Six short story and poetry competitions that are still open for submissions (2021)

(Updated April 2021)

Looking to hone your craft? These short story and poetry competitions are still open for submissions.

With hundreds of thousands of people in Ireland now looking for a way to occupy themselves during this difficult time, one such way is through writing short stories and brushing off their writing skills.

Many creative people have a penchant for writing and thankfully though we are living in strange times there are still short story competitions and awards that are taking submissions. It’s worth getting your creative hat on.

Wild Atlantic Writing Awards 2021 [May 2nd]

There are two separate categories here: the Flash Fiction Award and the Creative Nonfiction Award. Each award winner receives €500. The top 10 finalists will receive ‘Ireland Writing Retreat’ certificates and the chance to have their stories published on the website.

Find out more about this competition here.


Mairtín Crawford Poetry & Short Story Award [May 2nd]

“Both published and unpublished writers are invited to submit between 3-5 poems for the poetry award, and a short story of up to 2,500 words for the short story award, with the only stipulation being that they have not yet published a full collection of poetry, short stories, or a novel.”

Check out the website here to find out how to enter.

RTÉ Short Story Competition 2021 [May 7th]

“The overall winner will receive €3,000, while €2,000 and €1,000 will be awarded to the second and third place prize winners respectively. A further seven runners-up will receive €250 each, and all 10 shortlisted stories will be published on rte.ie and broadcast in a season of new writing on RTÉ Radio 1 in the autumn. “

Find out more about the rules surrounding this competition here.


Comedy Women In Print [May 28th]

This promotion is open to all UK and Ireland residents.

“Win a publishing contract with HarperCollins, with a £5,000 advance. The runner-up in the Unpublished Category will be awarded a place on the University of Hertfordshire MA in Creative Writing OR Writing Mentorship, consisting of four meetings with a professionally published author from the Creative Writing Team, taken within a six-month period, to discuss and workshop your current work in progress. A second runner-up will receive a place on the online MA in Comedy Writing from Falmouth University.”

See more on the website here.


The Aurora Prize for Writing 2021 [June 7th]

“In 2021 , the prize will be awarded to outstanding new writing in two categories, short fiction (of up to 2,000  words) and poetry (of up to 60 lines), with 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prizes in both categories.”

Check out the website for more information.


Michael Mullan Charity Fund Writing Competitions 2021 [July 15th]

“This is an open competition for short stories, flash fiction and poems on any subject matter. We also have a micro-fiction entry, open to Co. Kildare residents only.  The competition is open to people of 16 years and over. All entry fees will go towards Kidney Cancer Research at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute where Michael was treated.”

More information here.

Looking for other things to browse? Check out our list of top Irish podcasts to listen to here or Irish short films to watch here.

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I'm a freelance content creator and a journalist who has a strong desire to do as much as possible in the time I've got left on this planet. I got a taste for storytelling when I interned in Storyful many moons ago and since then have worked for places like WorldIrish (now Irish Central), Her.ie and Lonely Planet. I am constantly curious.

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