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Best Essay Writing Contests in 2024

Showing 48 contests that match your search.

Rigel 2024: $500 for Prose, Poetry, Art, or Graphic Novel

Sunspot Literary Journal

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Memoir, Non-fiction, Novel, Novella, Poetry, Script Writing, and Short Story

Literary or genre works accepted. Winner receives $500 plus publication, while runners-up and finalists are offered publication. No restrictions on theme or category. Closes: February 29. Entry fee: $12.50. Enter as many times as you like through Submittable or Duotrope

Additional prizes:

Runners-up and finalists are offered publication

💰 Entry fee: $12

📅 Deadline: February 29, 2024 (Expired)

World Historian Student Essay Competition

World History Association

Genres: Children's and Essay

The World Historian Student Essay Competition is an international competition open to students enrolled in grades K–12 in public, private, and parochial schools, and those in home-study programs. Membership in the World History Association is not a requirement for submission. Past winners may not compete in the same category again.

📅 Deadline: May 01, 2024

National Essay Contest

U.S. Institute of Peace

Genres: Essay

This year, AFSA celebrates the 100th anniversary of the United States Foreign Service. Over the last century, our diplomats and development professionals have been involved in groundbreaking events in history – decisions on war and peace, supporting human rights and freedom, creating joint prosperity, reacting to natural disasters and pandemics and much more. As AFSA looks back on this century-long history, we invite you to join us in also looking ahead to the future. This year students are asked to explore how diplomats can continue to evolve their craft to meet the needs of an ever-changing world that brings fresh challenges and opportunities to the global community and America’s place in it.

Runner-up: $1,250

📅 Deadline: April 01, 2024 (Expired)

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Jane Austen Society of North America Essay Contest

Jane Austen Society of North America

JASNA conducts an annual student Essay Contest to foster the study and appreciation of Jane Austen's works in new generations of readers. Students world-wide are invited to compete for scholarship awards in three divisions: high school, college, and graduate school.

Two nights’ lodging for JASNA’s Annual General Meeting

📅 Deadline: June 02, 2022 (Expired)

WOW! Women On Writing Quarterly Creative Nonfiction Essay Contest

WOW! Women On Writing

Genres: Non-fiction and Essay

Seeking creative nonfiction essays on any topic (1000 words or less) and in any style--from personal essay and memoir to lyric essay and 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. Electronic submissions via e-mail only; reprints/previously published okay; simultaneous submissions okay; multiple submissions are okay as long as they are submitted in their own individual e-mail. Open internationally.

2nd: $300 | 3rd: $200 | 7 runner-ups: $25 Amazon Gift Cards

📅 Deadline: April 30, 2024

Great American Think-Off

New York Mills Regional Cultural Center

Genres: Essay and Non-fiction

The Great American Think-Off is an exhibition of civil disagreement between powerful ideas that connect to your life at the gut level. The Cultural Center, located in the rural farm and manufacturing town of New York Mills, sponsors this annual philosophy contest.

Artificial Intelligence Competition

New Beginnings

Genres: Essay, Non-fiction, Science Fiction, Science Writing, and Short Story

There is no topic relating to technology that brings more discussion than artificial intelligence. Some people think it does wonders. Others see it as trouble. Let us know your opinion about AI in this competition. Include experiences you have had with AI. 300-word limit. Winners will be selected January 1, 2024. Open to anyone, anywhere.

Publication

💰 Entry fee: $5

📅 Deadline: December 15, 2023 (Expired)

Annual Student Essay Contest

Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum

For this year’s Essay Contest, we are asking students to think about why the story of the Oklahoma City bombing is important today.

📅 Deadline: March 04, 2024 (Expired)

Stories of Inspiration

Kinsman Avenue Publishing, Inc

Nonfiction stories of inspiration wanted (between 500 to 2,000 words). Submissions should highlight the struggle and resilience of the human spirit, especially related to cultures of BIPOC or marginalized communities. Stories must be original, unpublished works in English. One successful entry will be awarded each month from April 2024 and will be included within Kinsman Quarterly’s online journal and digital magazine. Successful authors receive $200 USD and publication in our digital magazine. No entry fee required.

Publication in Kinsman Quarterly's online magazine

📅 Deadline: December 31, 2024

Solas Awards

Best Travel Writing

Genres: Essay, Non-fiction, and Travel

Extraordinary stories about travel and the human spirit have been the cornerstones of our books since 1993. With the Solas Awards we honor writers whose work inspires others to explore. We’re looking for the best stories about travel and the world. Funny, illuminating, adventurous, uplifting, scary, inspiring, poignant stories that reflect the unique alchemy that occurs when you enter unfamiliar territory and begin to see the world differently as a result. We hope these awards will be a catalyst for those who love to leave home and tell others about it.

💰 Entry fee: $25

📅 Deadline: September 21, 2024

Indignor Play House Annual Short Story Competition

Indignor House Publishing

Genres: Fiction, Flash Fiction, Short Story, Crime, Essay, Fantasy, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Novella, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Thriller, and Young Adult

Indignor House Publishing is proud to announce that our annual writing competition (INDIGNOR PLAYHOUSE Short Story Annual Competition) is officially open with expected publication in the fall of 2024. Up to 25 submissions will be accepted for inclusion in the annual anthology.

2nd: $250 | 3rd: $150

💰 Entry fee: $20

📅 Deadline: March 01, 2024 (Expired)

Red Hen Press Women's Prose Prize

Red Hen Press

Genres: Fiction, Non-fiction, Short Story, Essay, Memoir, and Novel

Established in 2018, the Women’s Prose Prize is for previously unpublished, original work of prose. Novels, short story collections, memoirs, essay collections, and all other forms of prose writing are eligible for consideration. The awarded manuscript is selected through a biennial competition, held in even-numbered years, that is open to all writers who identify as women.

Publication by Red Hen Press

📅 Deadline: February 28, 2024 (Expired)

High School Academic Research Competition

Columbia Undergraduate Science Journal

The High School Academic Research Competition is where talented students from around the world compete to publish high-quality research on any topic. SARC challenges students to sharpen their critical thinking skills, immerse themselves in the research process, and hone their writing skills for success.

Indigo Research Intensive Summer Program

📅 Deadline: March 20, 2024 (Expired)

Brink Literary Journal Award for Hybrid Writing

Genres: Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Humor, Memoir, Non-fiction, Poetry, Science Writing, and Short Story

The Brink Literary Journal Award for Hybrid Writing will be administered to the winner of a literary contest designed to champion innovative hybrid and cross-genre work.

💰 Entry fee: $22

📅 Deadline: February 16, 2024 (Expired)

Annual Contest Submissions

So To Speak

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Flash Fiction, LGBTQ, Non-fiction, and Poetry

So To Speak is seeking submissions for poetry, fiction, and non-fiction with an intersectional feminist lens! It is no secret that the literary canon and literary journals are largely comprised of heteronormative, patriarchal, cisgender, able-bodied white men. So to Speak seeks work by writers, poets, and artists who want to challenge and change the identity of the “canonical” writer.

💰 Entry fee: $4

📅 Deadline: March 15, 2024 (Expired)

Vocal Challenges

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Memoir, Non-fiction, and Short Story

Enter themed storytelling contests to put your creativity to the test and be in with a chance of winning cash prizes and more. To submit, you'll need to sign up for a monthly fee of $9.99, or $4.99/month for 3 months.

💰 Entry fee: $15

📅 Deadline: March 07, 2024 (Expired)

Askew's Word on the Lake Writing Contest

Shuswap Association of Writers

Genres: Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, Essay, Memoir, and Short Story

Whether you’re an established or emerging writer, the Askew’s Word on the Lake Writing Contest has a place for you. Part of the Word on the Lake Writers’ Festival in Salmon Arm, BC, the contest is open to submissions in short fiction (up to 2,000 words), nonfiction (up to 2,000 words), and poetry (up to three one-page poems).

💰 Entry fee: $11

📅 Deadline: January 31, 2024 (Expired)

Military Anthology: Partnerships, the Untold Story

Armed Services Arts Partnership

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Humor, Memoir, Non-fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

Partners are an integral aspect of military life, at home and afar, during deployment and after homecoming. Partnerships drive military action and extend beyond being a battle buddy, wingman, or crew member. Some are planned while others arise entirely unexpectedly. Spouses, family, old or new friends, community, faith leaders, and medical specialists all support the military community. Despite their importance, the stories of these partnerships often go untold. This anthology aims to correct that: We will highlight the nuances, surprises, joy, sorrow, heroism, tears, healing power, and ache of partnerships. We invite you to submit the story about partnerships from your journey, so we can help tell it.

$250 for each genre category (prose, poetry, visual art)

The Letter Review Prize for Books

The Letter Review

Genres: Crime, Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Novella, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Short Story, Thriller, and Young Adult

The Letter Review Prize for Books is open to writers from anywhere in the world. Seeking most unpublished (we accept some self/indie published) novels, novellas, story collections, nonfiction, poetry etc. 20 entries are longlisted.

📅 Deadline: October 31, 2023 (Expired)

100 Word Writing Contest

Tadpole Press

Genres: Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Thriller, Young Adult, Children's, Poetry, Romance, Short Story, Suspense, and Travel

Can you write a story using 100 words or less? Pieces will be judged on creativity, uniqueness, and how the story captures a new angle, breaks through stereotypes, and expands our beliefs about what's possible or unexpectedly delights us. In addition, we are looking for writing that is clever or unique, inspires us, and crafts a compelling and complete story. The first-place prize has doubled to $2,000 USD.

2nd: writing coach package

Hispanic Culture Review Contest 2022-2023

Hispanic Culture Review

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, Short Story, and Flash Fiction

As the Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano once said, "the best that the world has is in the many worlds that the world contains." Therefore, this year we invite you to reflect on the following questions: How do you or your community celebrate these connections? How do you value those experiences with those people who leave a mark on your life? 1 work will be awarded in each category: 1) photography & visual arts, 2) poetry, and 3) narrative/essay/academic investigation.

💰 Entry fee: $0

📅 Deadline: February 01, 2023 (Expired)

Lazuli Literary Group Writing Contest

Lazuli Literary Group

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Poetry, Short Story, Flash Fiction, Non-fiction, Novella, and Script Writing

We are not concerned with genre distinctions. Send us the best you have; we want only for it to be thoughtful, intelligent, and beautiful. We want art that grows in complexity upon each visitation; we enjoy ornate, cerebral, and voluptuous phrases executed with thematic intent.

Publication in "AZURE: A Journal of Literary Thought"

📅 Deadline: March 24, 2024 (Expired)

Young Sports Journalist 2024

The Young Sports Journalist Competition, 2024, seeks well-argued articles from aspiring journalists aged 14-21. Winning entries will be published online and printed in the Summer Issue of Pitch. Critiqued by our panel of accomplished judges, winners will also receive a £50 cash prize and offered work experience here at PITCH HQ. The competition runs from 7 February 2024 to 5 April 2024. And winners will be announced in May.

Publication in magazine and online

📅 Deadline: April 05, 2024

International Voices in Creative Nonfiction Competition

Vine Leaves Press

Genres: Essay, Memoir, Non-fiction, and Novel

Small presses have potential for significant impact, and at Vine Leaves Press, we take this responsibility quite seriously. It is our responsibility to give marginalized groups the opportunity to establish literary legacies that feel rich and vast. Why? To sustain hope for the world to become a more loving, tolerable, and open space. It always begins with art. That is why we have launched this writing competition.

Book publication

📅 Deadline: July 01, 2024

Environmental Writing 2024

Write the World

The writer and activist Bill McKibben describes Environmental Writing as "the collision between people and the rest of the world." This month, peer closely at that intersection: How do humans interact with their environment? Given your inheritance of this earth, the world needs your voices now more than ever.

Runner up: $50 | Best peer review: $50

📅 Deadline: April 22, 2024

Irene Adler Prize

Lucas Ackroyd

I’ve traveled the world from Sweden to South Africa, from the Golden Globes to the Olympic women’s hockey finals. I’ve photographed a mother polar bear and her cubs and profiled stars like ABBA, Jennifer Garner and Katarina Witt. And I couldn’t have done it without women. I’ve been very fortunate, and it’s time for me to give back. With the Irene Adler Prize, I’m awarding a $1,000 scholarship to a woman pursuing a degree in journalism, creative writing, or literature at a recognized post-secondary institution.

2x honorable mentions: $250

📅 Deadline: May 30, 2024

Narratively 2023 Memoir Prize

Narratively

Genres: Essay, Humor, Memoir, and Non-fiction

Narratively is currently accepting submissions for their 2023 Memoir Prize. They are looking for revealing and emotional first-person nonfiction narratives from unique and overlooked points of view. The guest judge is New York Times bestselling memoirist Stephanie Land.

$1,000 and publication

📅 Deadline: November 30, 2023 (Expired)

Stella Kupferberg Memorial Short Story Prize

Gotham Writers Workshop

Genres: Crime, Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, and Young Adult

The Stella Kupferberg Memorial Short Story Prize is a writing competition sponsored by the stage and radio series Selected Shorts. Selected Shorts is recorded for Public Radio and heard nationally on both the radio and its weekly podcast. This years entries will be judged by Carmen Maria Machado (In the Dream House, Her Body and Other Parties).

A Very Short Story Contest

Genres: Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Humor, Memoir, and Non-fiction

Write a great short story in ten words or fewer. Submit it to our contest. Entry is free. Winner of the bet gets a free Gotham class.

📅 Deadline: May 31, 2024

The Letter Review Prize for Nonfiction

Genres: Essay, Memoir, Non-fiction, Crime, Humor, and Science Writing

2-4 Winners are published. We Shortlist 10-20 writers. Seeking Nonfiction 0-5000 words. Judges’ feedback available. Open to writers from anywhere in the world, with no theme or genre restrictions. Judged blind. All entries considered for publication + submission to Pushcart.

Publication by The Letter Review

💰 Entry fee: $2

NOWW 26th International Writing Contest

Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop (NOWW)

Genres: Essay, Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, and Short Story

Open to all writers in four categories: poetry, short fiction, creative nonfiction, and critical writing.

2nd: $100 | 3rd: $50

💰 Entry fee: $7

Anthology Travel Writing Competition 2024

Anthology Magazine

The Anthology Travel Writing Competition is open to original and previously unpublished travel articles in the English language by writers of any nationality, living anywhere in the world. We are looking for an engaging article that will capture the reader’s attention, conveying a strong sense of the destination and the local culture. Max 1000 words.

💰 Entry fee: $16

📅 Deadline: November 30, 2024

Share Your Story

FanStory.com Inc.

Genres: Essay and Memoir

Write about an event in your life. Everyone has a memoir. Not an autobiography. Too much concern about fact and convention. A memoir gives us the ability to write about our life with the option to create and fabricate and to make sense of a life, or part of that life.

💰 Entry fee: $10

📅 Deadline: September 15, 2022 (Expired)

The Letter Review Prize for Unpublished Books

Genres: Crime, Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Novel, Novella, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Short Story, Thriller, and Young Adult

Free to enter. Seeking 0-5000 word (poetry: 15 pgs) excerpts of unpublished books (Fiction, Poetry, Nonfiction), including most self-published and indie-published works. 2-4 Winners (publication of extract is optional). We Shortlist 10-20 writers. Open to writers from anywhere in the world, with no theme or genre restrictions. Judged blind.

Optional Publication of Excerpt, Letter of Recommendation

The Hudson Prize

Black Lawrence Press

Each year Black Lawrence Press will award The Hudson Prize for an unpublished collection of poems or prose. The prize is open to new, emerging, and established writers.

💰 Entry fee: $28

📅 Deadline: March 31, 2024 (Expired)

Discover the finest writing contests of 2024 for fiction and non-fiction authors — including short story competitions, essay writing competitions, poetry contests, and many more. Updated weekly, these contests are vetted by Reedsy to weed out the scammers and time-wasters. If you’re looking to stick to free writing contests, simply use our filters as you browse.

Why you should submit to writing contests

Submitting to poetry competitions and free writing contests in 2024 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!

That being said, we understand that taking part in writing contests can be tough for emerging writers. First, there’s the same affliction all writers face: lack of time or inspiration. Entering writing contests is a time commitment, and many people decide to forego this endeavor in order to work on their larger projects instead — like a full-length book. Second, for many writers, the chance of rejection is enough to steer them clear of writing contests. 

But we’re here to tell you that two of the great benefits of entering writing contests happen to be the same as those two reasons to avoid them.

When it comes to the time commitment: yes, you will need to expend time and effort in order to submit a quality piece of writing to competitions. That being said, having a hard deadline to meet is a great motivator for developing a solid writing routine.

Think of entering contests as a training session to become a writer who will need to meet deadlines in order to have a successful career. If there’s a contest you have your eye on, and the deadline is in one month, sit down and realistically plan how many words you’ll need to write per day in order to meet that due date — and don’t forget to also factor in the time you’ll need to edit your story!

For tips on setting up a realistic writing plan, check out this free, ten-day course: How to Build a Rock-Solid Writing Routine.

In regards to the fear of rejection, the truth is that any writer aspiring to become a published author needs to develop relatively thick skin. If one of your goals is to have a book traditionally published, you will absolutely need to learn how to deal with rejection, as traditional book deals are notoriously hard to score. If you’re an indie author, you will need to adopt the hardy determination required to slowly build up a readership.

The good news is that there’s a fairly simple trick for learning to deal with rejection: use it as a chance to explore how you might be able to improve your writing.

In an ideal world, each rejection from a publisher or contest would come with a detailed letter, offering construction feedback and pointing out specific tips for improvement. And while this is sometimes the case, it’s the exception and not the rule.

Still, you can use the writing contests you don’t win as a chance to provide yourself with this feedback. Take a look at the winning and shortlisted stories and highlight their strong suits: do they have fully realized characters, a knack for showing instead of telling, a well-developed but subtly conveyed theme, a particularly satisfying denouement?

The idea isn’t to replicate what makes those stories tick in your own writing. But most examples of excellent writing share a number of basic craft principles. Try and see if there are ways for you to translate those stories’ strong points into your own unique writing.

Finally, there are the more obvious benefits of entering writing contests: prize and publication. Not to mention the potential to build up your readership, connect with editors, and gain exposure.

Resources to help you win writing competitions in 2024

Every writing contest 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

On Writing:

How to Craft a Killer Short Story

The Non-Sexy Business of Writing Non-Fiction

How to Write a Novel

Understanding Point of View

Developing Characters That Your Readers Will Love

Writing Dialogue That Develops Plot and Character

Stop Procrastinating! Build a Solid Writing Routine

On Editing:

Story Editing for Authors

How to Self-Edit Like a Pro

Novel Revision: Practical Tips for Rewrites

How to Write a Short Story in 7 Steps

How to Write a Novel in 15 Steps

Literary Devices and Terms — 35+ Definitions With Examples

10 Essential Fiction Writing Tips to Improve Your Craft

How to Write Dialogue: 8 Simple Rules and Exercises

8 Character Development Exercises to Help You Nail Your Character

Bonus resources

200+ Short Story Ideas

600+ Writing Prompts to Inspire You

100+ Creative Writing Exercises for Fiction Authors

Story Title Generator

Pen Name Generator

Character Name Generator

After you submit to a writing competition in 2024

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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Looking for a Writing Contest to Enter?

Hannah Yang headshot

Hannah Yang

Different writing contests

Writing contests can be a useful way to send your work out into the world. With a strong submission and a bit of luck, you can win publication, recognition, and even cash prizes.

This article will give you the inside scoop on the most high-quality writing contests to enter.

Are Writing Contests Worth Entering?

What are some writing contests that are free to enter, how can i increase my chances of winning, where can i find more writing contests.

Entering writing contests can be useful for several reasons:

  • They give you a deadline and often even a prompt to write about , which many writers find motivating
  • The results can help you get a sense of where you are on your writing journey and how you can improve your craft
  • Winning a contest can be a fantastic boost to your journey as a writer

The benefits of writing competitions

On the other hand, it’s important to keep in mind that it takes a lot of luck to win a contest, since there are usually only a few winners chosen from among hundreds of strong contestants.

If your goal is to get your writing published, you’ll likely fare better by submitting to magazines and anthologies than by entering contests.

Download our free eBook on how to publish your writing

If your goal is to make money, you should prioritize freelance writing jobs instead.

With that being said, there are many incredible writing contests out there that can absolutely be worth your while, as long as you enter with realistic expectations.

The best option for your writing goal

Many writing contests cost fees to enter, since they give out cash prizes and hire guest judges that they need to pay for their time.

Charging an entry fee doesn’t necessarily mean the contest is a scam. It does mean, however, that you need to be judicious about which contests to submit your work to.

Free writing contests are more accessible to all writers, and there’s nothing to lose from giving them a shot.

We’ve compiled a list of legitimate, high-quality writing contests that charge no entry fees.

Prose Weekly Challenge

Prose, a social network for readers and writers, offers weekly challenges meant to spark your creativity. This is a fun, low-stakes challenge, with a small cash prize to sweeten the deal.

Prize: Each week’s winner receives $100. Guidelines: Submit a short piece of writing (up to 500 words) related to the weekly prompt. Deadline: Weekly.

Prose Weekly Challenge

Prime Number Magazine 53-Word Story Contest

Press 53’s Prime Number Magazine hosts a monthly micro-fiction contest based on a theme.

All stories must be exactly 53 words long. There’s no cash prize, but this can be a fun and low-stakes contest to participate in if you’ve got some spare time and are looking for a writing prompt.

Prize: Publication, a free book from Press 53. Guidelines: Submit a 53-word story based on a monthly prompt. Open to writers around the world who write in English. Deadline: Monthly on the 15th of each month.

Prime Number Magazine 53-Word Story Contest

Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short Fiction

The Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short Fiction is an annual short story contest co-hosted by Comma Press and the University of Central Lancashire.

If you live in the UK and are interested in crime stories, this is a great contest to consider, with a £500 for the winner and publication for the runners-up.

Prize: £500 ($692) for first place, and publication for 10 shortlisted authors. Guidelines: Submit a short story (between 2,000 and 6,000 words). The theme for the 2022 Prize is "Crime Stories." Only residents of the UK age 18 or older are eligible. Deadline: October 29, 2021.

Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short Fiction

Commonwealth Short Fiction Prize

The Commonwealth Short Story Prize is an annual short fiction contest administered by the Commonwealth Foundation.

If you’re a short story writer and a citizen of a Commonwealth country, this contest is a fantastic option, with a generous £5,000 cash prize for the winner.

Prize: £5,000 ($6,922) for the overall winner and £2,500 ($3,461) for regional winners. Guidelines: Entrants must be citizens of a Commonwealth country and age 18 or over. Submit a short story (between 2,000 and 5,000 words). As well as English, stories are accepted in the Bengali, Chinese, French, Greek, Kiswahili, Malay, Portuguese, Samoan, Tamil, and Turkish languages. Translated entries from any language into English are also eligible. Deadline: November 1, 2021.

Commonwealth Short Fiction Prize

ServiceScape Short Story Award

ServiceScape is a platform that matches freelance writers, editors, and graphic designers with clients. They offer a yearly Short Story Award with a $1,000 prize.

Prize: $1,000 for first place and publication on the ServiceScape blog. Guidelines: Accepts original, unpublished work (5,000 words or fewer) in any genre, fiction or non-fiction. Writers must be age 18 or older. Deadline: November 29, 2021.

ServiceScape Short Story Award

The Roswell Award

The Roswell Award is an annual science fiction contest with a $500 prize, co-presented by Sci-Fest L.A. and the Light Bringer Project.

This is a great option if you like using your writing to unite the worlds of science and art.

Prize: $500 for first place, $250 for second place, and $100 for third place. Guidelines: Submit a science fiction story. Open to writers around the world age 16 or older. Writers are encouraged to explore scientific, social, technological, environmental, and philosophical themes in their writing and always, at the core, to master the art of great storytelling. Deadline: December 21, 2021.

The Roswell Award

L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future Contest

The Writers of the Future Contest is the most enduring and influential contest in the history of science fiction and fantasy.

The contest is held once every three months, with a generous $1,000 prize.

Prize: $1,000 for first place, $750 for second place, and $500 for third place. Guidelines: Submissions must be short stories or novelettes (up to 17,000 words) in the genre of science fiction or fantasy. Open to new and amateur writers around the world. Deadline: Quarterly on December 31, March 31, June 30, and September 30.

Find Out More

L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future Contest

Jim Baen Memorial Short Story Award

The Jim Baen Memorial Short Story Award is an annual contest, co-hosted by the National Space Society and Baen Books, for stories about manned space exploration.

If you’re interested in the role that science fiction plays in advancing real science, this is a great option that pays professional rates.

Prize: Professional paying rates (8 cents per word). The winner’s story will be published as the featured story on the Baen Books main website. The winner will also receive free entry into 2020 International Space Development Conference and a prize package with various Baen Books and National Space Society merchandise. Guidelines: Submit a short story (up to 8,000 words) that shows the near future (no more than about 50-60 years out) of manned space exploration. The judges want to see moon bases, Mars colonies, orbital habitats, space elevators, asteroid mining, artificial intelligence, nano-technology, realistic spacecraft, heroics, sacrifice, and/or adventure. Open to writers around the world who write in English. Deadline: TBD 2022 (the previous year’s deadline was February 1, 2021).

Jim Baen Memorial Short Story Award

The Fountain Essay Contest

Fountain Magazine holds an annual contest for essays related to the personal challenges you’ve faced in your life.

Challenges can span from moving across the country and starting at a new high school or getting out of bed in the morning while undergoing depression. There are generous cash prizes for the winners.

Prize: $1,000 for first place, $500 for second place, $300 for third place, and $150 each for two honorable mentions. Guidelines: Submit a personal essay (between 1,500 and 2,500 words) on the annual theme. All writers worldwide are eligible. Deadline: TBD 2022 (the previous year’s deadline was March 1, 2021).

The Fountain Essay Contest

The Alpine Fellowship Writing Prize

Every year, The Alpine Fellowship awards writing, visual arts, and theater prizes related to an annual theme.

This is an extremely competitive fellowship, with global recognition for the winner and a whopping £10,000 first place prize.

Prize: £10,000 ($13,840) for first place, £3,000 ($4,150) for second place, and £2,000 ($2,770) for third place. Guidelines: Submit a piece of writing related to the annual theme (2021’s was "Untamed: On Wilderness and Civilization"). Entries must be unpublished and a maximum of 2,500 words. Poetry, prose, or non-academic essays welcome. Deadline: TBD 2022 (the previous year’s deadline was April 1, 2021).

The Alpine Fellowship Writing Prize

Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest

The Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest is a contest for humor poems. This is a really fun contest if you like wordplay and witticisms, and you might even win $2,000.

Prize: $2,000 for first place, $500 for second place, and $100 each to 10 honorable mentions. Guidelines: Writers of all ages can submit an original, humorous poem with 250 lines or less. The poem you submit should be in English. Inspired gibberish is also accepted. Deadline: April 1, 2022.

Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest

Parsec Short Story Contest

Parsec Ink holds an annual contest for science fiction, fantasy, and horror short stories from non-professional writers, with a small cash prize for the winners.

Prize: $200 for first place, $100 for second place, and $50 for third place. Guidelines: Submit a short story (up to 3,500 words) based on the annual theme. The 2022 theme has not yet been announced. (The 2021 theme was "Still Waters, Deep Thoughts"). Deadline: TBD 2022 (the previous year’s deadline was April 15, 2021).

Parsec Short Story Contest

Bacopa Literary Review Contest

Bacopa Literary Review is an international journal published by the Writers Alliance of Gainesville. They hold an annual contest that welcomes fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction.

Prize: $300 for first place and $100 for second place in each of four genres: Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, Poetry, and Prose Poetry. Guidelines: Submit a piece of writing in one of the four genres. You can find detailed guidelines for each genre on the website. Deadline: TBD 2022 (the previous year’s deadline was May 31, 2021).

Bacopa Literary Review Contest

Stony Brook Southampton Short Fiction Prize

The Stony Brook Southampton Short Fiction Prize is a short story contest specifically for college students.

If you’re an undergraduate and want to try a writing contest, this is a fantastic option because you have a smaller set of competitors.

Prize: $1,000, a scholarship to the 2021 Southampton Writers’ Conference, and consideration for publication in TSR: The Southampton Review . Guidelines: Only full-time undergraduates in United States and Canadian universities and colleges are eligible. Submissions must be short fiction (7,500 words or less). Deadline: June 1, 2022.

Stony Brook Southampton Short Fiction Prize

Insecure Writer’s Support Group Annual Anthology Contest

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group holds an annual contest for short stories based on a theme.

There’s no cash prize, but all winning stories are published in their anthology, and you can receive royalties from sales.

Prize: Winning stories will be edited and published, and authors will receive royalties from the anthology. Guidelines: Submit a short story (between 5,000 and 6,000 words) related to the annual theme. Deadline: TBD 2022 (the previous year’s deadline was September 1, 2021).

Insecure Writer’s Support Group Annual Anthology Contest

Hektoen Grand Prix Essay Contest

Hektoen International, an online journal dedicated to medical humanities, holds an annual contest for essays related to medicine, with a generous $5,000 cash prize.

Prize: $5,000 for the winner and $2,500 for the runner-up. Guidelines: Submit a short essay (up to 1,500 words) on any topic so long as it has a relation to medicine. The essay can include art, history, literature, education, and more. Writers must be age 18 or older. Deadline: TBD 2022 (the previous year’s deadline was September 15, 2021).

Hektoen Grand Prix Essay Contest

Owl Canyon Press Short Story Hackathon

Owl Canyon Press holds an annual “ hackathon ” for 20-paragraph stories, with a $1,000 prize.

The contest provides the first and last paragraph and the short story writer crafts the rest.

Prize: $1,000 for first place, $750 for second place, and $500 for third place. Publication in a short story anthology for 24 finalists. Guidelines: Writers are invited to create and submit a short story consisting of 20 paragraphs. The contest provides the 1st and 20th paragraphs, and the short story writer crafts the rest. There is no entry fee for submissions received during the first month of the contest. Deadline: TBD 2022 (last year’s deadline was September 30, 2020).

Owl Canyon Press Short Story Hackathon

Transitions Abroad Expatriate and Work Abroad Writing Contest

The Transitions Abroad Writing Contest is an annual contest for essays related to your experience abroad. If you’ve ever lived and worked abroad, this is a great contest with a $500 cash prize.

Prize: $500 for first place, $150 for second place, $100 for third place, and $50 for all finalists. Guidelines: Submit a practical and inspiring essay or mini-guide (between 1,200 and 5,000 words) that provides in-depth descriptions of your experience moving, living, and working abroad (including any form of work such as teaching English, internships, volunteering, short-term jobs, etc.). The contest is open to writers from any location around the globe. Deadline: TBD 2022 (last year’s deadline was October 15, 2020).

Transitions Abroad Expatriate and Work Abroad Writing Contest

Writing Battle Summer Flash Fiction

Writing Battle is a quarterly contest where writers are assigned prompts and have 2 days to write 1000 words. You are guaranteed feedback from you writing peers, plus you can win some money

Prize: $5,000 split between the four winners and publication.

Guidelines: Accepts original, unpublished work that matches the prompts and genre assigned. Writers must be aged 18 or older.

Deadline: August 7, 2022

Atlas Shrugged Novel Essay Contest

The Atlas Shrugged novel essay contest is open to all students globally. Atlas Shrugged is a heroic mystery novel written by Ayn Rand. Choose a prompt and write a 800-1,600 word essay in English. First prize: $10,000; 3 second prizes: $2,000; 5 third prizes: $1,000; 25 finalists: $100; 50 semi-finalists: $50.

Prize: First prize: $10,000, 3 second prizes: $2,000, 5 third prizes: $1,000, 25 finalists: $100, 50 semi-finalists: $50.

Guidelines: Choose a prompt and write an 800–1,600 word essay in English. All students globally can apply.

Deadline: Annually on November 6

Each of these contests has different requirements. What works for one probably will not work for another.

But what will increase your chance in every contest is good grammar and a solid structure. This is where ProWritingAid can help.

We may not be able to write your story for you, but we can help you submit your best work.

ProWritingAid’s 25 reports provide personalized, in-depth feedback on everything from grammar and spelling to pacing, word choice, passive voice, and more.

prowritingaid's summary report

Sign up for a free account to see how ProWritingAid can help you.

There are many resources for writers that compile lists of writing contests. You should check these regularly, as different writing contests have different submission periods.

Some of my favorite resources include:

  • Poets & Writers
  • Winning Writers

With many writers’ sites, you can filter for free contests specifically, and you can also filter by the type of work you want to submit.

I usually check these sites once a season (fall, winter, spring, summer) to compile a list of the contests I want to submit to.

Do you have a favorite writing contest? Let us know in the comments.

FREE WEBINAR: How to Improve Your Chances of Winning the Debut Dagger , Nov 11, 2pm ET / 7pm UK

improve your chances of winning the debut dagger, Nov 11 2pm ET / 7pm UK

Have you been thinking about entering your story for the CWA Debut Dagger this year? The deadline isn’t until the end of February but we want to help you prepare.

We’ve invited Dea Parkin, Secretary of the Crime Writers’ Association, and Leigh Russell, Chair of the Debut Dagger judges, to come and share their insider information. Learn what the judges are looking for and how to give your story the best shot at winning.

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Be confident about grammar

Check every email, essay, or story for grammar mistakes. Fix them before you press send.

Hannah Yang is a speculative fiction writer who writes about all things strange and surreal. Her work has appeared in Analog Science Fiction, Apex Magazine, The Dark, and elsewhere, and two of her stories have been finalists for the Locus Award. Her favorite hobbies include watercolor painting, playing guitar, and rock climbing. You can follow her work on hannahyang.com, or subscribe to her newsletter for publication updates.

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  • #Anthology Submission
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51 Writing Contests You Can Submit to Now (June - September 2022)

51 Writing Contests You Can Submit to Now (June - September 2022)

Find 51 excellent writing contests below with deadlines between June 2022 and September 2022. Polish your manuscript and submit it to one of these great writing contests (and, if you're looking for a class in fiction , poetry , nonfiction , or screenwriting , we've got you covered):

Bauhan Publishing

May sarton new hampshire poetry prize.

A prize of $1,000, publication by Bauhan Publishing, and 50 author copies is given annually for a poetry collection. Rebecca Kaiser Gibson will judge. Using only the online...

Griffin Trust for Excellence in Poetry

Griffin poetry prize.

Two prizes of $65,000 Canadian (approximately $51,123) each are given annually for poetry collections by a Canadian poet or translator and by an international poet or...

Poetry London

Poetry london prize.

A first-place prize of £5,000 (approximately $6,762), a second-place prize of £2,000 (approximately $2,705), and a third-place prize of £1,000 (approximately $1,353) will be...

University of North Texas Press

Katherine anne porter prize.

A prize of $1,000 and publication by University of North Texas Press is given annually for a collection of short fiction. Using only the online submission system, submit a...

Twyckenham Notes

Joe bolton poetry award.

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Twyckenham Notes is given annually for a poem or group of poems. The editors will judge. Using only the online submission...

Lascaux Review

Prize in flash fiction.

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Lascaux Review online and in print is given annually for a work of flash fiction. Previously published stories are eligible. Using...

International Short Story Prize

A prize of €3,000 (approximately $3,423) is given annually for a short story. A prize of a weeklong retreat at Circle of Misse in Missé, France, with a €250 (approximately $285...

University of Pittsburgh Press

Drue heinz literature prize.

A prize of $15,000 and publication by University of Pittsburgh Press is given annually for a collection of short fiction. Writers who have published at least one previous book...

Cider Press Review

Editors’ prize book award.

A prize of $1,000, publication by Cider Press Review , and 25 author copies is given annually for a poetry collection. The editors will judge. Submit a manuscript of 48...

Winning Writers

North street book prize.

A grand prize of $8,000 and seven additional prizes of $1,000 each are given annually for self-published books of poetry, fiction, genre fiction, creative nonfiction, children’...

Los Angeles Review

Literary awards.

Four prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Los Angeles Review are given annually for a poem, a short story, a short short story, and an essay. Joshua Rivkin will...

Barrow Street Press

A prize of $1,500 and publication by Barrow Street Press is given annually for a poetry collection. Tina Chang will judge. Submit a manuscript of 50 to 80 pages with a $25...

Hidden River Arts

William van wert memorial fiction award.

A prize of $1,000 is given annually for a short story or a novel excerpt. Using only the online submission system, submit up to 25 pages of fiction (and a synopsis if...

Omnidawn Publishing

Poetry chapbook contest.

A prize of $1,000, publication by Omnidawn Publishing, and 100 author copies is given annually for a poetry chapbook. Ruth Ellen Kocher will judge. Submit a manuscript of 20 to...

Claremont Graduate University

Kingsley & kate tufts poetry awards.

The $100,000 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award is given annually to honor a book of poetry by a midcareer U.S. poet. The winner will spend one week in residence at Claremont Graduate...

Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

Barbara mandigo kelly peace poetry award.

A prize of $1,000 and publication on the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation website is given annually for a single poem that explores “positive visions of peace and the human spirit...

Conduit Books & Ephemera

Marystina santiestevan first book prize.

A prize of $1,500, publication by Conduit Books & Ephemera, and 30 author copies is given annually for a debut poetry collection. Bob Hicok will judge. Submit a manuscript...

Regal House Publishing

Petrichor prize for finely crafted fiction.

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Regal House Publishing is given annually for a novel. The editors will judge. Submit a manuscript of 100 to 350 pages with a $25 entry fee...

Ghost Story

Screw turn flash fiction competition.

A prize of $1,000 and publication on the Ghost Story website and in the 21st Century Ghost Stories anthology is given twice yearly for a work of flash fiction with a...

The Story Prize

A prize of $20,000 is given annually for a short story collection written in English and published in the United States in the current year. Two runners-up receive $5,000 each...

Bellevue Literary Review

Prizes in poetry and prose.

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Bellevue Literary Review are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay about health, healing, illness, the...

Comstock Review

Muriel craft bailey memorial award.

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Comstock Review is given annually for a single poem. Ellen Bass will judge. Submit up to five poems of no more than 40 lines each...

Cincinnati Review

Robert and adele schiff awards.

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Cincinnati Review are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay. Rebecca Lindenberg will judge in poetry,...

Poetry Contest

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Narrative is given annually for a poem or group of poems. The poetry editors will judge. Using only the online submission system,...

The Word Works

Tenth gate prize.

A prize of $1,000, publication by the Word Works, and 30 author copies is given annually for a poetry collection by a poet who has published at least two full-length books of...

Poetry Prize

A prize of $15,000 and publication in Rattle is given annually for a single poem. A Reader’s Choice Award of $5,000 is also given to one of ten finalists. Submit up to...

Santa Fe Writers Project

A prize of $1,500 and publication by the Santa Fe Writers Project is given biennially for a book of fiction or creative nonfiction. Deesha Philyaw will judge. Using only the...

Poetry and Short Story Awards

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Sixfold are given quarterly for a group of poems and a short story. Using only the online submission system, submit up to...

Hawk Mountain Short Story Collection Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Hidden River Press is given annually for a story collection. Using only the online submission system, submit a manuscript of approximately...

Dogfish Head Craft Brewed Ales

Dogfish head poetry prize.

A prize of $500, publication by Broadkill River Press, 10 author copies, and two cases of Dogfish Head craft beer are given annually for a poetry collection written by a poet...

Munster Literature Centre

Seán o’faoláin international short story collection.

A prize of €2,000 (approximately $2,178) and publication in Southword is given annually for a short story. The winner also receives a weeklong residency at the Anam Cara...

Award for Poetry

A prize of $1,000, publication by Press 53, and 50 author copies is given annually for a poetry collection. Tom Lombardo will judge. Submit a manuscript of 50 to 120 pages with...

New Millennium Writings

New millennium writing awards.

Four prizes of $1,000 each and publication in New Millennium Writings and on the journal’s website are given twice yearly for a poem, a short story, a short short...

Prairie Heritage, Inc.

Jan garton prairie heritage book award.

A prize of $1,000 is given annually for a published book of poetry, fiction, or nonfiction that “illuminates the heritage of North America’s mid-continental prairies.” Authors...

Red Wheelbarrow

A prize of $1,000 and publication in  Red Wheelbarrow  is given annually for a single poem. The winner will also receive 20 copies of a letterpress broadside of the...

Staunch Book Prize

A prize of £1,000 (approximately $1,303) will be given for a thriller novel in which “no woman is beaten, stalked, sexually exploited, raped, or murdered.” Books published or...

Howling Bird Press

Book contest.

A prize of $2,500 and publication by Howling Bird Press is given in alternating years for a book of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction. The 2023 prize will be awarded in...

Spring Story Contest

A prize of $2,500 and publication in Narrative is given annually for a short story, a short short story, an essay, or an excerpt from a work of fiction or creative...

Connecticut Poetry Society

Experimental poetry contest.

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Connecticut River Review will be given annually for an innovative poem. Richard Deming will judge. Using only the online submission...

Sewanee Review

Fiction, poetry, and nonfiction contest.

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Sewanee Review are given annually for a group of poems, a short story, and an essay. Richie Hofmann will judge in poetry,...

Radar Poetry

Coniston prize.

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Radar Poetry is given annually for a group of poems by a poet who identifies as a woman. Dorianne Laux will judge. Using only the...

Delaware Division of the Arts

Individual artist fellowships.

Three Established Professional Fellowships of $6,000 each and three Emerging Artist Fellowships of $3,000 each are given annually to poets, fiction writers, and creative...

Granum Foundation

Granum foundation prizes.

A prize of $5,000 will be given annually to a poet, fiction writer, or creative nonfiction writer to support the completion of a manuscript-in-progress. Up to three finalists...

Literary Arts

Oregon literary fellowships.

Fellowships of $3,500 each are given annually to Oregon writers to initiate, develop, or complete literary projects in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. These include...

Aspen Words

Literary prize.

A prize of $35,000 is given annually for a book of fiction published in the current year that “illuminates a vital contemporary issue and demonstrates the transformative power...

Gival Press

Short story award.

A prize of $1,000 and publication on the Gival Press website is given annually for a short story. Submit a story of 5,000 to 15,000 words with a $25 entry fee by August 8....

TulipTree Publishing

Stories that need to be told contest.

A prize of $1,000 is given annually for a poem, a short story, or an essay that “tells a story that needs to be told.” The winner will also receive a two-year subscription to...

Grayson Books

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Grayson Books is given annually for a poetry collection. John Sibley Williams will judge. Using only the online submission system, submit a...

Open Book Prize

A prize of $3,000, publication by Omnidawn Publishing, and 100 author copies is given annually for a poetry collection. Shane McCrae will judge. Submit a manuscript of 40 to...

Other Futures Award

A prize of $1,000, publication by Futurepoem, and 25 author copies is given annually for a book of innovative poetry, fiction, nonfiction, or hybrid-genre work “that challenges...

Indiana Review

1/2 k prize.

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Indiana Review is given annually for a poem or a work of flash fiction or creative nonfiction. Submit up to three poems, stories,...

Kallisto Gaia Press

Poetry and short fiction prizes.

Two prizes of $1,500 each and publication in Ocotillo Review are given annually for a poem and a short story. Zoë Fay-Stindt will judge the Julia Darling Memorial...

Masters Review

Short story award for new writers.

A prize of $3,000 and publication in  Masters Review  is given twice yearly for a short story by an emerging writer. Writers who have not published a book are eligible, as...

Fool for Poetry International Chapbook Competition

A prize of €1,000 (approximately $1,089) and publication by the Munster Literature Centre is given annually for a poetry chapbook. The winner will also receive accommodations...

Talking Gourds

Fischer prize.

A prize of $1,000 is given annually for a single poem. The winner will also be featured in a Bardic Trails online reading in 2023 and will receive a $100 honorarium for...

Utica College

Eugene paul nassar poetry prize.

A prize of $2,000 is given annually for a poetry collection published in the previous year by a resident of upstate New York. The winner will also give a reading and teach a...

Creative Writing Award

Two prizes of £2,500 (approximately $3,256) each and publication in Aesthetica Creative Writing Annual are given annually for a poem and a short story. In addition, the...

University of New Orleans Press

A prize of $10,000 and publication by University of New Orleans Press is given annually for a short story collection or novel. Using only the online submission system, submit a...

Prize in Translation

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Gulf Coast is given in alternating years for a group of poems or a prose excerpt translated from any language into English. The 2022...

Barthelme Prize for Short Prose

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Gulf Coast is given annually for a short work of prose. Submit a prose poem, a work of flash fiction, or a micro essay of up to 500...

Gemini Magazine

Flash fiction contest.

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Gemini Magazine is given annually for a short short story. The editors will judge. Submit a story of up to 1,000 words with a $7...

Black Lawrence Press

St. lawrence book award.

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Black Lawrence Press is given annually for a debut collection of poems, short stories, or essays. The editors will judge. Using only the...

Off the Grid Poetry Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Grid Books is given annually for a poetry collection by a writer over the age of 60. Garrett Hongo will judge. Using only the online...

American-Scandinavian Foundation

Translation awards.

A prize of $2,500 and publication of an excerpt in Scandinavian Review is given annually for an English translation of a work of poetry, fiction, or creative...

Academy for Teachers

Stories out of school flash fiction contest.

A prize of $1,000 and publication in A Public Space will be given annually for a work of flash fiction about teachers and school, in which the protagonist or narrator is...

Academy of American Poets

First book award.

A prize of $5,000, publication by Graywolf Press, and a six-week residency at the Civitella Ranieri Center in Umbria, Italy, is given annually for a poetry collection by a poet...

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Dogwood are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay. Submit up to three poems totaling no more than 10...

Finishing Line Press

New women’s voices chapbook competition.

A prize of $1,500 and publication by Finishing Line Press is given annually for a poetry chapbook by a writer who identifies as a woman and has not yet published a full-length...

Nature Writing Prize

A prize of €1,000 (approximately $1,089) and publication in the Moth is given annually for a poem, story, or essay that features “an exploration of the writer’s...

Fordham University at Lincoln Center 

Poetic justice institute prizes.

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication by Fordham University Press are given annually for poetry collections. The winners also receive a publicity consultation and headline...

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free essay competitions 2022

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2022 Writing Contests – When, How and Why to Enter

  • on Nov 01, 2021
  • in Writing Tips
  • Last update: January 3rd, 2024

Note: Be sure to check out 2024 writing contests !

Who doesn’t love a good writing contest? The thrill of winning is always incomparable! Nothing pumps up a writer’s adrenaline and makes him up his game like competing with other greatest writers. Whether you have a passion for horror, science fiction, or even tragedy, proving yourself amongst your peers will help you get ahead in the writing field.

free essay competitions 2022

If you’re up for the challenge, we’ve gathered some of the best writing contests happening in 2022 to help you find the right one for you.

The 2021 Exeter Novel Prize

Eligibility & Restrictions

To apply, submit a 10,000 word novel in English. The novel can’t have been published by a traditional publishing house. Anyone above 18 can enter. All genres excluding children’s, but including Young Adult and New Adult, are acceptable.

Mississippi Review Contest

The contest is open to all writers in English except current or former students or employees of The University of Southern Mississippi. Fiction and non-fiction entries should be 1000-8000 words; poetry entries should be three to five poems totaling ten pages or less.

The Hunger Winter Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. You may submit up to 3 poems; please include them all in the same file. Multiple submissions are allowed with a separate entry fee for each submission.

The Tony Hillerman Prize For Best First Mystery Set In the Southwest

Anyone above 18 and is a resident of one of the US, the District of Columbia or Canada can enter. Entries must be unpublished, publication on an entrant’s website of a single one-chapter excerpt from a work is eligible. The Manuscript must be written in English and must be approximately 60,000 words or 220 pages. The theme is murder or another serious crime and should focus on the solving of the crime(s) rather than the details of such crime(s).

Scholastic Art and Writing Awards

Teens in grades 7–12 (ages 13 and up) can apply. Critical essay: 500-3,000 words. Dramatic Script: 500-3,000 word. Flash Fiction: 1,000 words. Humor: 500-3,000 words. Journalism: 500-3,000 words. Novel Writing: Up to 3,000 words. Personal Essay & Memoir: 500-3,000 words. Poetry: 20–200 lines. Science Fiction & Fantasy: 500-3,000 words. Short Story: 500-3,000 words. Deadlines vary between December 2021 and January 2022, depending on your region.

Mississippi Review Prize

Submit three to five poems totaling up to 10 pages or a short story or essay of 1,000 to 8,000 words,

NCH Essay Competition

The NCH London Essay Competition is open to students who are currently in their penultimate (second to last) year of secondary education (Year 12 in England) and who are interested in studying humanities or social sciences at university. Pupils can submit up to 1,500 words, choosing from a range of set essay titles that span a broad range of topics including humanities, philosophy, social issues, the law and creative writing.

Stacy Doris Memorial Poetry Award

Anyone can enter. Minimum 3 pages; maximum 10 pages. You can only submit one entry. Submission must be previously unpublished material. Students currently enrolled at San Francisco State University are ineligible.

James Knudsen Prize for Fiction

Anyone can enter. Submissions must be original, previously unpublished work of fiction, no longer than 7500 words. UNO students and alumni are ineligible. All current and former Bayou staff, previous contest winners, and current or former students of the judge are ineligible to submit.

Kay Murphy Prize for Poetry

Anyone can enter. Submissions must be original, previously unpublished poetry. You may enter up to three poems per entry. UNO students and alumni are ineligible to submit. Previous contest winners, along with current or former students of the judge are also ineligible to submit.

Korean Spirit and Culture

Korean Spirit and Culture Promotion Project is hosting its first National Essay Contest in the United Kingdom. The Essay Contest is open to students in two groups: Group A (Years 6 – 9) and Group B (Years 10-13). Choose from one of two topics based on the book ‘Chung Hyo Ye’.

North Carolina Writers’ Network

Submit a short story or essay of up to 3,000 words

San José State University Steinbeck Fellowships in Creative Writing

Anyone can enter. Residency in the San Francisco Bay Area is required during the academic year. Submit a writing sample up to 25, a project proposal for work to be written, a résumé, and three letters of recommendation.

Fan Story 80 Word Flash Fiction Contest

Anyone can enter. The submitted work must be between 78 – 82 words.

Gemini Magazine Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Entries Must Be Unpublished, Poems on Personal Blogs Are Eligible,

Gemini Magazine Poetry Open

Submit up to three poems of any length with an $8 entry fee

Fan Story 20 Syllable Poem Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a poem that has exactly 20 syllables. Any format.

2022 Book Prize (unleash press)

All submissions must be in English. The minimum length of a manuscript is 30,000 words. Genres accepted include fiction and creative nonfiction. Author must have full rights to reprint entries

The Henshaw Short Story Competition

Anyone can enter. Entries must be fictional short stories of up to 2000 words on any theme. All entries must be the original work of the author, must not have been published before the date of submission.

National Youth Foundation

Each entry must incorporate the theme of Local Heroines. From the time of submission, entries become the property of the National Youth Foundation and will not be returned. All students must be in grades K to 8 and live in the United States. Each book must be between 20 and 30 pages. The cover, dedication and back pages do not count towards this number

Nova Writes Competition

Entry must be a work of short fiction or an excerpt from a longer work of fiction (up to a maximum of 3,000 words) and may be in any genre (historical fiction, literary fiction, mystery, romance, speculative fiction, or otherwise). You must be 16 years of age or older.

Fan Story 3-6-9 Poem Contest

Anyone can enter. This poem has three stanzas. The subject can be anything.

Song Writing Competition 2022

Bethesda essay contest.

Residents of Montgomery County, MD and Upper NW Washington, D.C. (20015 and 20016 ZIP codes) are eligible. The contest will take entries in two categories: High School (grades 9-12) and Adult (ages 18+). Essays must be limited to 500 words or less about a topic of the writer’s choosing. Only one entry per person. Stories must be limited to 4,000 words or less.

The Mogford Prize for Food and Drink Writing

Anyone above 18 can enter. The English short story should have a maximum of 2,500 words. Entries must never have been published, self-published, broadcast or published on any website, blog or online forum. Entries must be the sole work of the entrant.

John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Essay Contest

Any United States high school students in grades 9-12 may apply. Describe and analyze an act of political courage by a U.S. elected official who served during or after 1917. Length: 1,000 words max with a minimum of 700. Past winners and finalists, employees of John Hancock Financial Services and members of their families are not eligible to participate.

Magma Poetry Competition

Anyone can enter. Poems may be on any subject, and must be in English and your own original work. They must not have been published, self-published or accepted for publication in print or online, broadcast, or have won or been placed in another competition at any time. Length: 11–50 lines.

The Royal Society of Literature Encore Award

The Award is open for any published second novel, which must be a full-length work of fiction. The writer must have been resident in the United Kingdom (UK) or the Republic of Ireland (RoI) for the past three years. Novellas or children’s books are ineligible. Books published with vanity publishers are not eligible.

Law Day Contest

Writing – Grades 1st through 12th: Students will respond to a prompt based on their grade level provided below or may submit an essay based on a prompt relating to the Law Day theme. Each prompt provided has been tailored to align with the Oklahoma State Department of Education social studies standards. Poetry and creative writing entries will also be accepted as part of the writing contest. There is no word-count minimum or maximum requirement.

Rattle Chapbook Prize

Anyone can enter. Each poet may submit 15–30 pages of poems in English only (no translations).Individual poems may be previously published in any format, but the manuscript as a whole must be unpublished as a collection.

Driftwood Press Short Story Contest

Anyone can enter. The entry should be between 1,000-5,000 words. The work must not have been previously published. Submit works written in English only, no translations.

Driftwood Press Poem Contest

Submitters may send up to five poems in a single document for consideration. Each poem must not exceed sixty lines. Prose poetry, experimental poetry, and poetry with a visual element are all welcome. Any submissions should be written primarily in English.

Rose Post Creative non-fiction Contest

The competition is open to any writer who is a legal resident of North Carolina or a member of the North Carolina Writers’ Network. Theme: Lasting non-fiction that is outside the realm of conventional journalism and has relevance to North Carolinians. Subjects may include traditional categories such as reviews, travel articles, profiles or interviews, place/history pieces, or culture criticism. Each entry must be an original and previously unpublished manuscript of no more than 2,000 words.

William Matthews Poetry Prize

Anyone can enter. Submit 3 poems in a single file, any style, any subject, any length. Previously published work and translations are not eligible. Simultaneous submissions are accepted, but notify us immediately if a poem is accepted for publication elsewhere.

Desert Writers Award

Anyone can enter. Length: no more than 10 pages, double spaced with 1-inch margins. You may submit published, unpublished, or work in progress but it must be an original work.

Heron Tree Volume 8

Anyone can enter. Poems that have previously appeared online (temporarily or permanently, on your own or a third-party site) should not be submitted, nor should work that has already been published electronically or in print. Simultaneous submissions are welcome with timely notification of acceptance elsewhere.

Storytellers of Tomorrow

we’re inviting all high-school-age students to submit unpublished, original English-language stories of up to 2,000 words in length for the 7th Annual “Storytellers of Tomorrow” Contest. The sole criterion for earning prizes in this contest is simply overall quality, meaning that well-edited, engaging, and evocative stories have the best chance of winning over the judges.

Border Crossing Contest

Fiction: No longer than 5000 words, with title and page number on each page after the first. NonFiction: No longer than 5000 words, with title and page number on each page after the first. Poetry: submit 3-5 poems in one file up to 10 pages; do not submit poems separately. Please note that you may only submit one file per reading period; multiple submissions will not be considered.

Novella-in-Flash Award

Anyone above 16 can enter. Entries can be on any theme or subject but must be original, unpublished previously, not have won a prize, and written in English between 6,000 and 18,000 words long.

Emma Howell Rising Poet Prize

Poets 35 or younger who have not previously published a book-length poetry manuscript are eligible. Poets who have previously published chapbooks are welcome to enter. Submissions must be original, book-length poetry manuscripts (minimum of 48 pages) written in English. There is no maximum page count. Translations are not accepted. One manuscript per submission.

The Bournemouth Writing Prize

Anyone above 16 can enter. Short Story length: Up to 3000 words maximum. It can be about any topic and in any style. Poetry length: Up to 42 lines. We are looking for poetry that is fresh and unexpected. All entries should be in English and be accompanied by a short (75 word) biography of the author and postal address. Entries must be entirely the work of the entrant and must never have been previously published, or broadcast or won a prize in another writing competition.

great weather

One prose/creative nonfiction piece, two if both under 500 words. Maximum word count: 2,500. Please include the word count on the first page.

Calibre Essay Prize

Anyone can enter except ABR staff and board members. Essay length: 2,000 to 5,000 words, written in English. Exclusivity is essential for longlisted essays.

Past Search Prize for Non-Fiction

Anyone can enter. Maximum 1,000 ~ 1,500 words.

North American Book Award

Anyone can enter. The book of poetry submitted must be the work of a single author, at least 64 pages long, and published in 2020 by an established press. Manuscripts, videos, CDs, chapbooks, and self-published books are not eligible, nor are books that have won awards, including a pre-publication award by the publishing press. It is expected that the book will contain both new and previously published poems.

Poetry Society of Virginia 2022 Contest

Anyone can enter. All entries must be in English, typed, unpublished, origi­nal, and not scheduled for publication before May, 2020. All entries not in compliance with category specifications will be disqualified.

Stage It! 10-Minute Plays Competition

Anyone can enter. Plays should be in generally-accepted script format and in English. Length: 10 pages or a 10 minutes read.

DISQUIET Prize

Anyone above 18 can enter. Only previously unpublished work in English can be submitted by authors who have not yet published more than one book. For the Novel/short story category: One short story or novel excerpt, maximum 25 (double-spaced) pages per entry. For the Poem category: No more than SIX poems per entry, up to 10 pages total and for the Nonfiction category: One piece of non-fiction, maximum 25 (double-spaced) pages per entry.

8th Ó Bhéal Five Words International Poetry Competition

Anyone can enter. Poems cannot exceed 50 lines in length (including line breaks), and must include all five words listed during this week. A modicum of poetic license is acceptable. Poems should be newly written, during the relevant 7-day period.

Fan Story Nonet Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. It has to be a nonet, but it can be on any subject and rhyming is optional.

Horror Writing Contest

Anyone can enter. Put your readers on edge or terrorize them.

Manchester Poetry Prize

The Competition is open internationally to anyone aged 16 or over who is not excluded by these Rules. There is no upper age limit for entry. Entrants may submit as many entries as they wish, but each submission must be submitted as a separate entry with payment of a separate entry fee.

Joe Gouveia Outermost Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Send up to 5 of your best unpublished poems, any style or subject matter, no more than 7 pages in total.

Manchester Fiction Prize

The Competition is open internationally to anyone aged 16 or over who is not excluded by these Rules. There is no upper age limit for entry, a portfolio comprising a minimum of three and a maximum of five poems. There is no minimum or maximum line limit for each individual poem, but the overall maximum length of the poems combined must not exceed 120 lines.

Fan Story Share A Story In A Poem Contest

Anyone can enter. In this contest you are challenged to write a poem that tells a story and also rhymes.

First Chapter Competition

Anyone can enter. International entries are welcome but first chapters must be written in English and can be up to 3,500 words (no minimum word count) and on any theme and subject (except children’s fiction). The novel should be unpublished and not have been accepted by a publisher.

Parracombe Prize 2022

To enter, simply submit a short story of no more than 2,022 words. Entries must be in English, your own original work, must not have been published or accepted for publication elsewhere.

3rd Annual Short Short Story Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a short short story no longer than 100 words. The contest is open to prose, any genre. Topics: ants, bowling, 1940s, water.

The Kent and Sussex Poetry Society Open Competition

Anyone can enter. Poems must be in English, unpublished, not accepted for publication, and must be your original work. They must be no longer than 40 lines.

Fish Publishing Short Memoir Prize

Anyone can enter. The entries can’t have been previously published. Maximum number of words is 4,000 in English.

GCWA Writing Contest

Anyone can enter. Youth category: 11-17; adult category: above 18. Your entry must be original, in English, unpublished, and unproduced, not accepted by any other publisher or producer before April 1, 2022. Fiction/non-fiction/children’s —1500 words maximum. Poetry – 40 lines maximum.

Lancashire Authors’ Association Open Competition

Anyone 16 or above can enter. The story must be exactly 100 words. Entries must be original, unpublished work which is not currently submitted for publication or entered into any other competition or award.

The Big Moose Prize

Anyone can enter. The Big Moose Prize is open to traditional unpublished novels as well as novels-in-stories, novels-in-poems, and other hybrid forms that contain within them the spirit of a novel. Manuscripts should be 90-1,000 pages in length.

The Brucedale Press Annual Acrostic Story Contest

Anyone under 18 can enter. Stories entered must be original, unpublished work created by the entrant, not previously entered in this contest. Stories may not be longer than 26 sentences. The first sentence must begin with “Because I can…”. Any subject or theme is acceptable, provided there is no profanity, obscenity, ageism, racism or sexism.

The BookLife Prize

Anyone can enter. Both unpublished or self-published books in the English language are eligible for the BookLife Prize. Entries must contain 40,000 to 100,000 words.

Clash of the Query Letters

One page—maximum 500 words, Only original, unpublished, unrepresented work may be submitted, Word documents & PDFs accepted, The winning submissions will be published on the Chopping Blog, All entrants will be notified of winners and shortlist by email.

The Fiction Desk

We are able to consider stories that are between 1,000 and 20,000 words in length; please do not send anything longer or shorter than this. Most of the stories we publish are between about 2,000 and 7,000 words.

Arts & Letters

Send only one submission per genre at any one time. (In other words, submitting a short story and an essay at the same time is fine, but please wait to hear from us before submitting another story.), All submissions must be typed and all prose double-spaced.

The Page Prize

Fiction: Manuscripts should be double-spaced. Please use 1″ margins and include page numbers. Maximum length is about 5000 words. NonFiction: Manuscripts should be typed and double-spaced. Please use 1″ margins and include page numbers. Manuscripts should be no more than about 5,000 words. Poetry: A maximum of three poems may be submitted.

The Danuta Gleed Literary Award

All entries must be Canadian-authored titles published in English between January 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020 and available through bookstores and libraries. Submission must be a first collection/first edition of short fiction, no co-authored entries, no posthumously published works, electronically published works not eligible, submission must be made by a publisher. Translations from other languages into English are eligible if all other criteria are met.

Cambridge Autumn Festival Short Story Competition

Anyone can enter. The word limit is 1500 words.The theme for this year’s competition is “Lockdown”.

Cúirt New Writing Prize 2022

Poetry entries must consist of up to three poems under 50 lines each. Short stories should be no longer than 2,000 words. Entry costs €10 in total which covers one story or up to three poems. Entries are welcome in English and Irish. An Irish language adviser will be approached to assess entries in the Irish language. The story or poems submitted should not have been accepted for publication elsewhere.

Bluefire 1000-Word Short Story Contest

Anyone in school grades 6-12 can enter. Entries must be original and not previously published. Length: exactly 1000 words. Previous grand prize winners are not eligible to submit in the same grade category (6-8, or 9-12) in which they have won.

EngineerGirl Essay Contest

Anyone in school (grades 3-12) can enter. Submit a piece of writing that salutes engineering’s role in meeting and defeating the challenges presented by COVID-19. Check guidlines for your category. Grades 3-5: 600 words limit. Grades 6-8: 650 words limit. High school: 700 words limit.

St. Gallen Symposium Esay Competition

Anyone enrolled in a graduate or postgraduate programme (master level or higher) and born in 1992 or later can enter. Essay should be in English and length should be max. 2,100 words. The essay must be written exclusively for this contest.

Arizona Mystery Writers Mary Ann Hutchison Memorial Story Contest for Youths

Writers from 9-16 years of age. Submission must be up to 2500 words (about 10 double-spaced pages).

Jim Baen Memorial Short Story Award

Anyone can enter. Submit a short story of no more than 8,000 words, that shows the near future (no more than about 50-60 years out) of manned space exploration.

Blinkpot Flash Fiction Awards

Anyone above 18 can enter. The entry must be in English and must have been written by the person making the submission. Entries must not have been previously published, broadcast or won a prize. Entries can be on any theme or subject. Maximum entry length is 100 words and minimum length 80.

Graywolf Press Nonfiction Prize

Graywolf awards the Nonfiction Prize to a previously unpublished, full-length work of outstanding literary nonfiction by a writer who is not yet established in the genre. The Graywolf Press Nonfiction Prize seeks to acknowledge—and honor—the great traditions of literary nonfiction. Whether grounded in observation, autobiography, or research, much of the most beautiful, daring, and original writing over the past few decades can be categorized as nonfiction.

EngineerGirl Writing Contest

You should submit an informative essay about the role of engineering in meeting one or more of the Sustainable Development Goals. All entries are limited to 650 words. High school students are also required to submit a reference list with their essay. A reference list is optional for middle and elementary school students. This list does not count toward the word limit.

Penguin Random House Creative Writing Awards

Current high school seniors at a public high school in the United States graduating Spring of 2022, 21 years of age and under, Plan to enroll in an accredited two-year or four-year college, university, or approved vocational-technical school Fall 2022, ubmit one original literary composition in English in one of the following genres of poetry, spoken word, fiction/drama or personal essay/memoir. Only the first 1000 applications will be accepted.

Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition

Stories must be original unpublished fiction, typed and double-spaced, and may not exceed 3,500 words in length. There are no theme or genre restrictions. Copyright remains the property of the author.

1000 Words Contest

open to all students enrolled in grades 6-12. Each entrant may submit a fiction piece consisting of exactly 1,000 words (not including title or author’s name). The fiction piece can be on any topic, as long as it is not vulgar or offensive, does not use inappropriate profanity, and is the original work of the entrant not previously published.

The Southampton Review

Fiction: We accept short stories and novel excerpts.5,000 words max. Flash Fiction is welcome!, NonFiction: We accept creative nonfiction, memoir, personal essay, traditional essay, and hybrid forms. 5,000 words max. Poetry: 5 poems max per submission.

Ottawa Travel Writing Contest

Anyone can enter. Eligible entries include items in English or in French that have appeared in magazines, newspapers, or online media in 2021 that highlight Ottawa as a travel destination.

Accenti Writing Contest

Anyone can enter. Submissions for original and unpublished English prose texts only. Maximum length: 2000 words. No poetry, plays, reviews, and scholarly essays. No footnotes and endnotes. No pseudonyms. Submissions can be an English translation of the author’s unpublished original work in another language.

Adamah Media writers’ competition

This competition is open to young adults, aged between 18 and 28. The writers’ competition is open to articles in English submitted by applicants globally and from all nationalities. All images used within any entry should be credited in the image description, otherwise these images will not be used and alternatives will be found for publication. word limit: 1000-1500 words

Fan Story 2-4-2 Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a 2-4-2 syllable poem. The subject can be anything.

The National Federation of Press Women’s Communications Contest for High School Students

All high school students in the US can enter. All 2022 contest entries must have been published, e-published, broadcast, or issued between February 1, 2021, and January 31, 2022. Entries must be produced by a current high school student or a recently graduated student who produced the work in their senior year after February 1, 2021.

The National Federation of Press Women’s Communications Contest for Professionals

The NFPW Communications contest is open to anyone regardless of sex, professional status or location. College students do not have to be 18 to enter any of the categories in the Collegiate Division. High school students may enter the professional contest if they are acting in a professional capacity. Entrants must enter the contest into their home state if that state is sponsoring a contest. Entrants who reside in a state without a contest must enter the at-large contest. Entries in the at-large contest may be regionally divided depending upon entries. All work must have been published or broadcast between January 1, 2021, and December 31, 2021, to be eligible for entry.

Next Generation Indie Book Awards

The 2022 Next Generation Indie Book Awards is open to all indie book authors and publishers who have a book, a manuscript, or a galley proof written in English and published in 2020, 2021 or 2022 or with a 2020, 2021 or 2022 copyright date.

Writers’ & Artists’ Short Story Competition

Anyone can enter. Submit a short story (for adults) of no more than 2,000 words.

The Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize

The competition is for novel manuscripts in any genre by unpublished women writer residents in the UK and Ireland. Literary and genre fiction are equally welcomed, and novels for children and young adults may be entered as long as they are primarily word-based. Picture books are not accepted. To enter, send the first 30 to 50 pages and a synopsis between three and five pages.

Scissortail Creative Writing Festival

All Oklahoma high school students (9th – 12th grade) are eligible. Poetry (up to 100 lines) or Short Fiction (up to 6,000 words) is acceptable. Limit 5 poems and 1 short fiction piece per student. All entries must be the original work of the student. All entries must be neatly typed; please double-space fiction entries.

Create The Future Writing Competition

Individual entrants can enter one submission. Poetry (up to 40 lines), Short stories (up to 2,000 words), All other creative prose (up to 2,000 words), Entries must not have been published (including self-published, published on a website, broadcast or featured amongst the winners in another competition). The competition is open to all writers over the age of 18, The Create the Future competition is open worldwide and applicants from non-English-speaking countries are warmly welcomed.

Adventures in Fiction Spotlight First Novel Award

Anyone can enter. To enter, submit the first page of your novel and a one-page synopsis. The winner should be prepared to submit the manuscript of their novel in hard copy (12pt, double-spaced, single side of the paper only) to Adventures in Fiction by the beginning of April. Prize: A Stage One Mentoring package for a novel of up to 550 pages/170,000 words including a full manuscript appraisal, a development strategy and two consultations and a dedicated page on the Adventures in Fiction website including a profile of you and your novel.

IndieReader Discovery Awards

Only books that have been either self-published or published by an independent publisher and have an ISBN or ASN can enter.

Achievement Awards in Writing

All 11th grade students in the current academic school year are eligible to be nominated by their school’s English department. Schools in the United States, Canada, Virgin Islands and American Schools Abroad are eligible. Nominating schools must be US accredited. Participating students submit two types of writing: themed writing (AWA prompt) and best writing. 2022 prompt: My Community. Writing options include poetry, short story, personal narrative, essay, or graphic storytelling. Themed Writing: max 4 pages. Best Witing: max 6 pages.

Promising Young Writers Program

All 8th grade students in the current academic school year are eligible to be nominated by their school’s English department. Schools in the United States, Canada, Virgin Islands and American Schools Abroad are eligible to nominate juniors. Nominating schools must be US accredited. Participating students submit two types of writing: themed writing (AWA prompt) and best writing. 2022 prompt: Change; Amidst isolation in 2020. You may produce any genre, or kind, of writing. Themed Writing: max 4 pages. Best Witing: max 6 pages.

Ambroggio Prize

Any US citizen or resident for the ten-year period prior to the submission deadline can enter. Poets are not eligible to apply if they have studied with the judge in full-time accredited courses within the last three years The manuscript must be originally written in Spanish and accompanied by a translation in English. Poets may translate their own work or collaborate with a translator who may or may not be a poet. The poet and translator must share the $1,000 prize. Poems may have been previously published in periodicals or chapbooks, but the collection must not have been previously published, including self-publications and e-books. The original manuscript in Spanish must contain original poetry by one poet and must be between 48 and 100 pages, typed single-spaced, unless the poems are meant to be presented using nonstandard spacing.

Morton and McCarthy Prizes

Open to any short fiction writer in English. Employees and board members of Sarabande Books, Inc. are not eligible. Submissions may include a collection of short stories, one or more novellas, or a short novel. Works that have previously appeared in magazines or in anthologies may be included.

Apprentice Writer

Only high school students can enter. You can submit poetry, chorepoetry, spoken word submissions, graphic fiction and non-fiction, and prose.

New Welsh Writing Awards

Writers from the UK and Ireland as well as those who have been educated in Wales for over six months can enter. Entries should be prose with a Welsh theme or setting and should be an unpublished book (between 5,000 and 30,000 words) in English. Entries this year may vary across the categories, from short form Welsh-themed- or Welsh-set non-fiction to a novella or short story collection set in Wales or with a Welsh theme.

Robert Watson Literary Prize

Anyone who is an active Greensboro Review subscriber can enter. Entries must be previously unpublished. No simultaneous submissions. Length restrictions: no more than 7,500 words or 25 pages for fiction; up to 500 words for flash fiction; up to 10 pages for poetry.

Guernsey Literary Festival 2022

Your poem could be on show in 2022. The Guernsey Literary Festival, together with Guernsey Arts and Guernsey Post, presents a competition that could deliver your work to thousands of readers. Winning entries are selected in two phases: 21 poems will be chosen, and 9 of these will take part in a second, Entries must be no longer than 14 lines and must fit on a single A4 page.

Harold Morton Landon Translation Award

resident of the United States for the ten-year period prior to the submission deadline, Only books published in the United States during 2021 are eligible for the 2022 prize. Books must be published in a standard edition (48 pages or more). Self-published books will not be considered.

Short Prose Competition

Original, unpublished fiction or nonfiction up to 2,500 words in the English language. Writers who have had no more than one book published (traditionally or self-published) in any genre or language and who are not currently under contract for a second book. Writers not published in book format are also eligible. Writers must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada.

SPJ/JEA High School Essay Contest

All 9-12 high school students in the US can apply. The essay should be 300-500 words of original work. Entrants must write about: “Why must journalists strive to improve diversity and representation in both their coverage and in their newsrooms, and how might this happen?”

Willow Run Poetry Book Award

Anyone can enter. Must be an unpublished English book length collection of poetry of 75 to 100 pages.

This Sentence Starts The Story

Anyone can enter. Write a story that starts with this sentence: It’s happening tonight. You have the option to put it in quotes (for dialogue) and to change the punctuation at the end for proper grammar.

Writing for Children Competition 2022

Waxing & waning tennessee tempest edition.

Anyone can enter. Poetry: 1-5 poems, up to 3,000 words. Fiction / creative non-fiction: 100-5,000 words (if any longer, it should be good enough to merit the space it will take up).

Waxing & Waning Screenplay Contest

Anyone can enter. Screenplays or plays can be up to 25 pages (may be a part of a whole).

The George Floyd Short Story Competition

All genres/styles are accepted. Word count shouldn’t exceed 5000 words. This year’s theme is climate change.

The Chaucer Tales Writing Competition

The competition is open to all students of school age including not only those in schools and college communities (ages 5-18), but also students who are home educated and in any other young people’s community organisations. The maximum word count is 500 words in English. The special theme of the competition this year is Be Careful What You Wish For!

Margery Allingham Short Mystery Competition

Anyone can enter. The international competition is open to all – both published and unpublished authors from all over the world – and is for short stories of up to 3,500 words. The story cannot have been previously published anywhere, or shortlisted for this competition.

The Exeter Writers Short Story Competition

The competition is open to anyone. Writing is ok in any genre except children stories. Stories must not have been previously published nor won a prize in any other competition. Previous prize-winning stories are not eligible for re-entry. Length: 3,000 words max.

Flash 500 Short Stories competition

Anyone can enter. Stories should range between 1,000 and 3,000 words, with strong characters, a well-crafted plot and realistic dialogue (where used).

Fish Publishing Flash Fiction Prize

Anyone can enter. Maximum number of words is 300 and it must be in English. The winning stories must be available for the Fish Anthology and, therefore, must not have been published previously. Fish will hold publishing rights for one year only after publication.

Reflex Fiction Flash Fiction Competition

Anyone above 16 can enter. Entries must be in Enflish and must be the work of the entrant and must not have been published or accepted for publication elsewhere in print or online including blogs or personal websites. Entries must be fiction but can be on any subject, and written in any style or form. No fan fiction or use of copyrighted material, characters, song lyrics etc.

Southword Poetry Prize

Anyone can enter. All poems must be previously unpublished. Works of translation where the original author is still in copyright will require the bios of both the original author and the translator. There is a suggested limit of 40 lines per poem.

The annual Lancaster Writing Award

All students in year 12-13 can enter. Categories: criticism, fiction, poetry, script and screen writing. Students may enter in more than one category and write in any style they wish. The word limit for criticism and fiction is 1500 words.The limit for poems is 25 lines. The limit for screenplays is 8 pages.

Scottish Arts Trust Short Story Competition

Anyone above 16 can enter. Length: 2,000 words or fewer. The entry should not have been previously published, online or in print. Short stories entered for the competition may be on any topic. Stories do not have to be set in Scotland or on Scottish themes but they must be in English.

The Isobel Lodge Award

Anyone above 16, is unpublished, and a resident of Scotland or studying in Scotland can enter. Entry can be published online or in print without compensation can qualify for the Isobel Lodge Award. Writers also qualify if they have self-published a work of fiction. Length: 2,000 words or fewer. The story should not have been previously published, online or in print. Stories do not have to be set in Scotland or on Scottish themes but they must be in English.

Nick Blatchford Occasional Verse Contest

Any Canadian (citizen or resident) can enter. Topic: poems written in response to an existing occasion, personal or public, or poems that make an occasion of something ordinary or by virtue of the poet’s attention. No word limit, must be unpublished nor accepted for publication elsewhere.

Minds Shine Bright’s first annual competition

Short stories: 5000 words/Flash Fiction: 1000 words /Poetry: 240 lines/Scripts: 90 pages, Each submission must be original, unpublished fiction written by the submitting author. Each submission must be entered into one of four categories including: poetry, micro/flash fiction, short stories or script writing.

Blue Mesa Review

accepts previously unpublished work in Fiction (up to 6,000 words), Nonfiction (up to 6,000 words), Poetry (up to 3 poems).

The Debut Dagger Award

the opening of a crime novel not exceeding 3,000 words and a synopsis of up to 1,500 words. You do not need to have completed the novel in order to enter. You must never have had a traditional publishing contract for any work of fiction over 20,000 words.

Self-Publishing Literary Awards

This contest is free and open to all self-published authors who meet the requirements. All eBooks submitted to the contest must be: In the poetry or fiction genres, A PDF or an ePUB file, In the English language, An original work that you own the rights to, Written by an African American author born in the U.S.

Red Hen Press Women’s Prose Prize

25,000 word minimum, 80,000 word maximum. Entries will be accepted via Submittable only. The award is open to all women writers with the following exceptions: Authors who have had a full-length work published by Red Hen Press, or a full-length work currently under consideration by Red Hen Press, Employees, interns, or contractors of Red Hen Press, Relatives of employees or members of the executive board of directors

Gutsy Great Novelist Chapter One Prize

The Gutsy Great Novelist Chapter One Prize is awarded for an outstanding first chapter of an unpublished novel. The prize is open internationally to anyone over 18 writing a novel in English in any genre for adult or YA readers.

Deep Wild 2021 Undergraduate Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. The entry should be a single poem of up to 70 lines.

Southword Fiction Story Prize

Anyone can enter. There is an upper limit of 5000 words for short stories. Only unpublished work.

Blue Mesa Awards

This competition is open to original English language works in the genres of Fiction, and Nonfiction. The submission must be an unpublished work. Simultaneous submissions are acceptable. accepts previously unpublished work in Fiction (up to 6,000 words), Nonfiction (up to 6,000 words). For the poetry category, Submissions of up to 3 unpublished poems are accepted.

Maureen Egen Writers Exchange Award

Have never published a book, Have published no more than one full-length book in the genre in which they are applying, Writers may apply in poetry and/or fiction (only one manuscript per category). Poetry manuscripts should not exceed ten pages, single or double-spaced (minimum of 7 pages). Fiction manuscripts should not exceed 25 pages and must be double-spaced. Fiction manuscripts may include stories and/or excerpts from novels.

The Christopher Tower Poetry Competition

Open to submissions from students between 16-19 years of age who are educated in the UK. Entries must be on written in English, and be no more than 48 lines in length. Entrants must be in full or part-time education at a school, college or other educational institution in the United Kingdom. Each poem must be the entrant’s own work, joint authorship is ineligible.

Fowey Festival Short Story Competition

Anyone above 16 can enter. The title for the competition is “Breaking Point”. Length: max 1500 words. Entries must be entirely the work of the entrant and must never have been previously published, commended, long-listed or short-listed in another writing competition.

True Story Contest

Anyone can enter. Share a true story from your life. Write a story that shares a moment, an object, a feeling, etc. This does not have to be a profound memory, but should allow readers insight into your feelings, observations and/or thoughts. Use at least 100 words. No poetry.

Cheshire Prize for Literature

The writer must have been born, live or have lived, study or have studied, work or have worked, in Cheshire. Entry must be an original and previously unpublished piece of creative work in one of four categories themed around all aspects of the pandemic including “lockdown”: poetry, short fiction, children’s literature and scriptwriting.

Geographies of Justice: Call for Submissions

Anyone can enter. Poetry/Lyric: no more than 50 lines. Fiction, essays, creative non-fiction and other prose: up to 4000 words. Must hold the rights to the work and must be unpublished.

Evesham Festival of Words Short Story Competition

Anyone above 16 can enter. Any genre or subject, must be unpublished and original, aimed at adults only. Length: max 2,500 words.

Nelligan Prize for Short Fiction

Anyone can enter. The stories must be at least 10 pages (or 2500 words) but no more than 50 pages (12,500 words). Stories must be previously unpublished.

Eludia Award

All women age 40 and above, who do not yet have a book-length publication of fiction, can enter. The author must be unpublished and the entry should be in English.

Minute Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. The Minute Poem is a poem that follows the “8,4,4,4” syllable count structure. It must have 12 lines total and 60 syllables.

James Jones First Novel Fellowship

Have never published a novel, Are U.S. citizens or permanent residents of America with Green Cards, May have published any other type of work including non-fiction articles and short stories. A two-page (maximum) outline or synopsis of the entire novel and the first 50 pages of the novel-in-progress are to be submitted. A specific format for the outline or synopsis is not required.

The 15th Annual Short Story Challenge

Anyone can enter.

The Phare Write Words Poetry Competition

Anyone 18 or above can enter. Entries must not have been previously published in print or online, been broadcast, or won a prize. They can be on any theme or subject but must be written in English. Non-fiction and fiction/poetry written for young adults or children is not eligible. Length: 40 lines max.

The Phare Write Words Short Story Competition

Anyone 18 or above can enter. Entries must not have been previously published in print or online, been broadcast or won a prize. They can be on any theme or subject but must be written in English. Non-fiction and fiction/poetry written for young adults or children is not eligible. Length: 3000 words max.

The Phare Write Words Flash Fiction Competition

Anyone 18 or above can enter. An entry can only be made by the work’s individual author. Entries must not have been previously published in print or online, been broadcast or won a prize. They can be on any theme or subject but must be written in English. Non-fiction and fiction/poetry written for young adults or children is not eligible. Length – 1000 words max.

Never Such Innocence Poetry Competition 2022

Poems must not be longer than 40 lines and should be your own, original work.

Two Line Poem

Anyone can enter. Write an essence poem. The poem should be of two lines with six syllables per line, each containing an internal rhyme and an ending rhyme.

Op-Ed Competition 2022

Young writers ages 13-18, 600 – 1,000 words.

5-7-5 Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. The entry should be a 5-7-5 poem that follows the structure of a Haiku but without any limitation to the topic.

SWAMP Writing

Anyone enrolled in a postgraduate program in any university across the globe can enter. Entries must be unpublished poetry, short fiction, creative non-fiction and memoir. This year’s theme: Reflection.

Free Verse Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. No restrictions.

The Edna Staebler Personal Essay Contest

All Canadians (citizen or resident) can enter. No word limit (2,000 – 5,000 expected), must be unpublished nor accepted for publication elsewhere.

Four Line Poem

Anyone can enter. Write a four line poem that has a specific syllable count. The subject can be anything.

Driftwood Poetry Collections

Anyone can enter. It should be between 40-100 pages of poetry. Experimental poetry, hybrid work, poetry with a visual element, prose poetry, and any avant-garde poetry are welcomed! Submissions should be primarily in English, but collections with a moderate bilingual component will of course be considered.

Dark Tales Short Story Competition

Anyone can enter. Each entry must be no longer than 5000 words, must be the original, unpublished work of the stated author.

Dream One Quest Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Previously published poems in other contests, books, magazines, etc. are accepted and welcomed as long as they are original works created by the contest entrant(s). All entries must be composed or translated into the English language. Poems must be 30 lines or fewer.

Dream One Quest Writing Contest

Anyone can enter. Previously published short stories in other contests, books, magazines, etc. are accepted and welcomed as long as they are original works created by the contest entrant(s). All entries must be composed or translated into the English language. Any fiction, non-fiction, creative non-fiction, essays, diary, journal entries, and short stage-plays and screenplays are accepted within a maximum of (5) pages or less.

Rubery Book Award

Anyone can enter. Your entry must be a book that is either self-published or published by an independent press.

Fish Publishing Poetry Prize

Anyone can enter. Poem length is restricted to 60 lines. The title is not included in the word limit, and it must be in English. The winning poem must be available for the Fish Anthology and, therefore, must not have been published previously. Fish will hold publishing rights for one year only after publication.

The Lascaux Prize in Poetry

Poets may enter more than once, and as many as five poems may be submitted per entry (all pasted into one document). There are no length restrictions. All genres and styles are welcome.

Wild Atlantic Writing Awards

For both categories, They’ve decided on an intriguing theme for both which is Time. The maximum length of your story should be 500 words, not including the title.

The Word Guild 2021 Fresh Ink Student Writing Awards

All entries must be published in 2021 and have a 2021 copyright date. Eligible entries must be in English or French. Self-published entries are admissible. We suggest the work be edited by a professional editor with experience in the publishing industry. The Word Awards are limited to writers who are Canadian. Submitter must confirm all entrants have Canadian Citizenship or Legal Permanent Resident Status.

The Caterpillar Poetry Prize 2022

Anyone above 16 can enter. The poem has to appeal to children aged 7-11 and it must be original and previously unpublished.

The Blue Mountain Novel Award

Anyone can enter. Entries must be original, and in English. It must be of a published novel of any length.

The Writers Of The Future

All amateur writers can enter. Entries must be original works by the entrant, in English. No excessive violence or sex. Entries may not have been previously published in professional media. Entries must be works of prose, up to 17,000 words in length. No poetry, or works intended for children.

The Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing

The contest is open to first-generation immigrants of their country. Entries should be unpublished and in English (translations welcome). Fiction manuscripts must be complete, a minimum of 45,000 words. non-fiction submissions must consist of either a complete manuscript, or a sample of at least 25,000 words and a detailed proposal.

Princeton 10-Minute Play Contest

All entrants must be students in the eleventh grade in the U.S. (or international equivalent of the eleventh grade).

Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Length limit: 250 lines maximum. Authors from all countries eligible except Syria, Iran, North Korea, and Crimea (due to US government restrictions). The poem you submit should be in English.

Zone 3 First Book Award in Poetry

Anyone can enter. Only unpublished work of a full-length collection of poems (48 pages or more) is eligible; those with chapbooks may participate. Manuscript should be 48-80 pages.

The Orison Prizes in Poetry & Fiction

Anyone can enter. Must be book-length manuscripts. Submissions should be of full-length poetry and fiction (minimum 30,000 words) manuscripts. Original English work only; no translations.

Manningham Trust Student Poetry Contest

There are two divisions: Grade 6-8 (Junior Division) and Grades 9-12 (Senior Division). Each NFSPS member state may submit ten (10) poems in each division. Poems may have been printed and/or have won previous awards. Each poem must be neatly typed or computer-generated and have no more than 35 lines including space lines with no line having more than 60 characters including spaces and punctuation. Every poem entered should appear on a single sheet.

2022 White Rose Memorial Essay Contest

Middle school Essay: Length: 500-1000 words. Eligibility: Students in grades 6-8 at the beginning of the 2021-2022 academic year may participate. Students may win an award only once in each school category. High school essay: Length: 750-1500 words, Eligibility: Students in grades 9-12 at the beginning of the 2021-2022 academic year may participate. Students may win an award only once in each school category. Use entry form attached.

Claymore Award

The contest is limited to only the first 50 double-spaced pages of unpublished English-language manuscripts containing elements of thriller, mystery, crime, or suspense NOT currently under contract.

Books By The Banks Writing Contest

This year’s contest theme is Home. You are encouraged to interpret this theme as literally or figuratively as you desire. Fiction, non-fiction, and poetry are welcome. Submitted work must be original and unpublished. Simultaneous submissions are fine, but please notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.

The Alpine Fellowship Academic Writing Prize

Anyone 18 and above can enter. Awarded for the best piece of academic essay writing on the theme of the 2021 Alpine Fellowship. A maximum of 4000 words per entry. Text must not have been published, self-published or accepted for publication in print or online, or have won or been placed in another competition at any time.

The Alpine Fellowship Writing Prize

Anyone 18 and above can enter. All genres permitted. A maximum of 2,500 words per entry. Text must not have been published, self-published or accepted for publication in print or online, or have won or been placed in another competition at any time (including the Alpine Fellowship Academic Writing Prize).

Nonfiction: We seldom publish prose that is more than 5,000 words in length. Fiction: We seldom publish prose that is more than 5,000 words in length. We will consider novel excerpts and flash pieces. Poetry: please submit no more than 6 poems.

Seaborne Magazine: Call for submissions about the sea

Anyone can enter. They are looking for rich, atmospheric fiction, non-fiction, poetry and visual artwork about the sea. Submissions must be formatted to UK spelling. They do not accept previously published submissions, in other magazines, websites or personal blogs. Fiction should be between 2,000-5,000 words for short stories, and 300 words for vignettes. Creative non-fiction should be between 800-1,500 words.

The American Foreign Service Association’s National High School Essay Contest

Students whose parents are not in the Foreign Service are eligible to participate if they are in grades 9 – 12 in the US, the District of Columbia, the U.S. territories, or if they are U.S. citizens attending high school overseas including home-schooled students. Previous first-place winners and immediate relatives of directors or staff of the AFSA and Semester at Sea are not eligible to participate. Length: 1,250 words max.

Oklahoma Poem Contest

Only Oklahoma residents are eligible to enter. Poems will be judged in 4 categories: K-4th, 5th-8th, 9th-12th, and Adult, The maximum length for poems is 30 lines, Poems can be rhymed or unrhymed, One poem per person, Previous winning poems cannot be submitted again.

The Colin Sutton Cup for Humour

Maximum 12-page spreads (totalling to 24 internal pages). No more than 500 words. Let your illustrations tell the story, Use whichever medium you’re most comfortable with, paint, pencil, collage, print etc….but don’t be afraid to experiment, word limit: 500, 12 page spreads (24 pages in total).

Ada Cambridge Biographical Prose Prize

Anyone 18 and above who lives in the state of Victoria can enter. Stories must be biographical. Stories must be between 1000 to 3000 words. The work must be original, written in English and not have been previously published. It should not have won a prize in any other competition.

Fan Story Dribble Flash Fiction Contest

Anyone can enter. The submitted work must be between 48 – 52 words.

Fan Story New Arrival Flash Fiction Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a story that uses exactly 100 words.

Fan Story Future Flash Fiction Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a flash fiction story that takes place in the future. Maximum length 500 words.

Etel Adnan Poetry Prize

Anyone of an Arab heritage can apply. Only first or second full-length books of poetry written in English may be submitted. Chapbooks are not considered as a previous publication in this regard. Manuscripts must be between forty-eight and ninety pages. Individual poems may have been published in chapbooks, journals, and anthologies. Work in translation is not accepted.

The Art and Writing Environmental Awareness Contest

All winners will be notified of the results in late April- mid May, Students ages 12-26 anywhere in the world are eligible to apply, Entries must involve the environment/environmental awareness,

We the Students Essay Contest

All students who are legal US residents or citizens, older than 14 and younger than 19, may apply. Stay tuned for updates on the 2021 contest prompt.

Fan Story Faith Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. The theme for this poetry contest is “faith”.

Poetry & Spoken Word Competition 2022

100 word flash fiction.

Anyone can enter. The entry should be exactly 100 words.

Ayn Rand anthem contest

Entrant must be at least 13 years old and in 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, or 12th grade for any part of the school year in which the contest is held. Essays must be submitted electronically through the online portal. Essays must be written in English only, and must be no fewer than 600 and no more than 1,200 words in length, double-spaced. One entry per student per contest.

Ayn Rand The fountainhead contest

Entrant must be in 11th or 12th grade for any part of the school year in which the contest is held. Essays must be submitted electronically through the online portal. Essays must be written in English only, and must be no fewer than 800 and no more than 1,600 words in length, double-spaced. One entry per student per contest.

Tanka Poetry Contest

Marsh hawk press poetry prize.

Anyone can enter. Manuscripts must be between 48 – 84 pages in length. Individual poems from the manuscript may have been previously published in magazines, anthologies, or chapbooks of less than 25 pages, but the collection, as a whole, must be unpublished.

The Claudia Ann Seaman Awards For Young Writers

High School students from anywhere in the world are eligible to submit original work written in English. Creative writing that was not previously published, can be submitted in the categories of poetry, fiction and creative non-fiction. Submit a maximum of three pieces across the three genres. Poetry, up to 80 lines. Fiction and creative non-fiction must be 1,800 words or less.

FAPA President’s Book Awards

Any English writing author can enter. All entries must be books with a copyright date from 2020 to 2022. Ebooks should be submitted in PDF format

3 Minute Drama Competition

The competition is open to all, but the script must be in English, and in PDF format. Warranty and Copyright. The script must be an original work that does not infringe upon another person’s copyright or other rights. It may or may not have been published before. The copyright in your script will remain your sole property.

Adventure Writer’s Competition

Science Fiction, Fantasy, Dystopian, Romance not allowed! – we can’t state it more straightforward than that unless we change the name of the competition to “The Not SciFi, Fantasy, Dystopian or Romance Competition.”,

Sentinel Literary Quarterly Poetry Competition

Anyone can enter. This competition is for original, previously unpublished poems in English, on any subject, in any style up to 50 lines long. Poems posted on members-only non-public groups for review/critique as part of the creative process are not deemed to have been previously published.

Cranked Anvil Short Story Competition

Anyone can enter. The competition is open to any theme or genre, but your story must be a maximum of 1,500 words and must be written in English. Entries must be the original and unpublished work of the entrant. This includes publication online, including (but not limited to) personal blogs or websites. Each entry must not be currently submitted for publication nor for any other competition or award.

The Ernest Hemingway Short Fiction Prize

Anyone can enter. Entries should be approximately 1500 words or less. Submissions should be unpublished.

Ver Poets Open Competition

Anyone 16 and above can enter. Poems should not have been published, or accepted for publication, in print or online. They should not have won prizes in other competitions, be simultaneously entered for other competitions or be translations of other poets’ work. Poems must be your own original work and may be on any theme. Length: no longer than 30 lines.

Tadpole Press 100 Word Writing Contest

Limit: 100 words per entry. Submit as many entries as you’d like. Writers: All ages. All genders. All nationalities. All writers welcome. Theme: The power of words.

CYGNUS Book Awards for Science Fiction | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Published works before Jan 1, 2019 will be disqualified. All works that have been published must be published after Jan. 1, 2019. Novels must be 60,000 plus words. You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.

World Historian Student Essay Competition

Only students enrolled in grades K–12 in public, private, and parochial schools, and those in home-study programs can apply. Past winners may not compete in the same category again. The entry should be approximately 1,000 words.

Bristol Short Story Prize

Anyone above 16 can enter. The maximum length of submissions is 4,000 words in English. Stories can be on any theme or subject and are welcome in any style including graphic, verse or genre-base .Entries must be entirely the work of the entrant and must never have been previously published, in print or online, or broadcast or won a prize in another writing competition.

15 Syllable Poem

Anyone can enter. Write a poem with exactly 15 syllables.

Writers’ Digest Annual Writing Competition

Anyone can enter. All entries must be in English. Only original works that have not been published (at the time of submission) in print, digital or online publications, Self-published work, unproduced scripts. Entries in the Print or Online Article category may be previously published.

Fan Story Non-Fiction Writing Contest

Anyone can enter. Submit literary works of non-fiction on any topic. It doesn’t matter if it’s spiritual, political, intellectual, emotional, funny, serious, or an essay about your DVD player. New entries only. Minimum length 500 words. Maximum Length 7,000 words. Recommended length 2,000 – 3,500 words.

3 Line Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. The poem has to have a syllable count of either 5-7-5 or 5-7-7. It shouldn’t rhyme. But the poem must address a loved one.

The Montreal International Poetry Prize

The Montreal Prize is awarded every 2 years for a single poem of 40 or fewer lines. Submissions open in January 2022. Entry fee rises to $25 CAD ($20 USD) from 2nd May.

James Laughlin Award

Any US citizen or resident for the ten-year period prior to the submission deadline can enter. Book must be under contract with a U.S. publisher and scheduled to be published between January 1, 2021, and December 31, 2021.Must be published by December 31, 2021. The author must have published one book of poetry in a standard edition (48 pages or more). Entries must be an English. Submissions are welcome from small presses, university presses, and trade publishers that have previously published at least four books of poetry. Translations and new editions of previously published books are not eligible.

Sports Writing Competition 2022

Fan story flash fiction contest.

Anyone can enter. Entry should be exactly 150 words.

Lazuli Literary Group Writing Contest

Anyone can enter. Fiction, non-fiction, poetry, essays, philosophical ruminations, stageplays, fragments, chapters, and excerpts are all acceptable.

Time Travelers Contest

You must write at least one chapter – there’s no maximum chapter limit. Because this contest is open to all audiences, your entries must not be sexually explicit and can’t feature graphic displays of gratuitious violence. Fan-fic novels are not eligible. The main character or characters of your entry must go through a change of temporality and must have a significant impact on the plot. This change must occur in the story before the end of the fourth chapter and must be mentioned in your book description.

The Peter Hinchcliffe Fiction Award

All Canadians who haven’t published either a first novel or short story collection can enter. No word limit (2,000 – 5,000 expected), must be unpublished nor accepted for publication elsewhere.

Rhyming Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a poem that has a rhyme scheme. How it rhymes is up to you.

Script Pipeline TV Writing Contest

The 2022 Script Pipeline TV Writing Competition heads into its 15th season, continuing the search for up-and-coming talent and connecting them with top producers, agencies, and managers. As one of the longest-running and most successful screenplay contests, we focus specifically on finding writers representation, supporting diverse voices, championing marketable, ambitious storytelling, and pushing original projects into production.

First Novel Prize

Entry is open to writers in the English language worldwide, regardless of the author’s country of residence. Entry is open to unpublished or independently published/self-published novelists only. Self-published/independently published means the author owns the rights to the work in full. Both represented and unrepresented novelists are welcome to enter the Prize. Only completed novels of over 50,000 words will be accepted, there is no maximum requirement for the number of words.

Accenti Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Submissions are open for entries unpublished and not under consideration by any other publication. Maximum length: 40 lines. Submissions can be an English translation of the author’s unpublished original work in another language.

Fiction Factory Poetry Competition

Fiction Factory welcomes submissions to its first ever poetry competition, judged by novelist and poet: Helen Cox. Maximum length: 40 lines.

Jane Austen Society Essay Contest

All students in school, university, or graduate school can apply.

Farnham Flash Fiction Competition

Anyone can enter. Story length: 500 words.

Fan Story Write A Script Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a script of any size (can be a small script as shown in the example) for any medium on any topic.

Bath Flash Fiction Award

Anyone above 16 can enter. Entries can be on any theme or subject but must be original and written in English. They must also be for adult or young adult readers. Non-fiction and fiction written for children under 13 years are not eligible. Max length is 300 words. Entries must not have been previously published in print or online, been broadcast or won a prize.

Fan Story ABC Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a one-stanza, five-line poem.

Fan Story 6 Word Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a poem with only 6 words.

Ocean Awareness Contest

All students aged 11 – 18 can apply. All entries must be original work in English and not previously submitted. Students ages 11-14 may enter the Junior Division (Creative Writing: up to 750 words; Poetry & Spoken Word: no more than 1 page). Students ages 15-18 may enter the Senior Division (Creative Writing: up to 1,250 words; Poetry & Spoken Word: no more than 2 pages).

Fan Story Haiku Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Only haiku poems.

Narrative Prize

We accept submissions only through our electronic submission system. We do not accept submissions through postal services or email. All manuscripts should be in 12-point type, with at least one-inch margins, and sequentially numbered pages. Fiction and nonfiction should be double-spaced. Poetry should be single-spaced.

Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award

Eligible works must have been first published in English between January 1, 2021 and January 1, 2022. To be eligible for the Silver Falchion Award, works must be published the year previous the competition and must be readily available to a North-American audience (either in print or digital format).

Baby Boomer Plus

he word count for this contest is 900 – 4000 words. Stories Through The Ages – Baby Boomers Plus is open to people born 1966 or earlier. There is no prompt for the contest Authors may write about any topic.

Poetry Chapbook Prize

Each manuscript should consist of a 20-30 page chapbook in a standard 12-point font. Chapbooks may not have been previously published nor be forthcoming, though individual poems may have been published elsewhere (provided rights have reverted to the author).

International Essay Contest for Young People

Essays may be submitted by anyone up to 25 years old (as of June 15, 2022) in one of the following age categories: a) Children (ages up to 14) b) Youth (ages 15 – 25) Essays must be 700 words or less in English or French, or 1600 characters or less in Japanese. Essays must be typed, with your name and essay title included at the top of the first page

TCK Publishing Flash Fiction Contest

This contest is open to writers from all countries, backgrounds, and levels of experience and we invite you to join the 2022 TCK Publishing Flash Fiction Contest. Any writer (regardless of who your publisher is or if your work has been previously published) may submit a short story totaling no more than 500 words (less is fine).

Food Writing Competition 2022

The lascaux prize in flash fiction.

Writers may enter more than once, and as many as three stories may be submitted per entry (all pasted into one document). Individual story length should not exceed 1,000 words. All genres and styles are welcome.

Fan Story Cinquain Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Entries must adhere to the contest’s syllable specifications.

Fan Story Love Poem Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. But it must clearly be a love poem.

Drue Heinz Literature Prize

Open to writers who have published a novel or a book-length collection of fiction in English. Translations are not eligible if the translation was not done by the author. Eligible submissions include an unpublished manuscript of short stories; two or more novellas (a novella may comprise a maximum of 130 double-spaced typed pages); or a combination of one or more novellas and short stories. Novellas are only accepted as part of a larger collection. Length: 150 – 300 pages.

North Street Book Prize

Anyone can enter except those from Syria, Iran, North Korea, and Crimea (due to US government restrictions). Length limit: 200,000 words maximum in English. You may submit a collection of short stories or essays as a single entry.

The Bulwer Lytton Fiction Contest

Anyone can enter. Must be original and unpublished. Each entry must consist of a single sentence. The entry shouldn’t go beyond 50 or 60 words.

Blackwater Press short story contest

Anyone can enter. Word limit should be between 1000 words to 10,000 words.

The Orison Chapbook Prize

Anyone can enter. Must be manuscripts of 20-45 pages, in any genre (poetry, fiction, non-fiction, or hybrid). Original English work only; no translations. Individual poems, stories, or essays—or excerpts—may have been previously published in periodicals and/or chapbooks, but the manuscript as a whole must not have been published in book form, whether digital or in print. Self-published manuscripts are not eligible.

Saudi Historical Fiction Awards

The AWARDS are open worldwide for entries, and there are no eligibility criteria except that manuscripts must be historical, in the English language and with a Saudi setting. To qualify for the prize, your novel must total at least 60,000 words and should be no longer than 150,000 words.

The Gutsy Great Novelist Page One Prize

The Gutsy Great Novelist Page One Prize is awarded for an outstanding opening page of an unpublished novel. The prize is open internationally to anyone over 18 writing a novel in English in any genre for adult or YA readers.

Fantasy Writing Competition 2022

Short story competition clean vs green.

Open to all – international writers are encouraged. All submissions must be in English and unpublished. A short story of between 1000 and 3000 words. Please submit your short story plus around 200 words on your thinking behind your approach and how your story meets the criteria. The title of the document should be the title of your story.

Fan Story Rhyming Poem Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a poem of any type. But there must be a rhyme scheme.

Cozy and Not-So-Cozy Mystery Book Awards | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Published works before Dec. 31, 2019 will be disqualified. Novels must be 60,000 plus words.You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.You may enter more than one novel into a given contest.

WOW! Women on Writing Creative non-fiction Essay Contest

All women can enter. Entries should be creative non-fiction in English. Maximum words: 1000. Minimum words: 200.

Polar Expressions National Poetry and Short-Story Contest

Any Canadian resident or citizen can enter. There are two seperate prize categories: 1) ages 16 and above, and 2) ages 15 and under. All work must be original. Entries should not have been previously published and no simultaneous submissions. Poems must be 48 lines or less. Short stories must be 750 words or less. Fanfiction and essays are not permitted. Entries should be in English or accompanied by an English translation.

Highlands & Islands Short Story Association

Any amateur author can enter. Any theme (unusual story lines preferred), must be unpublished and original and won no prize before. Short Story length: max 2,000 words. Flash Fiction length: max 500 words.

Fan Story New Arrival Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. This is a “New Arrival” contest which is designed to welcome new members to the site.

Red Hen Press Novella Award

15,000 word minimum, 30,000 word maximum. Entries will be accepted via Submittable only. The award is open to all writers with the following exceptions: Authors who have had a full-length work published by Red Hen Press; or a full-length work currently under consideration by Red Hen Press, Employees, interns, or contractors of Red Hen Press, Relatives of employees or members of the executive board of directors.

Western, Pioneer, & Civil War, Americana Historical Fiction Novels, and First Nations Novels | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Historical fiction pre-1750s writing contest | chaucer | chanticleer book reviews.

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Copyrighted works before Dec. 31, 2017 will be disqualified. Novels must be 60,000 plus words.You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.You may enter more than one novel into a given contest.

Historical Fiction Post 1750s Writing Contest | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Copyrighted works before Dec. 31, 2018 will be disqualified. Novels must be 60,000 plus words.You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.You may enter more than one novel into a given contest.

The Orison Anthology Awards

Anyone can enter. Submissions are for single works in 3 genres (poetry, fiction, an non-fiction). Submit up to 3 poems (10 pp. max), 1 story (up to 8,000 words), or 1 work of non-fiction (up to 8,000 words). You may submit in multiple genres, and/or submit multiple entries in each genre.

Fan Story Loop Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Loop Poetry requires that the last word of each line becomes the first word of the next line. The rhyme scheme is abcb.

Fan Story My Faith Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Share a poem that is about your faith or how faith has impacted your life. Any type of poem accepted.

Flash Fiction Competition 2022

Anthology magazine short story competition.

Anyone can enter. Stories submitted must be on the theme of ‘Memories’ in English. To enter, submit an original, unpublished short story, written in English on the subject of ‘Memories’ with a maximum of 1,500 words.

Young Adult and Teen Writing Contests | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Published works before Dec. 31, 2018 will be disqualified. Novels must be 50,000 plus words.You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.You may enter more than one novel into a given contest.

Middle Grade Fiction Writing Contests | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Published works before Dec. 31, 2018 will be disqualified. Novels must be 50,000 plus words.You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.You may enter more than one novel into a given contest. 20,000+ word count .

Oxford Flash Fiction Prize

Anyone can enter. All entries must be the work of the person entering and must not have been published anywhere online (including blogs and websites) or accepted for publication elsewhere. It must be in English. The copyright remains with the author. Length: 1000 words, no minimum word limit.

Fan Story Take A Photo Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter. Write a poem about a photo you’ve taken.

Aesthetica Poetry Creative Writing Award

Anyone can enter. Poetry entries should be no more than 40 lines. They accept works on any theme.

Aesthetica Short Story Creative Writing Award

Anyone can enter. Fiction entries should be no more than 2,000 words. They accept works on any theme.

Romantic Fiction Writing Contests | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Published works before January 1, 2018 will be disqualified. Novels must be 50,000 plus words.You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.You may enter more than one novel into a given contest.

Coniston Prize for Women Poets

All women can enter. Submit 3-6 previously unpublished poems in English. This award recognizes an exceptional group of poems.

Blue Mesa Review Writing Contest

Anyone can enter. Must be in English, unpublished original work, simultaenous submissions acceptable. Please submit a packet of up to 3 poems or up to 6,000 words of prose.

Miller Williams Poetry Prize

Anyone can enter. Length: Manuscripts must be between sixty and ninety pages. The manuscript must be previously unpublished. Individual poems may have been published in chapbooks, journals, and anthologies. Work in translation is not accepted.

Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest

Anyone can enter except those from Syria, Iran, North Korea, and Crimea (due to US government restrictions). Length limit: 250 lines maximum per poem. The entry should be your own original work and in English. You may submit the same poem simultaneously to this contest and to others, and you may submit poems that have been published or won prizes elsewhere. (However, please do not submit work that has previously received recognition at Winning Writers.)

The Lascaux Prize in Creative Nonfiction

Creative nonfiction may include memoirs, chronicles, personal essays, humorous perspectives, literary journalism—anything the author has witnessed, experienced, learned, or discovered. Writers may enter more than once. Length should not exceed 10,000 words. All topics are welcome; pieces should be written in a nonacademic style

Thriller, Suspense Writing Contest | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. 12 point font – Times New Roman suggested. Single or double-spaced. Single spaced preferred by judges. Name, title, and word count on cover page. Pages should be numbered. Digital WORD documents or PDF only. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Published works before Dec. 31, 2018 will be disqualified. Novels must be 60,000 plus words. You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee. You may enter more than one novel into a given contest.

Little Peeps Picture Books and Early Readers Writing Contests | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. Published works before Dec. 31, 2018 will be disqualified.You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.You may enter more than one novel into a given contest.

Non-Fiction Writing Contests | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Books may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. Books may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. All published books must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Works published before Dec. 31, 2018 will be disqualified. Books must be 50,000 plus words. You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee. You may enter more than one book into a given contest.

The Crucible First Novel Award

Anyone can enter. Submit the first 5,000 words of their manuscripts, along with a 150 word ‘elevator pitch’. Manuscripts which have been published in any form, either traditionally or self-published, are ineligible to enter. Entries which fall within the genres of crime, mystery, thriller, or their sub-genres are eligible.

Embracing Our Differences Quotation Contest

Anyone can enter. Entries can be no longer than 20 words on embracing our differences. Please consider submitting an original quotation.

The Calvino Prize

Submit up to 25 industry standard (double-spaced, 12-point font, pages numbered) pages of a novel. Do not send publication history of the author.

The Raven Short Story Contest

This contest is for previously unpublished short fiction between 250 and 2500 words in length. Multiple entries welcome. Total entries limited to 200.

The Galley Beggar Press

Submissions must be no longer than 6,000 words.

Letter Review Prize for Short Stories

submit an original unpublished short story which is 400 – 3000 words, written in English, in size 12 font, as a word doc. Include a short biography of less than 200 words. Don’t include your name in the title of your document, or in your story, as the Prize is judged blindly.

Fiction Factory Short Story Competition

Length of story: max 3,000 words. Entries should be as a Word document. All types of stories are welcome (excluding Children’s and Young Adult Fiction).

The Larry Brown Short Story Award

The submitted story must be less than 4,000 words. No previously published work will be considered. The writer’s name and contact information should only appear within the cover letter box in Submittable.

Flash 500 Novels competition

Anyone can enter. Entries may have appeared online in private (password protected) peer review sites, but should not have been published in any commercial online form including blogs or personal websites or accepted for publication elsewhere. Chapters must not exceed 3,000 words and must be accompanied by a one page synopsis of the balance of the story. Entries must be in English.

OZMA Book Awards for Fantasy Fiction | Sword & Sorcery Fiction | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Copyrighted works before Dec. 31, 2019 will be disqualified. Copyrighted works before Dec. 31, 2019 will be disqualified. You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.

Paranormal Writing Competition | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Published works before Dec. 31, 2019 will be disqualified. Novels must be 50,000 plus words. You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.

Global Thriller Writing Contest | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Virginia b. ball writing contest.

All students in grades 8-11 during the 2022-2023 school year are eligible to apply. Poetry: Your sample should include 1-4 poems/spoken word pieces. Fiction: Your sample should include 1-3 stories, novel or story excerpts, or flash fiction pieces. Each piece should be fewer than 3,500 words.ersonal essay/memoir: Your sample should include 1-3 essays. Each piece should be fewer than 3,500 words.Screenwriting: Your sample should be fewer than 20 pages. Playwriting: Your sample should be fewer than 20 pages.

CIBA Fiction Series Book Awards | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels must be PUBLISHED: Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pubs accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation. Unpublished Manuscripts are not accepted into the CIBA Book Series Awards. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Each book in the series must be at least 60,000 plus words. YA and Middle-Grade Works may be less but at least 40,000 words. The first book in the series must have been published AFTER January 1, 2010. Three Books or more is the qualifying number of works to be considered a series in the CIBA Series Book Awards. You may enter in more than one category. However, each complete series entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.

20c Wartime Historical Fiction | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Novels may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pub accepted. All published novels must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Published works before Dec. 31, 2018 will be disqualified. Novels must be 60,000 plus words.You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee.You may enter more than one novel into a given contest.

Satirical & Allegorical Fiction Book Awards | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Contemporary & literary novel writing contest | chanticleer book reviews, non-fiction guides and how-to book awards | chanticleer book reviews.

Books may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pubs accepted. Word Documents and PDFs are accepted. All published books must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Works published before December 30, 2018 will be disqualified. Books must be 50,000 plus words OR at least 75 pages for Photobooks, Graphic Books, Charts, and other types of visual books or cookbooks/instructional books (knitting, etc). You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee. You may enter more than one book into a given contest.

You may enter more than one book into a given contest.

Works may be published on the web or in print or may be non-published. E-pubs accepted. Word Documents and PDFs are accepted. International entries are accepted but they must be written in the English language. Entries must be in the English language. STYLE GUIDERS ACCEPTED: AP, Chicago Manual of Style, MLA, and APA. Works published before December 30, 2018 will be disqualified. Works must be 10,000 plus words. Works must be 10,000 plus words. You may enter more than one work into a given contest.

Business, Technology, and Enterprise Non-Fiction Guides and How-To Book Awards | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Books may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published E-pubs accepted. Word Documents and PDFs are accepted. All published books must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. Entries must be in the English language. Works published before December 31, 2018 will be disqualified. You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee. You may enter more than one book into a given contest.

Mind and Spirit Non-Fiction Guides and Works | Chanticleer Book Reviews

Books may be Manuscripts, Self-published, Indie Published or Traditionally Published. E-pubs accepted. Word Documents and PDFs are accepted. All published books must have ISBN/ASIN designation, manuscripts are not required to have this designation at the time of submission. Entries must be in the English language. No erotica. No graphic violence. Works published before January 1, 2019 will be disqualified. Books must be 40,000 plus words. You may enter in more than one category. However, each entry must be accompanied by the entry fee. You may enter more than one book into a given contest.

Hearten Book Awards for Uplifting Non-Fiction Works | Chanticleer Book Reviews

The grindstone novel prize.

The 2022 International Novel Prize is open to authors from all countries, providing their submissions are in English. The prize is open to authors who are; unrepresented and unpublished, unrepresented and self-published, or previously published but currently unrepresented. Entrants are asked to submit the first 5,000 words of their finished or part-finished manuscripts, accompanied by a brief synopsis. Manuscripts must have a finished, or projected-finished length of at least 50,000 words. Entries of all genres are accepted, with the exception of worked aimed at children. YA is accepted.

Orna Ross Green Stories Novel Prize

Typically novels are 60,000 – 95,000 words. Submit three chapters (minimum of 4000 words, maximum 10,000 words), including the first chapter, another chapter that best showcases how your novel meets the green stories criteria, and a third chapter (the final chapter if possible). Prepare a synopsis between 500 and 1000 words that covers genre, plot, characters, and details of how it meets the green stories criteria of showcasing positive visions of a more sustainable society or incorporating green solutions into the context of an otherwise mainstream story.

H.E. Bates Short Story Competition

Anyone can enter. Must be unpublished (except on social media) and original work, and won no prize before. Length: max 2,000 words.

Daisy Pettles Women’s Writing Contest

All women writers, age 40 or older.

Dynamo Verlag Book Contest

This contest is open to all authors who have not published more than one (1) full length book in their primary genre (this does not include self-published works). Current and under-contract Dynamo Verlag authors are ineligible, as are any persons employed or associated with the press.This contest is open to primarily textual poetry or prose, minimum 8,000 words for poetry and maximum 75,000 words for prose.

7 Day Story Writing Challenges

The competition is open to anyone aged 18 or over at the time of entering. International entries are welcome. All entries must be written in English. You must register for the competition using your real name. You can only register once.

Flash Fiction Competition

Entries must be in English. Entries must be the work of the entrant and must not have been published or accepted for publication elsewhere. The competition is international and welcomes non-UK entrants. Copyright remains with the author.

The Moth Poetry Prize

The Prize is open to anyone (over 16), as long as the work is original and previously unpublished. There is no line limit, and the poems can be on any subject.

Blue Mountain Arts Poetry Contest

Poems can be rhyming or non-rhyming, although we find that non-rhyming poetry reads better. Write about real emotions and feelings and that you have, some special person, or an occasion that comes to mind as you write. Poems are judged on the basis of originality and uniqueness. English-language entries only, please.

53-Word Story Contest

Your story must be 53 words—no more, no less—titles are not included in the word count. Stories not meeting this rule will be disqualified. Send only stories; poetry with line breaks will not be considered. Hyphenated words count as one word. One submission per person. there are no age restrictions.

Shooter Flash

We welcome stories up to 1,000 words long on a rolling basis, any theme/genre. Stories must be no longer than 1,000 words excluding title. Stories may be submitted at any time as submissions are open on a rolling basis. Stories can be previously published or unpublished, and writers may submit multiple stories for consideration.

Keeping your writing hidden won’t do much for your self-esteem and help you advance in your chosen career. Joining contests and competing with the best writers out there is the one way to give yourself the boost you need.

Read more here.

Amazing Writing Retreats to Attend in 2024

The 2024 International Book Fairs Calendar

The Best Writing Conferences and Workshops to Attend in 2024

500+ Online Writing Courses to Join in 2022

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Amber Byers

Thanks for including the Tadpole Press 100-Word Writing Contest in your valuable directory of writing contests for 2022!

We’re excited to let you know that we are now hosting this contest twice a year—with deadlines every April 30 and November 30.

If you make any updates to this list, would you kindly include our updated deadlines?

Many thanks! Amber https://www.tadpolepress.com/100-word-writing-contest

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Hello Amber, Thanks for letting us know. We’ll make sure to add the new dates in the next update.

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Michael Gordon

As a writer I would suggest other writers to take part in writing contests because they are a great way to increase your exposure.

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oussama boutoual

We at Neovel are excited to announce our upcoming writing contest with the theme of “Suspense” and the name The Mysterious Case We are seeking talented writers to submit their best work and compete for a chance to win prizes and gain recognition.

We would be grateful if you could help spread the word about our contest to your audience of writers and readers. We believe that your website is a great platform to reach out to potential participants and we would be honored if you could feature our contest on your website.

The contest is open for submissions starting 06/02/2023 and will close on April 2, 2023. The winners will be announced on May 8, 2023.

The entry is completely FREE

The prizes for winning authors are:

1st place: 500€,

2nd place: 250€,

3rd place: 100€.

Additionally, we will also be offering prizes for readers who read the most chapters from books that are participating in the contest :

1st : 1 year of free premium membership,

2nd : 6 months of free premium membership

3rd : 3 months of free premium membership.

Here is the link to the contest for more details : https://neovel.io/contest/the-mysterious-case-contest

If you have any questions or need more information about our contest, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We look forward to hearing from you and hope that you can help us make this contest a success.

If you have any questions, please contact Oussama at oussama@neovel.io for further assistance.

Best regards, The Neovel Team.

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free essay competitions 2022

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free essay competitions 2022

Sign Up For Paid Writing Opportunities

27 free writing contests with cash prizes.

These are contests for fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and plays. Prizes range from $100 to $72,000, and none of them charge an entry fee. They are, very roughly, divided geographically. – S. Kalekar

PRIZES OPEN FOR INTERNATIONAL WRITERS

Fourteen Hills: Stacey Doris Memorial Poetry Award This is a poetry contest – send one poem of 3 to 10 pages. Their guidelines say, “Stacy Doris was a poet, translator, and an Associate Professor in San Francisco State University’s Department of Creative Writing, where she taught for ten years. … Doris created new worlds with her unexpected poetics. Following upon her spirit of creative invention, engaging wit and ingenious playfulness, discovery in construction, and radical appropriations based on classical forms, pastiche, etc., and love, the Stacy Doris Memorial Poetry Award is given to a poet with a truly inventive spirit.” Works that don’t win will be considered for publication in Fourteen Hills.

Value: $500 Deadline: 1 January 2022 Open for: Unspecified Details here .

Defenestration.net Lengthy Poem Contest They are reading entries for a lengthy poem, of at least three 120 lines, or roughly chapbook-length (see guidelines). Poem cycles are accepted. They do not want prose poems. It is best to divide it into parts or sections, though this is not a strict requirement. Value: $300 Deadline: 1 January 2022 Open for: Unspecified Details here .

Martha Heasley Cox Center for Steinbeck Studies: Steinbeck Fellowships These are fellowships to help writers complete a book project. Up to six Steinbeck Fellows are selected each year from disciplines including fiction, creative non-fiction, biography, drama, and Steinbeck studies (no poetry). Also, “In awarding fellowships, the selection committee considers the quality of the candidate’s proposal and any factors that would lead to expectations of future publication and other achievement. The creative writing fellowship does not require that there be any direct connection between Steinbeck’s works and that of the applicant.“ Value: $15,000, residency at San José State University Deadline: 3 January 2022 Open for: Unspecified Details here

The Leon Levy Centre for Biography: Biography Fellowships These are four resident fellowships at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City, to nonfiction writers working on biographies. preference in the award of fellowships is given to those who have not yet published a biography or received fellowships for the writing of a biography. We also welcome applications from published and accomplished writers who are undertaking their first biography. The Leon Levy Center for Biography does not award fellowships for memoirs, essays, plays, films, or fiction. One of the application requirements is a sample of the proposed biography, a maximum of 2,500 words. (Also see the Sloan Fellowship , given annually to a writer working on a biography of a figure in the field of science or technology.) Value: $72,000, residency Deadline: 4 January 2022 Open for: Writers working on biographies Details here

Walter Muir Whitehill Prize in Early American History This prize is for an essay on early American history (up to 1826), not previously published, with preference being given to New England subjects. Essays should be 40-60 pages, and can be emailed or mailed. Value: $2,500 Deadline: 15 January 2022 (postmarked) Open for: Unspecified Details here

Lilith Magazine Fiction Contest This magazine publishes work of interest to Jewish women. They like work with both feminist and Jewish content. Submit up to 3,000 words. Value: $250 Deadline: 15 January 2022 (extended) Open for: All writers Details here

The Hillman Prize for Journalism This is for journalists who pursue investigative reporting and deep storytelling in service of the common good. Recipients exemplify reportorial excellence, storytelling skill, and social justice impact. The categories are:   Book (bound volumes and ebooks), Newspaper Journalism (story or series/in print or online),  Magazine Journalism (story or series/in print or online), Broadcast Journalism (story/series/documentary that has aired on television or radio), Web Journalism (story/series or multimedia that did not appear in print) , and  Opinion  &  Analysis Journalism (any medium)   – includes all types of advocacy, opinion, commentary and analysis, normally short-form and/or frequent, regardless of medium; open to newspaper and magazine columnists, TV and radio presenters, podcasters, blogs, and bloggers. The US prize is open to all journalists and subjects globally but the work must have been primarily accessible to a US audience; the Canadian prize, too, is open to all journalists and subjects globally but the work must have been primarily accessible to a Canadian audience, and must have been published in Canada. Value: $5,000 each Deadline: 15 January for Canadian, 30 January 2022 for US entries Open for: Journalists Details here and here (They also have Labor and Workforce Reporting Grants – they accept pitches on a rolling basis, and grants are up to $5,000.)

Learning Pool: Tall Tales Short Story Competition This is a story contest for children. Writers ages 7-12 can enter. Their guidelines say, “We are asking you to write a short story of no more than 500 words based on a mythical character of your choice. Whether it’s a shy dragon or a surfing mermaid, a silly werewolf or a scary fairy, we want to read your story. If you’re feeling really creative, send us a picture of your character to bring your story to life.” There are two categories, for ages 7-9 and 10-12 years. Writers have to ask an adult to submit their stories on the contest website. Royalties will be donated to Make-a-Wish International. Value: £200 for winners in each category, £100 for runners-up Deadline: 21 January 2022 Open for: Writers ages 7-12 years Details here .

Good Story Grant They will award two grants, and writers of all levels, in all genres, can apply. Their guidelines say, “The 2022 Good Story Grant aims to help two writers reach the next step in their creative journeys. This grant is open to writers of all skill levels, and working in all genres and categories. The award is $1,500 US, used however you’d like … as long as it has to do with writing and helps you tell your story. This year’s award is two grants. One open to all writers and one open to writers who identify as BIPOC, with the aim of championing underrepresented voices.” One of the requirements is an essay on what the grant will mean to you and how you will use the funds, Value: $1,500 for two writers Deadline: 31 January 2022 Open for: All writers Details here .

Jerry Jazz Musician Short Fiction Contest The magazine runs a short story contest thrice a year. Readers of this magazine are interested in music, social history, literature, politics, art, film and theater, particularly that of the counter-culture of mid-twentieth century America. While the writing should appeal to a reader with these interests, stories can be on any theme. Stories should be up to 3,000 words, but up to 4,000 words will be considered. Value: $100 Deadline: 31 January 2022 Open for: All writers Details here .

AKO Caine Prize for African Writing This is for a published short story by an African writer (see guidelines), of 3,000-10,000 words. The story must have been published in the five years preceding the submissions deadline. Submissions have to be made by publishers only. Works published in translation are also eligible (see ‘Rules of Entry’ for details). Value: £10,000, and £500 and travel expenses for up to five short-listed candidates Deadline: 31 January 2022 Open for: African writers Details here and here .

The Drip Action Theatre Company: Joy Goun Award They are looking for plays that are 30-40 minutes long, and these will be performed in the UK as part of the Arundel Festival Theatre Trail. Their website says the Train “is a great showcase for both new and established writers, from the UK and beyond.” There is a prize for the best submitted script, as well as for other successful playwrights. Seven plays will be chosen from the open call, along with a specially commissioned piece. Value: £250; £200 each for other successful playwrights Deadline: 31 January 2022 Open for: Unspecified Details here .

Jim Baen Memorial Short Story Award They want a short story, of up to 8,000 words, that shows the near future (no more than about 50-60 years out) of manned space exploration. They want to see Moon bases, Mars colonies, orbital habitats, space elevators, asteroid mining, artificial intelligence, nano-technology, realistic spacecraft, heroics, sacrifice, adventure. They do not want stories that show technology or space travel as evil or bad, galactic empires, paranormal elements, UFO abductions, zombie stories, thinly veiled copies of previous winners, non-standalone novel excerpts, or screenplays. Value: 8c/word, and various non-cash awards Deadline: 1 February 2022 Open for: All writers Details here . (They also have a fantasy short story contest, the Baen Fantasy Adventure Award , that pays $0.08/word for stories of up to 8,000 words in all fantasy genres, and will open for submissions from 14 February to 30 April 2022.)

Neukom Institute Literary Arts Award for Playwriting Playwrights have to write to a prompt: What does it mean to be a human in a computerized world? Value: $5,000 Deadline: 1 February 2022 Open for: All playwrights Details here

(A couple of contests with later deadlines are: — National Endowment for the Arts’ Creative Writing Fellowships for US writers – they are accepting applications for poetry this year, awards are up to $25,000, and the deadline is 10 March 2022; and — Robert Louis Stevenson Fable Competition for writers globally – write a fable in up to 350 words, in the style of Robert Louis Stevenson; and they accept entries from minors as well as multiple entries; please read the guidelines carefully, all entrants grant the Robert Louis Stevenson Club the right to publish any entries; prizes are £500 and £100, and the deadline is 2 April 2022. )

PRIZES FOR US- AND CANADA-BASED WRITERS (Also see The Hillman Prize for Journalism in the section above.)

Minotaur Books: The Tony Hillerman Prize for Best First Mystery Set in the Southwest This is for US and Canadian writers, for a first novel (manuscript) of mystery – in which a serious crime or crimes is at the heart of the story, and the emphasis is on the solution rather than the details of the crime – of approximately 60,000 words. The story’s primary setting must be one or more of the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas and/or Utah. Each manuscript will be assessed based on the following criteria, weighted as indicated: publishable quality of manuscript (60%); creativity (20%); and originality (20%). In the event of a tie, the tie will be broken based on the higher score in the “publishable quality of manuscript” category. Minotaur is an imprint of St Martin’s Press, which is part of Macmillan. Value: $10,000 advance against royalties Deadline: 1 January 2022 Open for: US and Canadian writers Details here

Homebound Publications: The Prism Prize for Climate Literature This is for a work of fiction, non-fiction, or poetry manuscript in the genre of climate literature. The final manuscript of up to 75,000 words (for fiction and non-fiction) and a market assessment and/or statement of marketing intentions are part of the submission requirement. The contest is for authors living in the US or UK. Value: $1,000, publication contract Deadline: 8 January 2022 Open for: US and UK authors Details here and here

National Endowment for the Arts: Translation Project Fellowship These are for published translators. The fellowship is for the translation of works of  prose, poetry,  or  drama  from other languages into English. They encourage translations of writers and of work that are not well represented in English translation. The proposed projects must be for creative translations of literary material into English. Value:  Up to $25,000 Deadline: 12 January 2022 Open for: Published translators who are citizens or permanent residents of the US Details here and here .

The John F Kennedy Profile in Courage Essay Contest This is for US high school students in grades 9 through 12. Essays must describe an act of political courage by a US elected official who served during or after 1917, the year John F Kennedy was born. The official may have addressed an issue at the local, state, or national level. Essays should be 700-1,000 words and must quote at least five sources. Value: $10,000, $3,000, $1,000 each for finalists, $100 each for semi-finalists Deadline: 14 January 2022 Open for: US high school students Details  here (also see tabs on the page for various details)

Douglas B. Rogers Conditions of a Free Society Essay Competition This competition is meant to encourage undergraduate students in the US and Canada to join the Center for Political and Economic Thought at Saint Vincent College in discussing themes of Western Civilization such as individual freedom, limited constitutional government, free market economics, and the philosophical and moral foundations of America and the West. This year students are asked to consider a particular passage from Edmund Burke’s Speech on Moving Resolutions for Conciliation With the Colonies, and address the following prompt: “Ignored at a critical time preceding hostilities, comment on how Burke’s salient arguments may have provided proscriptive emollients to America’s bitter internecine conflict resultant from a perspectival bias towards the compact formed by the United States Constitution.” Value: $2,000; $1,000; $500 Deadline: 15 January 2022 Open for: Undergraduate students in the US and Canada Details here .

The Elie Wiesel Prize in Ethics Essay Contest This contest is for registered undergraduate full-time Juniors or Seniors at accredited four-year colleges or universities in the US. Students are invited to write an essay about an ethical issue they have encountered, and analyze what it has taught them about ethics, and themselves. See guidelines for potential topics and issues. Value: $10,000, $5,000, $3,000, two prizes of $1,000 each Deadline: 18 January 2022 Open for: Students in the US (see guidelines) Details here .

Zócalo Public Square Poetry Prize They want poetry from US poets whose poem best evokes a connection to place. “The prize interprets “place” in many ways: A place may possess historical, cultural, political, or personal importance, and may be literal, imaginary, or metaphorical.” Value: $1,000 Deadline: 22 January 2022 Open for: US poets Details here .

Poetry Northwest: James Welch Prize for Indigenous Writers This is a poetry prize for Indigenous writers in the US – “new, emerging, and established poets who are community-recognized members of tribal nations within the United States and its trust territories (including American Indians, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, Chamorros, and American Samoans). Only poets who have not published more than one book-length collection are eligible; however, previous publication is not a requirement.” Submit up to three poems. Apart from cash prizes, two poets will also be invited to read at a literary venue. Value: $1,000 each Deadline: 31 January 2022 Open for: Indigenous writers in the US Details here and here .

Bucknell University: Philip Roth Residence in Creative Writing This residency is offered by Bucknell University, and provides writing time of up to four months. It’s for writers of fiction or creative non-fiction working on a first or second book. There are two residencies, in fall and spring semesters. Some record of publication is desirable. Value: $5,000 and residency Deadline: 1 February 2022 Open for: US writers Details here . (Also see details of the Bucknell Seminar for Undergraduate Poets , for those in the US – fellowships include tuition, housing in campus apartments and meals, and the application deadline is 31 January 2022; and some travel scholarships are also available.)

PRIZES FOR UK- AND IRELAND-BASED AUTHORS (Also see Homebound Publications: The Prism Prize for Climate Literature, in the section above) Discoveries 2022 This prize is run by The Women’s Prize Trust, Audible, Curtis Brown Literary Agency, and Curtis Brown Creative writing school. It is for UK- and Ireland-based women writers, for a novel-in-progress – send the first 10,000 words and a synopsis. Apart from a cash prize, the winner also gets literary representation. Value: £5,000 Deadline: 17 January 2022 Open for: UK- and Ireland-based women writers Details here .

Curtis Brown Creative: The New Beginnings Poetry Competition This prize is for UK- and Ireland-based writers, and it celebrates the launch of their online poetry-writing course. The theme is ‘New Beginnings’, and writers can interpret it as they like. Poems should be up to 40 lines. Entrants must not have previously published a full collection of poetry with a traditional publisher. Value: £500, online poetry writing course Deadline: 21 January 2022 Open for: UK- and Ireland-based poets Details here .

Red Dragonfly: Taking Flight Playwriting Competition This is for playwrights with East and South-East Asian heritage, and who are UK-based. They want one-page ideas for a one-hour play. Up to 10 shortlisted writers will attend a free workshop and mentorship sessions, before a winner is finalized. Value: £1,000 Deadline: 31 January 2022 (for ideas) Open for: UK-based writers of East and South-East Asian heritage and those from the British East and South-East Asian communities (see guidelines) Details here .

SOHO Theatre: The Verity Bargate Award This is the 40 th anniversary of their playwriting award. They want a play, of at least one hour production time (usually 40 pages, though monologues may be shorter). Musicals and plays with songs are accepted, but will be judged on text alone. Also, “If you’ve never written before, that’s fine by us. What matters is that great stories are told – human, inspiring and urgent stories which can only exist in this moment.” Value: £7,500, production Deadline: 21 January 2022 Open for: Any playwright who has had fewer than three professional productions and who lives in the UK or Republic of Ireland Details here .

Bio:  S. Kalekar is the pseudonym of a regular contributor to this magazine. She is the author of  182 Short Fiction Publishers . She can be reached  here .

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free essay competitions 2022

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Research & Learn

Table of contents, free speech essay contest.

free essay competitions 2022

The Details

The contest may return in 2024. Check back for updates.

Eligibility

Open to juniors and seniors in U.S. high schools, including home-schooled students, as well as U.S. citizens attending high school overseas. Additional questions regarding eligibility may be emailed to [email protected] .

Word Length

Students must submit an essay between 700 and 900 words on the provided topic below.

FIRE must receive all entries by 11:59 EST, December 31, 2021. Winners will be announced by February 15, 2022.

Scholarship Prizes

One $10,000 first prize, one $5,000 second prize, three $1,000 third place prizes and four $500 prizes will be awarded.

Before You Start

Get to know us! The mission of FIRE is to defend and sustain individual rights at America’s colleges and universities. These rights include freedom of speech , legal equality, due process, religious liberty, and sanctity of conscience—the essential qualities of individual liberty and dignity. In addition to defending the rights of students and faculty, FIRE works to educate students and the general public on the necessity of free speech and its importance to a thriving democratic society.

The freedom of speech, enshrined in the First Amendment to the Constitution, is a foundational American right. Nowhere is that right more important than on our college campuses, where the free flow of ideas and the clash of opposing views advance knowledge and promote human progress. It is on our college campuses, however, where some of the most serious violations of free speech occur, and where students are regularly censored simply because their expression might offend others.

We also encourage you to take advantage of our other educational resources , including our First Amendment Library , our continually-updated Newsdesk , our K-12 Video Library , and our many publications , including our Guide to Free Speech on Campus .

In a persuasive letter or essay, convince your peers that free speech is a better idea than censorship.

Your letter or essay must be between 700-900 words. We encourage you to draw from current events, historical examples, our free speech comic , other resources on FIRE’s website , and/or your own personal experiences.

Note: While there is no required format for your submission, many entrants use MLA guidelines. Successful entries will show an understanding of the importance of free speech and the pitfalls of censorship. You may use in-text citations, and do not need to include a References or Works Cited page. Essays that do not address the prompt question or fail to meet the word-count requirements will not be considered. View the essays of some of our past winners here !

Entering this essay contest constitutes agreement to having your name and essay published on FIRE's website if you are selected as a winner. FIRE reserves the right to make minor edits to winning essays before publication on our website.

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free essay competitions 2022

Essay  COMPETITION

2024 global essay prize, registrations are now open all essayists must register  here  before friday 31 may, 2024.

The John Locke Institute encourages young people to cultivate the characteristics that turn good students into great writers: independent thought, depth of knowledge, clear reasoning, critical analysis and persuasive style. Our Essay Competition invites students to explore a wide range of challenging and interesting questions beyond the confines of the school curriculum.

Entering an essay in our competition can build knowledge, and refine skills of argumentation. It also gives students the chance to have their work assessed by experts. All of our essay prizes are judged by a panel of senior academics drawn from leading universities including Oxford and Princeton, under the leadership of the Chairman of Examiners, former Cambridge philosopher, Dr Jamie Whyte.

The judges will choose their favourite essay from each of seven subject categories - Philosophy, Politics, Economics, History, Psychology, Theology and Law - and then select the winner of the Grand Prize for the best entry in any subject. There is also a separate prize awarded for the best essay in the junior category, for under 15s.

Q1. Do we have any good reasons to trust our moral intuition?

Q2. Do girls have a (moral) right to compete in sporting contests that exclude boys?

Q3. Should I be held responsible for what I believe?

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Q1. Is there such a thing as too much democracy?

Q2. Is peace in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip possible?

Q3. When is compliance complicity?

Q1. What is the optimal global population?  

Q2. Accurate news reporting is a public good. Does it follow that news agencies should be funded from taxation?

Q3. Do successful business people benefit others when making their money, when spending it, both, or neither?

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Q1. Why was sustained economic growth so rare before the later 18th century and why did this change?

Q2. Has music ever significantly changed the course of history?

Q3. Why do civilisations collapse? Is our civilisation in danger?

Q1. When, if ever, should a company be permitted to refuse to do business with a person because of that person’s public statements?

Q2. In the last five years British police have arrested several thousand people for things they posted on social media. Is the UK becoming a police state?

Q3. Your parents say that 11pm is your bedtime. But they don’t punish you if you don’t go to bed by 11pm. Is 11pm really your bedtime?

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Q1. According to a study by four British universities, for each 16-point increase in IQ, the likelihood of getting married increases by 35% for a man but decreases by 40% for a woman. Why? 

Q2. There is an unprecedented epidemic of depression and anxiety among young people. Can we fix this? How?

Q3. What is the difference between a psychiatric illness and a character flaw?

Q1. “I am not religious, but I am spiritual.” What could the speaker mean by “spiritual”?

Q2. Is it reasonable to thank God for protection from some natural harm if He is responsible for causing the harm?

Q3. Does God reward those who believe in him? If so, why?

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JUNIOR prize

Q1. Does winning a free and fair election automatically confer a mandate for governing?

Q2. Has the anti-racism movement reduced racism?

Q3. Is there life after death?

Q4. How did it happen that governments came to own and run most high schools, while leaving food production to private enterprise? 

Q5. When will advancing technology make most of us unemployable? What should we do about this?

Q6. Should we trust fourteen-year-olds to make decisions about their own bodies? 

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS & FURTHER DETAILS

Please read the following carefully.

Entry to the John Locke Institute Essay Competition 2024 is open to students from any country.

Registration  

Only candidates who registered before the registration deadline of Friday, 31 May 2024 may enter this year's competition. To register, click here .  

All entries must be submitted by 11.59 pm BST on  the submission deadline: Sunday, 30 June 2024 .  Candidates must be eighteen years old, or younger, on that date. (Candidates for the Junior Prize must be fourteen years old, or younger, on that date.)

Entry is free.

Each essay must address only one of the questions in your chosen subject category, and must not exceed 2000 words (not counting diagrams, tables of data, endnotes, bibliography or authorship declaration). 

The filename of your pdf must be in this format: FirstName-LastName-Category-QuestionNumber.pdf; so, for instance, Alexander Popham would submit his answer to question 2 in the Psychology category with the following file name:

Alexander-Popham-Psychology-2.pdf

Essays with filenames which are not in this format will be rejected.

The candidate's name should NOT appear within the document itself. 

Candidates should NOT add footnotes. They may, however, add endnotes and/or a Bibliography that is clearly titled as such.

Each candidate will be required to provide the email address of an academic referee who is familiar with the candidate's written academic work. This should be a school teacher, if possible, or another responsible adult who is not a relation of the candidate. The John Locke Institute will email referees to verify that the essays submitted are indeed the original work of the candidates.

Submissions may be made as soon as registration opens in April. We recommend that you submit your essay well in advance of th e deadline to avoid any last-minute complications.

Acceptance of your essay depends on your granting us permission to use your data for the purposes of receiving and processing your entry as well as communicating with you about the Awards Ceremony Dinner, the academic conference, and other events and programmes of the John Locke Institute and its associated entities.  

Late entries

If for any reason you miss the 30 June deadline you will have an opportunity to make a late entry, under two conditions:

a) A late entry fee of 20.00 USD must be paid by credit card within twenty-four hours of the original deadline; and

b) Your essay must be submitted  before 11.59 pm BST on Wednesday, 10 July 2024.

To pay for late entry, a registrant need only log into his or her account, select the relevant option and provide the requested payment information.

Our grading system is proprietary. Essayists may be asked to discuss their entry with a member of the John Locke Institute’s faculty. We use various means to identify plagiarism, contract cheating, the use of AI and other forms of fraud . Our determinations in all such matters are final.

Essays will be judged on knowledge and understanding of the relevant material, the competent use of evidence, quality of argumentation, originality, structure, writing style and persuasive force. The very best essays are likely to be those which would be capable of changing somebody's mind. Essays which ignore or fail to address the strongest objections and counter-arguments are unlikely to be successful .

Candidates are advised to answer the question as precisely and directly as possible.

The writers of the best essays will receive a commendation and be shortlisted for a prize. Writers of shortlisted essays will be notified by 11.59 pm BST on Wednesday, 31 July. They will also be invited to London for an invitation-only academic conference and awards dinner in September, where the prize-winners will be announced. Unlike the competition itself, the academic conference and awards dinner are not free. Please be aware that n obody is required to attend either the academic conference or the prize ceremony. You can win a prize without travelling to London.

All short-listed candidates, including prize-winners, will be able to download eCertificates that acknowledge their achievement. If you win First, Second or Third Prize, and you travel to London for the ceremony, you will receive a signed certificate. 

There is a prize for the best essay in each category. The prize for each winner of a subject category, and the winner of the Junior category, is a scholarship worth US$2000 towards the cost of attending any John Locke Institute programme, and the essays will be published on the Institute's website. Prize-giving ceremonies will take place in London, at which winners and runners-up will be able to meet some of the judges and other faculty members of the John Locke Institute. Family, friends, and teachers are also welcome.

The candidate who submits the best essay overall will be awarded an honorary John Locke Institute Junior Fellowship, which comes with a US$10,000 scholarship to attend one or more of our summer schools and/or visiting scholars programmes. 

The judges' decisions are final, and no correspondence will be entered into.

R egistration opens: 1 April, 2024.

Registration deadline: 31 May, 2024. (Registration is required by this date for subsequent submission.)

Submission deadline: 30 June, 2024.

Late entry deadline: 10 July, 2024. (Late entries are subject to a 20.00 USD charge, payable by 1 July.)

Notification of short-listed essayists: 31 July, 2024.

Academic conference: 20 - 22 September, 2024.

Awards dinner: 21 September, 2024.

Any queries regarding the essay competition should be sent to [email protected] . Please be aware that, due to the large volume of correspondence we receive, we cannot guarantee to answer every query. In particular, regrettably, we are unable to respond to questions whose answers can be found on our website.

If you would like to receive helpful tips  from our examiners about what makes for a winning essay or reminders of upcoming key dates for the 2024  essay competition, please provide your email here to be added to our contact list. .

Thanks for subscribing!

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The John Locke Institute's Global Essay Prize is acknowledged as the world's most prestigious essay competition. 

We welcome tens of thousands of submissions from ambitious students in more than 150 countries, and our examiners - including distinguished philosophers, political scientists, economists, historians, psychologists, theologians, and legal scholars - read and carefully assess every entry. 

I encourage you to register for this competition, not only for the hope of winning a prize or commendation, and not only for the chance to join the very best contestants at our academic conference and gala ceremony in London, but equally for the opportunity to engage in the serious scholarly enterprise of researching, reflecting on, writing about, and editing an answer to one of the important and provocative questions in this year's Global Essay Prize. 

We believe that the skills you will acquire in the process will make you a better thinker and a more effective advocate for the ideas that matter most to you.

I hope to see you in September!

Best wishes,

Jamie Whyte, Ph.D. (C ANTAB ) 

Chairman of Examiners

Q. I missed the registration deadline. May I still register or submit an essay?

A. No. Only candidates who registered before 31 May will be able to submit an essay. 

Q. Are footnote s, endnotes, a bibliography or references counted towards the word limit?

A. No. Only the body of the essay is counted. 

Q. Are in-text citations counted towards the word limit? ​

A. If you are using an in-text based referencing format, such as APA, your in-text citations are included in the word limit.

Q. Is it necessary to include foo tnotes or endnotes in an essay? ​

A. You  may not  include footnotes, but you may include in-text citations or endnotes. You should give your sources of any factual claims you make, and you should ackn owledge any other authors on whom you rely.​

Q. I am interested in a question that seems ambiguous. How should I interpret it?

A. You may interpret a question as you deem appropriate, clarifying your interpretation if necessary. Having done so, you must answer the question as directly as possible.

Q. How strict are  the age eligibility criteria?

A. Only students whose nineteenth birthday falls after 30 June 2024 will be eligible for a prize or a commendation. In the case of the Junior category, only students whose fifteenth birthday falls after 30 June 2024 will be eligible for a prize or a commendation. 

Q. May I submit more than one essay?

A. Yes, you may submit as many essays as you please in any or all categories.

Q. If I am eligible to compete in the Junior category, may I also (or instead) compete in another category?

A. Yes, you may.

Q. May I team up with someone else to write an essay?  

A. No. Each submitted essay must be entirely the work of a single individual.

Q. May I use AI, such as ChatGPT or the like, in writing my essay?

A. All essays will be checked for the use of AI. If we find that any content is generated by AI, your essay will be disqualified. We will also ask you, upon submission of your essay, whether you used AI for  any  purpose related to the writing of your essay, and if so, you will be required to provide details. In that case, if, in our judgement, you have not provided full and accurate details of your use of AI, your essay will be disqualified. 

Since any use of AI (that does not result in disqualification) can only negatively affect our assessment of your work relative to that of work that is done without using AI, your safest course of action is simply not to use it at all. If, however, you choose to use it for any purpose, we reserve the right to make relevant judgements on a case-by-case basis and we will not enter into any correspondence. 

Q. May I have someone else edit, or otherwise help me with, my essay?

A. You may of course discuss your essay with others, and it is perfectly acceptable for them to offer general advice and point out errors or weaknesses in your writing or content, leaving you to address them.

However, no part of your essay may be written by anyone else. This means that you must edit your own work and that while a proofreader may point out errors, you as the essayist must be the one to correct them. 

Q. Do I have to attend the awards ceremony to win a prize? ​

A. Nobody is required to attend the prize ceremony. You can win a prize without travelling to London. But if we invite you to London it is because your essay was good enough - in the opinion of the First Round judges - to be at least a contender for First, Second or Third Prize. Normally the Second Round judges will agree that the short-listed essays are worth at least a commendation.

Q. Is there an entry fee?

A. No. There is no charge to enter our global essay competition unless you submit your essay after the normal deadline, in which case there is a fee of 20.00 USD .

Q. Can I receive a certificate for my participation in your essay competition if I wasn't shortlisted? 

A. No. Certificates are awarded only for shortlisted essays. Short-listed contestants who attend the award ceremony in London will receive a paper certificate. If you cannot travel to London, you will be able to download your eCertificate.

Q. Can I receive feedba ck on my essay? 

A. We would love to be able to give individual feedback on essays but, unfortunately, we receive too many entries to be able to comment on particular essays.

Q. The deadline for publishing the names of short-listed essayists has passed but I did not receive an email to tell me whether I was short-listed.

A. Log into your account and check "Shortlist Status" for (each of) your essay(s).

Q. Why isn't the awards ceremony in Oxford this year?

A. Last year, many shortlisted finalists who applied to join our invitation-only academic conference missed the opportunity because of capacity constraints at Oxford's largest venues. This year, the conference will be held in central London and the gala awards dinner will take place in an iconic London ballroom. 

TECHNICAL FAQ s

Q. The system will not accept my essay. I have checked the filename and it has the correct format. What should I do?  

A. You have almost certainly added a space before or after one of your names in your profile. Edit it accordingly and try to submit again.

Q. The profile page shows my birth date to be wrong by a day, even after I edit it. What should I do?

A. Ignore it. The date that you typed has been correctly input to our database. ​ ​

Q. How can I be sure that my registration for the essay competition was successful? Will I receive a confirmation email?

A. You will not receive a confirmation email. Rather, you can at any time log in to the account that you created and see that your registration details are present and correct.

TROUBLESHOOTING YOUR SUBMISSION

If you are unable to submit your essay to the John Locke Institute’s global essay competition, your problem is almost certainly one of the following.

If so, please proceed as indicated.

1) PROBLEM: I receive the ‘registrations are now closed’ message when I enter my email and verification code. SOLUTION. You did not register for the essay competition and create your account. If you think you did, you probably only provided us with your email to receive updates from us about the competition or otherwise. You may not enter the competition this year.

2) PROBLEM I do not receive a login code after I enter my email to enter my account. SOLUTION. Enter your email address again, checking that you do so correctly. If this fails, restart your browser using an incognito window; clear your cache, and try again. Wait for a few minutes for the code. If this still fails, restart your machine and try one more time. If this still fails, send an email to [email protected] with “No verification code – [your name]” in the subject line.

SUBMITTING AN ESSAY

3) PROBLEM: The filename of my essay is in the correct format but it is rejected. SOLUTION: Use “Edit Profile” to check that you did not add a space before or after either of your names. If you did, delete it. Whether you did or did not, try again to submit your essay. If submission fails again, email [email protected] with “Filename format – [your name]” in the subject line.

4) PROBLEM: When trying to view my submitted essay, a .txt file is downloaded – not the .pdf file that I submitted. SOLUTION: Delete the essay. Logout of your account; log back in, and resubmit. If resubmission fails, email [email protected] with “File extension problem – [your name]” in the subject line.

5) PROBLEM: When I try to submit, the submission form just reloads without giving me an error message. SOLUTION. Log out of your account. Open a new browser; clear the cache; log back in, and resubmit. If resubmission fails, email [email protected] with “Submission form problem – [your name]” in the subject line.

6) PROBLEM: I receive an “Unexpected Error” when trying to submit. SOLUTION. Logout of your account; log back in, and resubmit. If this resubmission fails, email [email protected] with “Unexpected error – [your name]” in thesubject line. Your email must tell us e xactly where in the submission process you received this error.

7) PROBLEM: I have a problem with submitting and it is not addressed above on this list. SOLUTION: Restart your machine. Clear your browser’s cache. Try to submit again. If this fails, email [email protected] with “Unlisted problem – [your name]” in the subject line. Your email must tell us exactly the nature of your problem with relevant screen caps.

READ THIS BEFORE YOU EMAIL US.

Do not email us before you have tried the specified solutions to your problem.

Do not email us more than once about a single problem. We will respond to your email within 72 hours. Only if you have not heard from us in that time may you contact us again to ask for an update.

If you email us regarding a problem, you must include relevant screen-shots and information on both your operating system and your browser. You must also declare that you have tried the solutions presented above and had a good connection to the internet when you did so.

If you have tried the relevant solution to your problem outlined above, have emailed us, and are still unable to submit before the 30 June deadline on account of any fault of the John Locke Institute or our systems, please do not worry: we will have a way to accept your essay in that case. However, if there is no fault on our side, we will not accept your essay if it is not submitted on time – whatever your reason: we will not make exceptions for IT issues for which we are not responsible.

We reserve the right to disqualify the entries of essayists who do not follow all provided instructions, including those concerning technical matters.

free essay competitions 2022

55 Writing Contests in June 2022 — No entry fees

Erica Verrillo

Erica Verrillo

Curiosity Never Killed the Writer

T his June there are more than four dozen free writing contests for short fiction, novels, poetry, CNF, nonfiction, and plays. Prizes range from $100,000 to a trip to London. None charge entry fees.

Some of these contests have age and geographical restrictions, so read the instructions carefully.

If you want to get a jump on next month’s contests go to Free Contests . Most of these contests are offered annually, so even if the deadline is past, you can prepare for next year.

_____________________

Sapiens Plurum . Genre : Short stories that personalize the consequences of climate change. Theme: “Inventing Beautiful Futures.” Prize : 1ST PRIZE: $1000; 2ND PRIZE: $500; 3RD PRIZE: $300. Deadline : June 1, 2022.

The Novel Prize . Genre : Book-length work of literary fiction written in English. Prize : $10,000. Deadline : June 1, 2022.

Cromwell Article Prize . Restrictions : Open to early career scholars. Genre : Articles published in the field of American legal history. Prize: $2,500. Deadline : June 1, 2022.

Peggy Willis Lyles Haiku Awards . Genre : Haiku. Prize : $150. Deadline : June 1, 2022.

The PEN/Heim Translation Fund . Genre : Book-length works of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and drama in translation. Beginning in 2017, under the administering of the PEN/Heim Translation Fund, PEN will also offer the PEN Grant for the English Translation of Italian Literature . From the pool of annual submissions, judges for the PEN/Heim Translation Fund will select one project of narrative prose that has been translated into English from the Italian to receive this award, which will come with a $5,000 prize. Prize : $2000 — $4000. Deadline : June 1, 2022.

Dan Veach Prize for Younger Poets . Restrictions : Open to poets aged 18–23. Genre : Poetry. Prize : $100 and publication in the Atlanta Review. Deadline : June 1, 2022.

PEN/Phyllis Naylor Grant for Children’s and Young Adult Novelists . Restrictions : Candidates must have published one or more novels for children or young adults that have been warmly received by literary critics, but have not generated sufficient income to support the author. Genre : Book-length children’s or young-adult fiction. Prize : $5000. Deadline : June 1, 2022.

The PEN/Jean Stein Grant for Literary Oral History . Genre : Literary work of nonfiction that uses oral history to illuminate an event, individual, place, or movement. Prize : $15,000 each. (Two prizes) Deadline : June 1, 2022.

Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowships . Restrictions : Applicants must reside in the U.S. or be U.S. citizens. Applicants must be at least 21 years of age and no older than 31 years of age as of April 30, 2021. Genre : Poetry. Prize : $25,800. Deadline : June 2, 2022.

On The Premises: Unreliable . “For this mini-contest, tell, show, or evoke a complete story between 25 and 50 words long that is told from the point of view of an unreliable narrator. That is, you shouldn’t expect the reader to understand the story the same way the narrator does. Remember that an unreliable narrator isn’t necessarily a fool! The readers just have to recognize something in the story being told that the narrator doesn’t.” Prize : $250 for first place, $200 for second, $150 for third. Deadline : June 3, 2022.

The Lorca Latinx Poetry Prize honors the role of transoceanic friendship in poet Federico García Lorca’s life, work, and legacy. Restrictions : Poet must have published no more than one full-length collection. Genre : Poetry. Prize : Translation of an emerging Latinx poet’s English language chapbook-length manuscript into Spanish and bilingual publication. “The Prize strives to facilitate platforms for this poet to present their work, including at festivals, residences and readings in the United States, and beyond.” $500 and 10 copies of the chapbook. Deadline : June 5, 2022.

Furious Fiction . Genre : Flash fiction based on their prompt. Length: 500 words max. Prize : $500AUD. Deadline : June 5, 2022.

Icelandic Festival of Manitoba Poetry & Short Stories Contest . Genre : Poetry and short stories. Length; 1200 words max. Prize : $50 — $125. “You do not need to be of Icelandic descent to submit an entry however material reflecting Icelandic culture and interests will be given preference.” Deadline : June 5, 2022.

BlackInk: New Writing Competition . Restrictions : Open to writers from the African and African Caribbean Diaspora based in the UK. Genre : Short story up to 3,000 words. Prize : £500 top prize. Deadline : June 6, 2022.

The Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting . Restrictions : An address in the UK or Republic of Ireland or British Overseas Territory or British Forces Post Office. OR an entry code shared with you for submission to the International Award. Note : The Bruntwood Prize International Award of £8,000 is open to international playwrights who can apply through their partners. (See site for list) Genre : Play. Prize : £16,000. Deadline : June 6, 2022.

Defenestration . Genre : Short story including an incident of defenestration — the art or –ism of throwing people out of windows. It need not be literal. “This can be a sudden, immediate, even violent shift, change, or seismical event between the beginning and the end.” Prize : $75, two runner-up prizes of $30 each. Deadline : June 7, 2022.

Wyoming Creative Writing Fellowship . Restrictions : Open to Wyoming writers who are U.S. citizens or have legal resident status. Genre : Fiction, Poetry, CNF. Prize : $3,000 and an honorarium/travel stipend. One fellowship will be awarded in each category of Poetry, Creative Nonfiction, and Fiction, for a total of three fellowships. Applications are juried by noted authors, literary agents, or writing professionals from outside the state. Jurors may award honorable mentions. Recipients of the Creative Writing fellowships will share their work at one of Wyoming’s literary conferences. Deadline : June 9, 2022.

Literary Taxidermy . Genre : Short story, must begin and end with lines from one of three chosen novels. Prize : Up to $1500 and publication. Deadline : June 11, 2022. Note : There is a voluntary $10 fee. Entrants are encouraged to pay the fee, but the fee will be waived in the case of financial hardship.

Ocean Awareness Youth Contest . Restrictions : Open to students in grades 6–12. Genre : Art, poetry, prose, film. “Use humor, positivity, irony, or other unconventional approaches that are not typically used in environmental communication to address the climate crisis. Think outside the tackle-box, beyond clichés, to create something that makes the topic of climate change and our oceans more approachable and accessible.” Prizes : $100 — $1,500. Deadline : June 13, 2022.

Apparition Lit . Genre : Flash fiction. See themes . Prize : $30. Deadline : June 14, 2022.

International Wizard of Oz Club Annual Contest s. Genre : Short Fiction, Art & Academic Nonfiction Research Papers. All work must be related to the world of Oz. Prize : $100 in each genre. 2nd Prize $50 in each genre. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Christopher Hewitt Award. Genre : Poetry, fiction, CNF, drama. “The award showcases outstanding responses to the AIDS pandemic and the realities of individuals living with or affected by HIV/AIDS. Prize : $75 in each category. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Fraser Institute Student Essay Contest . Restrictions : Canadian high school, college, and graduate students. Genre: Short essay on “What in the world would Adam Smith say?” Prize : CAD$1,500 in each age category. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Baltimore Science Fiction Society Amateur Writing Contest . Restrictions : Open to Maryland residents or students at a MD 2- or 4-year college, and not a member of the Science Fiction Writers of America or published in a professional science fiction/fantasy magazine Genre : Science fiction short stories. Prize : 1st place is $250; 2nd place is $100; 3rd place is $50. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Little, Brown Emerging Artist Award . Genre : High-quality picture books that resonate with readers of diverse backgrounds and experience. Diversity includes literal or metaphorical inclusion of characters of underrepresented ethnicity, religious background, gender identity, class, mental or physical disability, or any other nondominant populations. Prize : American Express® gift cards totaling $1,500, round trip travel to New York City, and the honor of a one-day mentorship with a Little, Brown Books for Young Readers’ professional children’s book design and editorial team. Submission will be reviewed for publication. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Goi Peace Foundation International Essay Contest for Young People . Restrictions : Open to people 25 years of age or less. Genre : Essay (max 700 words). Theme: “What is Life?” Prize : 1st US$840, 2nd US$420. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Vermont Studio Center — Full Fellowship Awards . The Vermont Studio Center offers 54 fellowships; open to anyone in the world. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Norton Writer’s Prize . Sponsored by W.W. Norton & Company. “The Norton Writer’s Prize will be awarded annually for an outstanding essay written by an undergraduate. Literacy narratives, literary and other textual analyses, reports, profiles, evaluations, arguments, memoirs, proposals, mixed-genre pieces, and more: any excellent writing done for an undergraduate writing class will be considered.” Genres : Creative Nonfiction, Scholarly Essay. Prize : $1,500. Two runner-up prizes of $1,000. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Bard Fiction Prize . Restrictions : Open to a writer who is an American citizen aged 39 years or younger at the time of application. Genre : Published fiction book. Prize : $30,000 and a one-semester appointment as writer-in-residence at Bard College. Deadline : June 15, 2022.

Towson University Prize for Literature . Restrictions : Open to Maryland writers. Genre : Book-length manuscript of fiction, poetry, drama or imaginative non-fiction. The work must have been published within the three years prior to the year of nomination or must be scheduled for publication within the year in which nominated. Self-published works will not be considered. Prize : $1,000. Deadline : June 15, 2022 (?) See nomination form HERE .

Maine Arts Commission Individual Artist Fellowships . Restrictions : Open to writers who have lived in the state of Maine for at least one year. Genre : Fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction. Prize : $5,000. Deadline : June 16, 2022.

Scotiabank Giller Prize . Restrictions : Open to books published in Canada in English. Must be nominated by publisher. Genre : Fiction. Full-length novel or collection of short stories published in English, either originally, or in translation. Prize : $100,000 to the winner and $10,000 to each of the finalists. Deadline : Books published between May 1, 2021, and June 30, 2022 must be received on or before June 17, 2022.

Eugene C. Pulliam Fellowship for Editorial Writing . Genre : Editorial writing. The Eugene C. Pulliam Fellowship was established to enable a mid-career editorial writer or columnist to have time away from daily responsibilities for study and research. Freelancers may also apply. Fellowship: $75,000. Deadline : June 20, 2022.

A Midsummer Tale Narrative Writing Contest . Genre : Non-genre fiction and creative nonfiction. Theme : The End. Length : 1,000 words minimum; 5,000 words maximum. Prize : $35 — $50 Amazon gift card. Deadline : June 21, 2022.

Molly Keane Creative Writing Award . Restrictions : Open to Irish residents. Genre : Unpublished short story, maximum 2,000 words. Prize : 500 pounds. Deadline : June 22, 2022.

Solid Essay Contest . Restrictions : Open to high school students. Genre : Essay (See site for topics.) Minimum number of words is 600 and maximum is 800. Prize : Scholarship of $1000. Deadline : June 23, 2022.

Great Lakes Colleges (GLCA) New Writers Award . Restrictions : Open to Americans and Canadians. Genre : Poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction. In each category, the submitted work must be an author’s first published volume. Prize : $500. Deadline : June 25, 2022.

Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction . Restrictions : Books must be English-language, first-edition trade books published by a Canadian press, written by Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada. Titles must be published between May 3, 2022 and September 30, 2022 . Genre : Literary nonfiction including, among other forms, works of personal or journalistic essays, memoirs, commentary, criticism both social and political, history, and biography. Prize : Winner: $60,000; Finalists: $5,000. Deadline : June 28, 2022.

Atwood Gibson Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize . Restrictions : Titles must be published in Canada and written by Canadians. No self-published works. Genre : Novel or short story collection. Prize : $60,000 will be awarded to the novel or short story collection published between May 3, 2022 and September 30, 2022. Deadline : June 28, 2022.

Emmy Awards — Sir Peter Ustinov Television Scriptwriting Award . Restrictions : Non-US citizens under the age of 30 only. Prize : $2,500, a trip to New York City, and an invitation to the International Emmy® Awards Gala in November. Deadline : June 29, 2022.

The Lindisfarne Crime Prize . Restrictions : Residents of the North East of England, or whose work celebrates the North East of England. Genre : Crime short story of up to 10,000 words. Prize : £2500. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

The Zachary Doss Friends in Letters Memorial Fellowship . Genre : Collaborations between two people in any genre or form. Length: 10 pages. Prize : $50. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Shady Grove Literary . Genre : Any style, genre, tone of flash fiction. Length: 300 words max. Prize : $100. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Storyhouse . Genre : Nonfiction. Stories must be true, not semi-fictional accounts. 1000–10,000 words in length. Stories must be suitable for children. Prize : $200. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Sargeson Prize for Secondary Schools . Restrictions : Open to students enrolled at a New Zealand secondary school and aged between 16 and 18 years. Genre : Short story, Length: 5,000 words max. Prize : First Prize: $10000; Second Prize: $1000; Third Prize: $500. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Sargeson Prize . Restrictions : Open to New Zealanders. Genre : Short stories. Length: 5,000 words max. Prize : First Prize: $10000; Second Prize: $1000; Third Prize: $500. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Eden Mills Teen Poetry Contest . Restrictions : Open to Canadian teens. Genre : Poetry. Prize : Two $50 prizes, two $25 prizes. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future Contest . Restrictions : Contest is open only to those who have not professionally published a novel or short novel, or more than one novelette, or more than three short stories, in any medium. Professional publication is deemed to be payment and at least 5,000 copies (or 5,000 hits for online publication). Genre : Fantasy, Sci-Fi or Horror. 17,000 words max. Prize : $1,000 1st Prize awarded each quarter; one of those winners also receives the $5,000 annual “Golden Pen Award” grand prize. 2nd Prize $750, 3rd Prize $500. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Drue Heinz Literature Prize . Restrictions : The award is open to writers who have published a book-length collection of fiction or a minimum of three short stories or novellas in commercial magazines or literary journals of national distribution. Online and self-publication does not count toward this requirement. Genre : A manuscript of short stories; two or more novellas (a novella may comprise a maximum of 130 double-spaced typed pages); or a combination of one or more novellas and short stories. Novellas are only accepted as part of a larger collection. Prize : $15,000 and publication by the University of Pittsburgh Press under its standard contract. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Utah Division of Arts and Museums Original Writing Competition . Restrictions : Utah writers. Genres : Poetry and prose. Prize : $1,000 top prizes for book-length manuscripts of novels, creative nonfiction & history, collection of poetry or short stories, and juvenile book; $300 top prizes for individual poems, short stories, and personal essays. 2nd Prize $500 for the book-length categories, $150 for poetry. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Blue Mountain Poetry Card Contest . Genre : Poetry. “Poems can be rhyming or non-rhyming, although we find that non-rhyming poetry reads better. We suggest that you write about real emotions and feelings and that you have some special person or occasion in mind as you write.” Prize : First prize $300. Second prize $150. Third prize $30. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Preservation Foundation Essay Contest for Unpublished Writers . Restrictions : The contest is open to writers whose creative writing has never produced revenues of over $750 in any single year. Genre : General Nonfiction. Stories must be between 1000 and10,000 words in length. Prize : First prize in each category will be $200. Runners-up will receive $100. Finalists will receive $50. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Substack runs a monthly short story competition. Their mission is to “revive the art of the short story, support artists, and produce something wonderful.” Genre : Short story. Length: 6000- 10,000 words. Prize : $100 plus 50% of subscription revenue to be sent by Paypal, Zelle, or check. Deadline : June 30, 2022. Reprints are ok so long as you still have the rights to distribute.

Griffin Trust for Excellence in Poetry, Griffin Poetry Prize . Restrictions : One prize goes to a living Canadian poet or translator, the other to a living poet or translator from any country, which may include Canada. Genre : Poetry. Books must have been published in English during the calendar year preceding the year of the award. Prize : Prizes are awarded annually in two categories — International and Canadian. Each prize is worth C$65,000. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Contest . Restrictions : The competition is open to all citizens and residents of the Commonwealth aged 18 and under. Genre : Essay. The theme of the contest is “Community in the Commonwealth.” Prize : Past prizes have included certificates, resources for winner’s school, visits to Cambridge University, a trip to London and a week of activities, work experience at international organizations, and having your entry featured in worldwide media. Deadline : June 30, 2022.

Like this article? For more articles about the publishing world, useful tips on how to get an agent, agents who are looking for clients, how to market and promote your work, building your online platform, how to get reviews, self-publishing, as well as publishers accepting manuscripts directly from writers (no agent required) visit Publishing and Other Forms of Insanity .

Erica Verrillo

Written by Erica Verrillo

Helping writers get published and bolstering their flagging spirits at http://publishedtodeath.blogspot.com/

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MEET THE WINNERS OF THE QUEEN'S COMMONWEALTH ESSAY COMPETITION 2022

The Queen's Commonwealth Essay Competition (QCEC) is the world's oldest international schools' writing contest, established by the Society in 1883. With thousands of young people taking part each year, it is an important way to recognise achievement, elevate youth voices and develop key skills through creative writing. 

Each year, entrants write on a theme that explores the Commonwealth's values, fostering an empathetic world view in the next generation of leaders and encouraging young people to consider new perspectives to the challenges that the world faces. Themes have included the environment, community, inclusion, the role of youth leadership, and gender equality. 

In the past decade alone, this high-profile competition has engaged approximately 140,000 young people, over 5,000 schools and thousands of volunteer judges across the Commonwealth. 

This year, the competition theme was 'Our Commonwealth', reflecting on our Patron Queen Elizabeth II's seven decades of service to the Commonwealth as an inspiring example of the steadfast commitment and important contribution we can all make to our societies.

We were thrilled to receive a record-breaking 26,322 entries to the QCEC from every Commonwealth region, with the winners and runners-up from New Zealand, Australia, the United Kingdom and India. Find out more about this year's winners below and watch their reactions on discovering this significant achievement!

Sawooly's photo_edited.jpg

Sawooly Li 

Senior Winner 

Age 17, New Zealand 

Sawooly Li is a 12th grade student from Rangitoto College in New Zealand. Reading and writing have always been second nature for her—a way of expressing visions, thoughts, and emotions. She loves drawing inspiration and learning from other great writers and their works. Both reading and writing are things which Sawooly aspires to continue far, far, into the future.

Sawooly also has a love for maths and physics, and is heavily involved in such areas in her school, running clubs and participating in competitions. Fostering a strong sense of community, she also leads several in-school organisations, such as UN Youth and UNICEF. In the winters, Sawooly enjoys snowboarding in New Zealand’s beautiful mountains with friends and family.

Read Sawooly's winning entry, 'Willow Trees and Waterholes' .

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Madeleine Wood

Junior Winner 

Age 14, Australia 

Madeleine is 14 years old and lives in Melbourne, Australia. She is in grade 8 at Camberwell Girls Grammar School.

She loves travelling, particularly through Europe, and enjoys visiting the museums, historical landmarks and cities in each country. It is from these experiences that she gained a love for ancient, medieval, and renaissance history.

She is also an avid reader, plays the violin and spends much of her time playing basketball or swimming.

Read her winning poem, 'Catalina' .

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Amaal Fawzi

Senior Runner-up

Age 17, United Kingdom

Amaal Fawzi is a 17-year-old girl who was born in Egypt, raised in Lebanon, and now lives in East London. She has an Iraqi father and a British mother, and because of the education system in Lebanon, she has started university a year early! She studies English Literature with Creative Writing and has been writing poetry for many years, though she wouldn’t say she’s been writing poetry well for all of them.

Most of the poetry and prose she likes to write is concerned with culture and identity. Her years in Lebanon formed the majority of her character and cultural experiences, so learning to interact with that in the UK has been a very interesting season. It makes for a lot of writing material, and she’d say that the way she writes is always personal and drawn somehow from her own life.

Read Amaal's poem, 'Nursing Homes' . 

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Maulika Pandey

Junior  Runner-up

Age 13, India

Maulika Pandey, is an 8th grade student from Aurum the Global School.

She has always enjoyed writing since she was a child as she feels writing gives her the power to express her feelings in a creative way. Maulika also enjoys sketching and playing the guitar. Basketball is her favourite sport.

She aspires to be a successful entrepreneur but will definitely continue writing in the future.

She is a dedicated advocate for anti-bullying and body positivity.

Read her entry titled, 'The Molai Forest' .

2022 Essay Competition Winner – Anais W

Home › Essay Competition 2024 › Essay Competition Winners › 2022 Essay Competition Winner – Anais W

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Table of Contents

Take a look at one of this year’s winning entries to the Immerse Education Essay Competition from the Creative Writing category. Congratulations to all participants and in particular to those who have won 100% scholarships!

Which key attributes make a protagonist likeable?

Protagonists shape the way we interact with stories. They become our immediate association with a series or perspective – Harry Potter memorably recalled by its titular figure – and their memorable attributes accumulate iconic significance over time – such as the emergence of ‘Bah. Humbug!’ as a loveably universal aphorism.

Likeable protagonists form the eyes we see narratives through attracting our empathy and admiration through a mix of relatability, growth, and iconic memorability. These protagonists often embody a liminal dual role of relatable and aspirational quality. Author Amanda Skenandore cites a mix of ‘all-too human flaws and larger-than-life qualities’ [1] to construct a grounded, likeable protagonist. This hybridised concept is manifest quite literally in the mischievous student/talented wizard- ‘Chosen One’ Harry Potter. Sadie Hoagland extends this tenet through her assertation of powerful, ‘revealable’ characters [2]. Authors may also embrace a relatable image of ‘nuanced, human selves’ through initially complex or murky characterisation, leading to cathartic ‘reveals’ or vicarious self-discovery throughout a series; the magical backstory of Jackson and Potter intensifies and symbolises their own, otherwise relatable ‘coming-of-age’ arcs.

Contrasting consistently familiar qualities, to be likeable, protagonists must also be fluid. Protagonists, coined by Barthes as the ‘accomplices’ to discourse [3], mirror the progression of narrative: microcosmically modelling thematic change. Harry Potter’s role as a primarily relatable insert of the audience into the wizarding world expands as stakes grow higher- culminating in his self-realisation after Dumbledore’s death, and eventual legacy/family of his own. Scrooge initially commands little sympathy, yet in fable-like fashion comes to epitomise lofty ideals of Christmas cheer, courting the favour of both moralistic Christian and generally festive readers [4].

Conversely, gradually corrupted, less-reliable characters, consumed by Robert Garner McBrearty’s concepts of ‘strong longings’ [5], attract the adoration of immersed readers. Aristotle notes in Poetics that heroes should be ‘consistently inconsistent’ [6] with flaws, even fatal hamartia, which reads as engaging and, to some degree, justified. In Rebecca, the obsessive, morally grey unnamed narrator commands our loyalty through ambiguating resurged Gothic fantasy and deceptive reality- even as Mrs de Winter grows disconnected from logic and reality, her amplified human desires engender a likeability in her eventual self-determination- ‘I am Mrs de Winter’ [7]. Protagonists, as they evolve and shift, embrace an essentially human fluidity and fragility, captivating audiences to engage with their journey.

Ultimately, likeable protagonists are memorable: they encourage devotion and engagement in the reader. McBrearty notes effective protagonists ‘surprise us!’ [5]; even subtly, they subvert. In conservative Victorian Britain, Scrooge’s arc of humanist redemption embodies revolutionary empowerment and individual autonomy. Harry Potter’s adolescent struggles, recontextualised into fantasy fiction, achieve a memorable rendition of relatable human experience. In Rebecca, the distinctive voice of an ironically unnamed narrator – ‘Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again’ [8] – constructs a dark, psychological reflection on self-determination [9].

Each protagonist exemplifies an essentially relatable body of social ideas through distinctive, iconic individual voice- resonating with readers, and inspiring likeability. The popularity of Harry Potter, A Christmas Carol and Rebecca is evidenced by countless contemporary engagements in fanfiction, and even reinterpretations in film. Each uniquely likeable protagonist – Harry Potter as an audience stand-in; Scrooge as an allegorical parable of redemption; and Mrs de Winter as an abject reflection of shadowed Romanic urges – exemplifies reliability, fluidity and memorability to impress their engaging narrative message, embodying a character ultimately ‘worthy of readers’ investment’ [10].

Bibliography

Aristotle. “Poetics”. In The Internet Classics Archive. Translated by S. H. Butcher. 350BCE. 2009. [classics.mit.edu/Aristotle/poetics.1.1.html last accessed: 26th August 2022].

Barthes, Roland. “The Reality Effect.” In The Rustle of Language. Transcribed by Richard Miller. New York: Hill and Wang, 1986.

Cox, Don Richard. and Gilbert, Elliot L. “Scrooge’s Conversion”. PMLA, 90:5 (1975): 922-924. Du Maurier, Daphne. “Rebecca”. London: Virago Press, 2018.

Hoagland, Sadie. “What makes a good protagonist?”. Interviewed by Jack Smith. The Writer. 15 Nov. [https://writermag.com/improve-your-writing/fiction/what-makes-a-good-protagonist/ last accessed: 26th August 2022].

Linkin, Harriet Kramer. “The Deceptively Strategic Narrator of “Rebecca””. Journal of Narrative Theory, 46:2 (2016): 223-253.

McBrearty, Robert Garner. “What makes a good protagonist?”. Interviewed by Jack Smith. The Writer. 15 Nov. 2021. [https://writermag.com/improve-your-writing/fiction/what-makes-agood-protagonist/ last accessed: 26th August 2022].

Rohan, Ethel. “What makes a good protagonist?”. Interviewed by Jack Smith. The Writer. 15 Nov.[https://writermag.com/improve-your-writing/fiction/what-makes-a-good-protagonist/ last accessed: 26th August 2022].

Skenandore, Amanda. “What makes a good protagonist?”. Interviewed by Jack Smith. The Writer. 15 Nov. 2021. [https://writermag.com/improve-your-writing/fiction/what-makes-a-goodprotagonist/ last accessed: 26th August 2022].

Why Apply To The Immerse Education Essay Competition? 

Are you a highly motivated student aged 13-18? Have you ever wanted to experience studying at Cambridge or Oxford? 

The Immerse Education essay competition allows you the chance to submit an essay for the chance to be awarded a scholarship to the award-winning Cambridge summer school . 

How To Apply To The Immerse Education Essay Competition? 

The Immerse Education annual essay competition is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to win a scholarship to a Cambridge or Oxford summer school . 

If you’re aged 13-18 and you’re interested in applying to the Immerse Education essay competition then please visit our essay competition page for more details.

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Atlas Shrugged Essay Contest

Students      >      Essay Contests      >     Atlas Shrugged

✓    Open to all high school, college, and graduate students worldwide.

Annual Grand Prize

June 14, 2024

Summer Entry Deadline

Book Length

Interested in participating?

Fill out the contact form below, and we’ll email you with more information about this year’s contest—including instructions on how to enter.

Thank you for signing up!

We’ll email you more information about this year’s contest—including instructions on how to enter. In the meantime, please let us know at [email protected] if you have any questions. We’re happy to help.

What is Atlas Shrugged?

The astounding story of a man who said that he would stop the motor of the world—and did.

Tremendous in scope, breathtaking in its suspense, Atlas Shrugged is unlike any other book you have ever read. It is a mystery story, not about the murder of a man’s body, but about the murder—and rebirth—of man’s spirit.

How It Works

Every three months there is a new seasonal entry round, with its own unique essay prompt. You may compete in any or all of these entry rounds.

The top three essays from each season will be awarded a cash prize. The first-place essay from each season will advance to compete for the annual grand prize.

The first-place essay from each season will be eligible to contend for the annual first-place title, with the opportunity to secure a grand prize of $25,000.

Challenging Essay Topics

Each entry round features a unique topic designed to provoke a deeper understanding of the book’s central themes and characters.

Essays must be written in English only and be between 800 and 1,600 words in length.

Questions? Write to us at [email protected] .

  • Summer Prompt
  • Fall Prompt
  • Winter Prompt

The essay prompt for our fall entry period has not yet been determined. We will post it here as soon it’s available.

The essay prompt for our winter entry period has not yet been determined. We will post it here as soon it’s available.

Grand Prize

Master our grading standards.

Essays are judged on whether the student is able to justify and argue for his or her view, not on whether the Institute agrees with the view the student expresses. 

Our graders look for writing that is clear, articulate, and logically organized.  Essays should stay on topic, address all parts of the selected prompt, and interrelate the ideas and events in the novel. 

Winning essays must demonstrate an outstanding grasp of the philosophic meaning of Atlas Shrugged .

Organization

Understanding, contest timeline, discover the power of atlas shrugged.

Atlas Shrugged  is a mystery novel like no other. You enter a world where scientists, entrepreneurs, artists, and inventors are inexplicably vanishing—where the world is crumbling.

And what you discover, by the end, is an uplifting vision of life, an inspiring cast of heroes, and a challenging new way to think about life’s most important issues.

Learn more and request a free digital copy of the book today.

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Learn from Past Winners

Curious to know what makes for a winning essay in the Atlas Shrugged   contest? Check out some of the essays written by our most recent grand-prize winners. 

To varying degrees, they all display an excellent grasp of the philosophic meaning of Atlas Shrugged .

Click here to see the full list of 2022 contest winners.

Jacob Fisher

Graduate Student

Stanford University

Stanford, California

United States

Mariah Williams

Regis University

Denver, Colorado

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Nathaniel Shippee

University of Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

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Samuel Weaver

St. John’s College

Annapolis, Maryland

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Patrick Mayles

Graduate student

Universidad Nacional de Colombia

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Christina Jeong

College Student

University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame, Indiana

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Improve Your Writing Skills

Other than endorsing perfect punctuation and grammar in English, the Ayn Rand Institute offers no advice or feedback for essays submitted to its contests. However, we do recommend the following resources as ways to improve the content of your essays.

The Atlas Project

Writing: a mini-course.

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23 Writing Competitions for High School Students

What’s covered:, why should you enter a writing competition, writing competitions for high school students, how do writing competitions affect my admissions chances.

Do you dream of writing the next great American novel? Are you passionate about poetry? Do you aspire to become a screenwriter? No matter what genre of writing you’re interested in—whether it’s fiction, nonfiction, poetry, or something else entirely—there’s a writing competition focused on it.

Writing competitions provide great motivation to put pen to paper (or finger to key). Moreover, they’re an excellent step toward getting published, and can ultimately start you on the path to becoming a professional writer.

One of the best ways to improve your writing is simply to write—and competitions provide an excellent impetus to do so. Writing competitions also serve as an introduction to what life is like for many writers; participants entering writing competitions will receive a prompt or must think of an original idea, compose a piece of work, and submit it for review.

Another benefit of entering a writing competition for high schoolers is that many offer cash awards and scholarships, which can be used to help with the costs of college.

Additionally, many writing competitions are run by colleges and universities, so submitting them is a great way to introduce faculty to yourself and your work. If you win an award—especially a prestigious award—it can significantly improve your odds of college acceptance.

1. The Adroit Prizes for Poetry and Prose

Type: Poetry and Prose

Submission Fee: $15

Prize: $200

Deadline: May 1, 2023

Eligibility:

  • All secondary and undergraduate students

Guidelines:

  • Each student may send up to five total submissions across the genres of poetry and prose
  • Each poetry submission may include up to six poems (maximum of ten pages single-spaced). Each prose submission may include up to three works of fiction or creative nonfiction (combined word limit of 3,500 words; excerpts are acceptable).

Adroit Prizes are awarded to emerging high school and college writers in two categories: poetry and prose. Winning pieces are considered for publication in the Adroit Journal and winners receive an award of $200. The 2023 judges are Natalie Diaz and Ocean Vuong.

2. Ten-Minute Play Contest

Type: Plays

Submission Fee: N/A

Deadline: Passed, but the contest will reopen in 2024

Eligibility: Students in the eleventh grade in the U.S. (or international equivalent of the eleventh grade)

Guidelines: Applicants may submit only one play (10 pages maximum)

The Ten-Minute Play Contest is put on by Princeton University’s Lewis Center of the Arts. Applicants are allowed to submit one play that is no longer than 10 pages. Their submissions are judged by members of Princeton University’s Theater Program faculty.

3. Ayn Rand Anthem and The Fountainhead Essay Contests

Type: Essays

  • Anthem: $2,000
  • The Fountainhead : $5,000
  • Anthem: Grades 8-12
  • The Fountainhead : Grades 11-12
  • Anthem: Essays must be written in English only and between 600 and 1,200 words in length, double-spaced
  • The Fountainhead: Essays must be written in English only and between 800 and 1,600 words in length, double-spaced

In this essay competition, students pick one of three prompts about a topic related to Ayn Rand’s books and write an essay that goes through three stages of grading. Students are graded on their clarity, organization, understanding, and ability to stay “on topic.”

4. Leonard L. Milberg ’53 High School Poetry Prize

Type: Poetry

Prize: $500-$1,500

Eligibility: Students must be in the 11th grade in the U.S. or abroad

Guidelines: Applicants may submit up to 3 poems

The Leonard L. Milberg ’53 High School Poetry Prize is another contest run by Princeton University’s Lewis Center of the Arts. Winners are chosen by judges who are both poets and members of Princeton University’s creative writing faculty. Three monetary awards are available.

5. World Historian Student Essay Competition

Prize: $500

Eligibility: Students enrolled in grades K–12 in public, private, and parochial schools, and those in home-study programs

Guidelines: Essays should be approximately 1,000 words

Winners of this competition receive a $500 prize along with a free yearlong membership to the World History Association . To apply, you must submit an approximately 1,000-word essay responding to the following prompt:

  • Submit an essay that addresses the following topic and discusses how it relates to you personally and to World History: Your view of a family story related to a historical event or your personal family cultural background, or an issue of personal relevance or specific regional history/knowledge.

6. Jane Austen Society of North America Essay Contest

Prize: $250-$1,000

Deadline: June 1, 2023

Eligibility: Open to high school, undergraduate, and graduate students

  • Must be submitted by the student through the official Essay Contest Submission website
  • Entries may include a statement about the student’s mentor; however, a mentor statement is not required
  • The essay must be 6-8 pages in length, not including the Works Cited page
  • The essay must use MLA documentation, including a Works Cited page and parenthetical citations in the body of the text. Use endnotes only for substantive notes. Source material that is directly quoted, paraphrased, or summarized must be cited. Quotations from the Jane Austen work under discussion should be cited as well.

The Jane Austen Society of North America (JASNA) Essay Contest is an annual writing competition aimed at fostering an appreciation for its namesake’s work. The contest is broken down into three divisions—high school, college/university, and graduate school.

First-place winners are awarded a $1,000 prize along with free registration and lodging for two nights at JASNA’s Annual General Meeting—smaller monetary awards are also given to second- and third-place essayists.

This year’s essay topic:

  • In Pride and Prejudice and Jane Austen’s other novels, we see proposals and marriages that are motivated by love, as well as those that are better described as arranged marriages or marriages of convenience. Many cultures today also expect arranged marriages (not the same as forced). In your essay, compare and discuss the different types of marriages or courtships found in the novels, whether those relationships are new or longstanding.

7. Bennington College Young Writers Awards

Type: Poetry, Fiction, and Nonfiction

Deadline: November 1, 2023

Eligibility: Students in grades 9-12

  • Poetry: A group of three poems
  • Fiction: A short story (1,500 words or fewer) or one-act play (run no more than 30 minutes of playing time)
  • Nonfiction: A personal or academic essay (1,500 words or fewer)

Bennington College has a strong history of developing writers—it’s produced twelve Pulitzer Prize winners, three U.S. poet laureates, and countless New York Times bestsellers—and the Bennington College Young Writers Awards celebrate this legacy.

In addition to offering cash awards to winners and finalists in all three categories, winners and finalists who apply and are accepted to Bennington College are also eligible for substantial scholarships.

8. Rachel Carson Intergenerational Sense of Wonder/Sense of the Wild Contest

Type: Poetry and Essays

Deadline: November 16, 2023

  • You are required to have a team of 2 or more people
  • The team must be intergenerational

Guidelines: Maximum length of 500 words (approximately 2 pages)

This unique writing competition requires that entries must be submitted by a team of two people from different generations—for example, a high school student and a teacher. Contestants can compete in a number of categories and themes, each with unique submission requirements.

9. NSHSS Creative Writing Scholarship

Type: Fiction and Poetry

Prize: $2,000

Deadline: October 2, 2023

Eligibility: Rising high school students graduating in 2024, 2025, 2026, 2027, and recently graduated 2023 seniors

  • Poetry: Students may submit their original poetry in any style, from formal verse to free verse to experimental. The poem should be formatted as you wish it to appear in the publication.
  • Fiction: Students may submit a piece of short fiction, which must be no more than 5,000 words and should not be single-spaced. The entry may be any genre of the student’s choice, including graphic novel or story.
  • Must submit educator recommendation, academic resume, and current transcript with application

Winning works for this competition are chosen based on their creativity, technique, expression, and originality. Three winners are chosen in each category and each winner receives a $2,000 prize.

10. John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Contest

Prize: $100-$10,000

Eligibility: The contest is open to United States high school students in grades 9-12, U.S. students under the age of twenty enrolled in a high school correspondence/GED program,  and U.S. citizens attending schools overseas.

  • Essays can be no more than 1,000 words but must be a minimum of 700 words. Citations and bibliography are not included in the word count.
  • Essays must have a minimum of five sources.

The prestigious John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Contest is one of the most recognizable and prestigious writing competitions for high schoolers in the nation. Essays for the contest are required to describe an act of political courage by a U.S. elected official who served during or after 1917. The first-place winner of the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Contest takes home a $10,000 award and second place receives a $3,000 prize.

11. YoungArts National Writing Competition

Deadline: Opens June 2023

Eligibility: 15- to 18-year-old visual, literary, or performing artist based in the United States

Guidelines: To be released

YoungArts supports talented young artists between the ages of 15 and 18 (or grades 10-12) in 10 disciplines, including writing. Applicants can submit entries in six genres—creative nonfiction, novel, play or script, poetry, short story, and spoken word.

12. SPJ/JEA High School Essay Contest

Submission Fee: $5

Prize: $300-$1,000

Eligibility: All students enrolled in grades 9-12 in U.S. public, private and home schools within the United States

  • The essay should be 300-500 words
  • Entries may be typed or handwritten but must be double-spaced

This high school writing contest is presented by the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) and the Journalism Education Association (JEA) to increase awareness of the importance of independent media.

Last year’s prompt was:

  • While consumers are drawn toward tweets and sound bites, how can journalists tell more of the story without losing readers’ interest?

13. VSA Playwright Discovery Program Competitions

Eligibility: High school students with disabilities

  • 10-minute script
  • Entries may be the work of an individual student or a collaboration between two students that includes at least one student with a disability

This writing competition, presented by the Kennedy Center, is open to students ages 15-18 (or enrolled in high school) with disabilities. Writers may submit a “ten-minute” script in any genre, including plays, musicals, multimedia, video, film, TV, and podcasts.

Entries can be the work of an individual or the product of collaboration—provided that at least one of the collaborators has a disability. Multiple winners are chosen and given the chance to work with industry professionals, attend Kennedy Center professional development activities, and participate in networking opportunities.

14. Nancy Thorp Poetry Contest

Prize: $350

Eligibility: Women who are sophomores or juniors in high school or preparatory school

Guidelines: No more than two poems by any one student may be submitted

For almost six decades, the Nancy Thorp Poetry Contest has provided recognition, scholarships, and awards to the best female high school sophomore and junior poets. Submissions are reviewed by faculty members of Hollins University’s creative writing program and students enrolled in its M.F.A. in creative writing.

The first-place winner receives a $350 cash prize, a renewable $5,000 scholarship to Hollins University if they choose to enroll there, as well as free tuition and housing at the university’s Hollinsummer creative writing program. Their winning work is also published in Cargoes , the university’s student literary magazine.

15. Scholastic Art and Writing Awards

Type: Various

Submission Fee: $10 for individual entry, $30 for portfolio (can use Fee Waiver Form)

Prize: Varies

Deadline: Opens in September

Eligibility: Teens in grades 7–12 (ages 13 and up)

Guidelines: Varies by category

The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards is the nation’s longest-running, most prestigious recognition program for creative teens. They offer 28 submission categories, including writing, critical essay, dramatic scripts, flash fiction, journalism, humor, novel writing, personal essay and memoir, poetry, science fiction and fantasy, and short story.

Works are judged by famous jurors who look for works that show originality, skill, and the emergence of a personal voice or vision. Students can earn a variety of scholarships through success in these competitions.

Works that celebrate individual differences or personal grief, loss, and bereavement are eligible for $1,000 scholarships. High school seniors submitting winning portfolios of six works are eligible for up to $12,500 in scholarships.

16. Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Contest

Type: Creative Writing and Poetry

Prize: $100-$1,500

Deadline: June 13, 2023

  • Students ages 11-18 from around the world
  • Students can participate as an individual or as a club, class, or group of any size
  • All students must provide the contact information for an Adult Sponsor (teacher, parent, mentor, etc.)
  • Creative Writing: no more than 5 pages (approximately 1,250 words)
  • Poetry: no more than 2 pages
  • A written reflection is required to accompany your submission, regardless of category. It is like the introduction to a book or an artist’s statement in a museum.

The 12th annual Ocean Awareness Contest is a platform for young people to learn about environmental issues through art-making and creative communication, explore their relationship to a changing world, and become advocates for positive change. Students can participate in six different categories, including poetry and spoken word, and creative writing.

This year’s prompt centers around climate issues:

  • Research and choose an inspirational scientist, activist, artist, educator, or other hero who is working to solve climate change issues. Create a piece of art, writing, or media that highlights their efforts, organizations, and/or positive impacts. We are familiar with the amazing work of environmental giants like Greta Thunberg and David Attenborough. We challenge you to introduce the Bow Seat community to a Climate Hero whose work we may not know about yet – but should.

17. John Locke Global Essay Competition

Submission Fee: N/A (unless late entry)

Prize: $2,000-$10,000 toward attending any John Locke Institute program

Deadline: June 30, 2023 (must register by May 31, 2023)

Eligibility: Candidates must be no older than 18 years old on June 30, 2023 (Candidates for the Junior Prize must be no older than 14 on the same date)

Guidelines: Each essay must address only one of the questions in your chosen subject category, and must not exceed 2,000 words (not counting diagrams, tables of data, footnotes, bibliography, or authorship declaration)

Students competing in this competition have the opportunity to write an essay in one of seven categories—philosophy, politics, economics, history, psychology, theology, and law. Each category has three prompts, from which students choose and respond to one.

Essays are judged on knowledge and understanding of the relevant material, the competent use of evidence, quality of argumentation, originality, structure, writing style, and persuasive force.

If you miss the deadline, you can submit a late entry up until July 10. Late entries will be charged a $20 late fee.

18. AFSA National High School Essay Contest

Prize: $2,500

  • Students whose parents are not in the Foreign Service are eligible to participate.
  • Students must be in grades 9-12 in any of the 50 states, Washington, D.C, the U.S. territories, or—if they are U.S. citizens/lawful permanent residents —attending high school overseas.

Guidelines: Your essay should be at least 1,000 words but should not exceed 1,500 words (word count does not apply to the list of sources)

The AFSA Essay Contest focuses on knowledge of foreign policy and the American Foreign Service. Last year’s prompt was:

  • In your essay, you will select a country or region in which the United States Foreign Service has been involved at any point since 1924 and describe, in 1,500 words or less, how the Foreign Service was successful or unsuccessful in advancing American foreign policy goals – including promoting peace – in this country/region and propose ways in which it might continue to improve those goals in the coming years.

The first-place winner receives $2,500, a paid trip to the nation’s capital with their parents from anywhere in the U.S., and an all-expenses-paid educational voyage courtesy of Semester at Sea. The runner-up wins $1,250 and full tuition to attend a summer session of the National Student Leadership Conference’s International Diplomacy program.

19. EngineerGirl Writing Contest

Prize: $100-$500

  • The contest is open to individual students in the following three competition categories—Elementary School Students (grades 3-5), Middle School Students (grades 6-8), or High School Students (grades 9-12).
  • You can also qualify with corresponding homeschool or international grade levels.
  • High school student essays must be no more than 750 words
  • You must also include a reference list of 3-10 resources

In this competition, students choose one of four prompts related to the 20 Greatest Engineering Achievements of the 20th Century and explore the technologies that have been developed in the last century and technologies that are being developed today. Students are judged based on their presentation and examples of engineering (~35%), their celebration of diversity (~50%), and their quality of writing (~15%).

20. The Blank Theatre Young Playwright’s Festival

Prize: Play is produced

Eligibility: Playwrights must be 19 years old or younger as of March 15, 2023; co-authored plays are welcome, provided all authors are 19 or younger

  • Original plays or musicals of any length or genre and on any subject
  • Up to three plays per playwright or team

While winners of this theater competition do not receive a cash prize, they have the unique opportunity to be mentored by leaders in the field, then will have their play directed and performed by professional artists during the following summer. The 12 best submissions are produced and professionally performed.

21. Saint Mary’s College of California River of Words Contest

Type: Poetry and Arts

  • The contest is open to K-12 students, ages 5-19
  • Students must be enrolled in school to be eligible
  • Participants may submit up to 5 entries for poetry and 5 entries for art (total of up to 10 entries)
  • Poems should not exceed 32 lines in length (written) or 3 minutes (signed)
  • Collaborative poems and artwork are accepted, but only one student (chosen as the group representative) will be eligible for any prizes awarded

The River of Words contest aims to promote environmental literacy through the exchange of arts and culture. River of Words has been inspiring educators and students through this competition for over 25 years.

The goal of River of Words is to connect youth with their watersheds—the environments they live in—through engagement with art and poetry related to the idea of “place.” They look for art and poetry that shows the connection between students and the worlds around them.

22. Ayn Rand Atlas Shrugged Essay Contest

Prize: $10,000

Deadline: November 6, 2023

Eligibility: Open to all 12th grade, college, and graduate students worldwide

Guidelines: Essays must be between 800 and 1,600 words in length

In this essay competition, high school seniors pick one of three prompts about a topic related to Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged and write an essay that goes through three stages of grading. Students are graded on their clarity, organization, understanding, and ability to stay “on topic.”

23. Writopia Lab’s Worldwide Plays Festival

Prize: Play produced

Eligibility: Playwrights ages 6 to 18

  • 8 minutes maximum
  • Any genre or style
  • Plays should have no more than three characters
  • There can be no narrator of the play who is not emotionally invested in the story
  • Students must incorporate at least one of the following props or costumes —blue plates, a yellow blouse, a Valentine’s heart with the word “Love,” a flower crown, a plush hotdog, a Mardi Gras bead with jester heads, a pack of clothespins, Russian nesting dolls, a set of miniature cymbals, a lavender blouse, a lei, or a roll of aluminum foil

Since 2010, Writopia Lab has been producing, designing, and directing one-act plays submitted by young playwrights. These winning plays are then performed by New York City theater professionals. The contest looks for playwrights who embody fearlessness and imagination. Writopia Lab says, “Write deeply! Write fiercely! Write politically and personally! And don’t be afraid to write with a sense of play – they are called plays, after all.”

While we can’t know exactly how activities outside of the classroom will affect your college admissions odds, the 4 Tiers of Extracurricular Activities provide a helpful framework for understanding how colleges view your extracurriculars.

Extracurricular activities in Tiers 1 and 2 are reserved for the most exclusive and acclaimed awards, and can significantly improve your odds of college admission. By contrast, Tiers 3 and 4 are reserved for more common extracurriculars, and have less of an impact on your chances of college admission.

For example, if you place in a nationally renowned writing competition—a Tier 2 activity—this will positively affect your admissions chances. On the other hand, if you receive an honorable mention in your high school’s poetry contest—a Tier 4 activity—your admissions chances will not be significantly affected.

That said, if you are applying to an English Literature or Creative Writing program with a well-developed essay and recommendations that emphasize your commitment to language, participation in Tier 3 and 4 writing competitions could help admissions officers conceptualize your passion for your future career.

Curious how the writing competition you participated in will affect your college admission chances? CollegeVine can help! Our free chancing calculator uses a variety of factors—including grades, test scores, and extracurriculars—to estimate your odds of getting into hundreds of colleges and universities, while also providing insight into how to improve your profile.

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Regions Riding Forward® Scholarship Contest

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Their Story. Your Voice.

Your voice is your own. But it's also been impacted by others. Who, we wonder, has inspired you? Let us know by entering the Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Contest. 

You could win an $8,000 college scholarship

For the opportunity to win an $8,000 scholarship, submit a video or written essay about an individual you know personally (who lives in your community) who has inspired you and helped you build the confidence you need to achieve your goals.

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The details

The 2024 Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Contest consists of four (4) separate Quarterly Contests - one for each calendar quarter of 2024. Regions is awarding four $8,000 scholarships through each Quarterly Contest.

Each Quarterly Contest has its own separate entry period, as provided in the chart below.

The entry deadline for each Quarterly Contest is 11:59:59 PM Central Time on the applicable Quarterly Contest period end date (set forth in the chart above).

No purchase or banking relationship required.

Regions believes in supporting the students whose passion and actions every day will continue to make stories worth sharing. That’s why we have awarded over $1 million in total scholarships to high school and college students.

How to enter, 1. complete an online quarterly contest application.

Enter the Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Contest by completing a Quarterly Contest application.  The second Quarterly Contest runs from April 1, 2024 through June 30, 2024. Complete and save all requested information. 

2. Prepare your Written Essay or Video Essay

For each Quarterly Contest, the topic of your Written Essay or Video Essay (your “Essay Topic”) must be an individual you know personally, who lives in your community. Your Written Essay or Video Essay must address how the individual you have selected as your Essay Topic has inspired you and helped you build the confidence you need to achieve your goals.

Written Essay and Video Essay submissions must meet all of the requirements described in the contest Official Rules. Your Written Essay or Video Essay must be (i) in English, (ii) your own original work, created solely by you (and without the use of any means of artificial intelligence (“AI”)), and (iii) the exclusive property of you alone.

Written Essays must be 500 words or less. You can write your Written Essay directly in the application, or you can copy and paste it into the appropriate area in the application form.

Video Essay submissions must be directly uploaded to the contest application site. Video Essays must be no more than 3 minutes in length and no larger than 1 GB. Only the following file formats are accepted: MP4, MPG, MOV, AVI, and WMV. Video Essays must not contain music of any kind nor display any illegal, explicit, or inappropriate material, and Video Essays must not be password protected or require a log-in/sign-in to view. You must upload your Video Essay to the application, and you may not submit your Video Essay in DVD or other physical form. (Video Essays submitted via mail will not be reviewed or returned.)

Tips to Record Quality Videos on a Smartphone:

  • Don’t shoot vertical video. Computer monitors have landscape-oriented displays, so shoot your video horizontally.
  • Use a tripod. Even small movements can make a big difference when editing.
  • Don’t use zoom. If you need to get a close shot of the subject, move closer as zooming can cause pixilation.
  • Use natural lighting. Smartphone lighting can wash out your video.

3. Review and submit your Quarterly Contest application

Review your information on your Quarterly Application (and check the spelling of a Written Essay) and submit your entry by 11:59:59 p.m. Central Time on the applicable Quarterly Contest period end date. The second Quarterly Contest period end date is June 30, 2024.

4. Await notification

Winning entries are selected by an independent panel of judges who are not affiliated with Regions. If your entry is selected as a Quarterly Contest winner, you will need to respond to ISTS with the required information.

Eligibility

For purposes of this contest:

  • The “Eligible States” are defined as the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas.
  • An “accredited college” is defined as a nonprofit, two- or four-year college or university located within one of the fifty (50) United States or the District of Columbia.

To be eligible to enter this contest and to win an award in a Quarterly Contest, at the time of entry, you must:

  • Be a legal U.S. resident of one of the Eligible States.
  • Be age 16 or older.
  • Have at least one (1) year (or at least 18 semester hours) remaining before college graduation.
  • If you are not yet in college, begin your freshman year of college no later than the start of the 2025 – 2026 college academic school year.
  • As of your most recent school enrollment period, have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 in school (and if no GPA is provided at school, be in “good standing” or the equivalent thereof in school).

View Official Rules

NO PURCHASE OR BANKING RELATIONSHIP REQUIRED. PURCHASE OR BANKING RELATIONSHIP WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. The 2024 Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Contest (the “Contest”) consists of four (4) separate quarterly contests (each a “Quarterly Contest”): (1) the “Q-1 Contest;” (2) the “Q-2 Contest;” (3) the “Q-3 Contest;” and (4) the “Q-4 Contest.” The Q-1 Contest begins on 02/01/24 and ends on 03/31/24; the Q-2 Contest begins on 04/01/24 and ends on 06/30/24; the Q-3 Contest begins on 07/01/24 and ends on 09/30/24; and the Q-4 Contest begins on 10/01/24 and ends on 12/31/24. (For each Quarterly Contest, entries must be submitted and received by 11:59:59 PM CT on the applicable Quarterly Contest period end date.) To enter and participate in a particular Quarterly Contest, at the time of entry, you must: (a) be a legal U.S. resident of one of the Eligible States; (b) be 16 years of age or older; (c) have at least one (1) year (or at least 18 semester hours) remaining before college graduation; (d) (if you are not yet in college) begin your freshman year of college no later than the start of the 2025 – 2026 college academic school year; and (e) as of your most recent school enrollment period, have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 in school (and if no grade point average is provided at school, be in “good standing” or the equivalent thereof in school). (For purposes of Contest, the “Eligible States” are defined as the states of AL, AR, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KY, LA, MS, MO, NC, SC, TN and TX.) Visit regions.com/ridingforward for complete Contest details, including eligibility and Written Essay and Video Essay requirements and Official Rules. (Limit one (1) entry per person, per Quarterly Contest.) For each Quarterly Contest, eligible entries will be grouped according to form of entry (Written Essay or Video Essay) and judged by a panel of independent, qualified judges. A total of four (4) Quarterly Contest Prizes will be awarded in each Quarterly Contest, consisting of two (2) Quarterly Contest Prizes for the Written Essay Entry Group and two (2) Quarterly Contest Prizes for the Video Essay Entry Group. Each Quarterly Contest Prize consists of a check in the amount of $8,000 made out to winner’s designated accredited college. (Limit one (1) Quarterly Contest Prize per person; a contestant is permitted to win only one (1) Quarterly Contest Prize through the Contest.) Sponsor: Regions Bank, 1900 Fifth Ave. N., Birmingham, AL 35203.

© 2024 Regions Bank. All rights reserved. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender. Regions and the Regions logo are registered trademarks of Regions Bank. The LifeGreen color is a trademark of Regions Bank.

2023 Winners

High school:.

  • Amyrrean Acoff
  • Leon Aldridge
  • Kharis Andrews
  • Colton Collier
  • Indya Griffin
  • Christopher Hak
  • Aquil Hayes
  • Jayden Haynes
  • McKenna Jodoin
  • Paris Kelly
  • Liza Latimer
  • Dylan Lodle
  • Anna Mammarelli
  • Karrington Manley
  • Marcellus Odum
  • Gautami Palthepu
  • Melody Small
  • Lauryn Tanner
  • Joshua Wilson
  • Mohamed Ali
  • Kayla Bellamy
  • Lauren Boxx
  • Alexandria Brown
  • Samuel Brown
  • Thurston Brown
  • Conner Daehler
  • Tsehai de Souza
  • Anjel Echols
  • Samarion Flowers
  • Trinity Griffin
  • Kristina Hilton
  • Ryan Jensen
  • Miracle Jones
  • Shaniece McGhee
  • Chelby Melvin
  • Lamiya Ousley
  • Kiera Phillips
  • Gabrielle Pippins
  • Ethan Snead
  • Sydney Springs
  • Kirsten Tilford
  • Tamira Weeks
  • Justin Williams

2022 Winners

  • Paul Aucremann
  • William Booker
  • Robyn Cunningham
  • Kani'ya Davis
  • Oluwatomi Dugbo
  • Lillian Goins
  • Parker Hall
  • Collin Hatfield
  • Gabrielle Izu
  • Kylie Lauderdale
  • Jacob Milan
  • Jackson Mitchell
  • Carmen Moore
  • Madison Morgan
  • Kaden Oquelí-White
  • Kaylin Parks
  • Brian Perryman
  • De'Marco Riggins
  • Brianna Roundtree
  • Sydney Russell
  • Carlie Spore
  • Morgan Standifer
  • Ionia Thomas
  • Ramaya Thomas
  • Jaylen Toran
  • Amani Veals
  • Taylor Williams
  • Alana Wilson
  • Taryn Wilson
  • Aryaunna Armstrong
  • Hannah Blackwell
  • T'Aneka Bowers
  • Naomi Bradley
  • Arianna Cannon
  • Taylor Cline
  • Catherine Cummings
  • Margaret Fitzgerald
  • Chloe Franklin
  • Camryn Gaines
  • Thomas Greer
  • Kayla Helleson
  • Veronica Holmes
  • Logan Kurtz
  • Samuel Lambert
  • Jaylon Muchison
  • Teresa Odom
  • Andrew Payne
  • Carey Price
  • Emily SantiAnna
  • Curtis Smith
  • Jered Smith
  • Mariah Standifer
  • Maura Taylor
  • Anna Wilkes

Writers Alliance of Gainesville

2024 Creative Nonfiction (Up to 2,500 Words)

The Bacopa Literary Review is looking to publish true stories, written beautifully, and based on the author’s  experiences, perceptions, and reflections in the form of personal memoir  or literary essay (for example, nature, travel, medical, spiritual,  food writing).

Guidelines:

  • You must be 18 years old or older.
  • Only one submission to Creative Nonfiction, and do not submit to another genre unless this submission has been declined. Your uploaded file must contain only the title and work itself, not the author's name.
  • One piece, limit 2500 words
  • Double spaced, Arial 12-point typeface preferred 
  • Submit the file in .doc .docx or .rtf  only
  • Bacopa Literary Review does not accept previously published material

The submission process includes a text entry box titled "COVER LETTER,"  where you provide the following information:

  • Name, address, email, phone, title, word count and bio of 50 words or fewe r. This is the only place where your name appears.
  • Where did you hear about Bacopa Literary Review ?

Stephanie Seguin

Creative Nonfiction Editor

free essay competitions 2022

Conservatives shell long-standing White House Easter egg contest

Several conservative outlets did not "yolk" around this weekend when covering the White House 's annual Easter celebrations, accusing it of banning religious themes from the annual children's egg decorating contest — even though that guidance predated the Biden administration, according to the first lady's office.

A flyer circulated by the adjutants general of the National Guard inviting children of National Guard members to submit Easter eggs to the White House contest is the source of the controversy, with outlets like Fox News and The Daily Caller writing stories saying the administration is banning religious themes in this year's contest.

Indeed, this year's flyer does say that the decorated Easter egg submissions "must not include any questionable content, religious symbols, overtly religious themes, or partisan political statements."

Decorations for the White House Easter Egg Roll

But the White House and the American Egg Board have pushed back on the suggestion that the restrictions are new, saying that the rules banning religious symbols have been in place for years.

Emily Metz, president and CEO of the American Egg Board, a group that supports the White House Egg Roll, said in a statement, "The American Egg Board has been a supporter of the White House Easter Egg Roll for over 45 years and the guideline language referenced in recent news reports has consistently applied to the board since its founding, across administrations."

Similarly, the White House emphasized that the guidelines banning religious themes from the eggs have been in place for decades and aren't the result of a new Biden administration policy.

"The American Egg Board flyer’s standard non-discrimination language requesting artwork has been used for the last 45 years, across all Dem & Republican Admins—for all WH Easter Egg Rolls —incl previous Administration’s," the first lady's communications director, Elizabeth Alexander, said in a post on X.

And White House deputy press secretary Andrew Bates said it was "unsurprising" that some "are seeking to divide and weaken our country with cruel, hateful, and dishonest rhetoric."

"President Biden will never abuse his faith for political purposes or for profit," Bates added, noting that Biden is "a Christian who celebrates Easter with family."

The Biden administration has also been targeted this Easter holiday for a declaration recognizing Sunday as Transgender Day of Visibility.

President Joe Biden did indeed issue a proclamation acknowledging Transgender Day of Visibility — along with proclamations declaring 11 other holidays, including Cesar Chavez Day and Arab American Heritage Month.

March 31 has been Transgender Day of Visibility every year since 2010, per GLAAD . This year, Easter falls on March 31.

free essay competitions 2022

Elyse Perlmutter-Gumbiner is the coordinating producer for the NBC News White House unit.

free essay competitions 2022

Alexandra Marquez is a politics reporter for NBC News.

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  25. Writers Alliance of Gainesville Submission Manager

    The Bacopa Literary Review is looking to publish true stories, written beautifully, and based on the author's experiences, perceptions, and reflections in the form of personal memoir or literary essay (for example, nature, travel, medical, spiritual, food writing). Guidelines: You must be 18 years old or older. Only one submission to Creative Nonfiction, and do not submit to another genre ...

  26. Conservatives shell long-standing White House Easter egg contest

    Conservative outlets zeroed in on a flyer banning religious themes from an Easter egg decorating contest, though the policy has been in place for decades, according to the White House. IE 11 is ...