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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.

The Bedford Writing Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 30-Sep-16

Details:
The Bedford Writing Competition poetry section (there is also a short story competition) is a volunteer-run and judged contest. The income of the competition is donated to charities that promote literacy, particularly for children. Judge, Ian McEwen. A shortlist of ten poems will be announced, first prize £200, second £100, third £50. Poems no more than 40 lines, enter online, or by post to The Administrator, Bedford Writing Competition, 28 Miller Road, Bedford, UK, MK42 9NZ.
Entry Fee: £5 per poem or three for £10

Contact: For entry and further information see: http://bedfordwritingcompetition.co.uk/cgi-bin/bwcp16-rules.cgi

Cookham 2017 Festival Stanley Spencer Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 30-Sep-16

Details:
The Cookham Festival has teamed up with The Stanley Spencer Gallery, The University of Reading and Two Rivers Press to organise an international poetry competition on the theme of Stanley Spencer; his work, his life, his themes, influences or beliefs. First prize £2500 plus 2 runner up prizes of £500. All short listed works will be published by Two Rivers Press in an anthology. Poems must not exceed 54 lines.
Entry Fee: £10 for each entry.

Contact: For entry and more information see: http://www.cookhamfestival.org.uk/

The Salopian poetry Society's Open Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 30-Sep-16

Details:
Adjudicator: Allison Chisholm. Poems,(maximum 42 lines) should be typed but, if hand-written, printed. Each poem should be entered on a separate sheet of A4 paper, bearing only the title of the poem. Author's name, address or any other form of identification must NOT be included on the poem or poems but should be written on the entry form or a separate sheet of paper, together with the title/s of the poem/s and the name and address of the poet, and attached to the entries.
Entry Fee: £3 per poem or four for £10 for non members and £2 per poem for Society members.

Contact: Please submit two copies of each poem. Entries to be sent to the Competition Secretary. 5 Squires Close, Madeley, Telford, Shropshire TF7 5RU. 
More information: 
http://www.thesalopianpoetrysociety.webeden.co.uk/#/competition-rules/4531672813

Verve Poetry Festival Competition | Closing Date: 30-Sep-16

Details:
The theme is 'Birmingham.The judge for the adults’ category is Hannah Silva. Children's competition, open to children from Reception to year 11, is free to enter.

Prizes are Waterstones Vouchers for the best three poems at both Primary and Secondary school age. Up to 30 commended poems will appear in a Children's Anthology of Birmingham Poems.

The Children's competition is judged by Emma Wright from Emma Press. Only one poem permitted per person. Both adults and children's anthologies will be launched at Verve: A new Festival of Poetry and Spoken Word which will take place from 16-19 February 2017 at Waterstones Birmingham. The festival will feature over 30 poets performing over four days, and will be Birmingham's first poetry-only festival.
Entry Fee: £5 for the first poem and £2.50 for each subsequent poem. Free entry for Children's competition and is limited to one entry per person..

Contact: Full details of the competition can be found at http://vervepoetryfestival.com/competition/

Resurgence Poetry Prize | Closing Date: 01-Oct-16

Details:
Three awards (First, Second and Third place) will be made for original and previously unpublished ‘ecopoems’ in English (or any dialect of English). Poets may submit as many poems as they wish but each poem must not be more than 54 lines in length. Poems do not need to address a specific theme, but to be eligible poems will in some way – thematically, structurally, linguistically or formally – investigate the interrelationship between human culture and the natural world.

A poem’s spoken quality – its suitability for being read and recorded aloud – will form part of the judging criteria. The three winning poets will be expected to read their poems for use on radio and for recording and download. Poems may be submitted electronically or by post.
Entry Fee: £8 for first poem Each additional poem after that: £3

Contact: info@resurgenceprize.org For further information, rules and entry details, including online entries visit website at http://www.resurgenceprize.org/ 

The Poetry Kit Summer Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 10-Oct-16

Details:
This year's competition is for poetry on any subject or theme. There are no style or length restrictions but it should be stressed that a short poem is just as likely to be selected as a longer one. Prizes: 1st prize is £100. The top ten poems will be published in a special edition of CITN. Competition Judge; TBA.
Entry Fee: £3.50, 1 poem , £8, 3 poems, £10, 5 poems.

Contact: For entry and more information see: http://www.poetrykit.org/comp_pk.htm. Entry is by email to comps@poetrykit.org  after an appropriate fee is paid by Pay Pal to the account of info@poetrykit.org

Geoff Stevens Memorial Poetry Prize 2016 | Closing Date: 10-Oct-16

Details:
Two winners will have a poetry collection up to 52 pages published by award-winning publishers Indigo Dreams Publishing and receive 25 copies. Publication 2017 to coincide with Geoff’s birth date June 4th. 10 poems to 36 lines max, email or print. No entry form is required. Each poem in the selection should be typed on white A4 paper one poem per sheet. Poems must be your own work.Submissions may have been published online, anthology or in magazines but not as a complete collection.
Entry Fee: £29 per block of poems

Contact: All entries must be accompanied by cheque to correct amount made payable to ‘IDP’ or via PayPal.See full submission rules http://www.indigodreams.co.uk/geoff-stevens-prize/4592770640

Postal submissions to Geoff Stevens Memorial Poetry Awards, IDP, 24 Forest Houses, Halwill,Beaworthy, Devon, EX21 5UU

Indigo Dreams Pamphlet Prize 2016 | Closing Date: 14-Oct-16

Details:
Two winners will receive a royalty publishing contract from award-winning Indigo Dreams and receive 20 copies of their poetry pamphlet Submission: Full poetry pamphlet up to 30 pages 36 lines max inc line breaks
Entry Fee: £15 per block of poems.

Contact: All entries must be accompanied by cheque to correct amount made payable to ‘IDP’ or via PayPal.See full submission rules http://www.indigodreams.co.uk/pamphlet-prize/4592772045

Postal submissions to Indigo Dreams Pamphlet Prize, 24 Forest Houses, Halwill, Beaworthy, Devon, EX21 5UU

Shooter Poetry Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 30-Oct-16

Details:
Shooter's Poetry Competition offers a chance to write about whatever most compels you, in any style. We're looking for sharply observed poetry with strong ideas and imaginative use of language: in short, arresting poems that appeal to both the head and the heart. The winner of the 2016 Shooter Poetry Competition will receive £100, publication in the winter issue and on the website, and promotion on Shooter’s social media. The runner-up will receive £50, publication on Shooter's website, and promotion on social media. All entrants will receive an e-copy of Shooter's winter issue. Poems may be any theme or style, up to 125 lines long.
Entry Fee: £3 entry fee, ALL ENTRANTS will receive an e-copy of Shooter’s winter 2017 issue, which will feature the winning poem.

Contact: For more information see: https://shooterlitmag.com/poetry-competition/

The Flambard Poetry Prize 2016 | Closing Date: 31-Oct-16

Details:
The Flambard Poetry Prize is awarded annually to the best group of five poems submitted by a poet who has not yet published a single-authored pamphlet or collection. Each poem should be no longer than 40 lines. Prizes: 1st Prize: £1000, 2nd Prize: £250. Judges: Linda France & Andrew Forster.
Entry Fee: £5 per group of five poems.

Contact: Full details, including terms & conditions, can be found here: http://www.ncl.ac.uk/ncla/competitions/flambard

Fire River Poets Open Poetry Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 31-Oct-16

Details:
1st Prize: £200, 2nd Prize £100; 3rd Prize £75. Adjudicator: Alison Brackenbury. Prizewinners will be notified at the end of January and winning poems will appear on the Fire River Poets website. Prizewinners will be invited to take part in a special reading in Taunton with Alison Brackenbury in April 2017. 40 lines maximum.
Entry Fee: £4 for one poem; £3 each additional poem.

Contact: SEND TO: Fire River Poets Poetry Competition 2016, 2, Deane View, Bishop’s Hull Road, Taunton TA1 5EG. For further information, rules and entry details, including online entries,  visit http://fireriverpoets.org.uk

Bare Fiction Prize 2016 for Poetry, Flash Fiction & Short Story | Closing Date: 31-Oct-16

Details:
Details: 3rd annual Bare Fiction Prize is accepting entries of poetry (max 40 lines), flash fiction (max 500 words) & short story (max 3000 words). Prizes in each category of: 1st Prize £500, 2nd Prize £200, 3rd Prize £100, 2 x Highly Commended Awards of £25 each. 1st, 2nd & 3rd prize winners will be published in the Spring 2017 issue of Bare Fiction Magazine and on our website, with the prizes to be awarded at the Spring launch reading in March/April 2017 (date and location/venue to be confirmed). Entries accepted from anyone in the UK, or internationally, online or by post until October 31st 2016. Judges: Poetry - Helen Mort, Flash Fiction - David Gaffney, Short Story - Courttia Newland.
Entry Fee: £2 discount per entry for subscribers £5 per poem, £6 per flash fiction, £8 per short story. You can subscribe during the submission process if you wish and receive the discount.

Contact: For more information, rules, submission details, to enter online or download a postal entry form, please see http://www.barefictionmagazine.co.uk/competitions/

National Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 31-Oct-16

Details:
For previously unpublished poems of up to 40 lines on any subject, the competition is judged by Moniza Alvi, Gerry Cambrige and Jack Underwood. The judges read all entries, and all poems are judged anonymously. 1st prize is £5,000, 2nd £2,000, 3rd £1,000 and there are seven commendations at £200 each. Winning poems are also published in an anthology and on the Poetry Society website.
Entry Fee: £6:50 subsequent entries £3:50 per poem

Contact: See full details: http://poetrysociety.org.uk/competitions/national-poetry-competition/ Enter online: http://npc.poetrysociety.org.uk/register/

Cannon Poets Sonnet or Not 2016 Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 31-Oct-16

Details:
Poem or poems of just fourteen lines in length, traditional sonnet forms, or experiment with alternative 14 line forms using half rhyme, metarhyme or blank verse. Prizes: First Prize: £450 Second Prize: £200 Third Prize: £100 Judge is Steve Ellis
Entry Fee: £4.00 or the first poem and £2.50 .for each additional poem submitted

Contact: http://www.cannonpoets.org.uk/competitions.php?panel=sonentry.php Enter online or by post: Cannon Poets, 22, Margaret Grove,Harborne,Birmingham, B17 9JH

Writeabridge | Closing Date: 12-Nov-16

Details:
To raise money for Coventry Refugee & Migrant Centre and Daughters for Life Foundation. Judges: Lemn Sissay and Anjum Malik. First prize £300, Second prize £50 Poems can be submitted on any topic or theme. Poems should be no longer than 40 lines and have a title (The title is not included in the line count).International entries accepted. Entries must be typed – any clear font accepted, 12pt, black, single line spaced, except between stanzas
Entry Fee: £5 for one poem and £10 for three

Contact: writeabridge@yahoo.com See full competition details www.writeabridge.com 

Barnet Open Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 16-Nov-16

Details:
Elegy? Satire? Comedy? For Young and Old Write a poem of not more than 35 lines on any topic GENERAL CATEGORY 1st Prize = £500 JUNIORS (7-11 & 12-16) 1st Prize = £75.00 2nd Prize = £50.00 3rd Prize x3 = £25.00 FREE ENTRY to BARNET SCHOOLS REDUCED FEE TO BARNET RESIDENTS The Judges - Anne Stewart (General Catagory) Katherine Gallagher (Junior Catagory) Poets encouraged to illustrate their work with drawings and patterns
Entry Fee: £5.00 adult, £1 7-11s 7 12-16

Contact:

Downloadable forms available athttp://www.barnetarts.org.uk/bbac/index_main.htm or send a SAE to Barnet Arts Council, c/o All Saints Arts Centre,122 Oakley Road North ,London N20 9EZ

The Stiwdio Maelor Poetry Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 25-Nov-16

Details:
Prize: A two-week residency at Stiwdio Maelor, Wales. Judge: Earl Livings. All poems entered must be written in English, typed in 12pt in a standard font (such as Times Roman, Garamond or Calibri), 1.5 spacing, with a maximum of 50 lines. The author's name or any identification must not appear on the same page(s) as the poem. A shortlist of five poems will be announced.Entry is by email to stiwdiomaelor@gmail.com after an appropriate fee is paid by PayPal to the account of stiwdiomaelor@gmail.com
Entry Fee: £5 per poem or three for £10.

Contact: For further information see https://stiwdiomaelor.wordpress.com/events/annual-competition-poetry-2016/ or contact stiwdiomaelor@gmail.com.

Rubies in the Darkness Poetry Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 30-Nov-16

Details:
Organiser: Robert Karoke. Judge: Peter Geoffrey Paul Thompson. Entries in traditional form with rhyme scheme preferred. No entry form required. Poems of any length. The author retains copyright and published poems are acceptable. Book prizes for the top three.
Entry Fee: £3 per poem

Contact: Send entries to: Rubies Poetry Competition, 41 Grantham Road, Manor Park, London, E12 5LZ. 

The Rialto Open Pamphlet Competition 2016 | Closing Date: 30-Nov-16

Details:
Judge: Hannah Lowe. Your pamphlet: 18-24 pages of poems. Prize: publication of the winning pamphlet + launch reading + up to £200 travel expenses Poets on the shortlist of 10 will each get a paragraph of feedback. Winner and 3 others will have a poem published in The Rialto. All shortlisted poets will have a poem published on our website.
Entry Fee: £22, or £16 for Rialto subscribers. Non-subscribers may pay subscribers' rate if they take out a subscription when they enter.

Contact: Please see http://www.therialto.co.uk/pages/pamphlet-competition/ for the rules and how to enter.

Cafe writers open poetry competition 2016 | Closing Date: 30-Nov-16

Details:
Prizes: 1ST £1000, 2nd £300 3rd £200, Six Commended Prizes of £50, Funniest Poem not winning another prize £100 The Norfolk Prize £100 awarded to the best poem from a permanent Norfolk resident not winning another prize Maximum of 40 lines (excluding title) Judge: Andrew McMillan For further information, rules and entry details, including online entries, visit www.cafewriters.co.uk
Entry Fee: £4 per poem; or £10 for 3 poems and £2.00 per poem thereafter

Contact: www.cafewriters.co.uk Entries should be sent to:  Café Writers Poetry Competition, 168a Silver Rd, Norwich NR3 4TH with a cheque payable to Café Writers or enter and pay online at www.cafewriters.co.uk


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