Wednesday 31 July 2013

The Plough Prize for Poetry

The Plough Prize 2013 is now open for online or postal entries.

Full results for all previous contests are available under 'past years', as are the winning poems and judges' comments and I recommend you have a read so you know what kind of thing they are looking for. I think they pre screen so the judge, this year Andrew Motion, only reads a selection.

Entry fee: £5 (Cheque or Paypal)

Open Poetry (up to 40 lines)

Prizes: 1st £1000, 2nd £500, 3rd £250

Link here

Deadline 30 November

I have a soft spot for the plough as I won first prize for a short poem a couple of years ago, thought this category doesn't seem to be running this year.

Thursday 25 July 2013

The Irish Children’s Prize

This is a prize for writing for children, writing in Ireland, not a prize for the best Irish child or an Irish prize for the best child....just in case you were wondering.

There aren't that many competitions for writing for children and here's one from

The A. M. Heath literary agency have announced a Irish Children’s Prize,  looking for a new standout Irish voice in children’s fiction.

The Irish Children’s Prize will be judged by Julia Churchill, children’s book agent at A. M. Heath, and David Maybury of Brown Bag Films, Penguin Children’s Books and Inis Magazine editor.

Literary agent Julia Churchill (pictured) said “David and I love all sorts of writing for children. The winner could be a 200 word picture book, a sophisticated YA novel, a 9-12 stand-alone, or a young chapter series. I’m looking for a strong voice, a character to love, and a concept that feels fresh. If you’re writing for children, we’d love to see your work."

It is open to un-agented writers living in the Republic of Ireland and writing children’s or young adult fiction in English. To get a good sense of the voice, concept and where the character is headed, we’d like to see the first 5,000 words PLUS a short description of the book (a few lines) AND a one page outline that shows the spine of the story.

Deadline: October 17th.
More details here

Sunday 21 July 2013

Submissions sought for Southword

Southword Journal Online is the literary journal published at least twice yearly by The Munster Literature Centre. They have some super poems and poets in their back catalogue and you can read them for free. Link below.

They are now open for poems in English until September 15th for the winter issue; poetry, prose and literary criticism in Irish is also accepted during this time.

Southword Journal is not currently considering unsolicited submissions of non-fiction or memoir.

PLEASE NOTE after the close of the submission date the editors will make a selection.

Submit online at Submishmash.
Authors will be able to check the status of their submission via their profile. Due to the large volume of submissions received, the editor may take up to 8 weeks after the submission deadline to make their decision.

They are a paying market too. Link here

To read back issues for free, please visit Southword Journal at:

Friday 19 July 2013

Submissions for Envoi

Envoi poetry magazine has been around for 55 years now and is well regarded in the UK and beyond. It's published by Cinnamon press which has won awards for its poetry books.

Envoi has high production values – published in February, June and October as a 96 page, large format, perfect bound matt laminate journal with an eye to presenting the poetry well on the page.

They aim to provide a platform for new work from both established and new poets. They generally try to select a small group of poems that represent a poet’s voice so send a group of poems (they do not have to be related)

Submissions will be reviewed in batches in November/December (for February), March/April (for June) and July-early September (for October).

They are based in Wales and welcome submissions from Wales, the UK or from anywhere in the world.

Details here.

Apparently (i.e. per Wikipedia) an envoi is an extra stanza ob the end of a poem used to address a person (real or imaginary) or to comment on the poem itself.  

And while you're there, remember to support the press by subscribing.

Wednesday 17 July 2013

Stony Thursday Submissions

The imaginatively named poetry magazine based in Limerick is looking for submissions.
The Stony Thursday Book is one of the longest-running literary journals in Ireland and celebrates its 38th Anniversary Edition in 2013.

This year's editor is Kerry based poet Paddy Bushe.
Submissions are being sought in both English and Irish.  

How to Submit:
Send no more than 6 poems.
When submitting poems, write your name and address on each page.

Send poems to:
The Arts Office, Limerick City Council, City Hall, Merchant’s Quay, Limerick
Please mark your envelope: The Stony Thursday Book
Or by email:

Deadline: Friday 16th August 2013. 

*CUISLE, Limerick City International Poetry Festival will take place in Limerick from 18th - 20th October 2013 and is funded by The Arts Council & Limerick City Council.

Red Line Poetry Competition

This one is free to enter. I found it on Louise Phillips blog.

The Red Line Festival will take place from October 15th to 20th 2013, so keep the dates free in your diary.

The inaugural poetry competition is now open and accepting entries.

First prize is €300, second prize is €200 and the third prize is €100.

All shortlisted entrants will be invited to read their poems at an event in The Red Line Book Festival this October.

The competition is open to everyone living on the island of Ireland, as long as the work is original and previously unpublished.

The maximum number of entries per person is 2.

Deadline: Friday 30th August 2013.

The competition rules and entry forms can be downloaded from the website:

The Red Line Poetry Competition will be judged by the poet Alan Jude Moore.

Sunday 14 July 2013

North West Words Writing Weekend

This sounds great. Good to hear of initiatives in the North West. Most of the literature news tends to be Dublin Centric. Let me know of any other events outside the pale and I'd be happy to help spread the word.

Letterkenny July 19-21 2013

Workshops and readings to inspire your writing

North West Words
North West Words has been hosting monthly poetry and prose readings in Letterkenny since 2010. We publish a quarterly magazine of writing and arts news which we distribute across Donegal free of charge. We run an annual schools poetry competition and last year our first poetry competition for adults. In the summer we go on the road and present events at festivals in Donegal. Remarkably, we run on donations, support from the County Arts Office and from Donegal Local Development Company Ltd (DLDC) under the Local and Community Development Programme 2013.

Friday July 19 Launch at Café Blend 7.30pm
Reading by workshop facilitators, with music by Seoirse O’Dochartaigh

Saturday July 20 Gallagher’s Hotel
9.30am Registration

10.00-11.30am Workshop One
Collage Workshop or
Deepening Your Writing Practice

12.00-1.30pm Workshop Two
Turning Memories into Writing or
Writing for Younger Readers

2.30-4.00pm Publishing Panel Chaired Discussion with Declan Meade of Stinging Fly Press, John Walsh and Lisa Frank of Doire Press and wordlegs editor Elizabeth Reapy

4.00-5.00pm Café Blend
Reading by Freya mc Clements, Deirdre Hines, with music by Shay Halligan, and Open Mic

8.00pm Gallagher’s Hotel
Reading by workshop facilitators, with music by Simon Mc Cafferty, and Open Mic

Sunday July 21 Gallagher’s Hotel
9.30am Registration

10-12.30pm Poetry Workshop

1.30-4.00pm Techniques in Editing Fiction or
Poetry Clinic with John Walsh

Book Table open all weekend for facilitators to sell their work.

Details of the workshops or are available on the North West Words on Facebook page 
Enquiries to

Saturday 13 July 2013

Workshops in Limerick

As part of The Limerick Gathering Tailteann Nua Festival a series of creative writing workshops will be hosted by The Limerick Writers' Centre to coincide with the Bring Your Limericks to Limerick International Poetry Competition which takes place Saturday 3rd August on the UL Campus.

John Liddy will host a poetry/creative writing workshop at 10.00am to 12.00 noon. 
Fiona Clark Echlin will give a short story writing workshop from 12.00 noon to 2.00pm
Sheila Quealey will give a memoir writing workshop from 2.00pm to 4.00pm. 

All workshops take place in Plassy House.

The fee to take part is €10.00 per workshop.

Booking is adviseable as places will be limited. Please contact Dominic Taylor at to book.

Thursday 11 July 2013

Published Short Story Competition on

Have you had a short story published this year? Check this competition out.

This is a new category in the prestigious Bord Gais Energy Irish Book Awards, the Short Story of the Year Award, and is open to short stories of up to 7,000 words published between 1st Nov 2012 and 31st October 2013 in any of the following contexts:
  • a collection of short stories by a single author; 
  • an anthology of short stories; 
  • or an established journal or magazine, digital or print, that has been in existence for at least six months within the period of eligibility.
Stories must be original fiction, i.e. neither a reprint nor adaptation of a previously-published work, and all stories must have been or will be published in English or Irish during the qualifying period.

Stories published in Irish must be supplied with an English translation.

The author must be Irish by birth, citizenship or long-term residence.

Stories may only be submitted by the editor of the publication in which the story appears, with full permission of the author, with a maximum of one story per edition or collection. Self published works, at this stage, are not admissible.

Stories should be submitted via the online form here. Closing date for entries is 1st September 2013.

Submissions will be judged anonymously, the long list read by an independent panel of four judges.
  • Author and tutor on Trinity College’s MPhil in Creative Writing, Carlo Gebler; 
  • Director of Dublin City of Literature Jane Alger;  
  • Author and bookseller Adrian White of Dubray Books 
  •’s Irish editor Cathal Póirtéir,
The judging panel will select the final four stories to be shortlisted for the Literary Academy and public vote. 
These stories must be available to be read online, at the publisher’s website or at

Tuesday 9 July 2013

Kay Ryan in Nenagh

Former US Poet Laureate (2008 – 2010) and Pulitzer Prize winner, Kay Ryan will give her first reading in Ireland, in Nenagh, on Saturday 24 August 2013.

The Dromineer Literary Festival committee is delighted to announce a reading by Former US Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner, Kay Ryan, at the Nenagh Arts Centre, at 7.30pm, on Saturday 24 August 2013.  An early present to celebrate the festival’s tenth birthday, we are thrilled that Ms Ryan has accepted our invitation to read and to travel to Ireland for her first visit. 

Ms Ryan’s reading is the Dromineer Literary Festival’s contribution to the Gathering celebrations.  We are grateful to North Tipperary LEADER Partnership, whose generous sponsorship has enabled us to hold this exciting evening.

Paul Perry will interview Ms. Ryan onstage, before introducing her reading.

Mary Mullen, will be reading with Ms Ryan.  Mary was born in Anchorage, and raised on her parent’s homestead in Soldotna, Alaska.  She moved to Co. Galway in 1996. Her debut poetry collection, Zephyr, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2010. 

Sunday 7 July 2013

Revival Literary Journal No. 27

Revival Literary Journal is calling for submissions from local, national and international poets and writers for issue 27 which will be published in Limerick, October 2013.

Deadline: Friday 9th Aug 2013

Poetry send to:

Prose/Reviews send to:

Snail mail: The Editor, Revival, Moravia, Glenmore Ave., Roxboro Rd., Limerick.

Submission Guidelines:

Friday 5 July 2013

Abroad Writers Conference Short Story Competition

Three Winning Stories will be published in the 2014 February edition  of: THE STINGING FLY MAGAZINE

How deep can you dive into your imagination? How breathless can you make readers feel? How brief can you make your best stories? Dazzle us with your brilliant brevity and you might just win a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience during that magical month of December with Abroad Writers’ Conference at Ireland’s historic and awe-inspiring Lismore Castle in County Waterford.

In 500 words or less write a standout story that seduces us, sings to us, shakes us, grabs us by the throat, or that’s so quiet we have to strain to hear. Any subject and any genre, but whatever you do be interesting and make us care. Take the leap, you just might be about to lose and re-find yourself inside a twelfth-century castle in picturesque, hospitable, and literary-loaded Ireland.

1st Prize: Free Admission to award-winning author Ethel Rohan’s 3 Day “Brilliance of Brevity” Workshop* & a Celebratory Lunch with Contest Judge, Robert Olen Butler

2nd Prize: A scrumptious full banquet dinner at Lismore Castle with conference luminaries: Robert Olen Butler, Karen Joy Fowler, Sarah Gristwood, Mariel Hemingway, Edward Humes, Claire Keegan, Jacquelyn Mitchard, Anne Perry, Michelle Roberts, Ethel Rohan, Alex Shoumatoff, Patricia Smith, Jane Smiley, and Lily Tuck.

3rd Prize: A complimentary pass of your choice to any one of our many exciting conference events at Lismore Castle.

Deadline: July 15th   
Winners Announced August 15th, 2013
$10 Entry Fee:

Judge: ROBERT OLEN BUTLER--Pulitzer Prize Winner & F. Scott Fitzgerald Award for Outstanding Achievement in American Literature

For Full Contest Details Visit:

Wednesday 3 July 2013

Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award

Deadline: Friday 26th July 2013

The Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award is for a first unpublished collection of poems in English by an Irish poet. The award is now in its 42nd year.

Open to poets, born in the island of Ireland, or of Irish nationality, or long term resident in Ireland.
Prize: The winner of this year’s award will receive €1,000.

There used to be prizes for second and third. Damn the recession!
The Award will be presented on Friday 27th September 2012 at the opening of the Annual Patrick Kavanagh Weekend in Inniskeen.

Judge is Brian Lynch again so I'd suggest that if you had a collection that got nowhere before, the exact same collection may get nowhere again. So tweak it.

The collection of poems in English must be original and consist of 20 poems.
Individual poems should not be more than 40 lines.

Click here to see the rules

Tuesday 2 July 2013

Liberated Words Poetry Film Festival 2013 Competition

Doesn't this sounds great? I'd love to make a poetry film.
Get in touch if you'd like to collaborate!

Lucy English and digital arts writer Sarah Tremlett bring a dedicated annual poetry film or video poetry event to the UK. They are now seeking poetry films of 3 minutes or less for a one-day poetry film festival to be held during Bristol Poetry Festival 2013 on 3rd October.  

Deadline for submissions: 30th July

They define video poetry as:
the poetic juxtaposition of images with text and sound. In the measured blending of these three elements it produces in the viewer the realisation of a poetic experience.

There are two categories. For full details of how to submit work visit: Liberated Words Competition

Monday 1 July 2013

Writers Week at the Molly Keane House

There's a week long workshop planned in the Molly Keane house in Ardmore, Co Waterford in August 19 - 25th 2013, with the writer Lani O'Hanlon and special guest the poet Mark Roper on Saturday 24th August.

Cost €275 
Residential options also available.
Generously, there are two non-residential bursaries are available.

Tuesday-Friday mornings 10.00-1.00
Creative Writing Practice and Process with Writer: Lani O’ Hanlon
Creative Writing is a subtle dance between the unconscious and the conscious, the inner and outer world. In these workshops we will shape new work drawing from the landscape around us and the sensual landscape of memory. Together, as a community of writers, we will create a safe and intimate space where new work can be shared and where you can sink below busy thoughts and chatter to uncover and deepen your relationship with your authentic, creative voice.
There will also be time in the afternoons to discuss your creative process.
Then there's a fascinating sounding day with poet, Mark Roper about control and surprise.
 'Losing Control Of The Poem'
It’s often said that in the best writing there is always an element of surprise – a sense that the author, in the process of writing, has been surprised by the direction the writing has taken. Conversely, if it might seem that an author knows all too well exactly where s/he is going, from the start, the writing might well feel a bit lifeless.

How do we allow ourselves to be surprised in our writing?

This Workshop, through various games, exercises and discussion, aims to surprise you! It will use poems and poetry for examples, but it will be relevant to all forms of writing. The Workshop will take place in the morning, and it will be followed by discussion of individual pieces, by participants and the workshop leader.

Each participant should bring a piece of work to be discussed.

Details and links here