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Competitions

"we can not compete
but perhaps we meet somewhere"

from 'Red Rose and a Beggar' by H.D., found in Hermetic Definition (New Directions,1972)

  • This list is compiled monthly from information sent to The Poetry Library by organisers of competitions.
  • Each competition has different regulations. In most cases, poems should be in English and not previously published.
  • Where regulations and entry forms are available online, a link is provided, but in other cases, competitors should write to each competition, enclosing a stamped addressed envelope for an entry form before submitting work.
  • For competitions suitable for children and young people, click here
  • The Poetry Library accepts no liability in connection with the information contained in the list.

Black Country Living Museum Annual Poetry Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 29-Jul-16

Details:
Theme: Inspired and informed by the historical events in the Black Country, this year's theme is 'Earth & Air'. Entries can interpret the theme of the competition as historical, industrial, scientific, ecological, environmental, personal, reflective, or in any other way. The competition is open to adults aged 18 years and over, and to poetry in any style. Prizes: The first prize is £100, a family ticket to the Museum and publication on the museum website, and there are other cash prizes and opportunities for publication. Judges: Dave Reeves, Liz Berry and Mel Weatherley.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: Full details and entry form for the competition can be found on the Adult Learning pages of the museum's website at: https://www.bclm.co.uk/learning/annual-prize-poetry-competition-2016/457.htm

PENfro Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 31-Jul-16

Details:
Prizes: First prize: £300, Second prize: £125. Third: £75. Judge: Jonathan Edwards, who will read all entries. The PENfro Poetry Competition is run annually by the PENfro Book Festival. Max 40 lines. Subject: open. Entry Fee: £4 a poem. Enter on-line or download an entry form and enter by post.
Entry Fee: £4 per poem

Contact: All info and contact details on the website: http://penfrobookfestival.org.uk/competitions/poetry

The Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2016 | Closing Date: 31-Jul-16

Details:
The Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2016 is now open for entries. The biggest competition for writers aged 11-17. Winners receive a fantastic range of prizes, from mentoring to a residential Arvon writing course, Poetry Society membership to books. They also receive ongoing support and writing development opportunities. Judges this year are Malika Booker and W.N. Herbert.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: For entry and more information see: http://foyleyoungpoets.org/

Carers UK Creative Writing Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 31-Jul-16

Details:
First prize: £150 in high street vouchers Judge: Cheryl Moskowitz In our third creative writing competition we're welcoming poems and short stories on all aspects of caring ? the joys, challenges and complex emotions that come with looking after a loved one Whether you're an experienced writer or have never expressed yourself through creative writing before, we would love to hear from you. In November 2016 we will be producing an anthology of the winning and commended poems and stories, plus poems selected by Carers UK's volunteers, staff and trustees.
Entry Fee: £Free

Contact: For further details and to enter: www.carersuk.org/how-you-can-help/creative-writing/2016-competition

Winchester Poetry Prize 2016 | Closing Date: 31-Jul-16

Details:
Winchester Poetry Prize aims to give serious recognition to the successful poets. As well as receiving substantial prize money, the winners will be invited to read at a special awards event at Winchester Poetry Festival on Sunday 9 October 2016. Winning and commended poets will also see their entries published in a special anthology to coincide with the presentation. Judge: Mimi Khalvati. Prizes: First prize will be £1000, second prize £500 and third prize £250.
Entry Fee: £5 for the first poem and £4 for subsequent entries.

Contact: For more information see: www.winchesterpoetryfestival.org/prize

Light Verse Unlimited 3 | Closing Date: 31-Jul-16

Details:
Judge: Helen Meikle. A competition for lighter poems. No set theme or form, and no length limit. Prizes: 1st prize: £150, 2nd: £100, 3rd: £50.
Entry Fee: £3.50 for a single poem to £11.00 for four poems entered together.

Contact: For entry and further information see: www.writerscomp-resources.com

Free Verse: The Poetry Book Fair Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 01-Aug-16

Details:
Prizes: 1 x WINNER will receive: £200 to spend at the fair, a short reading at the fair, your poem displayed to hundreds of visitors on the day, 3 x RUNNERS UP will receive: £20 to spend at the fair, a short reading at the fair, your poem displayed to hundreds of visitors on the day. Judges: Joey Connolly, Chrissy Williams & Guest Judge: Jo Shapcott. We’re looking for a short poem (14 lines max.) about love – any kind of love – to welcome visitors to this year’s Poetry Book Fair at Conway Hall, London, on Saturday 17th September 2016.
Entry Fee: £5 for one poem, £10 for 3 poems.

Contact: For entry and more information see: http://www.poetrybookfair.com/p/competition.html

Buzzwords Open Poetry Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 07-Aug-16

Details:
Judge: Jo Bell (will read all entries). Poems up to length: 70 lines, Prizes: £600, £300, £50 x 5 commended. The Gloucestershire Prize- £200 (residents only).
Entry Fee: £4; £10/3 (postal entries); £4.35; £8.70/2; £11/3 (Paypal).

Contact: Online entry at http://tinyurl.com/buzzwords-poetry or SEND SAE to Buzzwords Open Poetry Competition, Butlers, Western Road, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL50 3RN for details

Wild Atlantic Words Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 11-Aug-16

Details:
Poems on any theme related to the sea. Judge: Bernard O'Donoghue. Prizes: First prize of 500 Euro, Second prize: A week's retreat at the Creativity Cabin on the Beara peninsula, Third prize 100 Euro.
Entry Fee: £See website

Contact: See website: http://www.hungryhillwriting.com/competitions-copy.html

Settle Sessions Poetry Prize 2016 | Closing Date: 12-Aug-16

Details:
Prizes: 1st prize £150, 2nd prize £100, 3rd prize £75. Judge:John Killick. You must be over 18 to enter. Maximum length is 40 lines. Do not put your name and address on your poem sheet, nor any other marks that could identify you. Please enter the title of each poem on a separate A4 Sheet, together with your name, address, email address and phone numbers(s). Winners will be notified by 6th September 2016.
Entry Fee: £4 for one poem, £10 for 3 poems

Contact: Entries should be posted to Settle Sessions, 3 Tillman Close, Settle, North Yorkshire BD24 9RA. Please use the correct postage; no excess charges will be accepted. Full competition details: info@settlesessions.co.uk, www.settlesessions.co.uk

Ouse Washes Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 12-Aug-16

Details:
Running as part of Ouse Fest 2016, the competition is looking for poems responding to any one of eight photographs of the landscape and wildlife of the Ouse Washes, an area at the heart of the Cambridgeshire and Norfolk fens. (See link below for photos). Judge: Clare Best. There are three prizes up for grabs in the form of book tokens worth £100 (first prize), £50 (second prize) and £25 (third prize). The deadline is Friday 12th August. Winning entries will be published online and in the autumn edition of The Fenland Reed.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: View the photos online here: http://ousewashes.org.uk/resources/galleries/snap-the-ouse-photography-competition-2016/. Please send your poem as a single word document attachment to ousewashespoetry@gmail.com. Please provide your name, address, the title of your poem, and the title of the photograph that inspired your poem in the body of your email. Do not include your name or any identifying information in your attachment. Please read the full guidelines online before submitting: http://www.thefenlandreed.co.uk/#!competition/mffoz

Behind the Curtain - A poetry challenge with the V&A | Closing Date: 12-Aug-16

Details:
For this brand new poetry challenge with the V&A Museum, Young Poets Network is asking you to step away from the bright stage lights, and go backstage into the murkier world behind the curtain. This challenge is open to poets up to the age of 25, from anywhere in the world. Prizes: publication on Young Poets Network, a sought-after YPN notebook, and other assorted poetry goodies.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: Find out more about the competition and how to enter at http://ypn.poetrysociety.org.uk/category/workshop/

Poetry & Politics competition | Closing Date: 31-Aug-16

Details:
The theme of this poetry competition is poetry and politics, so in order to enter your poem it must be about any aspect of politics. Your poem can be about international politics or instead be about something political much more closer to home. We don't have to agree with your opinions, but we do want to be touched in some way by your poem, inspired by its imagery and, of course, we look for a beautiful use of language. Prize: £200 and publication in the Holland Park Press online magazine Eligibility: poems written in English by writers over 18 from any country Length: 50 lines or less .
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: To submit email your poem as a Word or PDF attachment to submissions@hollandparkpress.co.uk Complete guidelines are available from http://www.hollandparkpress.co.uk/magazine_detail.php?magazine_id=407&language=English please read these instructions carefully.


SaveAs International Poetry and Short Story Competition | Closing Date: 31-Aug-16

Details:
SaveAs Writers invite entries for its annual poetry and prose competition. This year the theme is REBELLION, inspired by the centenary of the Easter Rising in Ireland. You do not need to write about the Rising if you do not wish to, and may choose any type of 'rebellion' you like, be it personal, political, religious, social, cultural or any other. Poems up to 60 lines, short stories up to 3000 words. Prizes for each category: 1st prize £100; 2nd £50; 3rd £25. Entries must be typed and be the submitter's own original work and not been previously published (either paper, websites, online journals or blogs). All entries must be accompanied by a separate cover sheet with your details; no identifying marks on your entry. Judges Simon Smith and Derek Sellen. Entries may be emailed to saveas@hotmail.co.uk, or posted to: Luigi Marchini, c/o Save As Writers, 35 Spillett Close, Faversham, Kent, ME 13 8QP Payment may be made online through PayPal to SaveAs Writers, (please add a 50p administration charge to each entry), or by post with a cheque made out to 'SaveAs Writers'. Full T&Cs are on the SaveAs website: www.saveaswriters.co.uk Winners will be announced on 29th October at the Awards evening as part of the Canterbury Festival.
Entry Fee: £3 per poem or £8 for three; £4 per story or £10 for three.

Contact: www.saveaswriters.co.uk

Oxford Brookes International Poetry Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 31-Aug-16

Details:
With two top prizes of £1000 on offer, the competition seeks to celebrate the great diversity of poetry being written in English all over the world. Poems are welcomed in the following two categories: English as Second Language - open to all poets over 18 years of age who write in English as an additional language Open category - open to all poets over 18 years of age. These prizes will be awarded in both categories: First prize - £1000, Second prize - £200. Judge:Daljit Nagra.
Entry Fee: £5 per poem, or £4 per poem for over 3 entries

Contact: For entry and more information see: http://www.brookes.ac.uk/poetry-centre/international-poetry-competition/

Sentinel Literary Quarterly Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 31-Aug-16

Details:
Judge: Terry Jones. For original, previously unpublished poems in English language, on any subject, in any style, up to 50 lines long. Poets of all nationalities living in any part of the world are eligible to enter. Prizes: £200 (first prize), £100 (second prize), £50 (third prize), £20 x (high commendation) and £10 x 3 (commendation). First publication: All winning and commended poems will be published in Sentinel Literary Quarterly magazine (online). Results: will be announced on 15 October 2016
Entry Fee: £4/1, £7/2, £9/3, £11/4, £12/5, £16/7, £22/10

Contact: Send cheques/postal orders (GB£ only) in favour of SENTINEL POETRY MOVEMENT to: Unit 136, 113-115 George Lane, London E18 1AB, United Kingdom. Contact: Enter online or download Entry Form for Postal Entry at http://sentinelquarterly.com/competitions/poetry


The Poetry Society's Stanza Competition | Closing Date: 12-Sep-16

Details:
Open exclusively to Poetry Society members, or anyone who joins before the closing date, who are also members of a Poetry Society Stanza. The theme for this year's competition is SILENCE. Send up to two poems, max 40 lines per poem. The winners will be announced on National Poetry Day, Thursday 6 October 2016. Our judge is award-winning poet and novelist Ros Barber.
Entry Fee: £Free

Contact: For more information see: www.poetrysociety.org.uk/stanzacomp 

The Timothy Corsellis Prize 2016 | Closing Date: 12-Sep-16

Details:
The Timothy Corsellis Poetry Prize asks young writers aged 14-25 to respond to the life and/or work of a small selection of Second World War poets: Keith Douglas, Sidney Keyes, Alun Lewis, John Jarmain, Henry Reed Timothy Corsellis and Anna Akhmatova. Prizes: There will be a first prize winner and two runners-up in each category, who will receive £100 in book tokens and £50 in book tokens respectively, plus a Young Poets Network notebook, other poetry goodies, and publication on Young Poets Network. The first prize poem will be published in The Poetry Society?s quarterly paper Poetry News. The first prize essay will be published on The Poetry Society's website. Judges: Fran Brearton, Judith Palmer and Wendy Cope.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: For entry and further information see: http://ypn.poetrysociety.org.uk/workshop/the-timothy-corsellis-prize-2016/

Live Canon 2016 International Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 12-Sep-16

Details:
Prizes: 1st Prize £1000, there is also a £100 prize for the highest placed entry by a local writer, living working or studying in the London Borough of Greenwich, 25 shortlisted poems will be published in our 2016 prize anthology, and performed by the Live Canon Ensemble at our prize giving event at Greenwich Theatre on Sunday 20th November 2016. Judge: Lorraine Mariner, guest judge.
Entry Fee: £6 for a single poem, £15 for three poems and £20 for five poems

Contact: For entry and further information see: http://www.livecanon.co.uk/poetry-competition

The Manchester Poetry Prize 2016 | Closing Date: 23-Sep-16

Details:
Chair of Poetry Judges: Adam O'Riordan. £10,000 prize for the best portfolio of three to five poems (maximum combined length: 120 lines). Open internationally to new and established writers aged 16 or over (no upper age limit).
Entry Fee: £17.50

Contact: For more information see: http://www.manchesterwritingcompetition.co.uk/Poetry-Prize.php. For updates on the competition, please join the Manchester Writing School mailing list and click to indicate that you are interested in'Manchester Writing Competition'. If you'd like to be sent a postal entry form, please supply us with your name and address via writingschool@mmu.ac.uk +44 (0) 161 247 1787.


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