com/competitions/selfpublished

2017 Bristol Short Story Prize Stories can be on any theme or subject, to 4,000 words. Awards: 1000, 700, 400 plus 100 gift card; 17 further prizes of 100 for shortlisted stories. All 20 shortlisted writers will have their stories published in the Bristol Short Story Prize Anthology Volume 10 . Entry fee is 8 per story. Deadline: May 3, 2017. Info: www.bristolprize.co.uk

86th Annual Writer's Digest Writing Competition 10 categories. Awards: $5,000, $1,000, $500, $250, $100 plus more. Entry fees: Early-Bird: Poems $15, $10; other entries $25, $20. Regular: Poems $20, $15; other entries $30, $25. Early Bird Deadline: May 5, 2017. Regular Deadline: June 1, 2017. Info: www.writersdigest.com/writers-digest-competitions/annual-writing-competitio n

The Writer Short Story Contest: Spring Cleaning. Pick your very best draft, polish it up, and send it in. No theme or genre restrictions. Maximum 2000 words. Awards: $1,000 and publication in The Writer; $500, $250 and publication on website. Entry fee: $25. Deadline: May 8, 2017. Info: https://writermag.submittable.com/submit/81030/spring-cleaning

I Come From The World's first Literature Contest - Poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, essays. What does it mean to you to "come from the world?" Award: $500. Entry fee: $3. Deadline: May 15, 2017. Info: www.icomefromtheworld.com/literature_contest/

The Kindle UK Storyteller contest is open to all authors and genres. Titles must be previously unpublished, a minimum of 5,000 words with no upper word limit and be submitted using Kindle Direct Publishing. Awards: 20,000 cash prize and be recognized at a central London award ceremony this summer. No entry fee. Deadline: May 19, 2017. Info: www.amazon.co.uk/b?ie=UTF8&node=12061299031&ref_=pe_undef - Terms and conditions at http://amzn.to/2lKyK8v

Gertrude Warner Awards for Middle Grade novels featuring stories of all shapes and sizes written to an audience between the ages of about eight to twelve. Categories: Contemporary Middle Grade, SFF & Paranormal Middle Grade, Mystery Middle Grade, Historical Middle Grade, Adventure Middle Grade. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee $55. Deadline: May 30, 2017. Info: https://chantireviews.com/services#!/Middle-Grade-Fiction-Writing-Contests-C hanticleer-Book-Reviews/p/58078131/category=5193080

Dante Rossetti Awards for Young Adult novels featuring stories of all shapes and sizes written to an audience between the ages of about twelve to eighteen. Categories: Contemporary YA, SFF & Paranormal, YA Adventure/Romance, YA Historical, Dystopian/Edgy/Urban, Mystery/Thriller/Suspense. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: May 30, 2017. Info: http://chantireviews.com/services/#!/Young-Adult-Novels-Writing-Contest/p/2 1521206/category=5193080

Sentinel Literary Quarterly Poetry Competition for original, previously unpublished poems in English language, in any style, on any subject. Maximum Length: 50 lines. Awards: 200, 100, 50, 20 (High Commendation) and 10 x 3 (Commendation). All winning and commended poems receive first publication in Sentinel Literary Quarterly magazine. Copyright to poems remains with the authors. Entry fee: 4 (one poem), 7 (2 poems), 9 (3 poems) 11 (4 poems), 12 (5 poems), 16 (7 poems), 22 (10 poems). Deadline: May 31, 2017. Info: www.sentinelquarterly.com/competitions/poetry/index.htm

Killer Nashville 12th Annual Silver Falchion Award honors the best books published in the year 2016 by genre and non-genre writers whose work contains elements of mystery, thriller, or suspense. Awards: $500 plus medal and book promotion. Entry fee: The first entry is free to registered attendees of Killer Nashville, but attendance at Killer Nashville is not required. For second entries, or entries from non-attendees, the fee is $79 per book. Deadline: June 1, 2017. Info: www.killernashville.com/awards/silver-falchion-award/

Quebec Writers' Federation Literary Prize For Young Writers who are residents of Quebec and between 16 and 24 years old, inclusively, as of the contest deadline. The prize will recognize the best short story, poem, or work of creative nonfiction written in English and published in an official literary publication in 2015 or 2016. Awards: Grand prize: $1000 and, when rights allow, republication in carte blanche. Second prize: $350. Third prize: $150. All three prize winners will receive a free one-year membership in the Quebec Writers' Federation. Entry fee: Not stated. Deadline: June 15, 2017. Info: www.qwf.org/youthlitprize.html

Chaucer Awards for Historical Fiction Pre-1750. Categories: Pre-Historical Fiction, Ancient Historical Fiction; Dark Ages, Medieval, Renaissance; Elizabethan/Tudor, 1600s, World/International History Pre-1750s, Americas - Historical Fiction Pre-1750s. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: June 30, 2017. Info: http://chantireviews.com/services/#!/Historical-Fiction-Contest/p/21521105/c ategory=5193080

Goethe Awards for Historical Fiction Post-1750. Categories: Regency, Victorian, 1700s/1800s; Turn of the Century, 20th Century, World Wars and Other Wars, World/International History Post 1750s, U.S. History. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: June 30, 2017. Info: https://chantireviews.com/services#!/Late-Historical-Fiction-Writing-Contest-C hanticleer-Book-Reviews/p/57936173/category=5193080

Laramie Awards for Western/Pioneer/Civil War Fiction. Submit novels featuring cowboys, the wild west, pioneering, civil war, and early North American History. Categories: Western Romance, Adventure/Caper, Classic, Civil War/Prairie/Pioneer, Contemporary Western, Western Y/A. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: July 31, 2017. Info: https://chantireviews.com/services#!/Western-Pioneer-&-Civil-War-Historical- Fiction-Novels-Pre-1900s/p/21521125/category=5193080

The Dream Quest One Poetry & Writing Contest - Summer 2017 is open to anyone who loves expressing innermost thoughts and feelings into the beautiful literary art of poetry and/or writing a story that is worth telling everyone. Guidelines: (1) Write a poem, 30 lines or fewer on any subject, form or style. And/or (2) Write a short story, 5 pages maximum length, single or double line spacing, on any subject or theme, fiction, nonfiction or creative nonfiction. Multiple entries are accepted. Awards: Writing First Prize:$500, Second: $250, Third: $100. Poetry First Prize: $250, Second: $125, Third: $50. Entry fees: $5 per poem; $10 per story. Postmark deadline: August 15, 2017. Info: www.dreamquestone.com

Chatelaine Awards for Romance & Women's Novels featuring romantic themes and adventures of the heart. Categories: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Adventure & Suspense, Historical Romance, Inspirational/Restorative Romance, Romantic Steamy/Sensual. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: August 31, 2017. Info: http://chantireviews.com/services/#!/Romance-&-Womens-Fiction-Writing-Con tests/p/21521080/category=5193080

2017 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, 2017. Info: www.ourpastloves.com/contest

Clue Awards for Thriller/Suspense novels featuring suspense, thrilling adventure, detective work, private eye, police procedural, and crime solving. Categories: Detective/Crime, Suspense/Thriller, Private Eye/Noir, Legal/Medical/Police Procedural, Spy/Espionage. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: September 30, 2017. Info: http://chantireviews.com/services/#!/Mystery-Thriller-Suspense-Writing-Conte st/p/21521209/category=5193080

Little Peeps Awards for Children's Books featuring stories of all shapes and sizes written to an audience for ages under eight. Categories: Chapter Book, Story Book, Picture Book, Activity Book, Educational Book. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: September 30, 2017. Info: https://chantireviews.com/services#!/Little-Peeps-Fiction-Writing-Contests-Ch anticleer-Book-Reviews/p/58078150/category=5193080

Ozma Awards for Fantasy Fiction Novels featuring magic, the supernatural, imaginary worlds, fantastical creatures, legendary beasts, mythical beings, or inventions of fancy that author imaginations dream up without a basis in science as we know it. Categories: Magic, Heroes & Villains; Coming of Age, Steampunk/Dieselpunk/Gaslight Fantasy, Historical Fantasy, Modern/Urban Fantasy; Fairy Tale, Fable, Myth & Legend. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: October 31, 2017. Info: https://chantireviews.com/services#!/Fantasy-Writing-Contests-Sword-&-Sorc ery-Fiction-Chanticleer-Book-Reviews/p/57162380/category=5193080

Paranormal Awards for Paranormal Novels featuring magic, the supernatural, weird other worldly stories, super humans, magical beings and supernatural entities, vampires, werewolves, angels, demons, Fairy, Magical systems and elements. Categories: Adventure/Mystery/Thriller, Paranormal Romance, Magical Beings & Creatures, Strange and Unexplained, Supernatural powers. Submissions are online, entries must be the full work as PDF or DOC file format. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: October 31, 2017. Info: http://chantireviews.com/services/#!/Paranormal-Writing-Competition/p/2591 7402/category=5193080

Somerset Awards for Literary/Contemporary/Mainstream Novels featuring contemporary stories, literary themes, adventure, satire, humor, magic realism or women and family themes. Categories: Contemporary Theme, Adventure/Suspense, Literary, Women's Fiction, Satire, Magic Realism. Awards: Category winners receive a blue ribbon, book stickers, digital badge, an editorial book review and marketing package, over $345 value. Grand Prize winner will receive $200, and be eligible for $1000 prize. Entry fee: $55. Deadline: November 30, 2017. Info: http://chantireviews.com/services/#!/Contemporary-&-Mainstream-Novel-Writi ng-Contest/p/21521214/category=5193080

 

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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