A guide to short story contests in 2020
AWP:Association of Writers & Writing Programs
AWP sponsors six contests, and also provides an extensive listing of literary grants, awards, and publication opportunities available from organizations and publishers throughout North America. Our own contests include the AWP Award Series, the George Garrett Award, the Small Press Publisher Award, the Intro Journals Project, the WC&C Scholarship Competition, and the National Program Directors’ Prize.
Writing Contests and Competitions
An open writing competition that is dedicated to finding and encouraging the most promising new writers from across the world. Each year the judges award over £18,000 in prize money for the best submissions in poetry, short stories, flash fiction and first novels.
The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest
Where "WWW" means "Wretched Writers Welcome"
Since 1982 the English Department at San Jose State University has sponsored the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest, a whimsical literary competition that challenges entrants to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels.
The Burt Awards for First Nations, Metis and Inuit Literature
The Burt Award for First Nations, Métis and Inuit Literature is a unique literary award and readership initiative established by CODE with the generous support of philanthropist William Burt and the Literary Prizes Foundation that recognizes excellence in First Nations, Métis and Inuit literature for youth and provide engaging and culturally-relevant books for young people across Canada.
List of various writing competitions.
Costa Book Awards
The Costas are the UK's most prestigious book awards. Established by Whitbread Plc in 1971 and known as the Whitbread Awards, they were rebranded the Costa Awards in 2006. Costa is a UK based coffee shop chain owned by Whitbread Plc. The five category winners (First Novel, Novel, Biography, Poetry and Children's Book) are announced in early January, honoring books published the previous year. The Costa Book of the Year Award is announced in late January.
We would like to share with you our curated list of writing competitions. Included are details about max word count, associated fees, submission deadlines, and direct links to each event. We try to keep this list as up-to-date as possible. If you’d like to add a writing competition or if you have any suggestions on how we can improve this directory please feel free to contact us using our writing competition submission form. You can also reach us via email or on social media.
Creative Writing Ink
Lists various writing competitions.
The Edgar Allan Poe Awards
The Edgar Allan Poe Awards (popularly called the Edgars), named after Edgar Allan Poe, are presented every year by the Mystery Writers of America, based in New York City. They honor the best in mystery fiction, non-fiction, television, film, and theater published or produced in the previous year.
EthelWilson Fiction Prize
Established in 1985 as one of the BCBook Prizes, this is awarded annually to the best work of fiction by a resident of British Columbia, Canada. The award is named after novelist and short story writer Ethel Wilson, author of Swamp Angel (1954) and The Innocent Traveller (1949).
The Governor General's Awards
The Governor General's Awards are a collection of awards presented by the Governor General of Canada, marking distinction in a number of academic, artistic and social fields. The first was conceived in 1937 by the Lord Tweedsmuir, a prolific author of fiction and non-fiction who created the Governor General's Literary Award.
International Book Awards
Honoring excellence in independent and mainstream publishing. The award is specifically designed to be a promotional vehicle for authors and publishers to launch their careers, open global markets and compete with talented authors and publishers throughout the world.
The Independent Publisher Book Awards were conceived as a broad-based, unaffiliated awards program open to all members of the independent publishing industry, and are open to authors and publishers worldwide who produce books written in English and intended for the North American market. We define “independent” as 1) independently owned and operated; 2) operated by a foundation or university; or 3) long-time independents that became incorporated but operate autonomously and publish fewer than 50 titles a year.
L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Contest
Whatever your feelings about L. Ron Hubbard’s work and philosophy, the prizes for this regular contest are nothing to sneeze at. Every three months, winners earn $1,000, $750 and $500, or an additional annual grand prize worth $5,000. Submissions must be short stories or novelettes (up to 17,000 words) in the genre of science fiction or fantasy, and new and amateur writers are welcome to apply. Deadlines: Quarterly on January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1.
LitPick Book Awards
The Man Booker International Prize for Fiction
Awarded in October each year, the Man Booker Prize is the UK's top literary prize and the most watched single-book award in the English-speaking world.
The National Book Awards
The National Book Awards — previously known as the Galaxy National Book Awards (2010–11); British Book Awards or Nibbies (1990–2009) — is a British literary award for the best UK writers and their works, as selected by an academy of members from the British book publishing industry. As of 2012–13, the awards are organized and governed by Agile Marketing and sponsored by Specsavers, among others.
National Book Award - New York Times Best Fiction
First awarded in 1950, the National Book Awards recognize the best of American literature. The Awards are announced in November.
Lists many prestigious writing competitions - all based in the UK, but can be entered from anywhere in the world.
Big list of writing contests.
New Voices Award
Presented by Lee & Low Books, an award-winning children’s book publisher, this award is given for a previously unpublished children’s picture book manuscript (of no more than 1,500 words) written by a writer of color. The winner receives $1,000 cash and a standard publication contract. You may submit up to two manuscripts. Deadline: Submissions must be postmarked by September 30 each year.
New York Times Editor's Choice and Notable Book of the Year.
Each year, around the beginning of December, a "100 Notable Books of the Year" is published. It contains fiction and non-fiction, 50 of each. The list has prestige among publishers with book jackets usually mentioned being chosen. From the list of 100, 10 books are award the "Best Books of the Year", 5 each of fiction and non-fiction. Other year-end lists include the Best Illustrated Children’s Books, in which 10 books are chosen by a panel of judges.
Nothing in the Rulebook
54 writing competitions for 2020.
Offers a list of the "top 10 writing contests".
Patsy Collins, Words About Writing and Writing About Words
Offers regular news on current contests.
PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction
Honouring the best work of fiction published by an American author in a single calendar year, this award has been given to the likes of John Updike, Philip Roth and Ann Patchett. The winner receives $15,000 and an invitation to read at the award ceremony in Washington, DC. Four finalists also each receive a $5,000 award. Deadline: Annually on October 31 for books published that calendar year.
Pinnacle Book Achievement Award
Poets & Writers
The Writing Contests, Grants & Awards database includes details about the creative writing contests—including poetry contests, short story competitions, essay contests, awards for novels, and more—that we’ve published in Poets & Writers Magazine during the past year. We carefully review the practices and policies of each contest before including it. Ours is the most trusted resource for legitimate writing contests available anywhere.
Published to Death
Constantly updated list of contests with no entry fees.
Pulitzer Prize for Fiction
The Pulitzer Prize for Fiction has been awarded for distinguished fiction by an American author, preferably dealing with American life. It originated as the Pulitzer Prize for the Novel, which was awarded between 1918 and 1947.
Readers' Favorite International Book Awards
Prestigeous and large book award.
Offers a database to browse contests.
Tethered By Letters
TBL is pleased to announce the F(r)iction Fall Literary Competition. There are three submission categories: 1) short stories of any genre ranging from 1,000 to 7,500 words, 2) flash fiction with a word limit of 750 words, and 3) poetry no longer than three pages. Winners of the contest will be published in a future issue of F(r)iction alongside stunning original artwork from TBL’s talented team of artists. Competition closes in November each year.
The Write Life
Thirty-two concurrent free writing contests.
The Scotia Bank Giller Prize
The Scotiabank Giller Prize, or Giller Prize, is a literary award given to a Canadian author of a novel or short story collection published in English (including translation) the previous year, after an annual juried competition between publishers who submit entries. The prize was established as the Giller Prize in 1994 by Toronto businessman Jack Rabinovitch in honour of his late wife Doris Giller, a former literary editor at the Toronto Star, and is awarded in November of each year along with a cash reward (then CAN$25,000).
The Warrior Muse
Posts submissions and contests every Wednesday.
Winifred Holtby Memorial Prize
The Winifred Holtby Memorial Prize was presented from 1967 until 2003 by the Royal Society of Literature for the best regional novel of the year. It is named after the novelist WinifredHoltby who was noted for her novels set in the rural scenes of her childhood. In 2003 it was superseded by the Ondaatje Prize.
The Writer encourages all of our readers to practice their craft and put their stories in front of the eyes of as many people as possible. Contests have always been a vital part of the writing world, giving writers the chance to have their work reviewed by editors and possibly published. Literary journals, universities and even The Writer regularly host contests, helping authors gain exposure and hone their craft. Choose your inspiration, submit before the deadline, and, as always, keep writing.
The Author's Guild (contests, grants, & residencies)
Dow Jones News Fund
Funds for Writers
Opportunities for Writers
The Write Life- 14 Great Grants for Writers
Women Arts - Grants for Individuals
Paying Gigs for Writers:
Freelance Writing Gigs with Great Pay: 50 Niches to Explore
Contests and More:
Watch WINNING Screenplay Readings - Watch videos of past winners performed by professional actors
READ 100s of testimonials for past submitters
Check for festivals in your area and the dates for these events:
Chanticleer Book Reviews
Creative Writing Contests
Freelance Writing contests
Poets and Writers
TV Writing Contest
West Virginia Writers
Writing and Publishing Grants and Prizes
Find grants and prizes through the Canada Council for the Arts.
Writer’s Digest, Two links that might grab your fancy are: 88th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition Deadline 6/3/19 and Self-Published Book Awards Deadline 5/31/19
The Author Biz http://theauthorbiz.com/author-biz-podcast/
The Creative Penn http://www.thecreativepenn.com/podcasts/
Helping Writers Become Authors http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/podcasts/
Kobo Writing Life https://kobowritinglife.com/category/kwl-podcast/
The Sell More Books Show http://sellmorebooksshow.libsyn.com/
Sterling & Stone http://sterlingandstone.net/podcasts/
Writing Excuses http://www.writingexcuses.com/
10 Great Podcasts for Writers
Art Deadlines List (a little of everything)
*If you enter one of the above and win, please share your good news with us.