The 50-Word Fiction Competition

Can you write a story in just 50 words?

Each month we’ll provide a prompt to get you started, but where the story goes from there is entirely up to you.

The competition includes four categories, Adult Writers, All-age Gaelic Writers, Young Writers 5-11 and Young Writers 12-18. The entries will be judged by a panel and the four winning stories will be published on our website roughly two weeks after the closing date.

A prize will be awarded to a writer in each category:

Whether you're a seasoned writer or you've always fancied picking up a pen, why not give it a go?

Need some inspiration or tips? Read our 50 Word Fiction blogs, check out Sophie Cooke's 5 Things for Writing A Short Story and read last month's winners.


July's prompt

Prompt: Write a story featuring the moon

Full moon on a dark sky

Image credit: via rkarkowski at Pixabay

How to Enter

Entries for our July competition are currently open. Submit your story by Tuesday 30 July 2019 at noon.

  • You can submit one entry to one category per month. Please read the terms and conditions carefully before entering.
  • To submit your story, please complete the form below. You will receive a confirmation message on screen after submitting.
  • We welcome entries in Scots or Scottish Gaelic for both categories and thank The Gaelic Books Council for their support in judging our entries.
  • Please note that we no longer send acknowledgement emails and due to the large number of entries, we are not able to offer individual feedback.
  • If you have any questions about the competition, please send them to:
Gaelic Book Council
Literary Gift Company


Submit your entry here:

We are taking these details so that we can contact you with the result of your entry. You can find our Privacy Statement here. If you would like to withdraw your consent and have your story or details removed from our database, please emails

We only need this information if you are 18 or under
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Please note: this box does not limit you to 50 words, so please check your story length before submitting.
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June's Winners

Prompt: Write a story featuring a pair of headphones.

white headphones on forest floor
All-age category winner Emma De Vito

He found the headphones walking home from school - the same ones his parents had told him were too expensive to buy.
In the days which followed, with police going door to door, he kept his secret. Even when he recognised the headphones in a photograph of the missing child.
Gaelic category winner Joe Sanders

Air an eilean, rachadh e a chadal ag èisteachd ri fiaclan a’ Chuain Shèimh a’ bìdeadh air a’ chladach urchair chloiche bhon taigh.

A-nise, gun chomas cadail air a’ chiad oidhche aig an oilthigh ann an Glaschu, cuiridh e cluasain a-steach is lorgaidh e liosta-chluich ‘ceòl na mara’ air Spotify.

 Translation by Gaelic Books Council

On the island, he would go to sleep listening to the teeth of the Pacific Ocean biting the shore a stone’s throw from the house.

Now, unable to sleep on the first night at university in Glasgow, he puts in headphones and finds the ‘music of the sea’ playlist on Spotify.


Young Writers (12-18) category winning story by Emily Betts, age 14

'You're my best friend' was their favourite song. Split between a pair of earphones, it was theirs, plural. Synchronised. Where one ended, the other began, joined by the umbilical at the ear, closer than sisters.
After the funeral, her new headphones hugged her tight, no room to share. Grieving, singular.


Young Writers (5-11) category winning story by Eve Hamilton, age 10

With caution, I’m carried everywhere. Either in a bag or on some nasty humans head. YUCK. That’s all I used to do. But nowadays I’m used as the headphones that people use to listen to whale songs in the National Museum of Scotland. What a life I have.


Read all the previous winning stories here.

Image credit, Free Photos on Pixabay.