Write Exposure & Words Magazine Competitions

Write Exposure has launched its first monthly competition. There are 3 categories – short fiction (up to 1200 words), flash fiction (up to 250 words) and poetry. Entry into each category is £4 or you can enter all 3 for £9.

The winner will be showcased on the website for a month along with 3 other ‘honourable mentions’.

Prize money depends on the number of entrants. I couldn’t find it on the website so I contacted Cheslyn Baker, who is running the competition, to find out the ‘formula’ that would be used to calculate the prize. She told me that it would be 25% of the total entry fee received in each category.

The theme for the competitions will change each month. For November it is “I know your face” and the closing date is 30th November.

Please read the full details here before you enter. 

In most competitions we never know what percentage of the entry fees was paid out in prizes so this competition is being transparent in that respect. It is also being open about its judging. It will be using a panel of 3, one of whom is a ‘citizen’ judge and any of us can apply to sit in that third seat. See the website for details.

What does anybody think about prize money being 25% of the pot? Is it fair? Can we (the entrants) actually reach a fair conclusion on this question when so many other competitions only advertise a fixed prize rather than a percentage?

There is a lot of work in running a writing competition – including a large amount of administration as well as the actual reading and judging of entries. 100 entries would be required to win £100 – and I’m sure that a lot of competitions offering a prize of £100 receive more than 100 entries so maybe 25% is realistic.

By coincidence I came across another competition recently where the prize money is dependent on the number of entrants. Words Magazine is running a ‘winner takes all’ competition for short stories of up to 2000 words. Entry fee is £3 – so if 100 people enter the prize will be £300 (Closing date is December 31st).

Best of luck if you decide to enter either of these!

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  1. #1 by Tracy Fells on November 14, 2011 - 4:32 pm

    Hi Saly, somehow you always find a competition I haven’t heard of. So always thanks for the heads up on these. Maybe I’m picky but I like to know exactly what’s in the prize pot before entering, simply because they’re a lot of competitions now running and you can’t (well I can’t afford) to enter all of them.

    Also well done on being shortlisted in Writers’ News short story comp – saw your name in the magazine!


  2. #2 by Patsy Collins (@PatsyCollins) on November 14, 2011 - 5:51 pm

    In theory a percentage (or all) of the entry fees is fairest, but I prefer to know what the prize will be before I enter.

  3. #3 by susanjanejones on November 14, 2011 - 7:36 pm

    Thanks for these links Sally, I’d rather have a set prize before I enter a competition. I don’t like it when some cancel a competition because there weren’t enough entrants. Those who did enter have been put on a shelf as it were. I like the sound of the words one though.

    • #4 by Sally Jenkins on November 14, 2011 - 8:26 pm

      Susan, Patsy & Tracy – thanks for dropping by. I think knowing what the prize value is in advance can make a competition seem more attractive but, on the other hand, a percentage pot can be fairer to both entrants & organisers (must be difficult to set a prize amount when a competition is run for the first time & you don’t know how many will enter).

  4. #5 by Tracy Fells on November 16, 2011 - 2:44 pm

    Hi Sally, just wanted to add a big THANK YOU from me for all the competitions that you highlight on this blog. Some months ago you talked about the West Country Writers Annual Conference and how you’d won the 2011 bursary to attend their annual conference. As I hail from Devon this spurred me on to apply and write the letter. As you stated ‘why not have a go’ as the winner would receive free accommodation and entrance to the whole 2012 conference. Amazingly I received a call today (from lovely lady at West Country Writers) to tell me I have been awarded the bursary for next year!! Just shows you what can happen when you have a go and this came out from reading your blog.
    Keep up the excellent posts!

    • #6 by Sally Jenkins on November 17, 2011 - 8:23 am

      Brilliant news, Tracy! I hope you have a great time.

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