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Prize money is never to be sniffed at, but most of us are honest about the difficulties of earning real money from writing. What we would rather have is recognition that we’ve written something other people want to read.

Short stories are hard. Some think they are harder to get right than novels. But a successful short story is a useful calling card. Win a prize, and you can mention this when approaching an agent with that synopsis and first 15,000 words.

Better still, the publicity from a win might open a magic door. In 2011 Emily Bullock won the Bristol Short Story Prize and caught the attention of Johnson & Alcock literary agency – who subsequently signed her up and sold her debut novel The Longest Flight.

We aren’t the Bristol Short Story Competition but, hey, everybody has to start somewhere. And a cheque for £100, £50 or £25 would certainly make your day.

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