December is a month when writing probably goes on the back-burner, but maybe you have an old story somewhere that can be dusted off and re-submitted? Tanya did just that, back in the summer, and won a competition with it.

The Magic Oxygen Prize is inviting entries of short stories and poems for MOLP3. The theme is open and there are prizes in each category of £1,000, £300, £100, plus two highly-commendeds at £50. Winning and shortlisted entries will be included in an anthology. Stories should be up to 4,000-words, and poems up to fifty lines. Entry is £5 and for each entry a tree will be planted in Bore, Kenya. Details:www.magicoxygen.co.uk

Presence haiku magazine is inviting entries for the Martin Lucas Haiku Award 2016. The competition is for an original, unpublished haiku, with a first prize of £100, a second prize of £50 and two third prizes of £25. The winning and commended haiku will be published in the magazine. The entry fee is £5 for five haiku and the closing date is 31 December. Details: http://haikupresence.org/

Soundwork, which is a not-for-profit online resource for free-to-listen-to short stories, monologues, poems, audio plays and monologues is inviting entries for its Short Story Competition. Sadly, there is no monetary prize, but the winner WILL have their story recorded and posted on the Soundwork site. Entries (which may have been published/broadcast elsewhere) should be up to 2,000-words and entry is FREE. The closing date is 31 December. Details: infor@soundwork.co.uk.

Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Contest is for a novel for children between 7 and 18. They need the full manuscript, synopsis and covering letter. The Fee is £15, but the prize is a contract with Chicken House and a royalty advance of £10,000. Deadline is 18 December (so SOON) and details can be viewed: http://www.chicken-housebooks.com

Mearns Writers’ ‘New Beginnings’ Short Story Competition. 1,000-3,000 words. Deadline 31 December. Fee £7. Prizes: £250; 3x£50. Details: mearnswriters.simdif.com

AND – for the New Year – two further competitions:

The Exeter Novel Prize. 10,000-word opening of a novel, plus a synopsis. Fee: £18. Prizes: £500 and a trophy. Five runners-up will receive £75 and a trophy. Details: http://www.creativewritingmatters.co.uk Deadline 1 January 2017.

The Mogford Prize for a story of 2,500-words on the theme of ‘Food and Drink’. Fee is £10. Prize £10,000. Details: http://www.oxford-hotels-restaurants.co.uk/the-mogford-literary-prize/2017-mogford-literary-prize-information Deadline is 15 January.

Please double-check details before submitting.My apologies for this being posted later than usual – blame it on seasonal confusion, plus our central heating not working for the past three days!

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