31 Free Writing Contests: Legitimate Competitions With Cash Prizes

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Search for writing contests in your genre Discover the finest writing contests of for fiction and non-fiction authors of short stories, poetry, essays and more. Updated weekly, these contests are vetted by Reedsy to weed out the scammers and time-wasters.
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Enter here every day for a chance to win a 2-night trip for 2 to a Classified concert during their Canadian Tour. The results are inconclusive though.

I like Reebok better than Nike. Unless you count the times I cheated by peeling off the stickers. Pretty much all bands do, I think. Daily Updates Want updates of new contests? Join the thousands of members who get our daily email! Vote for ContestCanada Readers Need votes for a contest? Contact us to add your name here. Recent comments Heather said Wow…thanks so much! Gale Coolidge said Your products are the best for sure anon said today code: Save said You have to tell us twice?

One of your whiny messages is enough. Heather said Is this for Ottawa only? If not how do we find the code word? Thanks for sharing all these contests Even as a pre-teen, I sensed a scam. Sadly, not much has changed when it comes to companies trying to take advantage of writers who want a chance at recognition and maybe a little bit of money.

Here are 31 reputable, well-reviewed, free writing contests for poets, fiction writers, essayists and more. Ready to share your novel or personal essay with the world? Whatever your feelings about L. Submissions must be short stories or novelettes up to 17, words in the genre of science fiction or fantasy, and new and amateur writers are welcome to apply. Quarterly on January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1. If you live in the U. The judges look for winners who push the boundaries of traditional literary nonfiction.

Contest is every other year, with the last one running in The deadline was January 31st. You may submit an unpublished manuscript of short stories, two or more novellas or a combination of novellas and short stories. Your total word count should be between and typed pages. Annual submissions must be postmarked between May 1 through June This biannual prize honors mid-career writers who have recently published their third, fourth or fifth work of fiction. Francis College in Brooklyn, NY to deliver a talk on their work and teach a mini-workshop in fiction to St.

Biannually; the deadline for work published between June and May has not yet been announced. Submit any novel or short story published or scheduled to be published in the calendar year.

Annually in the fall most recently in August or September. Deadline for submissions for awards was December 31, Deadline for awards TBA. They are expected to participate in the Lake Forest Literary Festival and give presentations. Annually; has passed and deadline is not yet announced.

You may submit up to two manuscripts. Submissions must be postmarked between May 1 and September 30 each year. Eligible authors should submit a work of fiction, such as a novel or short story collection, published in the calendar year. Annually; deadline has not yet been announced. Honoring the best work of fiction published by an American author in a single calendar year, this award has been given to the likes of John Updike, Philip Roth and Ann Patchett. Annually on October 31 for books published that calendar year.

Submissions should be four to 10 pages up to 2, words , and five authors will be chosen to read and discuss their submissions at the annual December event. Submissions must be published in the prior year so books published in are eligible for the award. Annual submission window is September 1 through December Annually in the last quarter of the year; the deadline has not yet been announced. Submissions may be adult or YA novels. FAW presents two annual awards: Annually at the end of the year; deadline has not yet been announced.

Hektoen International, an online journal dedicated to medical humanities, offers two prizes annually for essays of no more than 1, words in two categories. You may submit up to two short stories, but note that your name must not appear anywhere on your submission as the process is anonymous. Annually in the last quarter of the year. The deadline for awards has passed; the deadline for awards has not yet been announced.

In addition to submitting a copy of your book or written work, you must also complete a word statement that describes the tangible impact your piece has made in the world and outlining any social justice work you perform outside of your writing. Annually; deadline for awards has passed, and the deadline for has not yet been announced. Works must not have been published elsewhere. Award winners are required to submit a word biography, recent photo and a short note thanking the Woods family for their generosity and support.

This contest seeks to foster collaborations between artists and writers. Short stories should be between 2, — 5, words. Prose offers weekly challenges meant to spark your creativity; many are just for fun, but look for the weekly numbered challenges posted by Prose rather than community members or sponsors for a chance to win money.

Curious about opportunities for poets? Your stanzas — rhyming or not — could be worth a fair amount of money in these competitions. In addition, copies of her book are distributed to the 1, members of the Academy of American Poets. Annual submission window is January 1 through May Deadline for awards has passed, their next deadline is July 1, for book published between July 1, and June 30, The contest alternates annually between fiction novel or short story collection and nonfiction memoir, essay collection, narrative nonfiction.

In , it will go to a work of fiction of at least 45, words; will be nonfiction. Some contests accept submissions in multiple categories, so you could submit a novella as well as a poem or other work. We were so excited to include this competition that we overlooked its entry fees. Runners-up earn prizes in first through tenth places. Looking for more opportunities to submit your work to writing contests?

Here are a few great sites to keep an eye on. A number of the contests found on our list came highly recommended by this site, which compiles some of the best free literary contests out there. You can sort contests by recommendation level Highly Recommended, Recommended or Neutral , view plenty of info on requirements and even see which contests are better for beginners, intermediate writers and pros.

They also offer a handful of contests themselves , including the Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest which sounds delightful. Writer, poet and editor Cathy Bryant sources legitimate, free-to-enter writing contests and calls for submission. She releases a new list of contests and calls each month, so check back monthly for new opportunities. This post contains affiliate links. Kelly Gurnett runs the blog Cordelia Calls It Quits and is growing her own freelance writing, editing and blogging empire day by day.

You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook and hire her services here. Move from irregular client work and crappy pay to being a freelance leader in your field. What a brilliant list! Thank you too for the mention of Comps and Calls — I love finding free writing competitions, and some of them have very impressive prizes.

I get emails from people all over the world who have had success via Comps and Calls. While free writing contests are definitely great, it would be a little odd to overlook ones with fees.

Check this one out, insider tip: For example, the Erma Bombeck Writing Competition https: Entry length must be words or less for either a Humorous or Human Interest entry. I have problems in finding short story competitions as I live in England. If you do post any short story competitions or any in the literary format, that would excite my senses. You may want to check out these sites- but be aware, some require subscriptions, give precedence to subscribers or charge small entry fees; but not all do, and there are some free entrance comps in Canada that are worthwhile.

Looking for a contest that my 10 old son can enter or a publishing company that can help with self-publishing. Any recommendation or advice please? Our university just launched a new competition no entry fee, no gimmicks called FutureScapes. Hugo-Award winning author Mary Robinette Kowal will be our judge this inaugural year. The is a Mini Essay Writing Contest at biopage. It is for really short essays with a limit of 1, words. In the age of social media with majority of postings are pictures and videos, Biopage likes to encourage people to write — write about themselves, write their life stories and life experiences.

Now it is like there are too many people as working in the business here of transposing things across for a living. That really the only thing these vetted competitions do now is, just bunch up a bunch of people who cannot write, among judges judging as judges cannot much write either, and they sit around give a small vagabond gift amount of money in discovery for those who suck less at it.

As really a sign should go up before hand about how real writers we really need not to apply here anymore. As none of the spirit of writing is left of writing. Everyone writes politically correct as only to affirm the lack for want of any real creativity getting dispersed. Speak for yourself, honey. Who knows if anyone will publish it, though. While I like how your not afraid to speak your mind, and I really have no say in what you put in your books, could you please try not to offend too many people?

This is just a suggestion, so feel free to do whatever you like. My mind is full of stories to tell.. I am an idea person.

Is there a place in this writers world for one like myself? Perhaps a writer lacking an idea? I love to write, but I am almost always of of ideas… Maybe you can let me know. Were do I find the legitmate ways to to get paid for entering contests? I would like to find work online and get paid weekly by check through the mail do you know of such? Many are open worldwide, though, so good luck! I see you havent included the South African Writers college competition — held annually..

Send entries to Nichola sawriterscollege. Is there an URL with guidelines? Yes, the URL for the College is: R5, and R… and its free to enter..! Thanks for that and best wishes. Great List of Writing Contests!! Thank you very much for putting this together. As a aspiring beginner writer this is great place to decide,what contest to enter! Folks might also want to check out Stories to Change the World, a short story contest for youth and adults about positive and possible futures.

Deadline is approaching, check it out! And if you were to submit something previously published on Kindle or Smashwords or the like — could you take it down for a period and still be considered? Some specify whether situations like self-publication are acceptable or not. That feels like a risky gamble that might get you in trouble. Thanks for posting this list. When it comes to short stories, I never think about competitions and always look for publications instead.

Thanks, Kelly, for this interesting article and list. One does have to watch out for scams and ineffective ways of publishing your work. And entering legitimate writing contests sounds a lot more challenging and rewarding. When I was a college student, I had written some poems and essays, and was encouraged by friends to get them published. Learned my lesson to avoid being so vain. There are different fees listed on the site, as follows:. Sadly, there are all sorts of ways writers and wannabe writers can fall into the wrong hands, from scam competitions to content mills that pay pennies per word.

This site is a great place to start.

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