Friday, 14 January 2011

FOUR WRITING COMPETITIONS: Crime, Theatre and Children's

Writing competitions can be a great way of getting noticed so here are four to whet your appetite.
Moving away from writing for children for the first two, Circalit have organised two competitions.  First of all, we have a Crime Fiction competition in association with literary agency AP Watt, and for any aspiring playwrights there's still time to enter your scripts for the 2011 Little Episodes competition.

And for anyone writing for children I wanted to draw your attention to two competitions; the Commonword Children’s Diversity Writing Prize and The Frances Lincoln Diverse Voices Award 2011.  On this blog I strive to bring my readers interviews with authors from all backgrounds and writing in all genres and the winning writer for these competition must embrace ethnic diversity either through their own ethnicity and culture and/or within their writing.


Circalit, the new online hub of the literary world, has just announced a competition to find the next big crime fiction blockbuster with winning entries being submitted to the leading literary agency, A.P. Watt.

Circalit, whose social networking and digital distribution platform aims to bring writers and agents together, are hosting the competition online where the public are able to read all submissions and vote for their favourite novels. The top submissions will be read and considered for representation by A.P. Watt. The competition is free and those wishing to enter must start by creating an account at Circalit and posting their work online.

Raoul Tawadey, founder of Circalit, commented, “There is a wealth of literary talent across the globe, only a fraction of which gets the recognition it deserves. Crowd-sourcing is a great way for the publishing industry to find literature that already has a proven readership. We hope this competition will give talented new writers the opportunity to get their work noticed and demonstrate the power of the internet to create a global talent pool.

To enter your script please visit:



Little Episodes, an organisation that promotes the arts as a therapeutic tool, has announced the 2011 ‘Six Little Episodes’ scriptwriting competition. Six new scripts from emerging UK playwrights will be showcased in a London theatre during 2011. These performances will run for a week and the six produced finalists will be judged by a panel of industry experts.

The competition is hosted at Circalit, Europe’s premier social-networking site for writers, where the public can read submissions, write reviews, and vote for their favourites. The competition is free to enter and the six finalists will be chosen by Little Episodes.

Raoul Tawadey, CEO and Founder of Circalit commented, “Aspiring playwrights have never needed opportunities to make that crucial leap from page to stage more than in the current climate. Almost a quarter of the cuts to the Arts Council portfolio will be shouldered by theatres, resulting in severely limited prospects for emerging playwrights. There is no better way for the arts community to respond than with a project like this and we’re happy to be working with Little Episodes once again to support talented new writers.

Lucie BarĂ¢t, founder of Little Episodes, said: “This competition brings together two organisations that are committed to developing new writers. Writing is a tool that can be used for self-development, self-esteem and to help you achieve and make a difference. The feedback that each of the six finalists will get from the judging panel will prove invaluable in their personal development.

The deadline for entries is 31st January 2011 and entrants must be based in the UK and Eire.

For more information or to submit a script please visit:

About Circalit
Circalit is the world’s premier social networking site for writers. Originally launched in February 2010 as a place where screenwriters can showcase their work to film studios, Circalit is now also home to novelists, playwrights and short story writers across the globe. Its free service allows writers to have their work reviewed by peers and professionals, enter into free writing competitions, create a fan base, make industry contacts and market their work, and apply for professional writing jobs online. Circalit’s mission is to digitise and democratise the way that good literature is discovered by agents, producers and publishers.



Commonword, Puffin Books and Rogers, Coleridge & White Literary Agency (RCW) are pleased to announce a partnership for the Commonword Children’s Diversity Writing Prize, to be awarded annually from 2012.

The prize will be the culmination of fortnightly Commonword writing workshops in Manchester and an annual Puffin and RCW-sponsored masterclass for budding writers who exhibit potential in children’s fiction writing for 7+ to teenage. The winning writer must embrace ethnic diversity either through their own ethnicity and culture and/or within their writing.
The winning writer will receive a £500 cash prize, professional mentoring and £100 of Puffin books.

Marnie Riches, Commonword’s Fundraising and Strategic Development Manager, says: ‘Commonword is delighted to be spearheading this excellent project with such prestigious partners. We will strive to do what we do best: to bring undiscovered, unique voices to the fore.

Shannon Park, executive editor for fiction at Puffin, says: ‘As an editor at the UK’s number-one children’s publisher I am always on the lookout for exciting new voices for Puffin’s list. The lack of diverse authors and characters has always been an issue for me – our schools and communities are so much more wonderfully diverse than the current children’s book market suggests. I look forward to working with Commonword and RCW to discover and develop some fantastic new talent.

Catherine Pellegrino, children’s book agent for RCW says: ‘As a children’s agent, living in one of the most culturally diverse cities in the world, it struck me that there was a gaping hole in the children’s writing community; in the authors I represent, the writers published and consequently in the books we are able to offer our children to read, books that should represent our rich cultural diversity but so often fail to do so. The opportunity to address this issue alongside Commonword and Puffin Books is enormously exciting and I am confident that working together we will bring to light original and talented new writers and writers in the making.

For further information please go to:



The Frances Lincoln Diverse Voices Children’s Book Award is for a manuscript that celebrates cultural diversity in the widest possible sense, either in terms of its story or in terms of the ethnic and cultural origins of its author.

The prize of £1,500, plus the option for Frances Lincoln Children’s Books to publish the novel, will be awarded to the best work of unpublished fiction for 8–to-12-year-olds by a writer, aged 16 years or over, who has not previously published a novel for children. The writer may have contributed to an anthology of prose or poetry. The work must be written in English and it must be a minimum of 15,000 words and a maximum of 35,000 words.

Previously submitted manuscripts which were not short-listed will be considered for entry.

The closing date for all entries is Friday 25th February 2011.
The winner will be announced at an award ceremony in June 2011.

For further information please go to:

tall tales & short stories interviewed winner of the inaugural award in 2009, Cristy Burne, about her winning novel, Takeshita Demons.  You can read it here.


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