Category Archives: General competitions

A New Year opportunity

Literature Ambassador: Writer Opps, from ERYL GASPER DICK

Scottish Mental Health Festival has a writing competition with the theme Connected, which strikes me as rather exciting. You can enter a poem, a short story, a letter, a diary/blog entry, or a newspaper article. The deadline is March 15 at 5pm, entry is free. I’ve copied the guidelines from their website below, and if you’d like to enter, here’s the link:

Writing Competition

Guidelines and Entry Form 2018


The Festival:

The 2019 Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival (SMHAF) will take place at venues across Scotland from 3rd -26th May 2019. Led by the Mental Health Foundation, the Festival aims to support the arts and challenge preconceived ideas about mental health.

The Competition:

The SMHAF writing competition is managed in partnership with Bipolar Scotland.

This year’s theme for all categories is “CONNECTED”. This can be interpreted in any way you choose – the limit is your imagination. There are five categories:

  • Poems
  • Short stories
  • Newspaper articles
  • Diary/Blog entries
  • Letters

The closing date for the competition is 5pm on Friday 15th March 2019. We cannot accept any entries received after this date.

Submission guidelines (please read before submitting):

  1. Entry to the competition is free.
  1. Entrants must be over 16 years of age.
  1. Entries must be typed and in English.
  1. Entries must be on the theme of “CONNECTED”.
  1. Entries must be the entrant’s own original work.
  1. We will accept entries written at any time as long as they have not previously been submitted to Bipolar Scotland’s poetry and short story competitions, or previous SMHAF Writing Competitions.
  1. Word count:

Poems, up to 40 lines

Short stories, between 500 and 2000 words

Newspaper articles, up to 750 words (the article does not have to have been published)

Diary/Blog entries, up to 500 words (this can include be a sequence of entries up to the word limit)

Letters, up to 750 words

  1. We can only accept entry by email:

Entrants should send a single email with their full name as the subject to by 5pm, Friday 15th March 2019.

The email should include an attached file for the entry form and a file for each entry. Please do not attach folders. The entry should not be typed in the body of the email. It MUST be an attachment. Attachments should be compatible word files only.

Please name each file with the title of the entry. Do not put name, initials or anything that may identify you on any file except the entry form and in the subject bar.

  1. By entering you are agreeing to be published in any media or subsequent anthologies associated with the competition as approved by the SMHAF, however copyright of any work submitted remains with the author.
  1. Successful entrants will be notified by Friday 26th April 2019. The judges’ top ten entries will be invited to the Award evening during the Festival, where they will be invited to read their entry, and the top 3 will be announced. If you have not heard by that date then you have not been successful. Due to a high number of entries we cannot provide individual feedback.

For further information, and to answer any queries, please contact:

Bipolar Scotland, Studio 1015, Mile End Mill, Abbeymill Business Centre, Seedhill Road, Paisley PA1 1TJ, or 0141 560 2050



Filed under Events and diary dates, Factual, General competitions, Writing competitions

For those who like to write the Gothic genre or would like a change, info courtesy of Short Stops

A Gothic Short Story Writing Competition
Hosted by Tavistock Library and supported by Tavistock Heritage Trust as part of ‘Tavistock’s 1st Gothic and Neo-Gothic Celebration – Literature, Art, Architecture, Theatre, Film and Creative Fun.’

From Saturday the 12th of October and culminating in a market and author event on Saturday the 19th of October 2019.

This new celebration aims to encompass writing, film, drama and art activities.  There will be a Gothic market for writers and traders to showcase their work, and a range of related events.

Theme: A short story in the Gothic tradition incorporating folklore and myth.

Prizes: A cash prize will be offered to the overall winner 30% of all entry receipts will form the prize fund. There will also be a second prize of 30% of all the entry fees awarded to a ‘Gothic’ story based in Tavistock and incorporating its Gothic and Neo-Gothic Heritage. Additional runners-up prizes of books will also be awarded. The prize winners will be notified approximately two weeks prior to the prize giving. The remaining 40% of the entry fees will be used for administration costs and for festival and library events.


Presentation of the Prizes: The results will be announced, and the prizes presented at an event to be during the celebration.

Judging: The judging will be in two stages. The final short list of stories will be judged by a panel of librarians, authors and publishers. Shortlisted entries will be ranked by a final judging panel.

Tips: The judges will be looking for interesting and original stories that are factually correct where appropriate.

Publication: Depending on the number and quality of the entries received an e-anthology may be published.

A Gothic Short Story Writing Competition
For anyone over the age of 18

Rules and Conditions of Entry

  1. Entries must be in English, original and not previously published in any form or broadcast, and no longer than 1500 words (adult).
  2. Closing date: May 31st
  3. Results: Available to the public from the 12th of October 2019.
  4. Entries must be typewritten or word-processed on single-sided A4 paper, in 12-point typeface, double (or 1.5 times) spaced. Each page must carry the name of the story in the header or footer and pages must be numbered. Do not put your name on the story pages. Please attach a cover sheet with your name, address, telephone and if possible your e-mail contact details, title of your story, and word count. Entries may be emailed to and a copy to
  5. Entries may be delivered by hand or by post to Go Gothic – Flash Fiction Competition to Tavistock Library, The Quay, Plymouth Road, Tavistock, Devon, PL19 8HF, England. Please include your payment by cheque (in sterling) made payable to The Friends of Tavistock Library or BACS Transfer: Account name: Friends of Tavistock Library, Account number: 32152922, Sort code: 602149. Payment may also be made in cash at Tavistock Library.
  6. Entry fees: Adults – £3 for first entry, £2 for second or subsequent entry. If you intend to submit multiple entries, please submit all entries together.
  7. No manuscripts will be retained so contestants must keep a copy of their work.
  8. Copyright remains with the author.
  9. If acknowledgement of receipt is required, please include a stamped and addressed postcard.
  10. The judges’ decision is final, and no correspondence will be entered into.
  11. In accordance with the 2018 European Union General Data Protection Regulation Act (EU GDPR) your information will not be kept on a data base or used for marketing purposes and we will only contact you to tell you if you have won the competition and when all the logos will be on display.
  12. Entry to the competition implies acceptance of the rules.



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Filed under Events and diary dates, General competitions, Re-blogged

An interesting proposition


If you’re aged 18 or older and have a passion for writing, we are now accepting submissions for our 2018 writing competition.

READ Foundation has teamed up with prize-winning novelist and fellow of the Royal Society of Arts Qaisra Shahraz to launch this year’s contest.

The entry guidelines are simple: a poem, short story or first person essay on the theme of “My education helped me….”. This does not mean the writing has to start with this phrase, but this theme must be felt throughout the work. Submissions must be a maximum of 500 words and should be received before midnight on 10th October 2018.

We know how important education is in a young person’s life. Which is why we want entrants to help inspire the next generation of creatives by telling them all about the role education played in their own lives. We’re open to entries from all walks of life and abilities, so you don’t need to be a professional to enter: simply write from the heart.

The winning entry will be displayed in hundreds of READ Foundation schools to inspire today’s students. It will also be published on READ Foundation’s website. The winner and two runners up will also receive feedback on their work from Ms Shahraz.


Short story and poetry judge Qaisra Shahraz


I love reading and writing – writing can be an incredibly inspiring tool, taking the imagination to amazing places and experiences.

As an educationist and lover of learning, I really value READ Foundation’s incredible work in promoting and offering education to those who need it – such amazing work and achievement, led by an amazing team.

I am really glad this competition will encourage writers to inspire young minds with their words. Above all else, it is about the importance of education: how it literally transforms lives and gives children a passport to a better world.

I’m really looking forward to reading the entries and seeing how different entrants have approached the topic of education.

The tone must be inspiring. The children who will see the winning entry have fought very hard to get to school – some walking hours a day. Reading an inspiring story or poem will, I’m sure, offer them a lot of encouragement and a goal to achieve and do well in education themselves.

– Qaisra Shahraz, (Biography)

Terms & Conditions

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Filed under Events and diary dates, General competitions, Re-blogged


The old woman said

that there is only one way

to remove a wart

bury a toad before dawn

it will be gone by sunset


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Filed under Factual, General competitions, Inspired by fable, Old knowledge, Self compositions, Whimsical

Colleen’s weekly poetry challenge #49 Tanka 

Evening balloon.jpgThe balloon soars high

all the waiting is over

up to the heavens

Checking  the pressurised suit

ready for freefall descent

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Filed under General competitions, Self compositions, Tanka

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