If you want to get a jump on next month's contests go to Free Contests. Most of these contests are offered annually, so even if the deadline has passed, you can prepare for next year.
Green Stories Writing Competition. Genre: Screenplay about building a sustainable society. Prize: £750: 1st prize £500, 2nd prize £100, third prize £50 plus £50 for best student submission (18-25 years) and £50 for best < 18 year submission. Deadline: ?
Helen Schaible Shakespearean/Petrarchan Sonnet Contest. Genre: Poetry. Prize: $50, 2nd Prize $35, 3rd Prize $15, three Honorable Mentions, three Special Recognitions. Deadline: September 1, 2019.
Brilliant Flash Fiction. Genre: Flash fiction. Word limit: 300 words, excluding title. Prompt: “Feed Us” Prize: $100.00 first prize, $30.00 second prize, $20.00 third prize Deadline: September 1, 2019.
Transitions Abroad. Genre: Essay on living, working or moving abroad. Prize: $500. Deadline: September 1, 2019.
The Critical Junior Poet’s Award. Restrictions: Open to students between the ages of 13 and 18. Genre: Poetry. Prize: $100. Deadline: September 1, 2019.
PEN Prison Writing Contest. Restrictions: Anyone incarcerated in a federal, state, or county prison in the year before the September 1 deadline is eligible to enter. Genres: Poetry, fiction, drama, creative nonfiction. Prize: $200 top prize per category. Deadline: September 1, 2019.
Wrightwood Literary Festival Young Poets Competition. Restrictions: Open to school-aged poets in the Tri-Community area and beyond (Wrightwood, CA). Genre: Poetry. Prize: Gift basket and invitation to read at the festival. Deadline: September 1, 2019.
Hubert Butler Essay Prize. Restrictions: Open to European Union citizens aged 18+. Genre: Essay on theme "Where does a citizen of the world belong?" 3,000 words max. Prize: Up to 1,000 pounds. Deadline: September 2, 2019.
IWSG. Genre: Middle Grade Historical – Adventure/Fantasy. Theme: Voyagers. Word count: 3500-5000. Prize: The winning stories will be edited and published by Dancing Lemur Press' imprint Freedom Fox Press next year in the IWSG anthology. Authors will receive royalties on books sold, both print and eBook. The top story will have the honor of giving the anthology its title. Deadline: September 4, 2019.
#PitMad Pitch Party. #PitMad is a pitch party on Twitter where writers tweet a 280-character pitch for their completed, polished, unpublished manuscripts. Agents and editors make requests by liking/favoriting the tweeted pitch. Every unagented writer is welcome to pitch. All genres/categories are welcomed. Deadline: September 5, 2019.
Young Lions Fiction Award. Restrictions: Open to US citizens 35 years of age or younger. Genre: Novel or a collection of short stories published between January 2017 and December 2017. Submissions by publisher only. Authors may not submit their own work. Prize: $10,000.00. Deadline: September 6, 2019.
Pass or Pages. Genre: Novel. Prize: Possible agent representation. Deadline: September 9 - 13, 2019.
Shaughnessy Cohen Award for Political Writing. Genre: Book of literary nonfiction that captures a political subject of relevance to Canadian readers and has the potential to shape or influence thinking on contemporary Canadian political life. Book must be published in Canada. Prize: CAN $25,000.00. Deadline: Books published between July 31 and September 10 must be received by September 11, 2019.
Michael Marks Awards for Poetry Pamphlets. Restrictions: Poetry pamphlet. Only pamphlets published in the United Kingdom between September 2018 and this year’s closing date are eligible. Genre: Poetry. Prize: £5,000. Deadline: September 12, 2019.
Toni Beauchamp Prize in Critical Art Writing. Genre: Scholarly essay. All work submitted must have been written or published within the last year. Prize: $3,000. Deadline: September 15, 2019.
Scriptlab. Genre: TV script or short screenplay. Prize: Up to $500. Deadline: September 15, 2019.
RSL Giles St Aubyn Awards for Non-Fiction. Restrictions: The writer must be a resident of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, or have been a resident in the UK or ROI for the past three years. Genre: Nonfiction book. Prize: Two awards – one of £10,000, one of £5,000 – are offered to support writers to complete their first commissioned works of non-fiction. Deadline: September 16, 2019.
Three Cheers and a Tiger. Genre: Science fiction/fantasy short story. Prize: Winning stories are published in the December issue of Toasted Cheese. If 50 or fewer eligible entries are received, first place receives a $35 Amazon gift card & second a $10 Amazon gift card. If 51 or more eligible entries are received, first place receives a $50 Amazon gift card, second a $15 Amazon gift card & third a $10 Amazon gift card. Deadline: September 21, 2019.
Val Wood Prize for Creative Writing. Genre: Short story on theme: ‘Love Letters.’ Prize: £200. Deadline: September 21, 2019.
The Furious Gazelle’s 2019 Halloween Writing Contest. Genre: Halloween-themed poetry, fiction, short plays and creative non-fiction. Prize: $50. Deadline: September 21, 2019.
Slackjaw Humor Writing Challenge! Genre: Humor Prize: Up to $2000. Deadline: September 21, 2019.
Cullman Center Fellowships. Fellowship. The Cullman Center’s Selection Committee awards up to 15 fellowships a year to outstanding scholars and writers—academics, independent scholars, journalists, and creative writers. Foreign nationals conversant in English are welcome to apply. Award: A stipend of up to $70,000, an office, a computer, and full access to the Library's physical and electronic resources. Deadline: September 27, 2019.
The Lancaster Playwriting Prize. Restrictions: Open to writers aged over 55 who are based in North West England. Genre: Script (for a play). Scripts must be a minimum of 40 minutes long. Prize: £1500. Deadline: September 27, 2019.
Writers' HQ Flash Quarterly Contest. Genre: Unpublished flash fiction, 500 words max. Prize: 450 pounds. Top three winners win membership to Writers' HQ, a British writing resource site, and admission to three WHQ writing retreats. Winners outside the UK can substitute a manuscript critique for the retreats. Deadline: September 30, 2019.
Owl Canyon Press Short Story Hackathon. Genre: Short story. " Writers are invited to create and submit a short story consisting of 50 paragraphs. The contest provides the first and last paragraph and the short story writer crafts the rest." Prize: First prize is $1000, 2nd prize is $500, and 3rd prize is $250 with the winning short story published in an ebook short story anthology for Amazon, as well as an invitation to give a public reading at Inkberry Books in Niwot, CO. Twenty-four (24) Finalists will also have their short stories included in this ebook anthology. Deadline: September 30, 2019.
Salisbury Story Prize. Genre: Short fiction (500 words) on theme of "Rivers." Open to ages 4 and up. Prize: £50 for children to be spent at Waterstones. Free online course for adults. Deadline: September 30, 2019.
Jerry Jazz Musician Fiction Contest. Genre: Short fiction. Prize: $100. Deadline: September 30, 2019.
Iowa Short Fiction and John Simmons Short Fiction Awards. Genre: Short story collection. The manuscript must be a collection of short stories in English of at least 150 word-processed, double-spaced pages. Prize: Publication by the University of Iowa Press, royalties. Deadline: September 30, 2019.
L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future Contest is held four times a year. Restrictions: The Contest is open only to those who have not professionally published a novel or short novel, or more than one novelette, or more than three short stories, in any medium. Professional publication is deemed to be payment of at least six cents per word, and at least 5,000 copies, or 5,000 hits. Genre: Short stories or novelettes of science fiction or fantasy. Prizes: $1,000, $750, $500, Annual Grand Prize: $5,000. Deadline: September 30, 2019.
Johnson and Amoy Achong Caribbean Writers Prize. Restrictions: Open to writers of Caribbean birth or citizenship, living and working in the Anglophone Caribbean and writing in English, over the age of 18 by 30 September, 2018 and have no previously published a book-length work in the genre in which they are making a submission.Genre: Literary non-fiction work in progress. Prize: $20,000TT (or the equivalent in US dollars). Deadline: September 30, 2019.
Victoria Literary Festival Writing Competition. Genre: Short story: 1500 words, taking into consideration the theme of the 2019 VLF festival: Hats Off. Prize: First prize will receive 350 CDN$ with four runners up receiving 50 CDN$ each. Deadline: September 30, 2019.
John Pollard Foundation International Poetry Prize. Genre: Published book of poems. Publishers may submit four copies of a debut full-length poetry collection (or bound galleys) published between October 1, 2018, and September 30, 2019. Prize: €10,000 (approximately $11,400) Deadline: September 30, 2019.
My Writing Journey. Genre: A 600-word piece on the theme: The best writing tip I’ve ever received. Prize: $200 (R2 000 or £100) Deadline: September 30, 2019.
The Great Lake Drabble Contest #15. Genre: Drabble on theme of "Treasure Hunt." (100 words max) Prize: $1. Deadline: September 30, 2019.
Somos En Escrito. Restrictions: Writings must be by Americans of indigenous-Hispanic background (Native American, Chicanan, Latina/o/x) born in the USA or from Latin America residing in the USA. Genre: Science fiction, fantasy, horror, spec-lit, or just weird. Prize: $100. Deadline: September 30, 2019.