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.


January's prompt

To allow for the holidays, we're running an extra long competition this month.

Prompt: Write a story featuring fireworks.

Image credit: via Christels at Pixabay

How to Enter

Entries for our January competition are currently open. Submit your story by Tuesday 29 January 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:


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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November's Winners

Prompt: Write a story set at a music festival.

All-age category winner P.W. Bridgman

I was conceived in a field at Woodstock while Jimi played that reverse-strung Strat. My father’s tattooed backside appears briefly, 91:16 minutes into the movie. It’s all we have. He disappeared next day. Mom’s now a semiotician: successful, embittered. Him? Still searching. I pace, ever vigilant, all along the watchtower.

Gaelic category winner, Joan Stewart

“An e ‘fèis’ neo ‘feis’ a tha ann?”

“An dà rud... ma tha thu fortanach!” thuirt Niall le gàire.

Eh, bha mi ciallachadh an robh stràc air am facal Gàidhlig airson ‘festival’, ach air an làmh eile... Uill, bidh Niall anns an teanta co-dhiù. “Tiugainn!” thuirt ise le priobadh.

Translation from Gaelic Book Council

“Is it ‘fèis’ [festival] or ‘feis’ [sex]?”

“Both… if you’re lucky!” said Niall with a laugh.

Eh, I meant was there an accent on the Gaelic word for ‘festival’, but on the other hand… Well, Niall will be in the tent anyway.

“Come on!” she said with a wink.

Young Writers (12-18) category winning story by Ewan Little, age 16

We were rocking and rolling - banging, scraping and screeching. I knocked my head back and forth to stentorian tones, raked my fingers across the strings, bleating out boisterous melodies. With a crash, the cacophony was over. My Mum, standing awkwardly at the back of our garage, gave polite applause.

Young Writers (5-11) category winning story by Dougal Webb, age 9

One night, at Bristol Music Festival, as everyone’s favourite singer sung the first few bars of her song, a blinding flash came from the microphone. The audience’s gaze turned towards the city. They started to walk and say “Tonight’s the night we destroy.” The singer laughed wickedly.
Bristol was doomed.

Read all the previous winning stories here.

Image credit, thekaleidascope on Pixabay.