March 2018’s best writing opportunities


March has swept snow to the UK but it’s also brought great writing competitions and opportunities for writers based here and internationally. We’ve pulled together this month’s best, with details of prizes, requirements and deadlines so, whether you’re snowed in or not, you can start submitting!


Salariya Children’s Picture Book Prize

The Stratford Literary Festival is running a number of competitions including the Salariya Children’s Picture Book Prize which is open to unpublished authors and illustrators. The winner will get a £5,000 advance against royalties, with the book published in 2019 by Salariya imprint, Scribblers. Entries close on 5th March. Details here.

Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting

Applications are open for the 2018, $35,000USD Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting from new and/or amateur screenwriters based anywhere in the world.  Applicants must submit an original feature film screenplay between 70 and 160 pages, in English, written by up to two writers. The early-bird deadline is 7th March and the final cut-off for entries is 1st May. Details here.

The Open Border Fiction Prize

The Open Border Fiction Prize is open to stories between 1,900 and 6,000 words from writers worldwide. The winner will receive $1,000 USD and magazine publication. Entries close on 9th March. Details here.

BBC National Short Story Award

The BBC and Cambridge University are welcoming entries into the BBC National Short Story Award. The winning author will receive £15,000 and four shortlisted authors will each get £600. Entries close on 12th March. Details here.

The Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize

The Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize is an annual award for adventure writing. The Best Published Novel category accepts entries published between 1st January 2017 and 30th April 2018 with a top prize of £15,000. The winner of the Best Unpublished Manuscript category will receive a £7,500 travel grant to put toward research and mentoring from agents at Tibor Jones & Associates. Entries close on 12th March. Details here.

Nelligan Prize for Short Fiction

Short stories of between 2,500 and 12,500 words are being welcomed by The Colorado Review for the 2018 Nelligan Prize for Short Fiction. The winner will receive $2,000USD and publication in the autumn/winter issue. Entries are open until 14th March. Details here.

Prairie Schooner Book Prize

Literary magazine, Prairie Schooner is accepting fiction and poetry for its annual book prize. The winners will receive $3,000USD each and publication. Entries are open until 15th March. Details here.

Alpine Fellowship Writing Prize

The theme of this year’s Alpine Fellowship Writing Prize is ‘Childhood’ and a £3,000 cash prize will be awarded to the best short story on the topic. The winner and two runners will also be invited to attend the Venice symposium. The deadline is 15th March: Details here.

TSS International Flash Fiction Competition

The latest round of the TSS International Flash Fiction Competition has a top prize of £400. Winning and highly commended stories will also be published online. The deadline is 15th March. Details here.

The London Loop Writing Competition

Win £10,000 in The London Loop urban poster art competition for creatives, which has a special category for writers. It’s free to enter. The deadline is 31st March: Details here.

The Scottish Arts Club Short Story Competition

The Scottish Arts Club Short Story Competition is open to writers worldwide, published and unpublished. The first prize is £1,000 and two runners-up will be awarded £100 each. Entries are open until 31st March. Details here.

The Writers Bureau Short Story Competition

The 2018 Writers Bureau Short Story Competition is open for fiction up to 2,000 words. The top prize is £300. All winners and runners-up will also receive a Writers Bureau course of their choice worth over £374. Entries are open until 31st March. Details here.

The Rubery Book Award

The Rubery Book Award seeks the best books by indie writers, self-published authors and independent presses internationally. The ‘Book of the Year’ will be awarded £1,500 and will be read by London literary agency, MBA. In addition, category winners will each receive £150. Entries are open until 31st March. Details here.

The Winchester Writing Festival Competitions

The Winchester Writing Festival competitions have a great selection of categories and prizes for novel extracts, short stories, flash fiction, poetry and more. The deadline this year is 11th April (earlier than in previous years). Details here.

The Bath Novel Award

The Bath Novel Award is an annual, international prize for emerging novelists. The judge is literary agent, Felicity Blunt and the first prize is £2,500. The closing date is 30th April. Details here.

Swanwick Writers’ Summer School Competition

Win a place at the 70th Swanwick Writers’ Summer School by entering a poem, short story or piece of children’s fiction into this year’s competition. Entries are open until 30th April. Details here.


We also promote many more writing opportunities on Facebook and Twitter every week so do look out for those too.

If you have a great competition or opportunity for writers coming up, do get in touch with us here. We publish the best every month on Literary Lightbox and promote even more on social media.

  • author's avatar

    By: Loretta Milan

    Loretta Milan is the founder of Literary Lightbox. She works as a professional writer and also has a novel in construction. She is a graduate of the Faber Academy and Curtis Brown Creative’s three-month novel writing programme. Her writing is fuelled by too much tea.

  • author's avatar

Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in /home/literar2/public_html/wp-content/plugins/mashshare-sharebar/includes/template-functions.php on line 162