Competitions and places to share your work

Opportunities currently open:

Sweet Talk Productions/The Time Being – Sweet Talk have been commissioned to make three 15-minute radio programmes for BBC Radio 4 showcasing the work of writers between the ages of 16 and 21 and are looking for original short stories up to 1100 words – 21st June 2021

Poetry Kit Spring competition 2021 – is now accepting poems on any subject, with a first prize of £100 – 21st June 2021

Present Tense Literary Magazine – Autumn/Winter edition submission deadline 30th June 2021. A new imprint seeking submissions of poetry, prose and flash fiction.

The Stephen Spender Prize 2021 – annual competition for poetry in translation with categories for 14-and-under, 16-and-under, 18-and-under plus an open category for adults. All entrants must be UK or Irish citizens or residents, or pupils at a British School overseas – deadline 16 Jul 2021

Kindle Storyteller Award 2021 offers budding authors publishing their books through Kindle Direct Publishing the chance to secure a £20,000 cash prize – 31st August 2021

The Impress Prize for New Writers 2021 – annual literary prize for writers aged 16 and over who’ve not been traditionally published before (self-published authors accepted). Fiction and non-fiction entries across all genres accepted but not poetry – deadline 13th September 2021

Sunspot Literary Journal: Open Call for Writers and Artists – deadline 31st October 2021

Other outlets:

People’s Friend Magazine accept short stories, fiction serials and poems from new and experienced writers and pay for those they use (£80 per story for writers new to them). They ask that writers read their magazine to get a feel for their target readership’s tastes and material be posted to them rather than emailed. You’ll find their guidelines here.

Mslexia Magazine for women writers stage annual competitions for poetry, fiction and memoir, with many of those short-listed going on to win themselves an agent. Further information here.

For those interested in poetry, Jim Bennett’s Poetry Kit Newsletter includes a monthly list of poetry competitions with forthcoming deadlines. You can sign up to receive it here.

Writers’ Forum Magazine run monthly competitions for flash fiction (500 words), short stories and poetry, with a range of entry fees which are reduced for subscribers to the magazine. Further information can be found here.