Which strand of the programme should I enter?
There are three strands of the programme: a fiction strand with Faber & Faber, a journalism strand with The Daily Mirror, and a non-fiction strand with Substack. You should read the descriptions of each strand and decide which one is best suited to you and your writing.
Can I enter more than one strand of the programme?
Yes – however you should apply to each strand separately.
How do I apply?
All entries must be made through our Submittable online portal. We do not accept submissions by email or post. The deadline for applications is 8th January 2024.
What writing can I submit with my application?
Each strand requires that you submit a specific piece of work. For Faber & Faber, we ask that you submit the first ten pages or the first chapter (any length) of your work in progress. This can be fiction of any genre, non-fiction or narrative non-fiction such as memoir or short stories. We do not accept poetry, writing in translation, or children’s writing. For The Daily Mirror, we ask that you submit a 500-word journalistic article on the theme of hope. This can take the form of a feature piece or interview exploring an inspiring or hopeful story or person, or it could be a piece of journalistic writing covering something from your own life which speaks to the theme. For Substack, we ask that you submit 500 words detailing your concept for your Substack newsletter. Your submission should explain why you are interested in your topic, why you are suited to writing it, and why you believe Substack is a fitting platform for you as a writer.
Do I need to write about my experiences of being from a working class, lower income, or underrepresented background?
There is no requirement that you write about your experiences of being from a working-class, lower income or underrepresented background. You can write about any topic or theme that you like, as long as it follows the submission guidelines.
Do I need to have a full manuscript to apply to the programme?
There is no requirement that you have a full manuscript or that you have full drafts of your planned articles or newsletters when you are applying for A Writing Chance. You should, however, have a clear idea of your work in progress and how it will develop and have time, or be able to make time to substantially progress the work over the year of the programme.
Can I submit previously published work for the Faber & Faber strand?
This project is about developing work in progress, so generally speaking, you shouldn’t be submitting work that has previously been published. However, if your work in progress is a collection of short stories, you may submit a short story that has previously been published in a writing magazine/anthology.
How should I format my submission?
If you are applying to the Faber and Faber strand, please double-space your work and use 12-point text. You’re free to choose a font that appeals to you but avoid anything that doesn’t suit the tone of your work. If you are applying to The Daily Mirror or the Substack strand, you can copy your submission directly into the submission box on Submittable.
Can I save my application and come back to it before I submit?
Submittable does save in-progress applications as long as you select “Save Draft” at the bottom of the application. It does not, however, save automatically as you are typing; therefore we advise that you type up your submission in a separate document/space and copy it in rather than writing and editing it directly into the Submittable box.
Do I need to submit a synopsis?
If you are applying to the Faber & Faber strand, you do not need to submit a full synopsis, but we ask that you submit a brief 50-word description of your work-in-progress. This does not need to be a complete description of your work, as we understand that you may not yet be at a point with your work where it is fully written. You can use this space to give the judges an understanding of how your submitted writing sits within the broader piece: for example, you may want to note the genre, setting, general plot, and key characters.
How will my application be assessed?
Our process is as follows:
- An internal sift at New Writing North to discount incomplete or ineligible applications.
- First round of assessment where all work is read at least twice.
- Shortlisting round where work is shortlisted.
- Partners decide the final winners from a shortlist.
All submissions at the first stage will be read at least twice by a diverse team of experienced writers and journalists. All personal details and information are removed from the early stages of assessment and is only viewed by New Writing North at the shortlist stage.
When will I know if my application is successful?
The final 16 chosen participants will be announced in April 2024. We will let everyone know the outcome of their application prior to this date.