the Poetry kit


Poetry Competitions


Short story and other competitions

How to Enter Them - Beware of scams.

Please Note

The information given here is for GUIDANCE ONLY.

While every effort is made to ensure that it is accurate, before entering any listed competition you should

obtain full rules and an entry form from the organisers.  Infornation is provided by the organisers of the competitions

and we cannot accept any liabuility for its accuracy.



19th June 2016 1st £1000

entry £5

The McLellan Poetry Prize 2016  

Details: for a poem in English on any subject, maximum 80 lines

Prizes: 1st £1,000, 2nd £300, 3rd £100 and 6 commendations of £25.

Judge: David Constantine

Entry: £5 for first poem, £4 thereafter.

Contact: enter on line or by post. Full details from The Competition Organiser, The Yellow Land, Whiting Bay, Isle of Arran KA27 8PZ, Scotland, UK enclosing s.a.e.

21st June 2016 1st £5000

entry £5

Troubadour International Poetry Prize 2016

Prizes: 1st £5,000; 2nd £1,000; 3rd £500, plus 20 prizes of £25 each plus a spring 2016 coffee-house-poetry season-ticket plus a prize-winners' coffee-house poetry reading with judges Jane Yeh & Glyn Maxwell on Mon 31 October 2016 for all prize-winning poets.
Entry Fee: £5 per poem

For information:

30th June 2016 1st £100

entry £2
Cheltenham Writers' Circle
Prizes: £100 for the overall winner. £50 for the best entry from a GL postcode (most of Gloucestershire). In the event that the overall winner is from the GL area the GL prize will go to the next best GL entrant. £15 book token for the runner up in each category. Selected entries may be published in the CWC anthology, Hillside Voices.
Entry fee: £2 per entry. Up to 5 entries per entrant.
Looking for: Short stories, max length 2000 words. The theme is 'What You Will', to celebrate Will Shakespeare's 400th anniversary. In other words there is no constraint on the entrants' creativity.
Further information: The competition is ponsored by Cheltenham Writers' Circle with the assistance of the Cheltenham Arts Council. Judge: Helen Hollick, author of the Sea Witch series of historical novels, besides other award winning novels and short stories. Managing Editor for Indie Reviews for the Historical Novel Society.
30th June 2016 1st  £300

entry  £25


Closing Date: 30th June, 2016

Details: The second SPM Publications Poetry Book Competition is now accepting entries. Three poets will have their full-length poetry collections published by the London-based publishing house whose authors include Roger Elkin, Mandy Pannett, Uche Nduka, Obemata, Afam Akeh, Peter Oram, Graham Burchell, Nnorom Azuonye and Abigail Ardelle Zammit. Poets of all ages and nationality living in any part of the world are eligible to enter. Poetry collections may be on any subject but must be in English language.

Judges: Andy Willoughby and Bob Beagrie

Prizes: Standard publishing contract with SPM Publications, cash prizes of £300 (1st), £200 (2nd) and £100 (3rd), plus 20 authors’ copies for each published poet.

Fees: £25 (UK) or £30 (Rest of the World) per collection (Your fee covers administration and a poetry collection; choose from one of the three prizewinners from our 2015 competition)

See the full terms and conditions, enter online or download Entry Form at

30th June 2016 1st £700


For UK residents. Judges: DALJIT NAGRA and Cristina Navazo-Eguía Newton. The 3 winners and 4 commended poets will be invited to read their poems at the Poetry Swindon Festival on Saturday 8th October 2016, when Daljit Nagra will hand out prizes and read from his work. Winning and commended poems will appear in the Battered Moons Poetry Pamphlet and website. Part of  Poetry Swindon Festival.

1st £700 Second: £200  Third: £100  Commendations: £25 x4

Entry fee: £5 for first poem and £3.50 thereafter


30th June 2016 1st £300

entry £7

The London Magazine's annual poetry competition looks for new poets whose work is adventurous, innovative and surprising in both form and content. Submit for the chance to be published in the UK’s oldest literary journal. Judges: Andrew McMillan | Rebecca Perry.  Opening date: 1st May 2016 | Closing date: 30th June 2016. 1st prize: £300 | 2nd prize: £200 | 3rd prize £150. Entry fee: £7 | Subsequent Poems: £5.

30th June 2016 1st £300

entry £5

Poetrypulse offers an open theme, annual competition. The closing date is
30 June 2016.

This year the competition will be judged by Roger Elkins, winner of the 2015 competition. Results will be announced on 31 August 2016.

Keeping with the aural tradition of poetry we accept audio submissions.

First Prize £300 and the opportunity to judge next year's competition
Second Prize £150
Third Prize £75

Entrance Fee £5 per poem  to enter see 

30th June 2016 1st £500

entry £5

The Wells Festival of Literature's Poetry Competition
Closing date: 30th June 2016.
Prizes:£500, £200, £100 plus local poet prize £100.
Entry fee: £5
Looking for: A poem on any theme of not more than 40 lines.

7th July 2016 1st £1000

entry £5

Ledbury Poetry Competition.

Judge - Imtiaz Dharker

Entries close Thurs 7th July 2016 at 5pm.   


First Prize: £1000 cash and a course at TY Newydd,     Second Prize: £500     Third Prize:£250 


First Prize: £100 Cash  Second Prize: £50  Third Prize: £25


First Prize: £25 Book token  Second Prize: £15 book token    Third Prize: £10 book token

All winners get to read at the Ledbury Poetry Festival 2017 -

If abroad there is the possibility of Skyping at the winners’ event 

8th July 2016 1st £400

entry  £5

The Elmet Trust Poetry Prize
Celebrating the life and work of Ted Hughes

First Prize: £400; Second Prize: £100; Third Prize: £50

We'd like to read poems written in response to Ravens; The City. These can be found in Ted Hughes's Collected Poems (Faber & Faber).

Conditions of Entry:

1. Poems must be: in English, the poet's own work, unpublished, & not accepted for publication elsewhere.

2. Please attach your entries to an email, addressed to Please state the poet's name, address & contact number on the covering email.

3. Each poem must be on a separate attachment.

4. You may enter up to 3 poems, at a fee of £5 per poem.

We will notify the shortlisted poets by email and the winners will be announced at the Ted Hughes Festival in August 2016 and. The results & winning poems will appear on the Elmet Trust Website. Poems cannot be returned, so please keep a copy. No poet can win more than one prize. Copyright of all poems submitted will remain with the authors but the Elmet Trust reserves the right to publish the winning poems for one year after the announcement of the results. The judges' decisions are final; no correspondence can be entered into. The submission of poems for either of the Elmet Trust Poetry Prizes will be taken as indicating acceptance of the above conditions.

15th July 2016 1st $1000

entry $20

The Central Coast (CA) Writers Contest call for entries ends July 15, 2016.  Short Stories, Flash Fiction, Poetry and Screenwriting must depict the theme of The Final Word. Prizes up to $1,000. Entries will be judged by an array of best-selling and award-winning authors, editors, and publishers.

For further details, submission guidelines, contest rules, judges profiles and to submit your entry electronically please visit:

29th July 2016 1st £100

entry free

Black Country Living Museum Annual Poetry Competition 2016

Theme: Inspired and informed by the historical events in the Black Country, this year's theme is 'Earth & Air'. Entries can interpret the theme of the competition as historical, industrial, scientific, ecological, environmental, personal, reflective, or in any other way. The competition is open to adults aged 18 years and over, and to poetry in any style. Prizes: The first prize is £100, a family ticket to the Museum and publication on the museum website, and there are other cash prizes and opportunities for publication. Judges: Dave Reeves, Liz Berry and Mel Weatherley.
Free to enter.

For more details see :

31 July 2016 1st  £150

entry free

Carers UK Creative Writing Competition 2016

 Judge: Cheryl Moskowitz

In our third creative writing competition we’re welcoming poems and short stories on all aspects of caring – the joys, challenges and complex emotions that come with looking after a loved one. Whether you’re an experienced writer or have never expressed yourself through creative writing before, we would love to hear from you. In November 2016 we will be producing an anthology of the winning and commended poems and stories, plus poems selected by Carers UK’s volunteers, staff and trustees.

The competition is free to enter and open to UK residents. Entries must be unpublished, in English, and not a translation of another author’s work.

You can enter:

·         up to three poems, each no longer than 40 lines

·         one short story, of up to 1,000 words

For further details and to enter:

31st July 2016 1st £50

entry £6

The Paragram Paradox Prize

Judge: Claire Dyer

First Prize £50 plus publication in 2016 Paragram anthology ‘Paradox

Short listed poems/short prose will be published in the Paragram Anthology ‘Paradox’

Poems/short prose invited on the theme ‘Paradox’

Three genres: Poetry; Petite-prose; Humour (poetry or petite-prose)

Length limit: 60 lines (poetry); 300 words petite-prose

Previously unpublished work please. Short-listed pieces will be published in an anthology and prize winning entries will also appear online at the Paragram website.

See guidelines and full rules at

31st July 2016 1st large prize list

entry free
The Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2016. Judges Malika Booker and W. N. Herbert. Winners announced 6th Ocotber 2016 in London. Winners receive a fantastic range of prizes, from mentoring to a residential Arvon writing course, Poetry Society membership to books. They also receive ongoing support and writing development opportunities. For further details, rules & entry form visit 
31st July 2016 1st £150

entry £5
Artificium Poetry and short story competition
Poetry Winner - £150. 
Prize pot of min. £100, to be shared between 1-4 runners up.
Entry fee: £5 or two for £9.
Looking for: Writing between 500-1,000 words, in English. Includes poetry, flash fiction, and anything else.
For more details see!competition---artificium/h405o 
31st July 2016 1st £1000

entry £5
Winchester Poetry Prize  Sole Judge: Mimi Khalvati. Prize-giving will be on Sunday 9th October 2016  at the Winchester Poetry Festival.  Winners & runners-up will be invited to read their winning poems at the
festival.  Winning poems will be published in a Prize anthology

First Prize £1000 Second £500, Third £250

entry fee £5 for first poem and £4 for each subsequent poem
For further details, rules & to enter visit
31st July 2016 1st  £1000


Are you aged 10-13? Write a poem on the theme of ‘place’ and enter by post or online. Deadline is 31st July 2016.

The 2016 Betjeman Poetry Prize will be judged by Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy with poet and artist Imtiaz Dharker.

The top fifty poems will be printed in the BPP 2016 anthology. Six short-listed poets will be invited with their families and teachers to a prize giving on National Poetry Day, 6th October, in St Pancras Station, London, where the winner will be announced. The winning poet will receive £1000 (£500 for their school), Eurostar tickets and will be crowned St Pancras Laureate for twelve months. All six finalists are invited on a 3-day poetry workshop in May 2017. The teacher who sends in the most entries from their class wins a sponsored place on the MMU Teaching Creative Writing 3-day course in 2017.

Find out more at

3rd August 2016 1st €300.

entry  ?

2016 Over The Edge New Writer of The Year competition



Closing date: Wednesday, August 3rd , 2016

In 2016 Over The Edge is continuing its exciting annual international creative writing competition. Since its inception in 2007, it has grown to become one of the most important competition’s for emerging writers in Ireland and internationally. The competition is open to both poets and fiction writers worldwide. The total prize money is €1,000. The best fiction entry will win €300. The best poetry entry will win €300.

For further details or to enter

7th August 2016 1st £600

fee £4

Buzzwords Open Poetry Competition

Sole Judge: Jo Bell (will read all entries).

Closing date AUGUST 7th

Poems up to length: 70 lines.

Prizes: £600, £300, £50 x 5 commended.

The Gloucestershire Prize- £200 (residents only).

Fee: £4; £10/3 (postal entries);

£4.35; £8.70/2; £11/3 (Paypal).

Online entry at or

SEND SAE to Buzzwords Open Poetry Competition, Butlers, Western Road, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL50 3RN for details

9th August 2016 1st £300

entry £3

Nottingham Open Poetry Competition: closing date Tuesday 9th August 2016

Celebrating 75 years of the Nottingham Poetry Society!

Adjudicator: Liz Berry

1st Prize: £300, 2nd Prize: £150, 3rd Prize: £75, plus ten Merits of £10

Entrance fees: £3 per poem, £10 for four poems

Cheques payable to: Nottingham Poetry Society

Winners notified in September

Please address entries to: The Competition Secretary, 38 Harrow Road, West Bridgford, Nottingham  NG2 7DU

Further details from:  

11th August 2016 1st €500

entry €10
Wild Atlantic Words
Closing date: 11th August 2016.
Entry fee: €10 is per entry of up to three poems.
Prizes: First prize of €500; Second prize of a week's retreat at the beautiful Creativity Cabin on the Beara peninsula; Third prize of €100.
Looking for: Poems on any theme related to the sea.
Further info: We are delighted that Bernard O'Donoghue has agreed to judge the competition.
More detailed information on how to enter can be found on the website...
12th August 2016 1st £150

entry £5

Settle Sessions Poetry Competition

You must be over 18 to enter. Entries must be in English, maximum length is 40 lines.

Do not put your name and address on your poem sheet, nor any other marks that could identify you.

Please enter the title of each poem on a separate A4 Sheet, together with your name, address, email address and phone numbers(s).

Entries must be typed on white A4 paper, with one poem per sheet; single-spaced and a line count put at the top of the page.

You can enter as many poems as you wish, accompanied by the appropriate entry fee

Winners will be notified by 6th September 2016. The prizes will be awarded at our National Poetry Day c


The following prizes will be awarded: 1st prize £150, 2nd prize £100, 3rd prize £75


£4 for one poem, £10 for 3 poems. Cheques made payable to Settle Sessions.

Entries should be posted to Settle Sessions, 3 Tillman Close, Settle, North Yorkshire BD24 9RA. Please use the correct postage; no excess charges wil be accepted.

Closing date: 12th August 2016   see 

12th August 2016 1st £100

entry free

The Fenland Reed is inviting submissions for a unique Poetry Competition. Running as part of OuseFest 2016, we’re looking for poems responding the landscape and wildlife of the Ouse Washes, an area at the heart of the Cambridgeshire and Norfolk fens. The competition is open to anyone (whether local to the area or not), and we are teaming up with the Ouse Washes Landscape Partnership to provide you with some inspiration…

We’d like you to take as your starting point any one of the shortlisted photographs in this year’s ‘Snap the Ouse’ Competition. You can respond to your chosen photograph in any way you like - you might use the setting, a central image, or even the title. We’re looking for poems that draw inspiration from these pictures but which also depart from them and stand on their own. You have eight brilliant photos to choose from, which you can view on the OWLP website.

The competition is free to enter and will be judged by acclaimed poet Clare Best. There are three prizes up for grabs in the form of book tokens worth £100 (first prize), £50 (second prize) and £25 (third prize). Winning entries will also be published in the autumn issue of The Fenland Reed. The deadline is Friday 12th August – so check out those photos and get scribbling!

For more information and details of how to submit, please see the full competition guidelines on The Fenland Reed website:

14th August 2016 1st  £200

entry £4

The Elbow Room Prize 2016, now open for entries of poetry, short fiction and visual art. First prize: £200, Second and Third Prizes: £50.  Prize winners invited to London based event and published in the competition anthology.  All terms and conditions and competition

details available

17th August 2016 1st  $250

entry $5
Dream Quest One Poetry and Writing Contest 2016
Closing date: 17th August 2016.
Prizes(USD): First Prize: $250, 2nd: $125, 3rd: $50.
All winners will be published in Dare to Dream pages.
Entry fee: $5(USD).
Looking for: Now accepting poems 30 lines or fewer, on subject or theme.
Further details: This contest is International, open to everyone!
for more details see
26th August 2016 1st £500

entry £5

Buxton Poetry Competition 2016

Closing date: 26th August 2016.
Prizes: £500, £250, £100, book tokens.
Entry fee: £5 per poem, free to under 18's.
Looking for: Our theme in 2016 is 'Hidden'.
For details see

31st August 2016 1st £100

entry  £3


It is 100 years since the Easter Rising. To commemorate this event, SaveAs Writers invite poems and short stories on the theme of REBELLION.  Interpret the theme as you wish – political, social or personal rebellion

Prizes  1st place - £100,  2nd place - £50,  3rd place - £25

*Canterbury Festival Umbrella Awards evening

*Publication in an anthology

Poems: 60 lines max 

Short stories: 3000 words max

Deadline: August 31 2016

Entry Fees

£3.00 per poem / £8.00 for three

£4.00 per short story / £10.00 for three

Terms & conditions | Download poster

Entries may be emailed to

31st August 2016 1st £1000

entry £5

Oxford Brookes International Poetry Competition 

With two top prizes of £1000 on offer, the competition seeks to celebrate the great diversity of poetry being written in English all over the world. Poems are welcomed in the following two categories:

English as Second Language - open to all poets over 18 years of age who write in English as an additional language

Open category - open to all poets over 18 years of age.

These prizes will be awarded in both categories:
First prize – £1000
Second prize – £200

The competition is open for submissions until midnight on 31 August 2016.
It costs the equivalent of £5 to submit a poem, or £4 per poem for more than three entries. You may enter as many poems as you wish.
More information on the prize and how to submit your entry is available at 

31st August 2016 1st £200

entry free

Poetry & Politics competition

The theme of this poetry competition is poetry and politics, so in order to enter your poem it must be about any aspect of politics. Your poem can be about international politics or instead be about something political much more closer to home. We don't have to agree with your opinions, but we do want to be touched in some way by your poem, inspired by its imagery and, of course, we look for a beautiful use of language. Prize: £200 and publication in the Holland Park Press online magazine Eligibility: poems written in English by writers over 18 from any country Length: 50 lines or less .
Free to enter.

To submit email your poem as a Word or PDF attachment to Complete guidelines are available from please read these instructions carefully.

1st September 2016 1st  £2000

entry  free
Cheshire Prize for Literature competition
Prizes: The prize-winner will receive £2,000. Additional prize-money of £750 will be awarded and the best entries will be published.
Free to enter.
Looking for: An original and previously unpublished poem or collection of poems. Individual poems should not exceed 50 lines and no more than 100 lines per entrant.
Further info: The writer must have been born, live or have lived, study or have studied, work or have worked, in Cheshire. Entrants must be aged 18 years or over on 1st September 2016.
30th September 2016 1st £200

entry  £5
Bedford Writing Competition 2016 Poetry Competition
Closing date: 30th September 2016.
Prizes: 1st - £200, 2nd - £100, 3rd - £50.
e-book publication: All prizewinning and shortlisted poems will be published in a downloadable Kindle e-book.
Entry Fee: £5 per poem, £10 for three. There is no limit to the number of entries submitted by an individual.
Looking for: Poems on any subject up to 40 lines.
Further details: Entries may be made online or by post. This year the poems will be judged by the poet Ian McEwen.  For more details see 
30th September 2016 1st $1,500

entry $10

Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest

Judges: Soma Mei Sheng Frazier and Jim DuBois

Tom Howard Prize of $1,500 for a poem in any style or genre

Margaret Reid Prize of $1,500 for a poem that rhymes or has a traditional style

Ten honorable mention prizes of $100 (any style)

Entry fee: $10 per poem (up to 250 lines each)

14th annual contest sponsored by Winning Writers, one of the "101 Best Websites for Writers" (Writer's Digest). Submit poems in any style, up to 250 lines each. Both published and unpublished work accepted. All entries that win cash prizes will be published online. See guidelines, past winners, and enter online at

31st October 2106

1st £200

Entry fee £4
Fire River Poets Open Poetry Competition 2016. Adjudicator: Alison Brackenbury. Prizewinners will be notified at the end of January and winning poems will appear on the Fire River Poets website as soon as possible after notification. Prizewinners will be invited to take part in a special reading in Taunton with Alison Brackenbury in April 2017. For further information, rules and entry details visit
31st December 2016 1st €10,000

entry €12.
The Ballymaloe International Poetry Prize
Prizes: 1st prize €10,000, plus 3 prizes of €1,000 for each of the shortlisted poems.
Looking for: Unpublished poems of any length. The four winning poems will appear in the spring issue of The Moth.
Further info: Judged by Deborah Landau, director of the creative writing program at New York University. 'Landau's killer wit evokes Dorothy Parker crossed with Sylvia Plath - leaping spark after spark, growing to deadly dark fire,' says the Los Angeles Times of her work.
Visit website from the link below...
31st December 2016 1st  £50

entry £3

Hour of Writes

Deadline: 31st December 2016

First prize: £50 or half of the total entry fees. Entry is £3. 

Summary: Hour of Writes is a literary creative outlet taking the form of a weekly peer-reviewed writing competition. We have a new topic and guest judge every week. The word limit is 2000 and we welcome fiction and poetry writers from anywhere in the world.

Ongoing Competitions
We have decided not to list the ongoing competitions section as in some cases we are unsure as to the legitimacy of the competition.  In future we will only list competitions with a single closing date.