woman searches library


"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 York Literature Festival / YorkMix.com Open Poetry Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 25-Feb-18

Andrew McMillan is the sole judge, and the prize money has been increased, with a £600 first prize on offer. A runner-up award of £150, a third prize of £75 and a new, fourth prize of £50. The Helen Cadbury Prize of £50 – formerly The York Prize – is renamed in honour of the York author, poet and friend of the festival who died last year. The prize is awarded to an excellent poem from an entrant with a York (YO) postcode. At the judge’s discretion, up to ten Highly Commended and 15 Commended poems will each win their writer a certificate.
Entry Fee: £6 for a single poem; £15 for up to two or three; £17.50 for four; £20 for five. There is no limit to the number of poems that can be submitted.

Contact: See the link to the details and the entry form. https://www.yorkmix.com/entertainment/one-britains-best-poetry-competitions-back-now-600-first-prize/

Sentinel Literary Quarterly Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 28-Feb-18

Organised every three months …since July 2009, this competition is for original, previously unpublished poems in English language, on any subject, in any style, up to 50 lines long. All winning and commended poems will receive first publication in Sentinel Literary Quarterly magazine (online and in print) – published by SPM Publications. Prizes: £200 (First), £100 (Second), £50 (Third), £20 x 3 (Highly Commended), £10 x 3 (Commended). Judge: Mandy Pannett, author of All the Invisibles
Entry Fee: £4/1, £7/2, £9/3, £11/4, £12/5, £16/7, £22/10


Contact: Enter Online or download Entry Form at http://sentinelquarterly.com/competitions/poetry/index.htm

Send Cheques/Postal Orders payable to SPM PUBLICATIONS LTD to:

SPM Publications Ltd, Sentinel Poetry Movement, Unit 136, 113 – 115 George Lane, London E18 1AB, United Kingdom

Poets & Players Poetry Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 28-Feb-18

We are pleased to announce the 6th poetry competition run by Poets and Players, one of Manchester’s leading organisers of poetry and music events. Judge Pascale Petit 1st Prize: £600 2nd Prize: £200 3rd Prize: £100 Commended poets at the judge’s discretion. Winners will be informed by Friday 12th April 2018 and will be invited to read alongside Pascale Petit at the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester where they will also receive their prize.
Entry Fee: £4 for one poem or £10 for three poems


Entry by post or email. For full rules and details please see https://poetsandplayers.co/competition/competition-2018-closing-date-28-february-2018/

Herbert Spencer Poetry Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 28-Feb-18

There are prizes to be won in the Society of Civil & Public Service Writers poetry competition; Herbert Spencer poetry competition: Maximum 40 lines, one poem per sheet; Prizes £50 & £25. The judge for this competition will be Anne Smith The competition is open only to SCPSW members. Those eligible include serving or retired members of the Civil Service, Armed Forces, National Health Service, Local Government, The Police Force, or any Public Service. Membership inquiries, with SAE, to Bernie Bickerton, c/o 10 Malcolm Road, Woodside, London SE25 5HG or the email link at www.scpsw.org/joining
Entry Fee: £2 per poem


For full details visit http://www.scpsw.org/

Nature and Place Poetry competition 2018 | Closing Date: 01-Mar-18

The RSPB and The Rialto are additionally working with BirdLife International and the Cambridge Conservation Initiative. Prizewinners will be invited to read their poems at an event with the competition judge, Michael Longley, at CCI in spring 2018. Prizes 1st PRIZE £1000 2nd PRIZE £500 3rd PRIZE A Place on a Creative Writing Course at Ty Newydd in 2018 (worth £550) TWO ADDITIONAL PRIZES A personal tour with Mark Cocker of his most cherished wild life places in East Anglia, a personal tour with Nick Davies of Wicken Fen. The competition will raise money for conservation and poetry. Full details and the facility to enter online can be found on The Rialto website:
Entry Fee: £6 for the first poem and £3.50 for each subsequent entry.


The Poetry Business 2017/18 International Book & Pamphlet Competition | Closing Date: 01-Mar-18

PRIZES: Publication by smith|doorstop Books; a share of £2,000 cash; a launch reading at The Wordsworth Trust; publication in the North magazine; book vouchers from Inpress Books and more. Entrants are invited to submit a collection of 20-24 paged of poetry. Four winners will be selected by the judges to be published by our award winning imprint, smith|doorstop books. All winners will also receive a share of £2,000, publication in the North magazine, a reading at The Wordsworth Trust and gift vouchers from Inpress Books. All winners will be guaranteed pamphlet publication, however there is also an opportunity to submit,it a full-length manuscript, which if successful will be published as a book in the Autumn of 2018. The laureate Prize, judged by Carol Ann Duffy is a single poem prize that will run alongside the International Book & Pamphlet Competition. All entrants to the main competition will automatically be entered into this prize, which will celebrate and showcase the best single poems by entrants to our main International Book & Pamphlet Competition. Prizes -A share of £2000 cash, a launch reading at the Wordsworth Trust. Judges Liz Berry, David Constantine.
Entry Fee: £28, or £25 for North subscribers, Friends of the Poetry Business and members of the Poetry Society.

Contact: Entries can be submitted by post (with a cheque and completed entry form) or online http://www.poetrybusiness.co.uk/competition-menu/competition

The Poetry Business 2017/18 New Poets Prize | Closing Date: 01-Mar-18

A pamphlet competition for writers between the ages of 17 and 24 Prizes: Publication by smith|doorstop books following editorial, mentoring and workshops with Peter & Ann Sansom, a place on an Arvon residential course, publication in the North magazine, a launch reading hosted by the Poetry Business and more. The New Poets Prize is a short collection competition for writers between the ages of 17 and 24 (inclusive). This prize will run alongside the renowned International Book & Pamphlet Competition organized by The Poetry Business, which has now been established for 31 years. Entrants are invited to submit short collections of 12 pages of poems. Four outstanding collections will be selected to receive mentoring, readings, publication in the North magazine. One of the four collections will be published as a pamphlet by smith|doorstop. All four winners will also receive a subscription to the North magazine, and will have a launch reading organised by the Poetry Business and a selection of their poems published in the North magazine. Judged by Kayo Chingonyi
Entry Fee: £8

Contact: Entries can be submitted by post (with a cheque and completed entry form) or online. For full terms and conditions see website http://www.poetrybusiness.co.uk/newpoetsprize/information

2018 Cruse Lines Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 01-Mar-18

The 2018 Cruse Lines Poetry Competition has been launched following the success of the one organised in 2017. Last year entries were received from all over the country. There are three classes. Class 1 Any Subject Class 2 Countryside Class 3 Memories. (following bereavement) There will be cash prizes for each class special prizes for the most amusing and for the highest placed poem by an entrant under 18 on March 1st
Entry Fee: £5 per poem. Maximum 4 poems.


Send 2 copies of each poem with Entry Form,
Title List and cheque by Mar 1st 2018 to:-
CRUSE LINES Competition Secretary,
The Coach House, Walberton,
Arundel, West Sussex. BN18 0PJ  
There is a Facebook page where entrants can see updates and results.

The Edwin Morgan Poetry Award | Closing Date: 02-Mar-18

The 2018 Edwin Morgan Poetry Award is accepting entries now. The sum of £20,000 will be awarded for the best unpublished collection of poems by a Scottish poet aged 30 or under. The runner-up will receive £2,500 and other shortlisted poets £1,000.Conditions for entry have changed a little for 2018. Whereas in previous years a collection could either be published or unpublished, it must now be unpublished; it can be submitted if it has been accepted for publication so long as the collection doesn’t appear in print before the announcement of the Prize, which will take place at the Edinburgh International Book Festival in August. Poets should be no older than 30 years of age on the first day of January in the year of the Award, i.e. 1 January 2018 for the 2018 Award. Furthermore, those taking part must either have been born in Scotland, or continuously resident in Scotland for the last three years, or brought up in Scotland, or have a Scottish parent.There will be two judges on the panel, one of whom will always be Scottish.The judges for the 2018 award are Janice Galloway and John Glenday. Three copies (hard copy, not electronic) of an unpublished collection should be submitted.
Entry Fee: £0 Free


Entries should be sent to:Edwin Morgan Poetry Award,  Scottish Poetry Library, 5 Crichton’s Close, Canongate, EDINBURGH EH8 8DT

For rules and full details 


Christopher Tower Poetry Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 02-Mar-18

All UK students, between 16-18, are encouraged to enter the 2016 Christopher Tower poetry competition. This year’s theme is ‘SECRETS’ and the judges are Christopher Reid, John Fuller and Peter McDonald. First prize £3,000; second prize £1,500 and third prize £500, with three runner-up prizes of £250 each.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: Closing date 2 March.  For entry and further information see:

Brittle Star Competition | Closing Date: 14-Mar-18

Brittle Star magazine's inaugural poetry and short story competition. Open competition of poems and stories in English. Judges: Pascal Petit (poetry), Nicholas Royle (stories) and Brittle Star editor Jacqueline Gabbitas. Prizes in each genre: 1st £250, 2nd £50, 3rd £25.All poems must have a title and not exceed 60 lines.
Entry Fee: £5 for 1st entry then £3.50 subsequent entries. Brittle Star subscribers get second entry free.

Contact: For more details and an entry form please visit http://www.brittlestar.org.uk

Alpine Fellowship Writing Prize | Closing Date: 15-Mar-18

£3000 Awarded for the best piece of writing on the topic of ‘Childhood’ – the theme of the 2018 Alpine Fellowship Annual Symposium: June 21st – 24th 2018. The winner and two runners up are invited to attend the Venice symposium. Winner receives £3000 cash prize and is presented with the award by the poet John Burnside. Rules: Open to all nationalities, aged 18 and above. All genres permitted. A maximum of 2500 words per entry. Limited to one entry per person. Text must not have been published, self-published or accepted for publication in print or online, or have won or been placed in another competition at any time. Shortlisted entries will be notified by email. Judges have final decision and no correspondence is permitted. ‘I’m interested in writing that combines imagination and craft to create something that need not be highly ‘polished’, but which shows an artisan’s humility alongside that spontaneous engagement with the work of making that rests securely upon the awareness of what Ezra Pound called ‘a live tradition’ – not as a set of limits, but as an invitation to explore, to make new and, most of all, to extend the musical possibilities of language.’ John Burnside.
Entry Fee: £0 Free

Contact: Entries to: writing@alpinefellowship.com

Jane Martin Poetry Prize 2018 | Closing Date: 19-Mar-18

Girton College, University of Cambridge, is delighted to invite entries for the Jane Martin Poetry Prize. Now in its eighth year, the panel of judges will be led by two eminent poets, the literary critic and academic Adrian Poole and, Jeremy Noel-Tod, who is also an academic and poetry critic. It is open to all UK residents between the ages of 18 and 30 and there is no fee for entry. The first prize for the winning poet is £700 and £300 for the second prize. There will also be an opportunity to give a reading at a celebratory event at Girton College. To submit an application please use the link below: https://app.casc.cam.ac.uk/fas_live/jmp.aspx
Entry Fee: £0 Free


For further information please follow the link:
To submit an application please use the link below:

The Caterpillar Poetry Prize 2018 | Closing Date: 31-Mar-18

€1,000 for the best poem written by an adult for children aged 7–11. Judged by Chrissie Gittins. The winning poem will appear in the summer issue of The Caterpillar. Anyone over 16 can enter, as long as the poem is previously unpublished. The winning poem will feature in the summer 2018 issue of The Caterpillar. Commended poems may also be published in the same or subsequent issues.
Entry Fee: £12 Euro you can enter as many poems as you like


The Brian Dempsey Memorial Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 31-Mar-18

The competition opens on 1st January 2018 and the closing date for entering poems is 31st March. The competition will be judged anonymously by Janice and Dónall Dempsey. Prizes: 1st Prize: £75 plus publication of a 30 page pamphlet and 10 copies. 2nd Prize £50 3rd Prize £25. All shortlisted and winning poems will be published in our 2018 Anthology, along with selected poems by invited poets. All the contributors will receive a copy of the book when it's published and launched on July 2nd 2018. Poems may be of any length and on any subject. They should not have been published before, online or in print.
Entry Fee: £4.00 1 poem, 3 poems: £7.00, each entry over 3 poems: £2.00 per poem

Contact: For full competition details see http://www.dempseyandwindle.co.uk/competition.html

The Federation of Writers Scotland Vernal Equinox Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 31-Mar-18

Three categories, poetry (any number of poems, no more than 40 lines each), short stories (any number of stories between 1,500 and 2000 words each) and flash fiction (any number of stories up to 500 words). Prizes in each category: 1st prize £100, 2nd prize £25, 3rd prize £10. Poetry judge: Marjorie Lofti Gill.
Entry Fee: £3 per poem, £3 per flash fiction story, £5 per short story.


Fosseway Writers Poetry Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 31-Mar-18

On the theme of ‘FLIGHT’.To be judged by Leanne Moden. 1ST PRIZE £25, 2ND PRIZE £15, 3RD PRIZE £10 With an extra prize of £25 for the winner of the LOCAL POET SECTION (postcode eligibility NG22 / 23 / 24 / 25) Maximum length per entry: 60 lines (excluding title). The winners will be announced on 07 June at 7 pm at Knights Court, Balderton Gate, Newark. Prize-winners and commended entrants will be notified before the results evening. Other entrants will only be notified if an SAE is enclosed with the entry. Details of the prize-winners are posted on our webpage at https://fossewaywriters.wordpress.com/
Entry Fee: £3 for first entry; £2 each for further entries

Contact: Entry sent to: The Competition Secretary, 34 Wright Street, Newark, Notts NG24 1PJ. 01636 672616. Cheques made payable to Fosseway Writers, please.

Binsted Arts Poetry Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 09-Apr-18

Prizes: 1ST £150, 2ND £100 3RD £50. Maximum of 40 lines. Judge: Jeremy Page. Theme ‘Country’Winners & runners-up will be invited to read their winning poems at the prize-giving evening, June 8, 2018, part of the Binsted Arts Festival (June 8-10, 2018). Winning poems will be published on the Festival website.
Entry Fee: £5 for first poem; £3.50 for all subsequent poems


Entries (2 copies of each poem) should be sent to:
Competition Secretary, Shirley Park, Yapton Lane, Walberton, Arundel, BN18 0AN, with a cheque payable to Binsted Arts. For further information, rules and entry form, visit:

Poetry Kit Spring Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 16-Apr-18

This year's competition is for poetry on any subject. 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. 1st prize is £100. 2nd prize is £50 Competition Judge; Jim Bennett.
Entry Fee: £3.50 1 poem, 3 Poems £8.00 5 poems £10

Contact: For more info see http://www.poetrykit.org/comp-spring.htm

The Ver Poets Open Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 30-Apr-18

Adjudicator – Adrian Buckner FIRST PRIZE £600 SECOND PRIZE £300 THIRD PRIZE £100 Winning and selected poems published in the competition anthology. Poems on any theme and in any form should be no more than 30 lines in length. Each poem should be typed clearly on one side only of A4: one poem only per sheet. This year’s charity donation from the fee will go to Rennie Grove Hospice Care in St Albans.
Entry Fee: £4.00 per poem, 3 poems for £10, £2 per poem thereafter. Cheques/postal orders (sterling only) should be made payable to Ver Poets. Bank Transfers to: 40-40-01 (Sort Code) 82410419


Entry from can be downloaded from
Please send entries to:
Competitions Secretary
181 Sandridge Road
St Albans

Back to top Register for newsletter
Bookmark This Page