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The Reedsy Writing Prompts Contest

Reedsy

Respond to one of Reedsy's weekly writing prompt newsletters with a short story for the chance to win $50 and get featured on the Reedsy Blog!


Deadline January 01, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$50

Additional prizes

Publication on Reedsy Blog

Genres

Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: FREE

Hektoen International Essay Competition

Hektoen International

Hektoen International invites you to send an essay of under 1,600 words on the subject of Blood. The contest honors the achievements of the Red Cross, locally, nationally, and globally. Two prizes will be awarded: $3000 for the winner and $800 for the runner up.


Deadline January 15, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$3,000

Additional prizes

Publication in Hektoen International Journal

Genres

Essay, Non-fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $0

Law & Technology International Writing Competition

Justis Publishing

The Justis International Law & Technology Writing Competition 2020 is launching this coming autumn with a grand prize of £2,000! The competition is open to all college and university students around the world. This year we are giving you more time to start writing and planning so you can be ready to submit your entries once the competition opens on the 1st October 2019.


Deadline December 01, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$2,500

Additional prizes

Genres

Essay, Non-fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: FREE

WTP Hamptons Literary Competition

Woven Tale Press

Cash prizes, and first place award, a one-week stay in our WTP expanded 1909 charming cape in the legendary Hamptons, NY, destination to writers from around the world; home to Peter Matthiessen, George Plimpton, and Truman Capote.


Deadline October 23, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

One-week retreat

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Non-fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $25

The Lascaux Prize in Creative Nonfiction

The Lascaux Review

The Lascaux Prize in Creative Nonfiction will reopen 1 April 2020. Creative nonfiction may include memoirs, chronicles, personal essays, humorous perspectives, literary journalism—anything the author has witnessed, experienced, learned, or discovered. Pieces may be previously published or unpublished, and simultaneous submissions are accepted. Winner receives $1,000, a bronze medallion, and publication online in The Lascaux Review. The winner and all finalists will be published in the annual print journal Lascaux 8.


Deadline September 22, 2020

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Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

Genres

Essay, Memoir, Non-fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $15

The Lascaux Prize in Flash Fiction

The Lascaux Review

The Lascaux Prize in Flash Fiction will reopen 1 January 2020. Stories may be previously published or unpublished, and simultaneous submissions are accepted. True stories and prose poetry are welcome as long as they’re written in a narrative style. Winner receives $1,000, a bronze medallion, and publication online in The Lascaux Review. The winner and all finalists will be published in the annual print journal Lascaux 8.


Deadline June 30, 2020

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Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Flash Fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $15

The Lascaux Prize in Poetry

The Lascaux Review

Poems may be previously published or unpublished, and simultaneous submissions are accepted. Winner receives $1,000, a bronze medallion, and publication online in The Lascaux Review. The winner and all finalists will be published in the annual print journal Lascaux 8.


Deadline March 19, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

Genres

Poetry,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $15

The Lascaux Prize in Short Fiction

The Lascaux Review

Stories may be previously published or unpublished, and simultaneous submissions are accepted. Winner receives $1,000, a bronze medallion, and publication online in The Lascaux Review. The winner and all finalists will be published in the annual print journal Lascaux 7.


Deadline December 31, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

Publication in The Lascaux Review

Genres

Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $15

Nowhere Magazine Fall 2019 Travel Writing Contest

Nowhere Magazine

We are looking for young, old, novice and veteran writers to send us stories that possess a powerful sense of place. Stories can be fiction, nonfiction, poetry or essay.


Deadline January 01, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

Genres

Essay, Non-fiction, Poetry, Fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $2

James Jones First Novel Fellowship

Wilkes University

A prize of $10,000 is given annually for a novel-in-progress by a U.S. writer who has not published a novel. Runners-up will receive $1000. A selection from the winning work is published in Provincetown Arts.


Deadline March 15, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$10,000

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Novel,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $3

The Lena-Miles Wever Todd Prize

Pleiades Press

The Lena-Miles Wever Todd Prize for a book-length collection of poetry will open September 15, 2019 and close November 15, 2019. The winning writer will receive $3000 ($2000 prize + $1000 towards book tour expenses) and the winning collection will be published in paperback by Pleiades Press and nationally distributed by Louisiana State University Press. In addition, the winning writer will be invited to the University of Central Missouri, where Pleiades Press is housed, to launch a book tour.


Deadline November 15, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$3,000

Additional prizes

Publication by Pleiades Press

Genres

Poetry,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $25

The Restless Books Prize For New Immigrant Writing

Restless Books

Restless Books is looking for extraordinary unpublished submissions from emerging writers of sharp, culture-straddling writing that addresses identity in a global age.


Deadline March 31, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$10,000

Additional prizes

Publication by Restless Books

Genres

Fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: FREE

Catherine Doctorow Innovative Fiction Prize

Fiction Collective 2

The FC2 Catherine Doctorow Innovative Fiction Prize is open to any writer in English with at least three books of fiction published. Submissions may include a collection of short stories, one or more novellas, or a novel of any length.


Deadline November 01, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$15,000

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Novel, Novella, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $25

Booksie 2019 Short Story Contest

Booksie

Booksie is looking for the most interesting, original stories that will make them laugh, cry and see the world in a slightly different way. The winner will receive the Booksie Short Story Award, which comes with a hefty cash prize, a gold trophy badge, and one week of free Boosts.


Deadline November 29, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$1,500

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $9

Inception: $250 for the Best Opening

Sunspot Literary Journal

Sunspot Lit wants your best fiction, nonfiction, or poetry opening. No restrictions on theme, category. Up to 250 words for prose or 25 words for poetry.


Deadline October 31, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$250

Additional prizes

Publication in Sunspot Lit

Genres

Fiction, Humor, Non-fiction, Poetry, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $8

2019 Brooklyn Non-Fiction Prize

Brooklyn Non-Fiction Prize

The Brooklyn Non-Fiction Prize, a cash award of $500, will be awarded to the best Brooklyn-focused non-fiction essay which is set in Brooklyn and is about Brooklyn and/or Brooklyn people/characters.


Deadline December 01, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$500

Additional prizes

Genres

Non-fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $0

2020 Sonia Sanchez-Langston Hughes Poetry Contest

Split This Rock

Each year, Split This Rock sponsors a national poetry contest which serves to raise the visibility and prestige of poetry of provocation and witness.


Deadline November 01, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$500

Additional prizes

Publication on Split This Rock

Genres

Poetry,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $20

WOW! Women On Writing Q4 2019 Creative Nonfiction Essay Contest

WOW! Women On Writing

Seeking creative nonfiction essays on any topic and in any style--from personal essay to lyric essay to hybrid and more! The mission of this contest is to reward bravery in real-life storytelling and create an understanding of our world through thoughtful, engaging narratives.


Deadline October 31, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$500

Additional prizes

Publication, interview, and gift card good for one item from CreateWriteNow's Store

Genres

Non-fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $12

WOW! Women On Writing Fall 2019 Flash Fiction Contest

WOW! Women On Writing

Seeking short fiction of any genre between 250 - 750 words. The mission of this contest is to inspire creativity, communication, and well-rewarded recognition to contestants.


Deadline November 30, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$400

Additional prizes

Genres

Flash Fiction, Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $10

The Larry Brown Short Story Award

Pithead Chapel

We’re pleased to announce the fourth annual Larry Brown Short Story Award. The winners will receive the following prizes: 1st prize $400 USD; 2nd prize $50 USD; and 3rd prize $50 USD. Each prize winner will be published in the January 2019 issue of Pithead Chapel.


Deadline October 31, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$400

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $10

Autumn Writing competition

BeAnimal Journey Foundation

Each of the three finalists will win a place on a unique Nature experience and tour through the wilderness of India.


Deadline December 16, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

Nature tour through the wilderness of India

Additional prizes

Genres

Humor, Non-fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $0

Me&MyLife New Talents

Me&MyLife

We believe that there is an innate Talent in every person and we would like to discover your writing skills.


Deadline January 10, 2020

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Top prize

$3,000

Additional prizes

The prize will be delivered in euros.

Genres

Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $0

Novella-in-Flash Award

Bath Flash Fiction Award

The goal of the Novella-in-a-Flash Award is to promote flash fiction for both writers and readers and to bring the genre to a wider audience. There is a 6000 to 18000 word limit and each flash should not be more than about 1000 words.


Deadline January 12, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$300

Additional prizes

Genres

Novel, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: FREE

Ronald Sukenick Innovative Fiction Contest

Fiction Collective Two

The FC2 Ronald Sukenick Innovative Fiction Contest is open to any writer in English who has not previously published with FC2. Submissions may include a collection of short stories, one or more novellas, or a novel of any length. There is no length requirement. Works that have previously appeared in magazines or in anthologies may be included.


Deadline November 01, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$1,500

Additional prizes

Publication by FC2

Genres

Fiction, Novel, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $25

2019 Fiction Contest

fresh.ink

A writing contest with $7,500 of prizes available across 4 fiction categories: Short story, novelette, novella, and novel.


Deadline December 01, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$3,000

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Novel, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $0

The Cosmos Prize

First Fandom Experience

Re-write the final chapter of the 1930s sci-fi serial novel, Cosmos.


Deadline January 15, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$300

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Science Fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $0

Inkitt's Writing Contest

Inkitt

Inkitt’s writing contest runs quarterly and gives authors the chance to win an exclusive GALATEA publishing deal and the chance to showcase their book to the world. Monthly, alongside the quarterly publishing deal prize draw, cash prize contest winners are announced, determined on how many likes the author has received on their book. Monthly these winners will receive $150. Authors can also use Inkitt’s Writing app — found in the app store under ‘Inkitt Writing” — to draft up their novels!


Deadline October 31, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

Publishing contract with GALATEA

Additional prizes

$150

Genres

Fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: FREE

IndieReader Discovery Awards 2020

IndieReader

Where talented authors meet publishing professionals with the power to make a difference in the success of their books. Every author who enters a title in the 2020 IR Discovery Awards will receive a verdict, written by an IndieReader reviewer and based on their assessment after reading the complete book.


Deadline February 28, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

First look consideration by a top, NYC-based literary agency

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Non-fiction, Novel,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $149

Crab Orchard Series in Poetry Open Competition

Crab Orchard Review

Two volumes of poems will be selected from an open competition of manuscripts submitted online through Submittable October 1 through December 3, 2019. The winners will each receive a publication contract with Southern Illinois University Press. In addition, both winners will be awarded a $1000 prize and $1500 as an honorarium for a reading at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. [Submissions open October 1, 2019]


Deadline December 03, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$2,500

Additional prizes

Publication

Genres

Poetry,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $20

Willow Run Poetry Book Award

Hidden River Arts

Hidden River Arts offers a yearly prize of $1000 and publication in Hidden River Press for an unpublished book-length collection of poetry of 75 to 100 pages. The editors will judge. [Submissions open August 15, 2019]


Deadline February 15, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

Additional prizes

Publication by Hidden River Press

Genres

Poetry,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $22

Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award

Red Hen Press

Established in 1998, in honor of the poet Benjamin Saltman (1927–1999), this award is for a previously unpublished original collection of poetry. Top prize is $3000 and 4-week residency at PLAYA arts and sciences program. The winner of the 2019 Benjamin Saltman Award will be announced in 2020.


Deadline October 31, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$3,000

Additional prizes

4 week PLAYA residency and publication by Red Hen Press

Genres

Poetry,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $25

Flash 500 Short Story Competition

Flash 500

This is an open-themed competition that accepts all genres, including those written by or for children. Stories should range between 1,000 and 3,000 words, with strong characters, a well-crafted plot and realistic dialogue (where used). As the website says, "Make us laugh, make us cry, but most of all, make us feel!"


Deadline February 28, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

$500

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $7

Novel Opening Chapter & Synopsis Competition

Flash 500

We welcome published, self-published and unpublished novelists. The only stipulation is that the entry must be unpublished. We are looking for an opening chapter up to 3,000 words, plus a one page synopsis outlining the balance of the story.


Deadline October 31, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$500

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $13

Moment Magazine-Karma Foundation Short Fiction Contest

Moment Magazine

Moment Magazine is now accepting submissions for the 2020 contest. Moment will award up to three prizes to outstanding works of unpublished short fiction with Jewish content, including $1,000 for first place.


Deadline March 31, 2020

Learn more
Top prize

Publication in Moment Magazine

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $25

Flash 500 Flash Fiction Competition

Flash 500

Now in its tenth year, this quarterly open-themed competition has closing dates of 31st March, 30th June, 30th September and 31st December 2019.


Deadline December 31, 2019

Learn more
Top prize

$300

Additional prizes

Genres

Fiction, Short Story,

Entry fee

💰 Entry Fee: $6

Submitting to free writing contests in 2019 is absolutely worth your while as an aspiring author: just as your qualifications matter when you apply for a new job, a writing portfolio that boasts published works and award-winning pieces is a great way to give your writing career a boost. And not to mention the bonus of cash prizes!

While you’re submitting to writing competitions in 2019

Every competition has its own set of submission rules. Whether those rules are dense or sparing, ensure that you follow them to a T. Disregarding the guidelines will not sway the judges’ opinion in your favor — and might disqualify you from the contest altogether.

Aside from ensuring you follow the rules, here are a few resources that will help you perfect your submissions.

Free online courses:

Blog posts:

After you submit to a writing competition in 2019

It’s exciting to send a piece of writing off to a contest. However, once the initial excitement wears off, you may be left waiting for a while. Some writing contests will contact all entrants after the judging period — whether or not they’ve won. Other writing competitions will only contact the winners.

Here are a few things to keep in mind after you submit:

  • Many writing competitions don’t have time to respond to each entrant with feedback on their story. However, it never hurts to ask! Feel free to politely reach out requesting feedback — but wait until after the selection period is over.

  • If you’ve submitted the same work to more than one writing competition or literary magazine, remember to withdraw your submission if it ends up winning elsewhere.

  • After you send a submission, don’t follow it up with a rewritten or revised version. Instead, ensure that your first version is thoroughly proofread and edited. If not, wait until the next edition of the contest or submit the revised version to other writing contests.

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