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Why not aim high, and end the year with a flurry of entries to competitions looking for short stories or recently completed novels in December? Over the years members of ninevoices have not only entered, but won or been short-listed for some of the competitions given on this site. It can be done…

The list for December entries is being posted earlier than usual, to give anyone interested in the Barbara Pym Competition the chance to enter. The deadline for that is Midnight on December lst. The Virginia Prize for Fiction also has a December lst closing date.

The 2022 Ellen J Miller Memorial Short Story Competition. If you are a fast writer, or a long-established fan of the work of Barbara Pym, you may just have time to enter this competition for a short story which prominently features one or more characters from her published novels. Entries must be between 2000-2200 words and must not be under consideration elsewhere, or have been submitted before. Prizes are: $250, $100 and $50, plus complimentary registration and meals at the Barbara Pym Society North American Conference in Boston. The winning entries will be read at the conference and will also be published on the Society’s website. and in their newsletter. Entry is free. Details: http://barbara-pym.org

The Globe Soup Flash Fiction 2021 Competition wants stories about a secret location that will be revealed when writers enter the contest. One winner will receive £1,000. Enter unpublished flash fiction up to 899 words in any genre or style for adult or young adult readers, with at least part set in the location. Closing date: 31 December. Entry appears to be free. Website: http://www.globesoup.net/writing-competitions

Green Stories Writing Competitions: Novels. For the first three chapters of a full length novel touching on ideas of sustainable societies. Prizes: A discounted appraisal from Daniel Goldsmith Associates. Free entry. Deadline 1 December. Details: http://www.greenstories.org.uk

HE Bates Short Story Competition for stories up to 2,000 words. Prizes: £500, £200, £100. Entry: £6, £10 for two. Closing date: 9 December. Details: ww.hebatescompetition.org.uk (Please make your own checks on this closing date, taken from Writing Magazine’s Competition Guide, since I haven’t been able to verify it it on-line)

Virginia Prize for Fiction for unpublished novels of at least 45,000 words by women. Prizes: development and publication of the winning novel. Entry fee: £25. Closing date: 1 December. Details: https://aurorametro.com/

Sunday Times Audible Short Story Award for stories up to 6,000 words, by authors with a record of publication. Prizes: £30,000, 5x£1,000. Free entry. Deadline: December 4. Details: http://www.shortstoryaward.co.uk

Chorley & District Writers Circle Annual Short Story Competition for stories up to 2,500 words on a theme to be confirmed. Prizes: £100, £50, 3x£20. Entry fee: £6, or £10 for two. Closing date: 15 December. Details: http://www.chorleywriters.org.uk

London Independent Story Prize for short stories up to 3,000 words, or flash up to 300 words. Prizes: £100 for both categories. Entry fee: £4. Closing date: 15 December. Details: http://www.londonindependentstoryprize.co.uk

Ruth Rendell Short Story Competition for stories up to 1,000 words. Prizes: £1,000 and commission to write four further storiesfor InterAct Reading Service over the course of one year. Entry fee: £15. Closing date: 21 December. Details: http://www.interactstrokesupport.org

Henshaw Short Story Competition for stories up to 2,000 words on any theme. Prizes: £200, £100, £50. Entry fee: £6. Quarterly closing date: 31 December. Details: http://www.henshawpress.co.uk

Write Time Competitions for stories up to 1,500 words by writers over 60. Prizes£50; £25×2; publication. Entry fee: £3, £5 for two. Quarterly closing date: 31 December. Details: https://writetime.org/

Retreat West Themed Flash Fiction Prize for up to 500 words on the theme of “after”. Prizes: £200; 2x£100, Entry fee: £8. Details: http://www.retreatwest.co.uk

Moth Poetry Prize for a single unpublished poem. Prizes: 6,000 Euros; 3×1,000 Euros, plus publication; 8×250 Euros. Entry fee: 15 Euros. Closing date: 31 December. Details: http://www.themothmagazine.com

So, please don’t leave your writing resolutions until the New Year and please, as ever, double-check all details before entry.

Ninevoices wish you all the happiest of Christmases and lots of good things for the New Year. Including some well-deserved writing successes. Just remember, somebody has to win these things… why shouldn’t it be you?

We will close with a favourite quote from the excellent Sylvia Plath:

“I love my rejections. They prove that I’m trying.”