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Contests

 

Here you will find links to a variety of writing contests in which you can enter your novel or short story. Before submitting anything to any competition, it is worth reading the article at the top of the list - Beware of Fake Awards.
  • Beware of Fake Awards - warns of writing contest scams. Author beware!
  • 3 Day Novel Contest - this contest has been running every year for over three decades. It runs for the three days of the Labour Day weekend every year. There is a nominal entry fee. The 2014 contest had 454 entries from around the world.
  • Adventure Writer's Competition - this annual competition sponsored by the Clive Cussler Collector's Society has a $1000 prize. The 2014 deadline has passed and the 2015 competition has not been announced yet, so check back occasionally.
  • Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award - an annual contest that accepts entries during the last two weeks of February each year. Contest is limited to 10,000 entries. Word count must be between 50,000 and 125,000 words. There is no entry fee. And the prizes are huge, ranging up to a $50,000 US grand prize. The contest was replaced by the KindleScout program in 2015.
  • Amazon KindleScout - A new program from Amazon that replaced their Breakthrough Novel Award in 2015. It is an open-ended process with no deadline so you can submit your work any time. Unfortunately, entrants must have a US bank account and a US SIN or TIN number, which severly restricts the ability of non-US residents to enter.
  • Annual Halloween Ghost Story Writing Contest - a fun contest from saugus.net with little in the way of prizes - you get your story published on their website and a t-shirt. Deadline is October 22nd.
  • Black River Chapbook Competition - this bi-annual contest from Black Lawrence Press welcomes short books of poetry or fiction (16-36 pages). The winner gets $500 and has his book published. The Spring entry period is from April 1st - May 31st and the Fall entry period is from Sept. 1st - Oct. 31st. There is a $15 entry fee.
  • Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest - a whimsical contest in which each contestant submits one sentence, the worst opening sentence for a novel imaginable. The contest is named after Edward Bulwer-Lytton, a popular 19th Century writer who started one of his novels with "It was a dark and stormy night". Submissions accepted 365 days a year up to the contest deadline of April 15th.
  • Creative Communication Contests - Creative Communications holds two contests annually, one is poetry and the other is essay. The contest is open to students in grades K-12 in Canada and the US. Deadline for the essay contest in is Oct. 15, 2014. For the poetry contest, Dec. 5, 2014.
  • Graywolf Literary Non-fiction Award - this annual contest offers publication and a $12,000 advance to the winner. Dates for 2015 have not yet been set.
  • Kindergarten Story Writing Contest - this contest is looking for stories up to 150 words long geared to 5 and 6 year olds. Top prize is $500. There is a $15 entry fee. Deadline for 2014 is November 7th. Click on the contest link for more details. Sponsored by the Institute of Children's Literature.
  • Pacific Northwest Writers Association Literary Contest - this contest accepts entries in twelve categories and offers prizes up to $700. Every entry receives two critiques. Deadline for 2015 is February 20th. There is an entry fee of $35 for PNWA members, $50 for non-members.
  • SF Reader Short Story Contest - annual short story contest. Entries must be submitted between Dec. 1st and Dec. 31st. No entry fee.
  • Zoetrope Virtual Studios Screenwriting Contest - Zoetrope, the website run by Francis Ford Coppola and his family, features an annual screenwriting contest with a $5000 prize.
  • Zoetrope All-Story Short Story Contest - Zoetrope All-Story is a quarterly magazine that holds an annual short story contest. Grand prize is $1000 and consideration for representation by a talent agency. There is a nominal entry fee. The 2014 deadline is October 1st.

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