ACW Competitions

Welcome to our ACW Competitions.  ACW have been running competitions for almost all of our fifty years.  Our most recent competitions have included a contest for poetry on the theme 50, and non-themed comps for novel-writing and flash fiction.  Entry is open to all writers.  Although we are a Christian organisation, we don’t require a Christian angle in every competition.  Our judges are writers and they are looking for good writing, always.

Our current comp, Go for Gold,  is for a reflective piece, inspired by a Bible passage.

  • Entry to many (but not all) our competitions is free to members, including the current Go for Gold comp.  The first prize in Go for Gold is special in every way – a place at the ACW Worth Our Weight in Gold event at The Hayes Conference Centre in June next year.
  • We publish the first-placed winner’s entry for each comp in Christian Writer, as a general rule.  Not for our recent novel competition, obviously!
  • Book-token prizes are also awarded to the first-placed, second-placed and third-placed entrants.

ACW also run a rolling competition, My Writing Journey, for new or unpublished writers who are paid-up members of ACW.  There is no monetary or book token prize but a winner is declared four times a year and their work appears in Christian Writer.

Hope you can give our comps a go.  If you have any queries, please email competitions@christianwriters.co.uk  Below are just a few of the comments made by ACW members who have entred competitions, those run by ACW and by other organisations, magazines and ezines.

  • Jane Brocklehurst:
    ‘ Taking part in competitions teaches discipline with writing. Meeting a deadline, word count and a particular brief makes you pay attention to details…’
  • Fran Hill:
    ‘I think my favourite competition moment was finding a three-month old email in my junk mail saying, “Would you like your competition-winning £300 viar cheque or paid straight into your bank?” This was the first I’d heard of being placed….’ (This prize was not for an ACW competition by the way!)
  • Rebecca Lucy Seaton, who came second in Pen to Print’s 2017-18 Book Challenge.
    It gave me confidence, opened doors and introduced me to some great people. I always encourage people to enter competitions!
  • Lucy Marfleet, who won the ACW ‘Best Stories Ever Told’ comp, for ‘Mrs Zebedee’s Fish Stall’, in 2016:
    ‘Affirmation from other writers is a huge blessing in any form: winning an ACW competition has been an enormouos encouragement to me to continue. And as a community, when one of us wins, we all win.’
  • Veronica Bright, who has won first prize in two ACW comps (in 2013 and 2020), tells us about advice she has received:
    ‘Never go for your first ideas, because dozens of other people will think of those, too.’ It’s also a good idea to read through your story aloud before you send it off. That way you can hear whether it sounds right, or whether it needs tweaking a bit.’
  • Sophia Anyanwu
    I have taken part in all ACW competitions and gained the privilege of cheering the winners in good faith!

Entering Competitions in General

The following websites list current writing competitions.  Inevitably, they list many of the same comps!

Christophen Fielden (Click on Competitions (plural), in small print, about a quarter way down the home page.  ‘Competition’ (singular) (menu) is the comp Christopher himself is running.)

Prize Magic

Write in Time

Almond Press

Another good place to look for competition listings is Mslexia (print magazine, for women writers).  Writing (paperbased magazine) also lists competitions on  Writers Online.  Some are open to subscribers only.

If you know of any other directories of competitions, please email  Rosemary at webmaster@christianwriters.co.uk