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.


February's prompt

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

Prompt: Write a story featuring a camera.


Image credit: via PublicDomainArchive at Pixabay

How to Enter

Entries for our February competition are currently open. Submit your story by Tuesday 26 February 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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January's Winners

Prompt: Write a story featuring fireworks.

Fireworks in night sky
All-age category winner Mary Sheehan

Great Aunt Julia craved attention.
Her voice was the loudest in the room,
her clothes eye-catchingly bright.
She dreamed of being a Hollywood star.
When L.A.’s New Year’s Eve fireworks exploded into a million stars,
so too did her ashes which had been entombed within.
Making her dream come true.


All-age Gaelic category winner Robbie MacLeòid

Dragh a’ Choin

Dorch. Oidhche. Cadalan. Sàmhach. Sàbhailte.

Boillsg. Brag.

Cuideigin. Rudeigin. Tachairt. Cunnart.

Boillsg, boillsg. Brag. Brag, Brag.

Cho mòr. Cho àrd. Cha tèid



a stad. Dè nì? Cà bheil? Cuidi





Toradh na Bliadhn’ Ùire: Cac agus mùn agus deòir.


Translated by Gaelic Books Council

The Dog’s Distress

Dark. Night. Snooze. Quiet. Safe.

Flash. Bang.

Someone. Something. Happening. Danger.

Flash, flash. Bang. Bang, bang.

So big. So high. It won’t



stop. What? Where? Hel





The New Year’s result: shit and pee and tears.


Young Writers (12-18) category winning story by Rosie Wood, age 14

The show was intoxicating. The way the dancers moved, as if they were fireworks, whizzing and darting across the stage till they exploded in bursts of colour and light. Their energy heated up the entire audience, until it died away as quickly as a spark, and the stage went black.


Young Writers (5-11) category winning story by Esme Jack, age 11

I was watching the fireworks on the Lyle hill. The fireworks were going up as fast as lightning. Then an alien came down from it's U.F.O.! It turns out the fireworks were coming from the a distraction! The aliens took over Greenock as their new galactic headquarters!

Read all the previous winning stories here.

Image credit, thekaleidascope on Pixabay.