(b) Critique and Proofreading Services
Would you like feedback on your short story, poetry, script or book? Check out our critique service and proofreading service.
(c) No Fee Creative Writing Ink Monthly Competition
Many thanks to everyone who entered our free to enter September writing competition. Congratulations to Riley Sutton, the winner. You can read all winning entries here.
(d) Writing Prompt Competition
Our free to enter writing prompt competition is open and closes on November 30, 2020. Please visit our writing prompts page if you'd like to enter the current competition.
2. Writing Competitions & Opportunities
Here are some other free to enter writing competitions.
Use information listed at your own risk. Creative Writing Ink gives no warranty to completeness, accuracy, or fitness of the markets, competitions, publishers or agents although research is carried out to the best of our ability. Note that some of these competitions have residency requirements,so check the terms and conditions of the competitions to see if your country is eligible.
(a) The Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short Fiction is open until October 23, 2020.
Free to enter.
Open to anyone 18 years or over who is a resident of the UK.
The prize comes from Comma Press and the University of Central Lancashire.
Submit stories of between 2,000 and 6,000 words on the theme Home, along with a cover letter.
Judges: Dr Philip Braithwaite (UCLan), Abi Fellows (The Good Literary Agency), Alfred Searls (Northern Soul) and author Courttia Newland.
Prizes: £500. Ten shortlisted entries will be featured in an anthology which will be published by Comma Press. The winner will also have their story published online by Northern Soul.
(b) The Benjamin Franklin House Literary Prize is open until October 31, 2020.
Free to enter.
Submit fiction or non-fiction, 1,000-1,500 words. One entry only. Open to young writers aged between 18 and 25 living in the UK. Each year a question or quote exploring Franklin’s relevance in our time is open for interpretation. This year’s quote is: ‘Glass, China and Reputation are easily crack’d, and never well mended.’
Prizes: £750, £500. Winners will be published on the website.
(c) The 2021 St. Martin’s Minotaur/ Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Competition is open until January 1, 2021.
Free to enter.
Open to any writer, aged 18 and over who has never been the author of a published novel.
All manuscripts must book length (no less than 220 typewritten pages or approximately 60,000 words) and they must be in English. Murder or another serious crime or crimes must be at the heart of the story.
Prize: A standard publishing contract with a $10,000 advance.
(d) The Language Evolves – Short Story Competition 2020 is open until December 1, 2020.
Free to enter.
Submit short stories (max 2500 words) on the theme of language evolution.
The shortlist will be judged by Dr. Mary Doria Russell.
The first-prize winner will receive £400 and the story will be published in the New Welsh Review (on an exclusive basis, subject to the usual editorial process). The 2nd and 3rd place stories will also be considered for publication in the New Welsh Review.
(e) The Pressfuls 2020 Fantasy Short Story Contest is open until October 31, 2020.
Free to enter. Open to writers worldwide. Submit 1,000 – 5,000 words. Top Prize: $50
(f) The Never Such Innocence 2020/21 Competition is open until March 19, 2021.
This year’s competition theme is ‘The Unheard Voices of Conflict: Stories from Around the World’.
There are four categories: Poetry, Art, Speech and Song and the competition is open to young people aged 9-18.
The winners in the four categories will be invited to participate in unique experiences and invited to NSI’s special award ceremony in London. All participants will receive a certificate of commendation for their work.
(g) The Young Walter Scott Prize 2020 is open until October 31, 2020.
Open to young writers, aged 11-19. Stories must be set in the past – any time before you were born!
Free to enter.
Submit historical fiction, it can be in any form: prose, poetry, drama, fictional diaries, letters or reportage.
There are two age categories. The prizes in each category are: a £500 travel and research grant to explore historical places in the UK, and a two-day trip to Borders Book Festival in Melrose, Scotland. The runners-up in each category receive a £100 book token, and all the winning stories are published in an anthology.
(h) The New Media Writing Prize 2020 is open until November 27, 2020 (noon).
Free to enter. It comes from Bournemouth University and is for new media. They say, ““We are looking for good storytelling (fiction or non-fiction) written specifically for delivery and reading/viewing on a PC or Mac, the web, or a hand-held device such as an iPad or mobile phone. It could be a short story, novel, poem, narrative game, documentary, or transmedia work using words, images, film or animation with audience interaction. Interactivity is a key element of new-media storytelling.”
The winner will receive £1,000.
(i) The Erewash Themed Writing Competition is open until November 26, 2020.
Free to enter. Submit poems of up to 40 lines or stories of up to 500 words inspired by the word ‘course’. The winner will be awarded £10 and the winning entry will be published on the website.
(j) Seaborne Magazine is open for submissions about the sea until 1 Jan 2021.
It’s a new digital publication which aims to publish great literary work which celebrates our seas and oceans.
For their first issue, they are looking for atmospheric fiction, non-fiction, poetry and visual artwork about the sea which will captivate their readers’ imagination.
Short stories: fiction pieces between 2,000 and 5,000 words in any genre
Vignettes: pieces up to 300 words
Creative non-fiction: pieces between 800 and 1,500 words
Poetry: submissions should be no longer than 40 lines
Full details here.
(k) The Auroras & Blossoms Poetry Journal is open for submissions until December 31, 2020.
They feature poetry that is inspirational, positive and uplifting, no matter the topic.
Free entry for single poems.
(l) The Lockdown Lit—Imagination in Isolation Anthology is open for submissions until October 31, 2020.
Bounds Green Book Writers (BGBW), a North-London-based writers’ circle, is seeking submissions for an anthology of creative writing inspired by the coronavirus experience.
Submissions may be short stories, flash fiction, poems, short articles, editorials or essays. They should be under 2,000 words.
There are dozens of other open writing competitions and writing opportunities over on our websites. Many are free to enter. You can check out Creative Writing Ink UK or Creative Writing Ink Ireland for further details.
That's it for this month. If you decide to enter any writing competitions or submit to magazines and journals - best of luck with your submissions! And many thanks to everyone for letting us know if you've won a competition or if you've been published, it's great to hear!
Creative Writing Ink Team