Kalli Damschen

5 Cheap Writing Competitions to Enter This Winter

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© Photo by Caleb Roenigk on Flickr (https://flic.kr/p/brNqFE)

© Photo by Caleb Roenigk on Flickr (https://flic.kr/p/brNqFE)

If you’re a new writer, writing competitions can be a great way to get your work read, interact with editors, increase your readership and even win prizes. The key to winning competitions is to submit regularly, but competitions often charge entry fees, which can make submitting to a wide variety of competitions quite expensive. Here are five upcoming writing competitions with cheap (or free!) entry, so polish up your short stories or poems and start submitting.

Build Your Own Blog New Writer Scholarship
Deadline: 29 November 2015
Entry: Free
This competition is open to writers aged 16 or older. Submit a previously unpublished poem, short story or even a blog post between 100 and 5,000 words in length, on no particular theme, for the chance to win $4000 USD.

Txt Lit Monthly Writing Competition
Deadline: Ongoing
Entry: £1 plus standard text messaging rates
Write a micro story containing only 154 characters, including spaces and punctuation, and submit it via your mobile phone! Each month, Txt Lit posts a new competition theme on their website. All you have to do is write a super short story on that theme and then send it in a text message to 82085, along with the keyword STORY. After the end of the month, judges will select a winner, who will be awarded at least £50.

Magic Oxygen Literary Prize
Deadline: 31 December 2015
Entry: £5
This writing contest is for both short stories up to 4,000 words and poems up to 50 lines with no specified theme. Entrants must be 16 or older. The first prize in each category is £1000, with several smaller cash prizes offered for second and third places, as well as two highly commended entrants per category. For every entry, Magic Oxygen will plant a tree in the Magic Oxygen Word Forest.

L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future Award
Deadline: 31 March 2016
Entry: Free
This US science fiction and fantasy writing competition is open to writers of short stories and novelettes worldwide. The organisation awards prizes every three months, with the next contest starting 1 January 2016, and ending 31 March 2016. The first place prize is $1000 USD, with the chance to be considered for the annual $5000 grand prize as well.

The National Flash Fiction Youth Competition 2016
Deadline: 10 February 2016
Entry: Free
Current AS-level, A-level or Scottish Higher students in the UK aged 16-19 can submit a flash fiction story of up to 360 words to this creative writing competition, organised by the Department of English, University of Chester and Flash: The International Short-Short Story Magazine. The first place prize is a £100 Amazon voucher and publication in Flash.

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