Competitions for Children’s Book Writers

Several writers whom I met through SCBWI and at various author events, have got agent representation following a writing competition, which they either won or got shortlisted for. I thought it would be useful to have a record of all the competitions coming up over the next 12 months in the children’s book genre.

Feel free to share and add to!

Undiscovered Voices (SCBWI)
Undiscovered Voices is an initiative by the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) British Isles to help fresh, new voices in children’s literature – both writers and illustrators – find agents, publishers and ultimately readers through its Undiscovered Voices project.
Deadline: July 2014

The Kelpies Prize
The Kelpies Prize was set up in 2004 to encourage and reward new Scottish writing for children. Winning authors receive a £2,000 cash prize and have their novel published in the Kelpies range.
Deadline: 28 Februrary 2015

The Times / Chickenhouse Competition
What Chicken House are looking for:
Original ideas, a fresh voice and a story that children will love! To enter, you must have written a completed full-length novel suitable for children aged somewhere between 7 and 18 years. By full-length we suggest a minimum of 30,000 words and ask that manuscripts entered do not exceed 80,000 words in length.
Deadline: October 2014

The Greenhouse Funny Prize
A competition for writers of comedy fiction for children. This year it will be for UK, Europe and Commonwealth writers only.
Deadline: Coming soon (check website)

The Academy of Children’s Writers short story competition
The competition is open only to previously unpublished (for profit) writers of children’s fiction over the age of 18.
The story must not exceed 2,000 words in length and may be suitable for children of any age group up to and including teenage. It may be a short story or the first 2,000 words of a novel/longer story.
Deadline: 30th April 2014

The Montegrappa Scholastic Prize
Competition for writers of fiction for children aged 7-12. The prize is an offer of a publishing contract with Scholastic with a literacy agency contact with LBA. It also includes a weekend trip to Italy to visit Venice and the Montegrappa factory at Bassano Del Grappa.
Deadline: 2nd June 2014

The High Sheriff’s Cheshire Prize for Literature
This annual contest, which is open only to writers with some connection to Cheshire, is for prose of up to 1.500 words and poems of up to 100 lines aimed at children aged between seven and fourteen. It is administered by the University of Chester’s Department of English and funded by Bank of America.
Deadline: 1st September 2014

ACW Stories for Children Competition
The competition is run by the Association of Christian Writers and is for children’s stories of up to 1,000 words on the theme of Encouragement. Stories need not be explicitly Christian but they must have a Christian worldview.
Deadline: 5th May 2014

An international children’s story competition for ages 1-3 and 4-6. The theme of the 2014 competition is “Grandad, grandma and I in our multicultural society”.
Deadline: 31 August 2014


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