Original Life Logo

Writing opportunities – January 2021

We’ve brought together January’s best writing competitions, contests and opportunities open to writers of short stories, novels, nonfiction and poetry.

All the writing opportunities listed should be open to writers across the UK and most are open internationally too. We share details of prizes, requirements, eligibility, entry fees (some have free entry) and deadlines to help you choose the right ones for you.

The Prism Prize for Climate Literature

Organised by Homebound Publications, the new, Prism Prize for Climate Literature aims to promote fiction, poetry, and nonfiction in this emerging genre. The competition is open to writers based in the US and UK. Manuscripts may be up to 75,000 words. 


The DISQUIET Prize is open to submissions of fiction, poetry and nonfiction. Submissions are open internationally and can include one short story or novel excerpt of up to 25 pages; one piece of nonfiction of up to 25 pages or poetry of up to ten pages. 

Magma Poetry Competition

The Magma Poetry competition has two categories, one for poems of up to 10 lines and a second for poems of between 11 and 50 lines. It is open internationally. 

Colorado Prize for Poetry

The international Colorado Prize for Poetry, run by the Colorado State University, is open for submissions of poetry manuscripts of between 48 and 100 pages. The manuscript may include poems that have been published but the manuscript itself must be unpublished.

Writer’s Digest Short Story Competition

Enter stories of up to 1,500 words into Writer’s Digest’s latest short story competition. 

The Nine Dots Prize

The Nine Dots Prize awards creative thinking that tackles contemporary societal issues. Within 3,000 words, entrants need to respond to the question: ‘What does it mean to be young in an ageing world?’. If you win the prize, with the support of an editorial team, you will need to develop your entry into a book of between 25,000 and 40,000 words.

The Iowa Review Awards

Submissions of poetry, fiction and nonfiction are welcomed into the Iowa Review Awards. All manuscripts, whether selected as finalists or not, are considered for publication.

Fish Publishing Short Memoir Prize 

Write a piece about your life in up to 4,000 words and enter it into the Fish Publishing Short Memoir Prize. The competition is open to writers of any nationality.

The Kent and Sussex Poetry Society Open Competition

The Kent and Sussex Poetry Society Open Competition welcomes unpublished poems on any subject, in any form or style of up to 40 lines. 

Masters Review Winter Short Story Award

The Masters Review Winter Short Story Award is open internationally to emerging writers. Submit stories of up to 7,000 words.

Looking for more opportunities?

Subscribe to our magazine to make sure you’re first to hear about the latest opportunities. Published every two weeks, it’ll give you a regular creative boost.

* indicates required

Related Articles

Join the Discussion

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to our inspirational magazine

Our free, bimonthly magazine will inspire you to live your original life, embrace creativity and write.

Your Basket