mouse children's zone


  • Many poets send their poems to competitions. This can be a good way to find out what other people think of your writing.
  • We add competitions to this list when organisers send us information.
  • To enter the competition, send a stamped addressed envelope to the competition's address, and they will send you an entry form, or ask for an entry form by phone or email.
  • The Poetry Library accepts no liability in connection with the information contained in the list [boring adult stuff!]

The Solstice Prize for Young Writers 2017 | Closing Date: 30-Apr-17

If you’re aged between 10 & 17 years old and love to write, we’re on the hunt for your best poetry & short stories.You can enter up to 40 lines of poetry or a short story of up to 1000 words on any subject for your chance to win! The competition is completely free to enter, and there are some great prizes up for grabs. We will award prizes in two age categories, 10-13 and 14-17.1st prize: £50 book token for your school library and £50 cash for yourself! And see your work published on the website at Ten highly commended pieces of writing from each age category, along with the overall winning pieces, will be published in our online anthology, The Beacon. Winners will be announced on the Summer Solstice, 21st June 2017, which is also National Writing Day.
Entry Fee: £0


Please read our full rules of entry
Or, download a postal entry form from our website and send your entry to Writing East Midlands, 32a Stony Street, Nottingham, NG1

Page is Printed Creative Writing Competition 2017 | Closing Date: 01-May-17

The only limit to this competition is that of the page itself – you can write in any genre or style you like, the judges will simply be looking for the page that inspires them the most. The only rule is that each entry must be contained on one A4 side of paper.
Entry Fee: £10 for adults, FREE for Under 18’s. This fee entitles you to up to three entries


Download an entry form at  Emailed to: 
By Post: The Page is Printed, Tacchi-Morris Arts Centre, School Road, Taunton, TA2 
How to pay Online: By cheque: payable to Tacchi-Morris Arts Centre.By Phone: 01823 414141

Young People’s Laureate for London Poetry Awards | Closing Date: 02-May-17

The competition theme is 'tomorrow'. You can interpret this as creatively as you wish. You can submit a written poem or a performed poem. Performed entries must be a link to an online video. Length: Written poems can be up to 40 lines. Performed pieces on video can be up to 3 minutes.You can enter online or by post. Judged by Caleb Femi. There are two categories; 13 – 17 year olds and 18 – 25 year olds. If you are 13 – 17 years old, you will need permission from an adult such as a parent, carer or teacher, to approve your entry and agree to the terms and conditions.Each entrant can enter one poem. All poems should be written or performed in English. The Young People’s Laureate Poetry Award is open to young poets living in Greater London. There will be one winner from 13 – 17 year olds category who will win £75 Waterstones vouchers. Spread the Word will publish the winning poem on its website. The winner of the 18 – 25 year olds category will receive £75 cash. The winner and up to five highly recommended poets from this category will be invited to attend Caleb Femi’s Poetry Lab at the Roundhouse in Camden on 10 June 2017. The Poetry Lab will be an opportunity to work with talented poets including Caleb to hone your craft and contribute towards a collaborative poem for London. Spread the Word will publish the winning and up to five highly recommended poems on its website.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: or call us 020 8692 0231 ext 249 For full terms and conditions and Caleb Femi's  top tips  see

Printerinks Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 05-May-17

You can write about a topic of your choice! For a chance to win £100 Amazon vouchers Whether you are a budding or experienced poet, poets of all ages can enter this competition. Anything based on 'New Beginnings’ is acceptable, it can be written in any style, in no more than 45 lines and must be original.Judge: Pamela Koehne-Drube.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: To enter send poems to (copy and paste the poem on to the body of your email)  See website for full details

Love the Words | Closing Date: 05-May-17

This year, young people aged 7-25, from anywhere in the world, are invited to take part in Love the Words, an online competition in celebration of International Dylan Thomas Day. Simply download the opening paragraphs from Dylan Thomas’ Under Milk Wood, cut up the words, use them to create your own poem, take a photo, and share it with the world on Twitter. Use the hashtags #LovetheWords and #DylanDay so everyone can see your poem! And use the same hashtags to see everyone else’s, too. Poems may be in either English or in Welsh. A selection of entries will be chosen by Hannah Ellis, the grand-daughter of Dylan Thomas, and showcased on Discover Dylan, on International Dylan Thomas Day, Sunday 14 May. Do you love the words? Then join us in celebrating their magic for this year’s #DylanDay!
Entry Fee: £Free


For more information, contact:
07846 484 274 /

#LovetheWords #DyddDylan @DyddDylanDay @LitWales

South Downs Poetry Competition 2017 | Closing Date: 19-May-17

Prizes: £400 (1st), £150 (2nd), £50 (3rd) Best poem by an unpublished poet £100 Best poem by a poet under the age of 20 £100. Looking for: previously unpublished poems up to 50 lines.Judge: Jackie Wills.
Entry Fee: £4 per poem (£4.50 if submitting online)


Further information: full details and entry forms and to enter online: Entries for the South Downs Poetry Festival Competition should be sent to: SDPF, c/o 123 Valley Park Drive, Clanfield, PO8 0PS.

Oxfordshire Science Festival’s Schools Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 19-May-17

The competition is open to any child at primary or secondary school in Oxfordshire, and will be judged in four age categories:7 years and under, 8-11 years old, 12-14 years old, 14-16 years old.The winners and runners up in each age group will receive a certificate. The winning poem and two runners up from each age category will be performed at a special Festival event over the weekend of 17 / 18 June 2017, and published online. The class of the overall winner will receive a tour of the Diamond facility at Harwell; The school of the winning entrant in each age category will receive one years’ school membership of Science Oxford (worth £75) plus either a special hamper of science activities (with lesson plan materials) or a session delivered in your school.Your poem can be in any poetry style you like - (how about a limerick, haiku, acrostic poem or sonnet?).Your poem should have something to do with science (it could be about a scientific idea or discovery; a science lesson or experiment; a scientific issue that is important to you; a famous scientist, or just why you love science!). Your poem should be a maximum of 150 words. Short poems will be viewed just as favourably as longer poems.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: For full competition details and rules see

The Stephen Spender Prize for Poetry in Translation 2017 | Closing Date: 26-May-17

Entrants are invited to submit an English translation of a published poem from any language, ancient or modern, together with the original poem and a commentary of no more than 300 words. The submitted translation should be no more than 60 lines long, so entrants may submit an extract if their chosen poem is longer. Self-translation is not accepted. The judges of the 2017 competition are: Margaret Jull Costa, Olivia McCannon, Sean O'Brien. Entrants must be UK or Irish citizens or residents. There are three categories: Open (adult); 18-and-under, for entrants still 18 on the closing date; and 14-and-under, for entrants still 14 on the closing date.
Entry Fee: £7 for those entering the open category. (Anyone eighteen or under on 26 May 2017 is exempt from this charge.)

Contact: For entry and further information see:

Wundor Poetry Contest 2017 | Closing Date: 31-May-17

The prize for the competition will be £500. Open to 16 year and over. The winning poet will also have their work published on the Wundor website, and will be strongly considered for print publication.The prize-winners will receive multiple copies of any Wundor publication which includes their work. Each entry may consist of up to six poems of unlimited length. The poems must react in some way to the theme of ‘Spring’, but poets are encouraged to use the theme innovatively. Entrants retain the copyright to all submitted work, but the poems must be previously unpublished. The contest will be judged by an impartial, external judge. We will be appointing the judge within the next week. The competition is based in the UK and judged by Caroline Price.
Entry Fee: £10 for an entry of up to six poems

Contact: For full details:

Young Poets Competition Taunton Live 2017 | Closing Date: 16-Jun-17

Entrants are asked to write a poem which examines climate. All entrants must reside in Somerset. There are three categories: age 7-9, age 10-12, age 13-16. Poems must be between 10 and 35 lines excluding the title and line gaps. Each poet may enter a maximum of two poems. The competition will be judged by members of Fire River Poets Prize-winners in each age group will each receive a book token (First prize £15; Second Prize £10; Third Prize £5), journal and pen. The three first prize winners will also receive a free creative writing workshop for their school, led by a professional writer. All prize-winning and commended poets will be invited to an awards ceremony on the evening of Wednesday 12th July at the Brewhouse, Taunton, where the winning poems will be displayed and the prize-winning poets can give a reading of their work.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: For full competition rules and to download an entry form see

Milestones Open Poetry Competition 201 7 opens on March 21st | Closing Date: 21-Jun-17

Prizes: £500, £100, £25, and the U-16s Prize £100.Free anthology for winners and commended poets. Prizegiving 7 October 2017. Poems on the theme of ‘milestones’. You may interpret this theme as literally or figuratively as you wish. Poems must be in English, and no more than 40 lines long. Judge Brian Pattern. Results will be announced in early August. The winner will be invited to read their poem at an award ceremony on October 7th, 2017.
Entry Fee: £5.00 for the first poem entered, and can enter three poems in the same submission for £10 Entrants aged 16 years or over . Subsequent entries (also in the same submission) are £3 each. Entrants aged 15 or under pay £1 per entry.

Contact: Entries to the competition must be made online at

Ledbury Poetry Festival Poetry Competition 2017 | Closing Date: 13-Jul-17

Categories: Adult/ 17 and Under/ 11 and under. Judge: Fiona Sampson. Theme: Any. The length of each poem must not exceed 40 lines. Prizes: Adults: First Prize: £1000 cash and a course at Ty Newydd, The National Writers' Centre for Wales., Second Prize: £500, Third Prize: £250. Young People: 12-17: First Prize: £100, Second Prize: £50, Third Prize : £25. Children: (11 and under): First Prize: £25 book token, Second Prize: £15 book token, Third Prize: £10 book token. All winners get a chance to read at the Ledbury Poetry Festival in 2018.
Entry Fee: £Adults: £5.00 for first poem, £3.50 for additional ones. Children/Young People: First poem free, £1.50 for additional poems. Entry processing fee: £0.75 (where there is a fee).

Contact: For online entry and more information see website:

PENfro Book Festival Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 30-Jul-17

For poems of up to 40 lines. Top prize: £300. Top 3 poems published on website. Winners announced at the PENfro Book Festival, Rhosygilwen, Pembrokeshire, SA43 2TW, September 8-10 . Richardson. Poems should be loosely based on a myth or legend. Online entry preferred, or download entry form from website and submit by post. The Penfro Book Festival competitions for first chapter and short radio drama are now open see festival website details.
Entry Fee: £4 a poem

Contact: For full details  of poetry competition see

Betjeman Poetry Prize | Closing Date: 31-Jul-17

For children and young people aged 10-13 living anywhere in the UK. Write a poem on the theme of 'place'. 2017 judges Children's Laureate Chris Riddell and poet Rachel Rooney. The top fifty poems are printed in the BPP 2017 anthology.Finalists read their poems on National Poetry Day in front of an audience at St Pancras Station, London. The winning poet receives £500, and £500 for their school. All finalists are invited on a 3-day poetry workshop in Spring 2018. Every teacher who enters their class joins a prize draw to win a poet visit. Enter now!
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: For full details and online entry forms see by post to Betjeman Poetry Prize, 5 Princes Crescent, Hove, East Sussex BN3 4GS

Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2017 | Closing Date: 31-Jul-17

Open to writers aged 11-17. For poems of any length and on any theme. Judges, Sinéad Morrissey and Kayo Chingonyi. All 100 winners will be invited to a prestigious Awards Ceremony in London. Each year we select 100 winners (top 15 winners and 85 commended poets) of the Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award who receive a range of fantastic prizes.The top 15 winners will have their poems printed in the winners’ print anthology, over 20,000 copies of which are distributed to school libraries and poetry enthusiasts. The anthology is also available online. The 85 commended poets will have their work published in an online anthology and their names in the print anthology. The top 15 Winners will be invited to attend a life-changing residential writing course at one of the prestigious Arvon Centres, or receive mentoring from a professional poet (age dependent)
Entry Fee: £0


Enter online at
Request an entry form by writing to
Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award, 22 Betterton Street, London, WC2H 9BX
Or email

Making Waves Spoken Poetry Competion | Closing Date: 03-Sep-17

Falmouth Poetry Group is launching an exciting new prize for spoken poetry. The competition is open to anyone aged 17 or over at the time of entering. All poems must have a title and must not exceed 200 seconds in length. Entries can be on any subject and should highlight the spoken word.There is no limit on the number of entries a single entrant can make. Entries must be in the form of .mp3 or m4a files included as attachments in emails. First prize: £600, Second Prize: £250 and third prize £150. Judge: Luke Wright.
Entry Fee: £6.00 for the first and £4.00 for subsequent entries.


To enter the competition, send your poem as a sound file at See CoCoPoFest website  for competition rules and details of how to pay:  

Barnet Open Poetry Competition 2017 | Closing Date: 14-Nov-17

Elegy? Satire? Comedy? For Young and Old Write a poem of not more than 35 lines on any topic GENERAL CATEGORY 1st Prize = £500, 2nd £250 3rd Prize x3 = £50.00 JUNIORS (7-11 & 12-16) 1st Prize = £25.00 2nd Prize = £15.00 3rd Prize x3 = £10.00 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

Contact: Downloadable forms available at or send a SAE to Barnet Arts Council, c/o All Saints Arts Centre,122 Oakley Road North, London N20 9EZ

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