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.


2018 CA (Cosmonauts Avenue) Fiction Prize. Stories should not exceed 4,000 words and must be previously unpublished; can be short stories or novel excerpts. We accept (and encourage) entries from all ages and countries; any genre. Award: Not stated, but last year was $500 and publication in Cosmonauts Avenue. Entry fee: $14 first entry, $10 each additional entry. Deadline: December 15, 2018. Info: https://cosmonautsavenue.submittable.com/submit/128280/2018-fiction-prize

Instruction & Insight - NonNarrative/NonFiction - We are looking for the best books featuring guide books, How-to books, inspirational books and more. Awards: A Prize Ribbon, Digital Badges, Book stickers. Your name and book title announced on our high traffic website at the finalist stage, the category winner stage, the genre grand prize stage, and the overall grand prize stage, depending on how far you go in the competition. Corresponding social media announcements of your contest advancements. Corresponding newsletter announcements to our sizable email list. Your winning title's review published in our Chanticleer Reviews Magazine. Entry fee: $75. Deadline: December 31, 2018. Info: https://www.chantireviews.com/services/Non-Fiction-Guides-and-How-To-Boo k-Awards-Chanticleer-Book-Reviews-p77617464

41st Annual ASBPE Awards (Azbees) for the best in business-to-business journalism; several magazine article, newsletter and website categories, must have been published during 2018. Regional and national winners. Awards: Gold, Silver, Bronze. Entry fee: Early Bird: $150. Regular: $165.  Early Bird Deadline: December 10, 2018. Regular Deadline: January 7, 2019. Info: www.asbpe.org/azbee-awards/ and https://azbeeawards.secure-platform.com/a/page/about/categories

Annual Writer's Digest Short Short Story Competition. Maximum length 1,500 words. Awards: $3,000, 1,500, $500, $100 plus other prizes. Entry fees: $30 first, $25 each additional. Deadline: December 17, 2018. Info: www.writersdigest.com/writers-digest-competitions/short-short-story-competi tion

"Figures" International Call For Artists and Writers by ArtAscent – Theme: Figures of human form. Figures of life, imagination, history, mythology and allegory. In costume, in none. In lightness, in darkness. In dignity, in shame. Of everyday, of me, of you. Share your FIGURES 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, previously published or unpublished). Awards: Be profiled, get published, and shine on! Up to 40 applicants will be selected. Plus, if you are chosen as one of the top 4 applicants, you will also be highlighted in a feature section with a profile written about you and your work. All selected artists and writers are showcased in the magazine and the juried online exhibition. Entry fee for written works: $15. Deadline: December 31, 2018. Info: https://ArtAscent.com/the-call-for-artists-and-writers/

Gemini Magazine Ninth Annual Poetry Open competition. Any type of poetry, any subject matter, any length. Awards: $1,000, $100, (4) $25. All six finalists will be published online in the March 2019 issue of Gemini. Entry fee: $7 (for up to three poems). Deadline: January 2, 2019. Info: http://gemini-magazine.com/poetryopen.html

Society of Midland Authors Annual Literary Awards for print books published in 2018. Categories: Adult Fiction, Adult Nonfiction, Biography/Memoir, Children's Fiction, Children's Nonfiction, and Poetry. Author must reside in, have been born in, or have strong ties to one of the 12 Midland states: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Awards: $500 plus recognition plaques. Entry fee: $25. Deadline: January 5, 2019 Info: http://midlandauthors.com/contest_rules.htm

The Disquiet Literary Prize for writing in any genre: fiction (short story or novel excerpt, maximum 25 double-spaced pages per entry), nonfiction (maximum 25 double-spaced pages per entry), poetry (no more than six poems per entry, up to 10 pages total). Awards: The top winners in each genre will be published: the fiction winner on Granta.com, the nonfiction winner in Ninthletter.com, the poetry winner in The Common. The grand prize winner will receive a full scholarship including tuition, lodging, and a $1,000 travel stipend to Lisbon, Portugal, in 2019. Runners-up and other outstanding entrants will receive financial aid. Entry fee: $15. Deadline: January 10, 2019. Info: http://disquietinternational.org/the-program/contests-scholarships/the-disqui et-prize/ or http://bit.ly/2ekkbbd

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: February 15, 2019. Info: www.apexawards.com

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

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

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


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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