Short story competitions to enter in 2022

Is 2022 the year you share your short stories with the world? There are plenty of competitions and writing opportunities for you to challenge your creativity and get your work out there – with the chance to win some great prizes.

Don’t know where to find these great opportunities? Well, we’ve got you covered with a list of short story competitions that you can enter in 2022.

We’ll keep adding to this list throughout the year – be sure to bookmark this page so you can keep on writing and submitting.

Get ready to share your compelling short stories with the world…

Furious Fiction 
Presented by us, the Australian Writers’ Centre, this fun, fast – and best of all – FREE short story challenge blasts off on the first Friday of every season. Anyone in the world aged 17 years and older is able to take part. Not only do you get to try your hand at a new creative challenge, the winning story each round takes home $500 in cash!
Theme: Open
Opens: 5pm (Sydney/Melbourne time) on the first Friday of the season (March, June, September and December)
Closes: 55 hours later (midnight, Sunday)
Word limit: 500 words
Entry fee: FREE
Prize: The winner takes home AUD$500, and the shortlisted favourites are published on our blog 

Short story competitions that close February 2022

2022 Slinkies Under 30s call out
If you’re under 30 years of age and love writing, then Spineless Wonders invites you to submit your story for their Slinkies Anthology. They particularly welcome writers from diverse/disadvantaged backgrounds, and will accept entries in languages other than English, if they have a translation with it. If you’ve got illustrations or you’ve made a zine or graphics, send them through too.
Theme: Open
Closes: 1 February 2022
Word limit: 10,000 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: Winners will be published in Slinkies Anthology 2022

Silver Tree Poetry Competition
The Silver Tree Cooperative Bookshop has opened the Silver Tree Poetry Competition for passionate poets of all ages, to encourage reading, writing and the love of literature.
Theme: Open
Closes: 1 February 2022
Word limit: 50 lines
Entry fee: $10
Prize: $1000

Silver Tree Non-fiction Writing Competition
The Silver Tree Cooperative Bookshop has opened the Non-fiction Writing Competition for avid writers who have a biography to share of a family member or friend who has spent a significant part of their life in the Western Region.
Theme: Biography
Closes: 1 February 2022
Word limit: 2500 words
Entry fee: $10
Prize: $500

The Stringybark Short Story Award 2022
Stringybark Publishing are looking for compelling short stories to be submitted for their The Stringybark Short Story Award 2022. The competition has an open theme, but there is one condition – there must be a link to Australia within the story. This link can be a mention of a vegemite sandwich, or a story with an Australian setting, for example.
Theme: Open but must contain a link to Australia
Closes: 13 February 2022
Word limit: 1500 words
Entry fee: $14 for 1 story, $26 for 2 stories, $36 for 3 stories (max)
Prize: Over $1000 in cash and books

The Tasmanian Writers' Prize 2022
Open to residents of Australia and New Zealand, the Tasmanian Writers’ Prize is looking for great short stories having an island, or island-resonant, theme. This competition is run by Forty South Publishing, the largest book publisher in Tasmania and publisher of Forty South Tasmania magazine.
Theme: Island, or island-resonant
Closes: 14 February 2022
Word limit: 3000 words
Entry fee: $20
Prize: $500 and publication in Forty South Tasmania (online)

Words Out West Short Story Competition
Words Out West Literary Festival is excited for their Short Story Competition for writers over 16 years of age. This year, the judges are looking for short stories that follow the theme of ‘an inconvenient blessing’.
Theme: An inconvenient blessing
Closes: 20 February 2022
Word limit: 3000 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: First prize – $500 and a ticket to the Festival Day & Writers Retreat at Jubri’s Hideaway; Second prize – $300 and a ticket to the Festival Day; Third prize – $150 and a ticket to the Festival Day

Minds Shine Bright Writing Competition
Minds Shine Bright are looking for writers to submit compelling fiction stories and poems to capture perspectives on the theme of confidence. This competition is open for entries and will be judged by Minds Shine Bright’s own founder, Amanda Scotney.
Theme: Confidence
Closes: 28 February 2022
Word limit: Poetry – 240 lines; flash fiction – 1000 words; short story – 5000 words; scripts – up to 90 pages
Entry fee: $5
Prize: First prize (over all categories) – $1000; each category winner – $500 and publication in the Minds Shine Bright Anthology

2022 Heroines Anthology/Joyce Parkes Women's Writing Prize
The 2022 Heroines Anthology/Joyce Parkes Women's Writing Prize is now open for submissions of short fiction and poetry. The Heroines Anthology is a collection of stories of women written by women with a particular focus on telling lost women's history, untold stories, and reimagined myths.
Theme: Women
Closes: 28th February 2022
Word limit: Short story – 3000 words; poetry – 5 pages
Entry fee: $15
Prize: Short story – $1000; poetry – $1000

Positive Words Mini Competition
Positive Words magazine has opened its annual Mini Competition for short story writers and poets to submit a positive piece of writing that includes the word ‘crush’.
Theme: Positive story that includes the word “Crush”
Closes: 28 February 2022
Word limit: 100 words or 10 lines
Entry Fee: $2.20
Prize: Six-month subscription to Positive Words

Flash 500 Short Story Competition
Flash 500 Short Story Competition welcomes writers of all genres, including stories written by or for children. Judges are looking for stories with strong characters, a well-crafted plot and realistic dialogue (where used) – make them laugh or cry, but most of all, make them feel!
Theme: None
Closes: 28 February 2022
Word limit: 1000 – 3000 words
Entry Fee: £7, £12 for 2, £16 for 3, £20 for 4
Prize: First prize – £500; Second prize – £200; Third prize – £100

Short story competitions that close March 2022

Nature and Place Poetry Competition 2022
The Rialto, working in association with the RSPB, BirdLife International, Cambridge Conservation Initiative and The University of Leeds Poetry Centre, and proud to announce their Nature and Place Poetry Competition is open. Poems are invited that deal with any aspect of nature and place – these terms will be given a wide interpretation by the judge Gillian Clarke.
Theme: Nature and place
Closes: 1 March 2022
Word limit: Poems that are no more than 40 lines
Entry fee: £7
Prize: First prize – £1000; Second prize – £500; Third prize – £250

New Australian Fiction
KYD publishes a yearly short story anthology titled New Australian Fiction and they are now accepting unsolicited submissions for their fourth anthology of new short fiction, due to be published in September 2022. You must be a KYD member to be considered (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander writers are invited to pitch without the need for a KYD Membership.)
Theme: Open
Closes: 4 March 2022
Word limit: 2000-6000 words
Entry fee: Memberships start from $49.95
Prize: Published in New Australian Fiction anthology

Tales from the Pandemic: Short Story Competition
The Your Library: Eastern Regional Libraries are calling for short pieces of fiction or non-fiction writing of up to 3000 words for the 2022 Short Story Competition. They want to capture the tempo of the time we currently live in while it is still fresh and preserve it for the future.
Theme: Tales from the Pandemic
Closes: 11 March 2022
Word limit: 3000 words
Prize:; First prize – $3,000; Second prize – $1,000; Third prize – $500; Local prize – $1,000; A selection of stories will be published in an anthology by IngramSpark

Peter Carey Short Story Awards 2022
Moorabool Shire Libraries has announced the Peter Carey Short Story Award for 2022 is open. Australian residents who have original short stories between 2000 – 3000 words are encouraged to enter to win a great prize and get published.
Theme: Open
Closes: 17 March 2022
Word limit: 3000 words
Entry fee: $15
Prize: First prize – $2000; Second prize – $1000. Both stories will be published in the Spring 2022 issue of Meanjin and receive Meanjin’s standard contributor fee

Little Black Dress Spooky Story Competition
The KSP Writers' Centre presents the annual Little Black Dress Spooky Story Competition, sponsored by Little Black Dress Productions. The judges will be looking for good quality, original unpublished stories with engaging characters and a compelling narrative including an excellent beginning, middle and end. Entries must be rated PG and should address the set theme.
Theme: Best friend
Closes: 24 March 2022
Word limit: Youth – 500 words, one entry only; adult – 1200 words, unlimited entries
Entry fee: Youth – free; adults – $10 per entry
Prize: WA adult first prize – $100, certificate, complimentary copy of Spooky Story anthology; WA youth first prize – $100, certificate, complimentary copy of Spooky Story anthology; youth interstate award – $50, certificate, complimentary copy of Spooky Story anthology.

Art & Words Project 2022: Northern Beaches Writers' Competition
Calling all writers to submit short stories with a ‘tree’ theme for this competition. Entries must include at least one image that reflects and enhances the story. Stories can be non-fiction, fiction, or fiction inspired by true events, and all genres and styles are welcome.
Theme: Tree
Closes: 31 March 2022
Word limit: 2500 words
Entry fee: $15
Prize: First prize – $100 + publication; Second prize – $50 + optional publication; Northern Beaches Commendation Award (for Northern Beaches residents only) – $25 + optional publication

The Caterpillar Poetry Prize
The Caterpillar Poetry Prize is an annual prize for an unpublished poem written by an adult for children aged 7–11. Every year since 2015, The Caterpillar Poetry Prize has been awarded to a single poem by a single judge.
Theme: Poetry written by an adult for children (aged 7-11)
Closes: 31 March 2022
Word limit: 150 lines
Entry Fee: €14
Prize: €1000

Ethel Webb Bundell Literary Awards 2022 for Short Stories
The Society of Women Writers WA Inc. has opened their Ethel Webb Bundell Literary Awards for 2022 for brilliant short stories. Entries must be the original work of the author, must not have won a prize or been previously published, and must not be under consideration elsewhere.
Theme: Open
Closes: 31 March 2022
Word limit: 4000 words
Entry fee: $10
Prize: First prize – $400; Second prize – $200; Third prize – $100

The UNSW Press Bragg Prize for Science Writing
Submissions for the UNSW Press Bragg Prize for Science Writing 2022 are now open. Judges are looking for good writing about science that is moving, funny, exhilarating or poetic, yet still honest and rigorous about the research that underlies it.
Theme: Science
Closes: 31 March 2022
Word limit: 7000 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: First prize – $7000; Runner up prize (2) – $1500 Runner up prizes; Winning entries will be included in NewSouth's anthology, The Best Australian Science Writing

Short story competitions that close April 2022

Ada Cambridge Biographical Prose Prize
If you are a writer over 18 years of age with a previously unpublished and original biographical story, then the Ada Cambridge Biographical Prose Prize is a great opportunity to share your story.
Theme: Biographical story
Closes: 8 April 2022
Word limit: 3000 words
Entry fee: $15
Prize: $500

Ada Cambridge Poetry Prize
Accepting (up to) two poems in any form, on any theme,the Ada Cambridge Poetry Prize is looking for short but compelling writing. Open to all writers aged 18+ living in Victoria.
Theme: Open
Closes: 8 April 2022
Word limit: 30 lines
Entry fee: $15
Prize: $500

Young Adas Prize
Young writers between the age of 14 and 18 years who live in the Western suburbs of Melbourne are invited to enter the Young Adas Prize. Eligible stories can be on any theme, but need to be 1000 words or less.
Theme: Open
Closes: 8 April 2022
Word limit: 1000 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: $250

Rachel Funari Prize
Lip Magazine is celebrating the tenth year of the annual Rachel Funari Prize for Fiction, and submissions are now open for 2022. Judges are looking for insightful and creative fiction stories that engage with the theme ‘aftermath’. Open to all women and non-binary writers who have an original, previously unpublished story to share.
Theme: Aftermath
Closes: 15 April 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Prize: $1000 cash prize and will be officially announced as part of the Emerging Writers' Festival in Melbourne

Newcastle Short Story Award 2022
The 2022 Newcastle Short Story Award is open. Judges are looking for short stories that capture their attention in 2000 words. Do note that this word count includes the title and any sub-headings in the story.
Theme: Open
Closes: 25 April 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Entry fee: $16.50
Prize: First prize – $2000; Second prize – $1000; Third prize – $700

South Perth Young Writers Award
The South Perth Young Writers Award encourages excellence in creative writing and is open to all students from Year one through to Year 12 who live in or attend school within the City of South Perth. The categories include:

  • Lower Primary Years 1-2
  • Middle Primary Years 3-4
  • Upper Primary Years 5-6
  • Lower Secondary Years 7-9
  • Upper Secondary Years 10-12

Theme: Open
Closes: 26 April 2022
Word limit: 1500 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: Winning entries will be published in the South Perth Young Writers Award Anthology

F(r)iction Spring Contest
F(r)iction are looking for short fiction, flash fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry that is experimental, nontraditional, and boundary-pushing to be submitted for their Spring Contest.
Theme: Open
Closes: 28 April 2022
Word limit: Short stories – 7500 words; Flash fiction – 1000 words; Poetry – three pages; Creative non-fiction – 6500 words
Entry fee: Up to $15
Prize: $2,100 in prizes

Jennifer Burbidge Award
The Jennifer Burbidge Award is looking for compelling stories about disability. Entries can be either fiction or non-fiction stories by any writer of any age.
writers.
Theme: Disability
Closes: 29 April 2022
Word limit: 300 words
Entry fee: $15

Desperate Literature Short Fiction Prize
The Desperate Literature Short Fiction Prize is here to celebrate the best of new short fiction. Desperate Literature has teamed up with fifteen different literary and artistic institutions to offer a cash prize and writing retreats to the winner, and the opportunity for shortlisted writers to be published in multiple print and online journals.
Theme: Open
Closes: 30 April 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Entry fee: €20
Prize: First prize – €1500, a week’s residency at the Civitella Ranieri Foundation; a consultation with a Literary Agent Charlotte Seymour from Johnson & Alcock; a manuscript assessment and follow-up meeting with a literary editor from The Literary Consultancy; Runner-up prizes – €750 (two prizes available); All shortlisted writers – published in a limited edition book published by Desperate

Silver Tree Short Story Competition
The Silver Tree Cooperative Bookshop has opened the Silver Tree Short Story Competition for writers of all ages to share a compelling story based on Rebecca West’s quote: “The world is round and what might seem like the end may also be only the beginning.”
Theme: Rebecca West’s quote
Closes: 30 April 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Entry fee: $10
Prize: $1000

Furphy Literary Award
This year, the Furphy Literary Award Short Story Competition returns to support emerging writers with an increased prize pool. If you can write a good Australian yarn – either fiction or non-fiction – and are over 18 years of age, then you should submit your Furphy for the chance to win.
Theme: Australian Life (in all its diversity)
Closes: 30 April 2022
Word Limit: 5000 words
Prize: First prize – $15,000 and a residency at La Trobe University Shepparton; Second prize – $3,000; Third prize – $2,000. Select finalists will receive publication in the 2021 Furphy Anthology

John Gavin Flash Fiction Competition
The John Gavin Flash Fiction Competition is one of the three categories offered in the Fremantle Round House John Gavin Writing Competitions of 2022. Writers are invited to submit their short story set in the time and place of John Gavin, 1844 Swan River Colony. 
Theme: Set in 1844 Swan River Colony. 
Closes: 30 April 2022
Word limit: 750 words
Entry fee: $10
Prize: First –  $200; Second – $100

John Gavin Ballad Competition
The John Gavin Ballad Competition is one of the three categories offered in the Fremantle Round House John Gavin Writing Competitions of 2022. Writers are welcome to enter a poem/song in the ballad form based on the short and tragic life of John Gavin.
Theme: Tragic life of John Gavin
Closes: 30 April 2022
Word limit: 500 words
Entry fee: $10
Prize: First –  $200; Second – $100

John Gavin Short Story/Poetry Competition
The John Gavin Short Story/Poetry Competition is open to young writers who attend a Western Australian  school The theme for 2022 is ‘Walking in the Steps of Others’. So young writers, it’s time to travel back into the past and write an experience based on this idea.
Theme: Rebecca West’s quote
Closes: 30 April 2022
Word limit: 500 words
Entry fee: $7.50
Prize: First –  $100; Second – $50

Anthology Magazine Short Story Competition
Writers of short fiction are invited to enter the Anthology Magazine Short Story Competition which has been established to recognise and encourage creative writing and provide a platform for publication. This competition is open to original and previously unpublished short stories in the English language by a writer of any nationality, living anywhere in the world.
Theme: Courage
Closes: Early bird – 30 April 2022; Final deadline – 1 August 2022
Word limit: 1500 words
Entry fee: Early bird – €10 per story; Final deadline – €15 per story
Prize: €500

Short story competitions that close May 2022

2022 Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize
The 2022 ABR Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize is open to short story writers who have great stories they want to share. Eligible stories must be in English and completely original.
Theme: Open
Closes: 2 May 2022
Word limit: 5000 words
Entry fee: $25
Prize: $12,500

The Nan Manefield Young Writers’ Award (Ages 11-18)
Calling young writers living in Sydney! If you’re between the age of 11 and 18, this is a golden opportunity for you to submit either one poem or short story for The Nan Manefield Young Writers’ Award. Your submission will be read and judged by five award-winning writers, including author and AWC presenter Sue Whiting.
Theme: Open
Closes: 6 May 2022
Word limit: 750 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: Prize pool over $2000 and winners will receive an invitation to a writing masterclass

The 2022 What Matters? writing competition
Inspired by Gough Whitlam's commitment to involving young people in the shaping of Australia's future, the What Matters? writing competition is currently open to school students in years 5 to 12 from Australia. What Matters? is a ‘catalyst for young thinkers and young writers to develop a perspective, a point of view, on where we're heading as a society'. Prizes are awarded in 4 categories: Years 5/6, 7/8, 9/10 and 11/12. 
Theme: Open
Closes: 6 May 2022
Word limit: 300 words
Prize: All category winners – $350 and book pack from Allen and Unwin; All category runners-up – $200 and book pack from Allen and Unwin; Overall competition winner – trophy and $1000 cash.

Grieve 2022
Celebrating their tenth year of the Grieve Project, the Hunter Writers Centre have announced the Grieve 2022 competition is open for submissions. Australian writers – both first-time and published – are invited to submit their short story or poem about grief and loss in honour of Grief Awareness Month (August). Of all the entries, 120 works are selected and published in the annual Grieve Anthology.
Theme: Grief and loss
Closes: 31 May 2022
Word limit: Short story – 500 words; Poem – 36 lines
Entry fee: $16.50
Prize: Over $7000 in prizes and publication in Grieve Anthology: volume 10

The Best Australian Yarn 2022
Are you the author of Australia’s best short story? Then you will want to submit your short story for The Best Australian Yarn 2022 short story competition presented by The West Australian and the Minderoo Foundation. Everyone has a story to tell, and now we are calling on Australians everywhere to put pen to paper and take part in the world’s richest short story competition for published and unpublished writers.
Theme: Open
Closes: 31 May 2022
Word limit: 2500 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: Overall winner – $30 000; WA winner – $4000; Regional Australia winner – $3000; Youth winner – $2000 and mentoring; Readers’ Choice – $2000; Nine shortlisted finalists – $1000 each

The Synopsis Skirmish
Querying authors are encouraged to enter the The Darling Axe’s The Synopsis Skirmish competition.
Lay out your story's chain of consequence, and demonstrate character, context, and conflict, and may the best plot summary win! 
Closes: 31 May 2022
Word limit: 500 words
Entry fee: $20 CAD
Prize: Winner – $700 CAD; Second place – $200 CAD; Third place – $100 CAD; all three finalists will be published on the Chopping Blog and receive

Short story competitions that close June 2022

The Big Issue Fiction Edition 2022
Submissions are now open for The Big Issue 18th annual Fiction Edition 2022 magazine. Judges are looking for stories of all kinds – literary, comedy, romance, sci-fi, crime and everything in between – to be published in this magazine.
Theme: Open
Closes: 13 June 2022
Word limit: 3000 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: Published in The Big Issue Fiction Edition and $500 cash

RD Walshe Memorial Writing for the Environment Competition 2022
The Sutherland Shire Environment Centre holds an annual, national Writing for the Environment prize in honour of their founder, Bob Walshe, who passed away in March 2018. This year, you’re invited to submit an original piece of fictional prose that is no more than 800 words based on the theme of ‘peace and sustainability’.
Theme: Peace and sustainability
Closes: 17 June 2022
Word limit: 800 words
Prize: In the three categories (Up to 18 years; 19-25 years; over 65): First prize – $500; runner-up – $100

Lord Mayor’s Creative Writing Awards
If you are an emerging writer residing in Victoria, search your imagination and put pen to paper (or fingers to the keyboard) and enter the Lord Mayor’s Creative Writing Awards.
Closes: 30 June 2022
Word limit: Creative Writing Award will win an additional $10,000
The Dorothy Porter Award for Poetry – 100 lines; Narrative Non-fiction – 5000 words; Short Story Set in Melbourne – 5000 words; Life Writing Award for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Writers – 5000 words; Self-told Stories by Writers Living with a Disability – no more than 5000 words 
Prize: Winning entries will receive a $2000 category prize. The overall winner of the Lord Mayor’s

Northern Beaches Readers Festival Short Story Competition
The Northern Beaches Readers Festival is delighted to announce they are holding a new short story competition in 2022 for short form fiction stories. The competition will be independently judged by editor and writing coach, Kelly Rigby. Stories should follow the theme ‘fire and water’ to pique judge and editor, Kelly Rigby’s interest. 
Theme: ‘Fire and Water'
Closes: 30 June 2022
Entry fee: $10
Prize: $500

Short story competitions that close July 2022

The 2022 ACU Prize for Poetry
The 2022 ACU Prize for Poetry is open for entries from Australian residents who have crafted their finest poems on the theme of ‘Hope', inspired by a line from Alfred Lord Tennyson's famous play Robin Hood play: “Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering ‘it will be happier'…”
Theme: Hope
Closes: 4 July 2022
Prize: Winner – $10 000; Second prize –  $5 000; Third prize – $3000

Lost In Words Short Fiction Competition
Undo Redo Entertainment is proud to announce their Lost in Words Short Fiction Competition 2022 is open for submissions. The judges are looking for original short fiction and ideas that have been lost in the cacophony of corporate banality.
Closes: 8 July 2022
Word limit: 4000 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: Winner – $500

The Literary Taxidermy Writing Competition
The Literary Taxidermy Writing Competition invites writers to create original stories and poems using the opening and closing lines of classic works of literature. For its fifth year, in addition to monetary prizes and publication, the competition offers personal feedback for all honourable mentions.
Theme: Use opening and closing lines set by competition hosts
Closes: 11 July 2022
Entry fee: USD $10
Prize:  USD $500 cash prize and a complimentary copy of the forthcoming 2022 Literary Taxidermy Anthology

2022 E.M. Fletcher Short Story Writing Competition
The annual E.M. Fletcher Writing Award is open to short stories that are based on family history or genealogy. The competition is judged to select the best short story, and writers are encouraged to explore their creativity within this theme.
Theme: Family history
Closes: 15 July 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Prize: $1000 cash and published in the December edition of Family History ACT’s journal The Ancestral Searcher

Clean vs Green Short Story Competition
Organised by the University of Southampton, the Clean vs Green Short Story Competition is a targeted competition aimed at using an engaging fictional story that helps raise awareness about bacteria and shift attitudes, especially for those people who assume that the more detergent the better.
Theme: Clean vs green
Closes: 21 July 2022
Word limit: 3000 words
Prize: £500

AlburyCity Short Story Award
Writers from across Australia are invited to enter the AlburyCity Short Story Award. There is no set theme. Just submit your most inspired writing!
Theme: Open
Closes: 25 July 2022
Entry fee: $10
Word limit: 3000 words

Prize: First prize – $1,000; Second prize – $200 book voucher; Third prize – $100 book voucher

Boroondara Literary Awards
It's time to get writing for the 2022 Boroondara Literary Awards! In a partnership between the Rotary Club of Balwyn and the City of Boroondara and held each year, the Awards encourage creativity in writers of all ages.
Theme: Open
Closes: 29 July 2022
Word limit: 1,500 to 3,000 words
Entry fee: Free
Prizes: First place – $1500; Second place – $1000; Third place – $500
AWP/Westerly Magazine Life Writing Prize
In its inaugural year, the AAWP/Westerly Magazine Life Writing Prize welcomes entries from emerging and established writers of autobiography, biography, memoir, and essays, and celebrates excellence in nonfiction, creative nonfiction and hybrid modes of storytelling.
Theme: Memoir or biography
Closes: 31 July 2022
Word limit: 3500 words
Prize: $500 cash prize, a one-year subscription to Westerly, and conference fees to attend the annual conference of the AAWP

AAWP/ASSF Emerging Writers' Short Story Prize
Celebrate the craft of writing at the Australian Short Story Festival, held in Perth in 2022. Be welcomed into the thriving community of writers within the AAWP. Enter your short story and take advantage of this generous publication pathway and networking opportunity for emerging writers.
Closes: 31 July 2022
Word limit: 3000 words
Prize: Ticket to the Australian Short Story Festival, economy airfares and accommodation, and fully subsidised conference fees to the AAWP’s annual conference; winning entry will also be considered for publication in Meniscus

AAWP/UWRF Emerging Writers' Prize
Take advantage of this stunning opportunity to celebrate the craft of writing at South East Asia's largest and most exciting literary festival, the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival. Enter your short story or poem on the 2022 festival theme ‘Through Darkness to Light' and take advantage of a publication pathway and networking opportunity for emerging writers.
Theme: Through Darkness to Light
Closes: 31 July 2022
Word limit: Poetry – 30 lines; prose – 3000 words
Prize: Ticket to the UWRF, accommodation for the duration of the festival, and $500 towards economy airfares

2022 Open Writing Competition
Port Writers Inc are proud to announce its popular 2022 Open Writing Competition is open to writers to submit their short stories on any theme. There are three categories in which you can win: fiction, non-fiction and poetry.
Theme: Open
Closes: 31st July 2022
Word limit: Fiction – 2500 words; Non-Fiction – 2500 words; Poetry – 32 linesEntry: $10 
Prize: In each category, first – $200; second – $50; highly commended – Certificate; Hastings Award – one prize over all categories (for local writers in the Port Macquarie-Hastings geographic area) $100

AAWP/Express Media Sudden Writing Prize
The AAWP/Express Media Sudden Writing Prize is for emerging writers under 25. Young writers are welcome to submit prose, poetry or prose poems with any theme. 
Theme: Open
Closes: 31 July 2022
Word limit: 400 words prose, 40 lines for poetry, 200 words for prose poems
Prize: $500, your work published on the Express Media website and a Voiceworks subscription, and a one-year membership to the AAWP

Anthology Poetry Award
Established to recognise and encourage excellence in the craft of poetry writing and to provide a platform for publication, the Poetry Award is open to original and previously unpublished poems in the English language. Entries are invited from poets of all nationalities, living anywhere in the world. 
Theme: Dreams 
Closes: Early Bird – 31 July 2022; Deadline – 31 October 2022
Word limit: 40 lines
Entry fee: Early Bird – €10 per poem; Deadline – €15 per poem
Prize: €500 cash prize, the chance to see their work published in a future issue of Anthology, and a one year subscription to Anthology magazine

Short story competitions that close August 2022

Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Writing Competition 2022
Hawkeye Books are looking to read light-hearted, positive short stories so they can award the writer as the winner of the Sydney Hammond Memorial Short Story Competition 2022. Let your imagination run wild with a story that follows the theme of ‘water under the bridge'. The judges will favour stories with critical thinking, humour and/or a point of difference – so get creative.
Theme: Water under the bridge
Closes: 1 August 2021
Word limit: 1000 words
Entry fee: $15
Prize: Winner – $250AU Hawkeye Gift Voucher + Anthology front cover design based on winner’s story;  Shortlisted (2nd – 4th placed) names published; Top 40 stories published in an anthology

The Hachette Australia Prize for Young Writer
The Hachette Australia Prize for Young Writers is a developmental award open to Australian secondary school-aged students across the nation and recognises writing excellence in Fiction, Creative Non-fiction and Poetry. Entries can include writing for readers of any age.
Theme: Open 
Closes: 7 August 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Prize: Winner in each category – $500, publication of their work on the Express Media website
their names, and an acknowledgement printed in Voiceworks, Australia’s premier youth literary journal    

The 2022 Venie Holmgren Environmental Poetry Prize
In partnership with Rabbit: a journal for nonfiction poetry, Holmgren Design have opened their 2022 Venie Homgren Environmental Poetry Prize for submissions. This competition is in honour of Venie Holmgren, environmental activist and bestselling poet. 
Theme: Environmental theme
Closes: 10 August 2021
Word limit: 80 lines
Entry fee: $10
Prize: $1000

2022 Tim Winton Award for Young Writers
The City of Subiaco presents the 30th annual Tim Winton Award for Young Writers. This creative short story writing award is open to Western Australian school students to encourage their imagination, innovation and creativity. 
Theme: Open 
Closes: 12 August 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Prize: Put on display for one month at Subiaco Library from Tuesday 27 September and published online

BAD Western Sydney 
BAD Western Sydney is a new crime anthology set in the urban/suburban sprawl of Western Sydney. This richly diverse part of Australia is home to over 10% of Australia's population and is one of the world's most multi-cultural regions. Within its bounds each centre is distinctive with a unique blend of languages and characters. Judges are looking for short stories and microfiction to include in the anthology that evoke that strong sense of place.
Theme: Sense of place
Closes: 12 August 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Entry fee: Free
Prize: Successful entries will be published in the BAD Western Sydney anthology in November/December 2022

Seeking Asylum Poetry Prize
Ballina Region for Refugees (BR4R) invites you to submit up to three poems to this year’s Seeking Asylum Poetry Prize. This Prize celebrates the positive contributions that refugees make to our communities and acknowledges the circumstances that forced them to flee their homelands and request refuge in Australia.
Theme: A Turning Point
Closes: 14 August 2021
Word limit: 50 lines
Entry fee: Free
Prize: First prize – $300; Second prize – $150; Third prize – $50; winners will be published in Social Alternatives

2023 NWF/joanne burns Microlit Award
Judges are looking for play-themed writing for the 12th joanne burns Microlit Awards. Co-hosted by Newcastle Writers Festival and specialist microliterature publisher, Spineless Wonders, this award offers cash prizes and publication. 
Theme: Play
Closes: 28 August 2022
Word limit: 200 words
Entry fee: $15
Prize: Winner and finalists will have their entries published in Spineless Wonders’ annual anthology

The Woollahra Digital Literary Award
The Woollahra Digital Literary Award is a national literary award supporting innovation in Australian literature and publishing, encouraging writers producing work in a digital medium. The award opens 1 June and seeks submissions of a literary nature that are digitally born – published online or in electronic form. There are four categories in which to enter: fiction, non-fiction, poetry and digital innovation.
Closes: 29 August 2022
Word limit: Fiction – 3000-30,000 words; Non-Fiction – 3000-30,000 words; Poetry – 3000 words; Digital Innovation – 30,000 words
Entry fee: $12
Prize: Fiction – $2500; Non-Fiction – $2500; Poetry – $1000; Digital Innovation – $1500

Aesthetica Creative Writing Award 2022
Poets and short story writers are welcome to submit their work on any theme. Yet the judges are very interested in works that reflect upon our ever changing world… hint hint. 
Closes: 31 August 2022
Entry fee: Poetry £12; Short Fiction £18
Prize: £5,000 (£2,500 for the Poetry Winner, £2,500 for the Short Fiction Winner), publication

2022 Alice Sinclair Memorial Writing Competition
Brought to you by the Lake Macquarie Branch of the Fellowship of Australian Writers, the 2022 Alice Sinclair Memorial Writing Competition will open 31 May. Poets and short story writers are welcome to submit their piece that follows the theme of ‘out of the shadows’.
Theme: Out of the Shadows
Closes: 31 August 2022
Entry fee: $15
Prizes: For each category winner – $150 + certificate for first; second prize – $100 + certificate; 15 short stories and 15 poems will be published in an anthology

Sisters in Crime’s Women’s Crime and Mystery Short Story Competition
Sisters in Crime Scarlet Stiletto Awards is looking for women writers to submit their best short crime and mystery stories to be entered in this killer competition. There are also many other writing competitions in the Sisters in Crime Scarlet Stiletto Awards on offer, so check out the site for full details. 
Theme: Crime and mystery
Closes: 31 August 2022
Word limit: 5000 words
Entry fee: $25
Prize: $12,365 in prizes on offer

Short story competitions that close September – October 2022

Reconciliation Writing Competition 2022
The Reconciliation Writing Competition organised by the Port Phillip Citizens for Reconciliation is open to all Victorians. The theme is the 2022 NAIDOC theme ‘Get Up Stand Up Show Up’, which reflects a proud history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People organising and fighting for their rights. All styles of writing are encouraged, including fiction, non-fiction and poetry. 
Theme: Get Up Stand Up Show Up
Closes: 2 September 2022
Word limit: Adults – 1500 words or 50 lines of poetry; Year 9-12 Students – 600 words or 30 lines of poetry
Prize: Adults winner – $1000 donated; Second – $600; Third – $300; Year 9-12 Students winner – $1000; Second – $600; Third– $300

Dickinson Memorial Literary Competition 2022
Braille House is excited to announce that the Dickinson Memorial Literary Competition for 2022 is open for entries from all Australian residents for their 101st year. Writers (children and adults) who are blind or have low vision are welcomed to pen a short story or poem and be in the running to win cash prizes in the 101st year of the Dickinson Memorial Literary Competition which is a National literary competition and is for children and adults who are blind or have low vision.
Theme: Time
Closes: 16 September 2022
Word limit: Adults (18 years +) and senior students (13 to 17 years) – 2000 words; junior student (12 years and under) – 1500 words
Entry fee: Adults and senior students ($10 per item), junior students ($5 per item), peoples’ choice category ($10 per item)
Prize: Winner (per category) –  $350; Second prize (per category) – $150

Storm
A literary storm is brewing as Minds Shine Bright seeks the very best fiction writing on the theme of storm. Whether it’s fast and furious, loud and bright, something that’s brewing or a spirit summoned tempest, judges are looking for your best writing to warm their hearts through this cold winter.
Theme: Storm
Closes: 30 September 2022
Word limit: 2500 words
Entry fee: $5
Prize: Winner – $500; Second – $400; Third – $300; Fourth – $200; five commended entries – $100

The Letter Review Prize for Short Stories 2022 
Judges of The Letter Review Prize for Short Stories 2022 are looking for writers to submit their compelling short stories for a great prize. Twenty entries will be selected for the longlist and ten will be selected for the shortlist. All long and short listed authors will have the opportunity to discuss publication of their entry on Letter Review.
Theme: Open
Closes: 31 October 2022
Word limit: 2000 words
Entry fee: $20 USD
Prize:  Winner – $600 USD; Second prize – $250 USD and publication; Third prize– $150 USD

How can I write better short stories?

New to short story writing or looking to refresh your skills before you submit your stories? Maybe you’re looking to hone your techniques and get feedback on one of your short stories? Look no further than our Short Story Essentials self-paced course – it is the ideal place to start.

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