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Start the new year the way you mean to go on – by entering a competition (or two). There are so many exciting ones to choose from this month and I’ve added in a couple of extras whose deadlines fall early in February. I hope you’ll find lots to inspire you here. As always, please check websites, in case details have changed.

Exeter Novel Prize for first 10,000 words of a novel not under contract, including 500-word synopsis. Entry fee: £20. Prizes: £1,000 + trophy, 5 x £100 + paperweight. Closing date: 1st January. Details: www.creativewritingmatters.co.uk

The Charles Causley International Poetry Competition for a poem on any subject up to 40 lines. Entry fee: £7.50 for one poem, £5.50 for subsequent poems. Prizes: £2,000 + one-week writing residency at Cyprus Well, Causley’s former home in Launceston; £250; £100. Closing date: 1st January. Details: www.causleytrust.org/competition-2022

The European Writing Prize 2023 for unpublished short fiction between 1,500 to 3,500 words, incorporating the notion of anxiety (however you see fit). Entry fee: Free. Prizes: €50 + lifetime membership of the European Society of Literature + publication in its quarterly journal. Closing date: 1st January. Details: www.litsoceu.com/writing-prize

Kay Murphy Prize for Poetry for up to three poems. Entry fee: $20. Prize: $1,000 + subscription to Bayou Magazine. Closing date: 2nd January. Details: www.bayoumagazine.org

Gemini Magazine Poetry Open Prize for poems of any subject, length and style. Entry fee: $9 for up to three poems. Prizes: $1,000, $100, 4 x $25, + publication. Closing date: 3rd January. Details: www.gemini-magazine.com

Orna Ross Green Stories Novel Prize for three chapters (first, last and one that best showcases how your novel meets their green stories criteria) plus synopsis. They also require you to read one of the books from their Green Stories project and will ask you three questions about it when you submit. Free entry. Prizes: £1,000, £500, plus discounted appraisal from Daniel Goldsmith Associates. Closing date: 3rd January. Details: www.greenstories.org.uk

Discoveries Programme (a writers’ development programme run in partnership with the Women’s Prize Trust, Audible and Curtis Brown) invites women resident in the UK or the Republic of Ireland to submit opening (including any prologue) of a fiction novel for adults (not children or YA) of up to 10,000 words and a synopsis of no more than 1,000 words. Free entry. Prizes: (i) winner – offer of representation by Curtis Brown, £5,000, gratis place on Discoveries course, studio session with Audible; (ii) scholar – gratis place on Curtis Brown 3-month novel course, mentoring session, gratis place on Discoveries course, studio session with Audible; (iii) Four shortlisted entrants – gratis place on Curtis Brown 6-week course, mentoring session, gratis place on Discoveries course, studio session with Audible; (iv) ten longlisted entrants – £50 discount on a Curtis Brown 6-week course, gratis place on Discoveries course. All sixteen of the above will also receive an annual Audible subscription and invitation to the Women’s Prize Trust’s summer 2023 party. Closing date: 15th January. Details: https://www.womensprizeforfiction.co.uk/discoveries

Bath Flash Fiction Novella in Flash Award for flash fiction novellas between 6,000 and 18,000 words. Entry fee: £16. Prizes: £300, 2 x £100, publication. Closing date: 15th January. Details:  www.bathflashfictionaward.com/novella-entry

Retreat West First Chapter Competition for first chapter of a novel on any theme up to 3,000 words. Entry fee: £10. Prizes: feedback and review. Closing date: 29th January. Details: www.retreatwest.co.uk

Magma Poetry Competition for poems on any subject in two categories: (i) 11–50 lines, (ii) up to 10 lines. Entry fee: £5, £4 for second poem, £3.50 for third and each subsequent. Prizes: (i) £1,000, £300, £150, + publication. Ditto for (ii). Plus 5 special mentions for each. Closing date: 31st January. Details: www.magmapoetry.com/magma-2022-23-poetry-competition

British Haiku Society Awards for three categories: (i) Haiku, (ii) Tanka, (iii) Haibun. Entry fee for up to 3 Haiku OR 3 Tanka OR 3 Haibun: £5.50. Prizes: Haiku – £125 x 2, £50 x 2. Tanka – £125 x 2, £50 x 2. Haibun – £125, £50. All award-winners will be published in the May 2023 issue of BHS journal Blithe Spirit. Closing date: 31st January. Details: http://britishhaikusociety.org.uk/2022/09/call-for-entries-bhs-awards-2022/

WriteMentor Novel and Picture Book Awards for (i) children’s novel (chapter book, middle grade, young adult) – first 3,000 words and 1-page synopsis; and/or (ii) children’s picture book – whole, completed manuscript. Entry fee: £12. Prizes 6 months’ access to Spark, WM’s 121 mentoring service with published children’s authors + 1-year membership to the Hub, WM’s online community platform. Runner-up prize: 1-year membership to the Hub. Closing date: 31st January. Details: https://write-mentor.com/awards/writementor-novel-picture-book-awards-2023/

The Cheshire Prize for Literature by writers born, living, studying or working in Cheshire (past or present) for a short story (up to 1,500 words) OR poem (maximum 100 lines) OR children’s story or poem (same lengths) OR script (max 15-minute). Also entries of poetry/short stories are invited from children aged either 4–11 or 11–17. Entry: free. Prizes: cash for each over-18 category. Book tokens for children aged 4–17. Closing date: 31st January. Details: https://www1.chester.ac.uk/press-office/cheshire-prize-literature

Kent & Sussex Poetry Society Open Poetry Competition for poems up to 40 lines. Entry fee: £5 per poem or, for three or more, £4 each. Prizes: £1,000, £300, £100, 4 x £50. Closing date: 31st January. Details: https://kentandsussexpoetry.com/kent-sussex-poetry-society-open-poetry-competition-2023/

Lancashire Authors’ Association Flash Fiction Competition for a story of exactly 100 words. Entry fee: £2, or £5 for a maximum of three. Prize: £100. Closing date: 31st January. Details: http://www.lancashireauthorsassociation.co.uk/Open_Comp.html

Martin Lucas Haiku Award for original unpublished haiku. Entry fee: £5 for up to 5 haiku, £1 each additional haiku. Prizes: £100, £50, 2 x £25, + publication in Presence Magazine. Closing date: 31st January. Details: https://haikupresence.org/award

Teignmouth Poetry Festival Competition for poems up to 40 lines. Entry fee: Online – £4.50 (£3.50 each additional entry). By post – £4 (£3 each additional entry). Prizes: £600, £300, £200. Closing date: 31st January. Details: https://www.poetryteignmouth.com/competition-2023.html

Virginia Prize for Fiction for unpublished novels, at least 45,000 words, by women. Entry fee: £25. Prize: Development and publication of winning novel. Closing date: 31st January. Details: https://www.aurorametro.com/virginia-prize-for-fiction

Fish Publishing Short Memoir Prize for a memoir of up to 4,000 words of your life. Entry fee: €18 (€11 subsequent entries). Prizes: €1,000; 2 x €300 + online writing course. The best 10 memoirs will also be published in the Fish Anthology 2023. Closing date: 31st January. Details: https://www.fishpublishing.com/competition/short-memoir-contest

Jim Baen Memorial Short Story Award for a short story of up to 8,000 words showing the near future (no more than 50–60 years out) of manned space exploration (e.g. about moon bases, Mars colonies, orbital habitats, space elevators, asteroid mining, AI, nano-technology, realistic spacecraft, heroics, sacrifice, adventure). Entry: free. Prizes: publication on Baen Books’ main website at pro rates for first prize, plus prize packages for first, second and third. Closing date: 1st February. Details: https://www.baen.com/contest-jbmssa

Papatango New Writing Prize for unperformed full-length playscript. Free Entry. Prizes: £7,000 + winning script produced by Papatango in a full run at Bush Theatre (London). 4 x £500 + option to have play presented as reading. Closing date: 5th February. Details: www.papatango.co.uk

A nudge from Snowy to get writing!