Literary Contests for Unpublished Writers

The previous post on writing contests can be found here, with a number of prizes still up for grabs (until April 30th). As before, these contests are primarily for unpublished writers and, if you would like a professional edit before you enter, please contact me for a 10% discount by referencing this blog post in your initial email.

Good luck to you all!

Please note that self-published works are often not accepted, and the majority of entries are submitted anonymously. Be sure to read the guidelines carefully.

writing contests open until SEPTEMBER 30th, 2016

WhoGlimmer Train Press
What: There's the Short Story Award for New Writers, the Very Short Fiction prize, and the Fiction Open. There are reading fees for submissions. More information can be found here.
When: Deadlines are June 30th for the Short Story Award and April 30th or August 31st for Very Short Fiction and Fiction Open.
Where: No specifications.
Why: First place winners receive $2,500 (Short Story Award), $2,000 (Very Short Fiction), and $3,000 (Fiction Open). All winners will be published in Glimmer Train Stories.

WhoThe Raymond Carver Short Story Contest
What: Literary fiction of no more than 6,000 words (they're very strict about this). Entry fee is $17 online and $15 mailed. Readings are blind (meaning do not include your name on the submission). Click here for further details.
When: Entries must be submitted between April 1st, 2016 and May 15th, 2016.
Where: Worldwide, but must be written in English.
Why: First prize is $1,500; second prize is $500; third prize is $250; and there are two Editor's Choice prizes of $125. The winning stories will be read by three literary agencies.

WhoYeovil Literary Prize
What: Submissions in the following genres: novel, short story, poetry, and "writing without restrictions." Entries must not have been previously published or accepted for publication. Entry fees range from £5 to £11 depending on the genre of the work submitted. All guidelines and rules can be found here.
When: Deadline is May 31st, 2016.
Where: Worldwide, but must be written in English.
Why: First prize is £1,000 (novel), £500 (short story), £500 (poetry), and £100 (writing without restrictions). There are also second and third place prizes.

Who: Autumn House Press Contests
What: Fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, primarily from unpublished and lesser-known authors. Autumn House recommends familiarizing yourself with their previous publications before submitting. A $30 handling fee for each submission is required.
When: Deadline is June 30th, 2016.
Where: No specifications.
Why: Each winner receives publication of the manuscript plus $2,500 ($1,000 advance against royalties and $1,500 for travel and publicity to promote the book).

WhoBellevue Literary Review Contest
What: Fiction, nonfiction, and poetry submissions related to themes of health, healing, illness, the mind, and the body. Entry fee is $20 per submission. Previously published work will not be considered. Further details can be found here.
When: Deadline is July 1st, 2016.
Where: No specifications.
Why: Winners in each genre receive $1,000 and publication in the Spring 2017 issue of BLR. Honorable mention winners receive $250 and publication.

WhoCinnamon Press Debut Novel/Novella Prize
What: Open to those who have never had a novel published. Submit the first 10,000 words of your novel/novella. Entry fee is £12. More information can be found here.
When: Deadline is July 31st, 2016.
Where: No specifications.
Why: First place prize is £500 and a publishing contract.

Who: The Manchester Fiction Prize
What: An unpublished short story up to 2,500 words (though established writers may apply). Open to writers aged 16 and above. Entry fee is £17.50. The terms and conditions are here.
When: Deadline is September 23rd, 2016.
Where: Open to all, but submission must be in English.
Why: Winner receives £10,000 (though if two winners are award, the prize is £5,000 each).

Who: Lee & Low Books New Voices Award
What: Children's picture book manuscript (fiction, nonfiction, or poetry) by a writer of color. See guidelines for further details.
When: Competition opens in May 2016. Deadline is likely the end of September.
Where: Writers must be residents of the United States.
Why: Winner receives $1,000 and a publication contract. An honor award winner receives $500.

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