Opportunities for Writers
To find out more about opportunities for young writers, click here
The opportunities listed are not directly associated with Scottish Book Trust. Please check submission deadlines and guidelines carefully before submitting your work.
At Scottish Book Trust we get lots of people telling us about different opportunities for writers in Scotland. Here's the current crop, organised by the month of deadline:
NEIL GUNN WRITING COMPETITION
Following its launch on 11th September by author James Robertson, the 13th Neil Gunn Writing Competition is open for entries until 02 March 2015. There are two sections open to writers worldwide – short story and poetry. This year there is a choice of three themes, all of which are quotes from Neil Gunn’s writing.
- “For love is the creator and cruelty is that which destroys”
- “The secret loveliness and laughter in things”
- “The extra magic of distance”
Deadline: Monday 2 March 2015
POETRY WORKSHOP: A TASTE FOR POETRY
The workshop will take place in the beautiful setting of Hill of Tarvit near Cupar, one of Scotland's finest Edwardian mansion houses, replete with a splendid collection of antiques, furniture, Chinese porcelain and superb paintings by Sir Henry Raeburn, Allan Ramsay and eminent Dutch artists. The workshop will be tutored by Gerry Cambridge, the leading Scottish poet and editor/publisher of The Dark Horse poetry journal, who has a strong interest in design, typography and nature photography.
Date: Monday 2 March 2015
ORKNEY WRITERS' COURSE
Now in its fifth year, the Orkney Writers’ Course will run from 17-21 June 2014, as part of the St Magnus International Festival in Orkney. The course is based in the Pier Arts Centre, Stromness.
Directed by Orkney-based writer Pamela Beasant, and co-tutored by Shetland-based poet Jen Hadfield, the course offers the following:
• A session with Festival Poet Stewart Conn
• The opportunity to interact with composers on the St Magnus Composers’ Course
• One-to-one mentoring on request
• The chance to read your work at a dedicated Festival event, Poems with Tea and Cake
• Advice on how to get your work into print
Course dates: Wednesday 17-Sunday 21 June 2015
Deadline: Monday 2 March 2015
TINDER PRESS OPEN FOR SUBMISSIONS
Headline imprint Tinder Press will celebrate two years of publishing by opening submissions for unagented manuscripts for two weeks in March.
Tinder Press Publisher Mary-Anne Harrington said ‘Since we launched Tinder Press with the publication of INSTRUCTIONS FOR A HEATWAVE by Maggie O’Farrell, we’ve had a huge amount to celebrate, and 2015 is already shaping up to be an exciting year, with new novels from Patrick Gale and Sarah Winman.
‘At Tinder Press we are committed to finding the freshest literary voices, and the time seems right for us to reach out directly to authors at an early stage in their careers. This business is all about discovering new talent, so we’re hoping to be surprised and delighted, and that at the end of the day we’ll find an author we can go on to work with in the future.’
Writers are invited to submit fifty pages, an outline and an author biography from previously unpublished writers of fiction. Short stories will be considered, in addition to novels.
Submissions will only be accepted electronically, and should be made via email@example.com
Submission window: Monday 2-Sunday 15 March 2015
POETRY WORKSHOP: CELEBRATING AND RAIDING THE BALLAD TRADITION
The workshop will take place in the beautiful setting of Kellie Castle near Pittenweembe. The workshop will be tutored by Alexander Hutchison, winner of the Saltire Poetry Book of the Year award for 2014 for his collection ‘Bones & Breath’. A prize-winning poet who has taught creative writing in Canada, the US and Scotland, he will start from the castle’s own long history and from the nearby fishing port in Pittenweem to explore Scotland’s maritime and rural heritage, celebrating the ballad tradition of poetry and song, and how that offers a feast of imagery and rich detail for your own writing.
Date: Wednesday 4 March 2015
BLEAK BLEAK BLEAK MAGAZINE: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
Bleak Bleak Bleak is an online arts magazine, aiming to encourage debate, nurture intellectual discourse, and shine a light on gifted (but perhaps formerly undiscovered) artists, journalists and creative writers. Submissions of photographs, paintings, illustration, interviews, review, poetry, prose fragments or short stories, or articles on pertinent contemporary issues are all welcome. Prose or articles over 2000 words cannot be accepted.
Deadline: Wednesday 4 March 2015
POETRY WORKSHOP: VOICES AND TIME
This workshop led by acclaimed poet and tutor Gerrie Fellows for poets interested in developing a poetry sequence or long poem, will explore several key aspects of the poetry sequence – narrative and present time, and voice. The group will look at these through the work of published poets before coming afresh to their own writing. Participants are encouraged to bring a theme they can work with or are already working on.
Date: Thursday 5 March 2015
TOM MCGRATH TRUST: SMALL GRANTS AWARDS
Small grants awards will be given towards expenditure which makes writing for stage possible and able to be heard, examples may include travel and research; equipment; costs of staging performed readings of new work; general living costs to support artists development. Small grants awards will range from £300-£500.
Deadline: Friday 6 March 2015
POETRY WORKSHOP: NEW POEMS AND RE-REVISIONS
Carolyn Forché has taught writing and literature for forty years. She is a Professor of English at Georgetown University, where she also directs The Lannan Center for Poetics and Social Practice. this workshop will explore methods of generating work, and unusual revision techniques.
Date: Friday 6 March 2015
COASTWORD FESTIVAL WRITING COMPETITION
What do you think of when you hear the word ‘hotel’? The best hotel you’ve stayed at? The worst? What’s your ideal hotel? Does it have a view of the Grand Canyon, or sunrise over Mount Fuji, or the heathery hills of the Trossachs? Why did you go there? Who did you meet? Was it a wedding, a ceilidh, a Burns Supper, a romantic weekend for two, an anniversary, a wake? Or perhaps you were the curious chambermaid? The hard-working concierge?
You are invited to submit your stories and poems inspired by The Hotel, for the CoastWord 2015 anthology.
Stories are limited to 1,500 words, poems to 40 lines.
Deadline: Friday 6 March 2015
POETRY WORKSHOP: LEAVING THE COMFORT ZONE
Poetry improvisation is an approach to writing that involves spontaneity, collaboration, and oral composition. In this workshop a maximum of five participants will work collaboratively with Robin Vaughan-Williams to develop a performance piece that grows out of their different voices and the ways they interact. The group will explore freestyle and structured approaches to improvisation, working in a supportive environment where participants feel able to openly follow their creative instincts. At the end of the day it will be brought together for an audience in a short improvisational performance.
Date: Saturday 7 March 2015
POETRY WORKSHOP: EDIT, DRAFT, EDIT, [REPEAT]
Ahren Warner, the poetry editor for Poetry London, a leading international poetry magazine, has been praised by the Sunday Times for his 'pizzazz, wit and – astonishing at his age – both technical assurance and a genuinely integrated humanity.’ His books have been shortlisted for major prizes and have twice been named as Poetry Book Society Recommendations. In this intensive writing workshop on the practice, process and publishing of poetry, he offers an editor’s insight into the importance of effective editing.
Date: Saturday 7 March 2015
JAMES TAIT BLACK PRIZE FOR DRAMA
The James Tait Black Prize is Britain’s oldest literary award and was extended to include drama for the first time in 2012. The prize for the best original new play written in English, Scots or Gaelic is organised by the University in association with Playwrights’ Studio, Scotland and the Traverse Theatre. The winner of the third £10,000 annual award will be announced in August 2015.
Judges will award the accolade to a play which displays an original voice in theatre and one that they feel has made a significant and unique contribution to the art form.
The prize is open to any new work by playwrights from any country, and at any stage in their career. The judges will include students and staff of the University’s School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures, representatives from Playwrights’ Studio, Scotland and the Traverse Theatre.
Deadline: Monday 9 March 2015
PERFECTING YOUR SUBMISSION LETTER AND SYNOPSIS
In this master class, Nicola Morgan offers a hands-on workshop. If you want to craft a cover letter and synopsis that can help you get the attention of agents or editors (in a good way), don’t miss this Edinburgh event! Learn how to craft a perfect pitch for your wonderful book, produce a shimmering synopsis and show yourself as the clued-up, personable and hard-working professional that you are.
Deadline: Saturday 14 March 2015
WRITERS AND CREATIVE PRODUCERS LAB
The Lab consists of a Writers Lab and a simultaneous and integrated Creative Producers Lab:
The Writers Lab aims to be a pressure cooker development process for screenwriters and writer-directors. Writers will be challenged professionally and coached by international colleagues to bring out the heart of a story in an effective screenplay.
Creative Producers concentrate on story development and the creative process; refining skills, tools and working practices in collaboration with international advisors and writers(-directors) of the Lab.
There are 8 spots for writers and/or writer-directors with a project and 4 for creative producers.
Deadline: Sunday 15 March 2015
VESSEL: POETRY WORKSHOP WITH REBECCA SHARP
This multimedia poetry workshop will help make participants' words more tangible. Writers will have a particular subject or theme in mind, eg: a memory, place, feeling, experience; something you wish to describe, commemorate, celebrate or exorcise. Participants will explore how a poem can be a vessel and talisman, imbued with personal power that radiates out to the wider world and conversely gives something back to the bearer.
Date: Sunday 15 March 2015
EMMA PRESS: CALL FOR MILDLY EROTIC POEMS
For the second edition of The Emma Press Anthology of Mildly Erotic Verse, the publisher is expanding the original selection to include even more experiences and stories. Writers are invited to submit poems about love, sex, romance and eroticism, focusing particularly on erotic headspaces.
Deadline: Sunday 15 March 2015
MSLEXIA WOMEN'S SHORT STORY COMPETITION 2015
Stories can be up to 2,200 words in length and can be on any subject.
1st Prize: £2,000
plus two optional extras: a week’s writing retreat at Tŷ Newydd Writers’ Centre*, and a day with a Virago editor*
2nd prize: £500
3rd prize: £250
Three other finalists will win £100 each
All winning stories will be published in Mslexia magazine.
Fee: £10 per story
Deadline: Monday 16 March 2015
MAIRI HEDDERWICK BURSARY: WRITING FOR CHILDREN COURSE AT MONIACK MHOR
Kindly donated by Mairi Hedderwick, this annual bursary will support one place on the Moniack Mhor Writing for Children and Young Adults course on July 13th to July 18th. The tutors for the course are Joan Lennon, Melvin Burgess and guest Anne Fine. It is hoped that this opportunity will support those wanting to develop skills in the genre and enhance their writing practice.
The Bursary is open to unpublished/published writers living and working in Scotland who have or would like to have a ‘Writing for Children or Young Adults’ piece in development.
Deadline: Friday 27 March 2015
THE BATH NOVEL AWARD
The Bath Novel Award is an international prize for aspiring and self-published writers
Writers are invited to submit the first 5,000 words plus a one page synopsis.
Deadline: Tuesday 31 March 2015
SCOTTISH ARTS CLUB SHORT STORY COMPETITION 2015
Author Alexander McCall Smith is the chairman of judges in the 2015 Scottish Arts Club Short Story Competition. The competition is open to all published and unpublished writers over 16 years. Stories should be no more than 1,500 words and can be on any topic.
All funds raised through the competition will be channelled through the Scottish Arts Club Charitable Trust to benefit the arts in Scotland.
Entry fee: £10.
Deadline: Tuesday 31 March 2015
SCIENCE FICTION MAGAZINE: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
Shoreline of Infinity is a new forthcoming Science Fiction magazine from Scotland. Issue 1 will be launched this summer and writers are invited to submit stories which explore our unknown future.
Deadline: Tuesday 31 March 2015
NEON LITERARY MAGAZINE, BATTERY PACK II: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
Battery Pack II will be a tiny anthology of short stories, made from a single folded sheet of paper. The finished article will be given away for free with the Summer issue of Neon.
Stories should be no more than seventy-five words in total.
Deadline: Wednesday 15 April 2015
THUNDERSTONE BOOKS: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
ThunderStone Books aim to publish children's books that have an educational aspect, stories that encourage learning for children, whether that be learning about a new language/culture or learning more about science and math in a fun, fictional format. Fiction and Non-Fiction submissions are currently being accepted.
Deadline: Friday 1 May 2015
MAIRI HEDDERWICK BURSARY: TRAVEL WRITING COURSE AT MONIACK MHOR
Kindly donated by Mairi Hedderwick, this annual bursary will support one place on the Moniack Mhor Travel Writing course on October 12th to October 17th 2015. The tutors for the course are Chris Stewart and Mairi Hedderwick with guest Nick Thorpe. It is hoped that this opportunity will support those wanting to develop skills in the genre and enhance their writing practice.
The Bursary is open to unpublished/published writers living and working in Scotland who have or would like to have a travel piece in development.
Deadline: Friday 15 May 2015
THE BRIDPORT PRIZE 2015
One of the richest writing competitions in the UK, the Bridport Prize is open to all nationalities aged 16 years and over.
A new category for flash fiction with a prize of £1,000 was launched in 2010. There is a second prize of £500, 3rd prize of £250 and 3 supplementary prizes of £50.
Deadline: Sunday 31 May 2015
THE FELXIBLE PERSONA: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
The Flexible Persona is a biweekly literary journal that publishes fiction and nonfiction in audio and print format. Writers in Scotland, England, Ireland, and Wales are invited to submit engaging, character-driven fiction. The Flexible Persona is a space for experimentation, chances, accidents and discoveries. Word count: 1200 – 6500 words.
Deadline: Sunday 31 May 2015
THE BRUNTWOOD PRIZE FOR PLAYWRITING 2015
The Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting is the biggest national competition for playwriting. It is the search for great new plays and great writers.
With prize money totalling £40,000, The Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting, a joint venture between property company Bruntwood and the Royal Exchange Theatre, is the UK’s biggest playwriting competition. Since its inception in 2005, over 7000 scripts have been entered, £160,000 has been awarded to 15 prize winning writers and eight winning productions have been staged.
Deadline: Friday 5 June 2015
WEST SUSSEX WRITERS NATIONAL SHORT STORY COMPETITION
The competition has no set theme and entries must be a maximum of 3000 words.
The final judge for this year's competition will be novelist Rosanna Ley.
£250 first prize
£75 Second Prize
£50 third Prize
Entry fee: £5 per submission
Deadline: Tuesday 30 June 2015
3 DAY RESIDENTIAL WRITING COURSES IN GALLOWAY
Whether you are starting out as a writer or seeking to enhance your skills, this is your opportunity to discover your writing potential at this 3-day residential course based at Durhamhill in the beautiful and tranquil Galloway countryside. The tutors are Margaret Elphinstone & Mary Smith. They are well-established, published writers with a wealth of teaching experience who will support & encourage attendees to develop their writing. Workshop topics include the creation of character & plot, the role of the narrative voice & writing from personal experience.
Deadline: Monday 9 November 2015
PRODUCT MAGAZINE: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
Product Magazine recently issued a call out for visual art strong enough to elicit a creative response from writers. Each week six pieces of art will be published and writers are invited to submit stories inspired by the work.
Texts can relate to one or more of the artworks and, if chosen, will be published on the site in coming months.
- 3,500 words maximum per story
- Two stories maximum per writer
- 100 lines of poetry maximum
JANIS MACKAY WORKSHOPS
Author Janis Mackay will be running various workshops throughout 2015. Please download the information leaflet for more information
1000 WORDS: SUBMISSIONS OPEN
1000words is looking for previously unpublished flash-fiction of up to 1000 words in length. The stories may be in any genre, but must have been written in response to one of the images from our Pinterest Boards. We do not accept poetry.
POETRY SUBMISSIONS WELCOME FOR AN GUTH
Poems in Irish and/or Scottish Gaelic are sought for the annual anthology An Guth. Consideration will also be given, for inclusion in Gaelic translation, to unpublished work in English by poets with a collection profile.
For more information, please email Editor Rody Gorman: firstname.lastname@example.org
THE WOMENTORING PROJECT
The WoMentoring Project exists to offer free mentoring by professional literary women to talented up and coming female writers who would otherwise find it difficult to access similar opportunities.
The mission of The WoMentoring Project is simple: to introduce successful literary women to other women writers at the beginning of their careers who would benefit from some insight, knowledge and support. The hope is that we’ll see new, talented and diverse female voices emerging as a result of time and guidance received from our mentors.
There is no application deadline and mentors will keep receiving applications until they have selected their mentee. This is a pilot project and will begin in April 2014 and finish in April 2015 initially – with potential to make it an ongoing permanent project.
DUNDEE WRITES: SUBMISSIONS WELCOME
Dundee Writes is a little magazine of creative writing from students, staff and recent graduates of the University of Dundee. It is produced and edited by postgraduates on the MLitt in Writing Practice and Study, part of the University of Dundee’s Creative Writing Programme in the School of Humanities.
All kinds of creative writing will be considered, with a limit of 1000 words (prose) or 40 lines (poetry). Please send your work (in word doc format) to email@example.com including a separate cover page with name, department and contact details. All pieces will be judged anonymously.
THE HAWICK NEWS- POETRY CORNER
Regional newspaper The Hawick News is looking for poems to feature in its weekly Poetry Corner. Submissions of up to 4 poems (in English or Scots) of up to 16 lines each are welcomed, and should be sent to poetry editor Thomas Clark at firstname.lastname@example.org, either in the body of the e-mail or attached as a PDF, RTF or Word document. Previously published poems are accepted, but please let us know in the body of your e-mail where and when the poem has been published! The submission window is open all year round.
Responses can normally be expected within 2-3 weeks of submission.
HARPER COLLINS- THE WEDNESDAY POST
HarperCollins is inviting unsolicited manuscripts from aspiring authors in Australia, New Zealand and around the world. Whether or not you’ve been previously published, this is the perfect opportunity to submit your work and have a chance to be published by an award-winning, international publishing house.
Our online submissions scheme, The Wednesday Post, is ready to uncover the best voices writing today. All entries will be considered for both print and ebook publication as well as digital-only publication.
Every Wednesday, we will accept submissions through the website. Submissions must be sent through the online portal and should meet all the guidelines outlined below. Please note that submissions sent by post or email will NOT be considered for publication.
If we are interested in seeing more of your work, we will contact you within three weeks. Unfortunately we do not have the capacity to provide feedback for unsuccessful submissions.
We are currently looking for: adult fiction and non-fiction including novels (all genres), memoirs, biographies, narrative histories, young adult, popular science and illustrated non-fiction.
We are not currently accepting: plays, poetry, mind body spirit, religious titles, health and fitness, children’s books and educational texts.
Submissions open from: Wednesday 26 February 2014
SALT PUBLISHING- 'MODERN DREAMS' CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
In their fifteenth year of publishing, Salt are seeking submissions for their new digital-only initiative. Salt is calling for submissions for a new series of digital-only novellas as an extension of its 'SALT MODERN FICTION' list. Submissions must deal with 18 to 24 year olds living in contemporary inner-city Britain.
Manuscripts are currently being accepted on an ongoing basis. Please check the Salt website for the latest details before submitting your work.
THE NEW CURIOSITY SHOP: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
The New Curiosity are seeking informative and entertaining ebooks on topics writers know and love well. The ebook will be between 13,000 to 17,000 words in length, just right for someone with a Kindle tucked into their travel bag.
BLOOMSBURY SPARK: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
Bloomsbury Spark is a one-of-a-kind, global, digital imprint from Bloomsbury Publishing dedicated to publishing a wide array of exciting fiction eBooks to teen, YA and new adult readers.
If you have a manuscript between 25 and 60k words long, then send it to: BloomsburySparkUK@bloomsbury.com
THE BOOK THAT MADE ME...
Books are powerful things. They can introduce us to new ideas. Give us the courage to do what we couldn't do before.
Even transform our lives completely.
The Book That Made Me... is an ongoing collection of stories about lives that have been changed by books.
Whatever the story (and whatever the book), anyone can submit their own story online or in any Waterstones bookshop.
PUFFIN REVIEW: SUBMISSIONS WELCOME
The Puffin Review welcomes submissions of fiction, poetry or journalism.
Fiction submissions should be flash fiction of up to 500 words, short stories or stand-alone novel extracts of up to 3,000 words. Poetry submissions should consist of three poems, with a maximum total of 150 lines. Articles can be a range of essays, reviews and opinion pieces of a maximum of 1,500 words.
THI WURD MAGAZINE: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
Thi Wurd, a fiction magazine based in Glasgow, are seeking submissions of short fiction and illustrations. Submissions should be no more than 4,000 words and there is no minimum amount.
NEW EDINBURGH WRITERS
New Edinburgh Writers meet every Wednesday from 6-8pm in Fountainbridge Library, near the leisure centre. The format can vary from week to week, but meetings usually involve members reading their own material and/or writing exercises with the occasional visiting professional writer.
The group welcomes all writers, including children's literature, drama, short stories and poetry.
STRANGER THAN FICTION WRITERS' GROUP
Stranger Than Fiction is a very informal and friendly writers' group for Edinburgh folk who are interested in writing non fiction. It’s open to anyone who is serious about non-fiction writing, whatever their level of publication/aspiration/activity. Most months the group will discuss a chapter or two of a member's current project and there will occasionally be guest speakers asked along. On the whole, it's a largely social event for non fiction writers including general chat and jokes about the use of the semi-colon.
THE FICTION DESK: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
The Fiction Desk welcome submissions of short fiction on a rolling basis. They seek stories about people and places, rather than about writing itself. Stories should be between 2,000 and 11,000 words in length.
EDINBURGH CREATIVE WRITERS CLUB
Edinburgh Creative Writers Club meets every Monday in Pulp Fiction Books, located at 43 Bread Street. Most people bring something to read and the range of style and form is wide. Further discussions have ranged from submitting to agents/publishers and dealing with writer's block.
THE BOHEMYTH: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
The Bohemyth Literary Journal is open for submissions of previously unpublished works of short fiction and personal essay. They are looking for contemporary short fiction with a literary bent, with ideas that affect, engage, move and entertain. The word count is less than 3,000 words for short stories and personal essays, and under 700 words for flash fiction pieces.
NAWE: THE WRITER'S COMPASS
The Writer’s Compass is the name for all NAWE’s professional development services for writers. It brings together NAWE’s professional development programme with the free information and advice services for all writers formerly offered by literaturetraining.
Our aim is to help writers in all genres, and at all stages in their development, to steer a course through the complexities of the writing life and build and sustain their careers.
HIGHLAND LITERARY SALON
Created in the tradition of the literary salons of Paris and New York, and based on the successes of similar gatherings in Edinburgh and Glasgow, the HLS brings together those with an interest in literature to discuss writing, ideas, projects, publishing, and all things literary.
The Salon will be on the third Tuesday of each month at Maverick's, 5 Young Street, Inverness, IV3 5BL.
Salons may feature writers, agents, and other literary professionals as guest speakers. More details can be found on the website
For more information, contact: email@example.com
Weegie Wednesday began in January 2007, inspired by Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature’s salon night (last Tuesday of every month at the Wash Bar, upstairs). Writers, booksellers, publishers, librarians, or anyone who wishes to network and talk books is welcome. Please pass the word. The meetings take place once a month at the following venue:
CCA (Centre for Contemporary Arts) Glasgow, 350 Sauchiehall Street, G2 3JD. Telephone : 0141 352 4900