Wednesday, 10 July 2019

V.S. Pritchett Short Story Prize

The author of the winning entry will be awarded a prize of £1,000 and have their story published in Prospect online and in the RSL Review. The V.S. Pritchett Short Story Prize is administered by the Royal Society of Literature in association with Prospect magazine.

Terms and Conditions

Entrants must be resident in the UK, Republic of Ireland or Commonwealth and likely to be available for a prize-giving event in October 2019
Stories entered for the competition must not have been published previously or broadcast in any other medium
Multiple entries to this competition are permitted but must be submitted and paid for individually (the fee is £7.50 per entry to cover administration costs)
Entrants must be over 18 at the time of submission.

Entry Instructions

Stories MUST:
be written in English
be between 2,000 and 4,000 words
be submitted as Microsoft Word or PDF documents with the author name (surname, first name) and short story title in the file name e.g. Wilde, Oscar – The Happy Prince
use Arial, 12pt, black font and use double-line spacing
have page numbers at the bottom right-hand side of each page
have the title of the story and word count at the top of the first page.

Stories MUST NOT:
include the name of the entrant, their address or any identifying mark anywhere in the document
include photos or illustrations.

The Royal Society of Literature cannot undertake to make corrections or additions to submissions. You must request that your submission is opened for editing if you wish to make changes. Submission of an entry implies acceptance of these conditions and entry fees are non-refundable. The shortlist will be contacted in autumn. The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. Due to the volume of submissions received, we are not able to provide individual feedback.

Please note that any entries that do not meet the requirements outlined above will not be accepted and the fee will not be refunded. No correspondence will be entered into regarding incorrect submissions.

See here for further information and to submit.

Entries for low-income writers

The RSL is committed to increasing accessibility and supporting writers of all incomes. As such, we are offering 50 free entries to low-income writers based in the UK.

To apply for a free entry to this year’s prize please e-mail using the subject ‘Free VSP Entry Application’ and in the body of the email include your name, postcode and up to 200 words on why you are eligible for a free entry, along with supporting documentation as proof of financial eligibility such as: Jobseeker’s Allowance, Disability Benefit, Income Support; Working Tax Credit; proof of being a full-time student; Housing Benefit; proof of being a full-time carer. All details will be kept in the strictest confidence and have no bearing on your Prize entry. Applications with no supporting evidence will not be accepted.

Eligible writers have until the 28 May to apply for a free entry. However, we recommend applying earlier as these entries are offered on a first come, first served basis. You will be informed by email as to whether you have been accepted and then given instructions on how to enter. Please do not send your story to us prior to this. Successful applicants will have until midnight on Friday 28 June (the same as the general entry deadline) to submit their story to the competition.

Please note, if successful you can only submit one free entry into the competition. Additional stories will need to submitted via the general submission portal at the bottom of this page (£7.50 per entry).

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Fiction Factory: Flash Fiction Competition


Send your submissions

in a Word document to:

In the body of the email, please include:
your name
email address
your country
the name of your story
the word count

Please tell us how you heard about our competition.


Payment: Please go to the secure website to pay by Pay Pal.

Entry fee 6.00 GBP

Your entry will be forwarded to the judges when the fee has been paid.
Good luck!

Terms and Conditions
The Competition is open to anyone aged 16 or over.
International entries are welcome but stories must be written in English.
Stories must be previously unpublished
Deadline: 31 July. 2019.
There is no minimum word count but your story must not exceed 500 words.
All genres will be accepted except Children's and Young Adult Fiction
Entrants may submit as many stories as they wish, but each story must be submitted as a separate entry and entry fee.
All work submitted must be the entrant's own original writing, and should not have appeared in print or appear on a website (including blogs and social networking sites).
Winners will be announced before October 31st 2019
The judge’s decisions are final, and no correspondence will be entered into. Short Story of the Year 2019 is delighted to announce that we are sponsoring the An Post Irish Book Awards Short Story of the Year Award again this year.

Roisin O’Donnell won in 2018 for her story ‘How to Build a Space Rocket’ which featured in The Broken Spiral anthology complied by RM Clarke for Dublin Rape Crisis, watch her chatting about the story to Evelyn O’Rourke and read her story here

The Award is open to short stories of up to 7000 words published between 1st November 2018 and 31st October 2019 in any of the following contexts: a collection of short stories by a single author; an anthology of short stories; an established journal or magazine (established for at least six months within the eligible period); published in print or digital format.
Stories should be original fiction. All stories must have been published in English during the qualifying period.
The author must be Irish by birth, citizenship or long-term residence.
billy o'callaghan irish book awards
Billy O’Callaghan, Short Story of the Year winner 2013
Entries must be made by the editor of the publication in which the story appears. Submissions open on 1st June 2019. An individual author may be entered more than once for the competition by an editor if their work appears in more than one publication. It is the editor’s decision which author will represent each of their publications.
Entries will not be eligible where the author is a member of the independent judging panel, anyone involved in the administration of the IBAs or a close family relative of any such person.
Authors who have made current or previous contributions to are eligible to enter.
Adjudication on all eligibility issues will be at the discretion of the Awards’ executive body. Their decision will be final.
john boyne irish book awards
John Boyne, Short Story of the Year winner 2014
How to submit
Stories may only be submitted via the online form at . Closing date for entries is  7th September 2019. The entry form must be completed in full and the story attached as a doc or docx in the format detailed below.
Stories may only be submitted by the editor of the publication in which the story appears, with full permission of the author, with a maximum of one story per edition or collectionThe author may not submit their own work.  Submission of an entry is taken as acceptance of all the terms and conditions of entry. The submitting party must undertake to support the IBAs campaign and if shortlisted, must attend the awards night at their own expense. Shortlisted authors’ are guests of, and do not need to buy tickets, however partners and friends of shortlisted authors will need to make their own arrangements.
Submission of an entry is taken as acceptance of all the terms and conditions of entry detailed here.
Orla McAlinden 2016 winner of The Short Story of the Year
Format of Submissions
Manuscripts must be in a Word doc or docx format, typed in Times New Roman, double line spaced and pages must be numbered.
The document itself should be saved with the title of the story ONLY as the file name. The title of the story and its host publication ONLY, MUST appear in the header or footer of all pages in the document. All stories will be judged anonymously.
The word count, author name, edition or collection and publisher should be detailed on the application form.
Submissions will be judged anonymously. An independent panel will select a long list of  twelve stories for the panel of judges to consider. The judges will then select the final six stories to be shortlisted. Their decision is final. The shortlist will then be voted on by the public and must be available to be read online at

To submit a story, please click here.

Pictured at the 10th annual Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards is Donal Ryan, winner of the Short Story of the Year award for his books Slanting at the Sun with Vanessa O'Loughlin. Pic: Patrick Bolger
Pictured at the 10th annual Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards is Donal Ryan, winner of the Short Story of the Year award for his books Slanting at the Sun with Vanessa O’Loughlin.
Pic: Patrick Bolger
The judging panel will select the final six stories to be shortlisted for the Short Story of the Year Award. The winner will be announced at the An Post Irish Book Awards on 20th November 2019. For more information about the awards check out:
In line with GDPR legislation, all information gathered in the process of submission is held strictly confidentially and will only be used by the organisers to contact those involved in the process in connection with the Short Story of the Year. Read the privacy policy here.

Friday, 14 June 2019

The London Short Story Prize


The London Short Story Prize aims to find the best short stories from emerging writers in the capital.

The winner of the 2018 London Short Story Prize is Guy Ware for his story the year of peace.

Highly commended: A Complete History of Portraiture by Kira McPherson and Dead Shark by Emma Hutton.

Shortlisted: Real Estate by CG Menon, Like A Blooming Discotheque by Judith Wilson, and Chicken Shop Girl by Katie Lumsden.

Longlisted: As Close as it Comes by Adam Welch, Granda by Ken Barlow, First Time Ever by Erika Banerji, Strange Inherited Jazz by Lou Kramskoy, Madrid by B R Porter, and End of the Terrace by Luan Goldie.

Ten of the longlisted stories for the 2018 prize will be published in the London Short Story Prize 2018 Anthology

The 2018 judges were authors Guy Gunaratne, Clare Fisher and literary agent, Sarah Such.

We will be open for entries to the London Short Story Prize 2019 on Friday 14 June.

Sunday, 2 June 2019

The Sean Ó Faoláin Short Story Prize 2019

Word limit: 3,000 words
Closing date: 31st July (midnight)
Entry fee: €18 per story

The competition is open to original, unpublished and unbroadcastshort stories in the English language of 3,000 words or fewer. The story can be on any subject, in any style, by a writer of any nationality, living anywhere in the world. Translated work is not in the scope of this competition.

1st Prize
— €2000
— Residency (one week) at Anam Cara Retreat
— Publication in Southword 38

2nd Prize
— €500
— Publication in Southword 38

Four Runners-Up
— €250
— Publication in Southword 38

2019 Judge

Billy O'Callaghan

Friday, 24 May 2019

The Moth International Short Story Prize: Entries Close


This prize is open to previously unpublished works of fiction up to 5000 words. In addition to the €3000 (approximately US$3400) first prize, a second prize winner will receive a writing retreat at Circle of Misse, located in the south of France’s Loire Valley plus €250. A third prize winner will receive €1000 and all three winners will have their stories published in the autumn issue of The Moth.

The winners will be decided by judge Kit de Waal. de Waal’s writing has received numerous awards, including the Bridport Flash Fiction Prize 2014 and 2015 and the Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year and has been shortlisted for the Costa First Book Award, the Desmond Elliott Prize and the British Books Awards Debut Novel of the Year.

The judging takes place anonymously; de Waal will only learn the identities of the shortlisted writers after the selection of the winning stories. The Moth publisher Rebecca O’Connor thinks this is an important way of levelling the playing field. According to O’Connor, The Moth is “passionate about nurturing new talent and much of what we publish is by new or up-and-coming writers. We want to produce a magazine which is vibrant and new, and which keeps its readers on its toes. So often, these publications can become stale when they focus too much on names and not enough on entertaining their readers . . . Having just one judge means there is no compromise.”

The Moth Short Story Prize closes on Sunday 30 June 2019. An entry fee of €15 is payable with each entry. For full entry details visit The Moth website.

To discover more writing prizes, see our guide to short story contests in 2019.


“The Moth is a beautiful creature.” – David Mitchell

Founded in June 2010, The Moth is an Irish quarterly printed arts and literature magazine based in featuring poetry, short fiction and art by established and up-and-coming writers and artists. Each issue also features two interviews with writers or artists.

In addition to its annual prizes for poetry and short fiction, The Moth also accepts unsolicited submissions. Prose pieces (up to two short stories) should preferably be no longer than 3000 words. If you are submitting poetry, then you are asked to send no more than six poems. Submissions are also open for The Moth’s junior edition, The Caterpillar. The Caterpillar’s audience is primarily readers aged between 7 and 11.

The Fiction Desk - Short Story

Now open for submissions...

From now until the end of September, we're asking writers to submit short stories on a theme of 'Houses and Homes'. This is our first themed call for submissions, and there's plenty of opportunity for different approaches: from domestic dramas to haunted houses, from the political to the personal.

Submissions are made in the usual way, through our website. There's more information here: Stories about 'Houses and Homes'.

If you're looking for inspiration, here's a selection of recent news stories that relate to the theme in one way or another. (The Fiction Desk is based in the UK, so these have a British slant, but we welcome submissions from around the world.) And if you're not interested in this theme, we're open for general submissions too.

Friday, 17 May 2019



Starting on Monday 20 May, the course is open to both new and experienced screenwriters. The course is led by Michael Lengsfield, a graduate of Columbia University’s MFA program. His credits include scripts for the Walt Disney Company and Harpo Entertainment, and his work has screened at the Sundance Film Festival.

According to Lengsfield, “for those of you who’ve never given much thought to screenwriting, the course will offer a brief glimpse into the thinking that goes into the construction of a screenplay. For those of you who have previous experience with screenwriting, the course should offer you new techniques, or approaches, that will help to further your own work.

The course runs for two weeks and requires a three-hour per week commitment. By the end of the course, students will be able to:

Explore key issues in the practice of creating screenplays
Explain the basic principles of the screenwriting process
Identify the essentials of the screenplay format
Discuss the construction of a professional script
Design a story pitch

For further information about the course and to enrol visit the Future Learn website.

Thursday, 16 May 2019

Sir Peter Ustinov Television Scriptwriting Award

The International Academy Of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation

Created in 1989, The International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation has its own Constitution, Officers and independent Board of Trustees.

Each year, The Foundation administers the Sir Peter Ustinov Television Scriptwriting Award. The competition is designed to motivate non-American novice writers under the age of 30, and offer them the recognition and encouragement that might lead to a successful career in television scriptwriting. Entrants are asked to create a completed half-hour to one-hour English-language television drama script.

The award winner receives $2,500, a trip to New York City, and an invitation to the International Emmy® Awards Gala in November.

Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short Fiction


The Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short FictionComma Press and the University of Central Lancashire are proud to host the annual Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short Fiction.

Dinesh Allirajah (1967-2014) once said of himself (referencing a Sonny Criss sleeve note): ‘I am a jazz writer, which is a full-time creative job’. Dinesh had many other occupations, too – lecturing in creative writing at Liverpool John Moores University, the University of Central Lancashire and Edge Hill, running workshops and literacy classes in community centres, schools and prisons, acting as Chair of the National Black Arts Alliance and the National Association for Literature Development, as well as being a long-term director of Comma Press. He was also a DJ, playwright, radio presenter, cricket enthusiast and blogger. Dinesh regularly performed to audiences across the UK, as well as in France, Poland, Germany, Bangladesh and Nigeria. His short stories were featured in numerous anthologies and magazines, and first collected in A Manner of Speaking (Spike Books, 2004). Scent is the first comprehensive collection of his work, published by Comma Press following his sudden passing in December 2014.

Dinesh was a Founding Board Member of Comma (2007-2012), and a Director of Comma Press since it became a National Portfolio Organisation of the Arts Council in 2012. He also lectured in Creative Writing at UCLan for 8 years and was much-loved by everyone he worked with. Amongst these many other things, first and foremost, he was a writer, and he loved to write short fiction, which he posted regularly on his blog (Real Time Short Stories). His sudden passing in 2014 was a shock to all who knew him, and now Comma in partnership with the University of Central Lancashire, have set up this prize, in his name, as part of a lasting legacy of his love of writing short fiction.

The prize is open to anyone 18 years or over who is a resident of the UK, and the story you submit must not have been published anywhere else, online or in print. It is free to submit your entry, but only one per writer please. All entries will be made anonymous upon receipt. Entries will be made anonymous upon receipt and will remain so until after the shortlist has been decided.

The 2018 prize was announced on Tuesday 8th May in Preston. The winning story was 'Bakhur' by Lucas Stewart. More info here about the 2018 prize. You can buy the 2018 prize anthology featuring all 10 shortlisted stories from Amazon Kindle for only 99p.

Entries for the next round (2019) will be on the theme of 'Scent', which is the title of Dinesh's posthumous collected works, and entries will open open 14th May 2018 and close midnight on the 26th October 2019.

You must submit your story electronically. All entries must include a cover letter which states the author’s name, address, email, contact number, and story title. Any entries sent without this information will not be considered. Please send your story entry and cover letter electronically to in the form of a Word Doc.

The shortlist will be chosen with the help of UCLan creative writing students, who will then handover the shortlist to our panel of judges, which includes Dr. Naomi Kruger (novelist and Lecturer in Creative Writing at UCLan), Zoe Gilbert (award-winning short story writer and author of Folk (Bloomsbury, 2018)), Irenosen Okojie (short story writer, curator and Arts Project Manager) and Andy Murray (writer and Film Editor of Northern Soul).

The winning writer will receive £500 and all 10 shortlisted authors will be featured in an ebook anthology which will be published by Comma Press and sold online. The winner will also have their story published online by our media partner Northern Soul. The prizegiving ceremony and announcement of the winner will take place in May 2019.
Full terms and conditions:

1. The Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short Fiction 2018 is organised by the University of Central Lancashire ("UCLan") and Comma Press.

2. The Competition is open to anyone aged 18 or over and based in the UK who is not excluded by these Rules. There is no upper age limit for entry.

3. Members of University of Central Lancashire staff (who may also be students) and their spouses are excluded from being eligible to enter.

4. The deadline for electronic entries is midnight (UK time) on Friday 26th October 2018. Entries received after this deadline will not be considered.

5. Entrants must submit a short story of between 2,000 and 6,000 words in length. Titles, blank lines and page numbers are not included in the word count.

6. Entrants may submit one story each.

7. All work submitted for consideration must be on subject with the theme of 'scent', and must be the entrant's own original writing.

8. The story entered should not have appeared in print, online or have been broadcast prior to or be published after entry. Work which has been published on public websites, blogs or social media sites can be submitted, but must be taken down before the date of entry and must not be uploaded again until the writer has been notified whether they have been successful in making the shortlist. Shortlisted writers are asked not to publish their story anywhere as it will be included in the shortlist eBook. Work found to be published in print or to have been broadcast or to have appeared on a website outside of these terms will be disqualified.

9. All work must be submitted electronically by email to, and must include a cover letter which states the author’s name, address, email, contact number and story title. Without a cover letter the story will not be eligible. Preferably entries should be typed or word-processed, clearly legible and written in English. Entrants should not include illustrations or artwork. Beyond these stipulations, presentation (e.g. font and spacing) is at the entrant’s discretion.

10. Translations into English of work written in other languages can be accepted, provided that the source text is the entrant's own original work and has not been published (in line with the above); translations into English of work published (in line with the above) elsewhere in other languages will not be accepted.

11. All entries will be assigned an ID number and made anonymous upon receipt. The readers will not be privy to the entrants’ names while deciding on the long list and the panel of judges will not be privy to entrants' names during the reading and judging process of the shortlist. Names will be reattributed to entries only after the winner and runners-up have been decided.

12. If shortlisted, writers should please do their best to attend the special prizegiving event which will take place in the North West in May 2019 where the winner and highly commended entries will be announced and the eBook launched. The winner will be notified in advance of the ceremony to ensure they are in attendance for the announcement.

13. Electronic entries will only be valid if accompanied by a cover letter containing all the necessary information (see 9).

14. Entries submitted for consideration may be withdrawn from the Competition by entrants by notification in writing (by email) to be received by Comma Press.

15. Amendments cannot be made to entries after they have been submitted; stories cannot be amended, corrected or substituted. No correspondence or discussion about amendments will be entered into. So please proof your work thoroughly!

16. Comma Press and UCLan reserve the right to disqualify any entry if it has reasonable grounds to believe that the entrant has breached any of these Rules, or made a false declaration on the entry form.

17. Neither Comma Press nor UCLan will accept any responsibility for any damage, loss, injury or disappointment suffered by any entrant entering the Competition.

18. Comma Press and UCLan will act in accordance with current UK data protection legislation in relation to your personal data.

19. The Competition and Rules will be governed by English Law and any dispute will be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales.

20. Comma Press and UCLan reserve the right to amend these Rules where it is deemed necessary to do so or where circumstances are beyond their control. Any changes to the Rules will be posted on the competition web page on

21. Submission of an entry will be deemed to imply unqualified acceptance of the Competition's Rules. In the event of any dispute regarding these Rules or any other matter relating to the Competition, the decision of Comma Press and UCLan shall be final and no correspondence or discussion shall be entered into.

Translate at City summer school

Launched in 2007, our translation imprint publishes the best short fiction from around the world. We have translated collections and single stories from over fifteen languages, including Arabic, Icelandic, Bengali and Spanish, among others. Our international authors include Sema Kaygusuz, Pawel Huelle, Larissa Boehning, Atef Abu Saif, and Iraqi refugee Hassan Blasim, described by the Guardian as perhaps ‘the greatest writer of Arabic fiction alive'.

We're delighted to partner with the Translate at City summer school on a new literary translation competition. Summer school participants will be invited to submit a sample translation from Arabic into English, with the best translator being commissioned to translate a single story for a forthcoming Comma anthology. The winner will benefit from editorial support and feedback from an in -house editor, and will see their work appear alongside established literary translators.

The 2016 winner, Emre Bennett, was featured in Iraq + 100 (the first ever anthology of Science fiction from Iraq) and a second winner, Perween Richards, was recently commissioned to translate a Palestinian short story to be published in a 2018 collection.

This is a great opportunity for emerging translators to develop their craft, and to be guided through the publishing process by industry professionals.

You can find out more about submitting to the prize on the Translate at City website, where you can also learn about their summer school programme for emerging translators.

We are sorry that there will be no Translate at City Summer School in 2018, due to the decision to close the Translation Centre at City University of London. Course directors Professor Amanda Hopkinson and Ros Schwartz are working on transferring to a new university venue for the next summer school, which is planned for 2019. Watch this space for further announcements. We will post more information as soon as we have it.

V.S. Pritchett Short Story Prize

The author of the winning entry will be awarded a prize of £1,000 and have their story published in Prospect online and in the RSL Review...