[Updated 15 August 2018: At the time this post was written in 2015, the Melita Hume Prize was free to enter. In 2018 there is now a submission charge. Please note that at the time Leilanie Stewart was longlisted for the Melita Hume Prize in 2014, and Joseph Robert longlisted for the Melita Hume Prize in 2015, there were no submission fees to enter.]


In March last year I entered the Melita Hume poetry prize 2014, held by Eyewear Publishing. My collection of 80 poems was longlisted, and through the competition, my work got noticed and selected for the 20/20 pamphlet series. I picked the best 25 poems from the collection and working with my publisher and editor, shaped those up and chose the best 20. A Model Archaeologist is the finished collection, available this month!

In the world of poetry and fiction, having a stick-to-it attitude will take you a long way. I started writing poetry in my teens and was first published at a 14. Believing in your own work helps a lot…and if you want to sell your stuff, you can’t be shy. Better get out there and promote it!

With that in mind, here is my latest update on FREE writing competitions for teenagers – a good stepping stone to publication! Good luck!

ONGOING – NO DEADLINE. ANYONE, ANY AGE CAN SUBMIT: Cultured Vultures Poetry Competition

OVER 18s ONLY – DEADLINE 15 JULY 2015: Dog Diaries short story competition

UNDER 18s ONLY – DEADLINE 31 JULY 2015: Foyle Young Poets

OVER 18s ONLY – DEADLINE 31 AUGUST: Holland Park Press short story competition


ANYONE, ANY AGE IN THE UK ONLY: United Press poetry competitions

UNDER 18s – UK ONLY: Young Writers competitions

OVER 18s – UK ONLY: The Great British Write-off

Leilanie Stewart is a widely published writer and poet. In addition to promoting her own work, she has run creative writing workshops for gifted and talented London secondary school students aged 12 to 18 and is currently a poetry editor for Ashvamegh International Literary Journal. She is married to the writer and poet, Joseph Robert.

A Model Archaeologist

YouTube poetry

Zombie Reflux

About Leilanie Stewart

Leilanie Stewart is a novelist and poet. Her debut novel, Gods of Avalon Road was published by Blossom Spring Publishing in October 2019 and her second novel, The Buddha's Bone is forthcoming in October 2021. Leilanie has also published three poetry collections: The Redundancy of Tautology (Cyberwit, 2021); Chemotherapy for the Soul (Fowlpox Press, 2017); A Model Archaeologist (Eyewear Publishing, 2015) and two self-published pamphlets: Toebirds and Woodlice (Meandi Books, 2012); Metamorphosis of Woman (Meandi Books, 2012), satirical novella Zombie Reflux (Meandi Books, 2014) and surreal novelette, Til Death do us Boneapart (Dark Gothic Resurrected Magazine, 2017). Leilanie is also Editor in Chief of Bindweed Magazine, a poetry and fiction online magazine that also publishes a quarterly print anthology. She currently lives in Belfast with her writer and poet husband, Joseph Robert and their lively literary tot, a voracious reader of educational books. Literary blog: https://leilaniestewart.com/ Meandi Books: http://meandibooks.bigcartel.com/ Bindweed Magazine: https://bindweedmagazine.wordpress.com/

2 responses »

  1. Rachel says:

    Thanks for sharing all these great contests!

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