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Welcome to the Writers Connect! Newsletter

Writing is a human experience. It’s about connection with everyone and everything around us.

We understand you’re busy. So the newsletter usually has just four or five main items of content. A brief but satisfying read.

In this issue:

  • Write Here, Right Now: Writing Competitions
  • Word of the Day. An unusual word to keep your writing fresh
  • Humorous Quote
  • Writing Inspiration
  • Writing Tip

Write Here, Right Now: Writing Events

Following are writing competitions that close between 1 and 21 September 2020.

For competition closing dates, bear in mind these relate to the time zone where the competition originates, so check the relevant site.


Comp 1: The Pen/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction

Do you love writing fiction about subjects that make a difference? Then this may be just the competition for you.

About: This is a career-founding prize promoting fiction that addresses issues of social justice and the impact of culture and politics on human relationships.

Open to: International, previously unpublished novel of high literary calibre

Length: Full manuscript

Theme: Issues of social justice and the impact of culture and politics on human relationships

Closes: 1 September 2020

Entry fee: $40

Prizes: 1st = $25,000 US cash prize + publication

Details here: https://pen.org/pen-bellwether-prize/


Comp 2: Insecure Writer’s Support Group Anthology Contest

The name of this competition was what drew me to read about it!

About: ‘The winning stories will be edited and published by Dancing Lemur Press’ imprint Freedom Fox Press in the 2021 IWSG anthology. Authors will receive royalties on books sold, both print and eBook. The top story will have the honour of giving the anthology its title’

Open to: International. Age limit not stated

Word count: 4,500 – 6,000

Theme: ‘Dark Matter’ – the genre is science fiction

Closes: 2 September 2020

Entry fee: Free

Prize: Winning stories = edited & published by Freedom Fox Press in 2021 IWSG anthology + Royalties on books sold (print & eBook) + top story gives the anthology its title

Details here: https://www.insecurewriterssupportgroup.com/p/the-2019-annual-iwsg-anthology-contest.html

Also, see here for guidance on the types of stories published by Freedom Fox Press: http://www.dancinglemurpressllc.com/freedom-fox-press


Comp 3: Oxford Brookes University International Poetry Competition

A competition for poets, that has two categories.

About: The two categories are:

Open category (open to all poets 18+)

English as an Additional Language (EAL) category (open to all poets 18+ who write in English as an Additional Language)

Open to: 18+ poets, new or established poets, anywhere in the world

Word Count: 50 lines

Theme: Appears to be open

Closes: 14 September 2020

Entry fee: £5

Prizes: 1st = £1,000 (GBP) the winner of each category. The two runners-up = £200.

Details here: https://www.brookes.ac.uk/poetry-centre/international-poetry-competition/


Comp 4: Mslexia Fiction & Memoir Competition 2020: Children’s & YA Novel

There are four categories for women writers – memoir and life writing, short story, flash fiction, and children’s and YA novel. Hopefully you’ll find at least one category that matches your writing.

About: This prize has been created specifically to promote the work of women who are unpublished novelists

Open to: Women, international

Word count: Full manuscript – NOTE: submit the first 5,000 words of completed novels of at least 20,000 words in length, for children and/or YA readers

Theme: Not stated

Closes: 21 September 2020

Entry fee: £25

Prizes: 1st = £5,000. Also, the winner and three finalists will be invited to a pitching workshop and a networking event with agents and editors, and will receive manuscript feedback from The Literary Consultancy

Details here https://mslexia.co.uk/products/competition_entry_fee/mslexia-fiction-memoir-competition-2020-childrens-ya-novel/


Word of the Day


This Japanese slang word originated in the Meiji era (1868–1912) – the very beginning of modern Japan. It means to buy an abundance of books and let them pile up without reading any. Its English equivalent would be bibliomania, which may be a symptom of obsessive–compulsive disorder involving the collecting or hoarding of books to the point where social relations or health are damaged. Bibliomania is distinguished from bibliophilia, which is the healthy love of books. Phew, thank goodness, I’m a biliophile!

Humorous Quote

I write to discover what I think. After all, the bars aren’t open that early ― Daniel J. Boorstin (1914—2004), American historian.

Get Inspired

Don’t bend; don’t water it down; don’t try to make it logical; don’t edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly ― Anne Rice (1941—), American author of gothic fiction, Christian literature and erotic literature.

Writing Tip

Write everything going through your mind – your stream of consciousness – for five to ten minutes without thinking about it and then read it to see what you came up with.

Keep well, keep safe, keep writing 🙂

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