Welcome to my blog

Welcome to The Literary Pig's blog - a safe haven for all those afflicted with
the unbearable urge to write.

Monday, 5 March 2012

March competition madness

March is a mad month for writing competitions with many having closing dates throughout the month.  Here are few of my favourites specially selected for:
Women writers

Funny writers (for those writing humorous stories not for funny/odd writers - well let's be honest all writers are pretty odd, it's part of the job description)

Children's writers

Mslexia Short Story Competition - check website for full terms and conditions

  • Closing date 31 March (postal or online entries)
  • For women writers only!
  • Up to 2,200 words on any theme.  Story must be previously unpublished and not won or under consideration in any other competition.
  • Judge: Tessa Hadley
  • Entry fee - £10 per entry (cheque or online payment)
  • 1st Prize - £2,000 + week's writing retreat at Chawton House Library (East Sussex - lovely location!), day with a Virago editor.
  • 2nd Prize - £500, 3rd Prize - £250 and £100 for 3 other finalists, plus winning stories published in Mslexia magazine.
  • You can listen to last year's winner on the website, interestingly this is written in second person.
CheerReader Quartely Competition - check website for full terms and conditions
  • Closing date 15 March for Spring competition (next one is Summer - closing 15 June).
  • Up to 1,500 words any subject genre BUT story has to be amusing/witty/funny (you can read previous winners on the website, Winter winner had some lovely one-liners).
  • Must be original and previously unpublished stories.
  •  Entry fee - 5euros by paypal only, stories must be emailed as Word attachments.
  • Winner gets 100 euros plus publication on website.
  • Note: for this story they want font Arial 10pt (I noted this because indoor writer typically uses Times New Roman 12 pt!).
- check website for full terms and conditions
  • Closing date 31 March.
  • You must be a previously unpublished (for profit) writer of children's fiction.
  • Up to 2,000 word story suitable for children of any age group up to teenage, can be short story or the first 2,000 words of novel/longer story.
  • 1st Prize - £2,000, 2nd - £300, 3rd - £200.
  • Postal entries only.  UK entries - £3 per entry (though 10 2nd class stamps are preferred).
  • Include an entry form.
Worth noting this competition received about 2,500 entries in 2011.  The indoor writer's novel opening reached the shortlist, which meant it got into the last 300... so clearly there are an enormous number of  children's writers out there (and this is a global competition - winner came from New York for 2011).

Good luck if you enter of these and let me know how you get on...


  1. I'm having a go at the CheerReader one. I had what I thought was quite a funny piece, but it gets less and less amusing the more I tweak it. I'm hoping that's just because I'm familiar with it and not because I've edited out all the humour!

  2. That's great to hear - good luck for the entry and do let me know how you get on. Do you get someone else to read a piece - it's encouraging when somebody else laughs out loud. I hate passing my 'funny' stories over to hubby for proof-reading as I'm always listening out for that tantalising titter signalling his approval. Even more disappointing when I hear him laughing and he's actually reading one of my more literary stories...

  3. Don't know if it's just that I'm noticing them more, but the number of writing competitions seems to go up and up - so it seems does the number of entrants.

  4. Totally agree Patsy - and the range of competitions is so broad now too, which should be good news for multi-skilled writers. But even the 'smaller' comps are now attracting several hundred entries. Though it's hard to predict - some of those offering good prize money can be surprisingly undersubscribed, particularly if on a specific theme or topic. A writer friend of mine was asked to judge a comp last year that offered £200 first prize, and it only received 10 entries. So you just can't tell. Guess we have to keep on submitting and ensuring we always enter the best story/poem/feature we can write.