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Awards

Hachette Children’s Novel Award

The Hachette Children’s Novel Award is open to debut writers of middle-grade children’s fiction and early teen fiction.

We accept all kinds of children’s and early teen fiction, including but not limited to historical fiction, crime, science fiction, romance and fantasy. Please do not submit collections of short stories or individual short stories.

In terms of target age group, we are looking for fiction for children aged 7-11 (at the younger end of this bracket the word count can be 15-30K; at the older end, approx. 40K), or teen fiction for readers aged 11-13 (50-65K words), this should still exclude high-end or explicit content including swearing, sex and drugs.

There is one winner for this award. The winning writer will be offered a publishing contract from Hachette Children’s Group granting Hachette world rights in all languages, including audio, film, TV and merchandising, with an advance of £5,000 to be set against royalties. Royalties will be on Hachette Children’s Group’s standard terms. Additionally, the winner will receive access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network. HCG reserves the right to: (i) withdraw its offer of a contract to the winning writer if terms cannot be agreed (in these circumstances, the winning writer will still be paid £5,000); and (ii) offer an additional publishing deal to any of the shortlisted titles, on the same terms as the winning entry.

The NorthBound Book Award

The NorthBound Book Award, supported by the University of York and in partnership with Saraband, is open to writers of fiction or narrative non-fiction who have completed a full manuscript. New, emerging or established writers may apply for this award. Please read the Eligibility carefully for further details.

There is one winner for this award. The award is for a full-length work. The winning writer will receive an advance against royalties of £5000, publication with Saraband and access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network. Royalties will be paid on Saraband’s standard terms.

The award celebrates the innovative spirit of independent publishing and the richness of writing from the North of England. Saraband is a leading award-winning independent publisher, now based in North West England, whose list includes Graeme Macrae Burnet, Chitra Ramaswamy and Karen Lloyd.

Northern Writers’ Awards for Poetry

Winning poets will receive awards of between £2000 and £5000 to support them to develop work in progress and to complete promising collections. These awards are open to applications from both emerging and established poets but poets yet to publish a full-length collection should consider entering the Northern Debut Awards: Poetry.

Winners will also receive access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network.

Northern Debut Awards: Poetry

This programme will offer a package of support to three poets who are yet to publish a full-length collection.

The programme has been devised by New Writing North to offer developmental support to poets with a work in progress showing potential for publication.

Three awards will be made in this category. Each winner will receive £2000, mentoring and access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network

One of the three winners will be accepted onto the Out-Spoken Press Emerging Poets Development Scheme and receive mentoring from Anthony Anaxagorou.   

Additionally, all three poets will receive a group professional development session with a poetry publisher. 

Northern Writers’ Awards for Fiction and Narrative Non-Fiction

Winners will receive awards of between £2000 and £5000 to support them to develop work in progress and to complete promising manuscripts. They will also be given access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network.

These awards are open to applications from both emerging and established writers, but we recommend that as-yet-unpublished writers consider entering the Northern Debut Awards: Fiction programme or the Hachette Children’s Novel Award. Please read the Eligibility criteria carefully to see if you can enter this award.

Northern Debut Awards: Fiction, Narrative Non-Fiction and Young Adult

This programme will offer a package of support to four writers of fiction, young adult fiction or narrative non-fiction who are yet to publish a full-length novel or collection of short stories.

Awards will be made to two writers of fiction/narrative non-fiction and one writer of young adult fiction; an additional writer will receive an award in memory of the writer Andrea Badenoch.

The programme has been devised by New Writing North to offer structured developmental support to writers with a work in progress showing potential for publication. Each winner will receive £2000, mentoring and access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network

Sid Chaplin Award

The Sid Chaplin Award is for writers of fiction and narrative non-fiction who identify as originating from a working-class background.

The winning writer will receive a bursary of £2000; a manuscript appraisal from The Literary Consultancy; advisory sessions from the writer Michael Chaplin; an introduction to the North Agency; and access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network

The award is made in memory of the writer Sid Chaplin (1916–1986) whose novels such as The Day of the Sardine and The Watchers and the Watched are celebrated for their stylistic mastery and their vivid depictions of working-class life in North East England.

We are very grateful to the Chaplin family, the North Agency and Newcastle University for their support of this award.

The Finchale Award for Short Fiction

This award is for a single unpublished short story of up to 1500 words. This opportunity is open to new, emerging and established writers.

The winner of the Finchale Award for Short Fiction will receive £1000 and access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network. 

The award is named after Finchale Priory, a place of retreat for the monks of Durham during the Middle Ages. We’re massively grateful to the writer Benjamin Myers, whose generous support has made this unique opportunity possible. 

To enter writers should submit a short story of up to 1500 words and answer the application questions. 

TLC Free Reads

For this award, we welcome entries from people who may have faced barriers to seeing their work progress for financial reasons or issues connected to disability, ethnicity and/or sexuality. For more information, see TLC’s website.

In conjunction with The Literary Consultancy we are offering up to three poets, prose writers and children’s writers the chance to receive an in-depth editorial report on their work in progress, worth up to £300 each. You must be working towards a full-length work (e.g. a novel, work of creative non-fiction, poetry collection or short-story collection). Although your manuscript does not have to be complete, you must be in a position to submit the manuscript for assessment during 2022. Unpublished and previously published writers may enter work in this category.

In addition to the Free Read, writers will receive a £500 bursary from New Writing North and access to the Northern Writers’ Awards Talent Network.

Arvon Award

In conjunction with Arvon, we are offering a prose writer the chance to undertake an Arvon course. This may be either a tutored or untutored retreat, depending on what you think will be of most benefit to you. Both children’s writers and writers for adults may apply for this award. We are grateful to Arvon for their continued support of this award.

Northumbria University Student and Alumni Award

This award, worth £2000, is open to writers of poetry, fiction and narrative non-fiction who are either final-year students or recent graduates at Northumbria University who are based in the North of England. Writers can be at any stage in their career.

The award is open to students and graduates from any discipline who are: final-year undergraduates; current postgraduate students or alumni who have graduated from an undergraduate or postgraduate programme at Northumbria University within the last ten years.

Young Northern Writers' Awards

This award is open to young writers aged 11-18 in the North of England. Young writers can submit creative work in any form including prose, poetry, scriptwriting, blogging, songwriting and rap.

There are two age categories, 11-14 and 15-18. Entrants must be 18 years or under on Thursday 17 February 2022 when the awards close. The winner in each category will receive prize money of £150. Up to two writers may also be highly commended across the age categories.

Matthew Hale Award

The Matthew Hale Award is open to young writers who show promise but have had limited opportunities to pursue their talent. This could be due to a number of factors, including physical or mental ill-health, family circumstances, financial circumstances, lack of access to cultural opportunities or any other reasons.

This award is for a young person aged 11-18 based in the North of England. Entrants must be 18 years or under on 17 February 2022 when the awards close. Young writers can submit creative work in any form including prose, poetry, scriptwriting, blogging, songwriting and rap.

There is one award winner each year. The award consists of a package of support created by New Writing North and is worth £500. The package will be tailored to the specific interests and needs of the winner, but could include anything from one-on-one mentoring with a professional writer, enrolment on a course, books, theatre tickets or a pass to a literature festival.

This award is judged by the family of Matthew Hale and New Writing North.

Channel 4 Writing for Television Awards – Lime Pictures

There is one award available. The winner will be offered the unique chance to work closely with Lime Pictures through a placement on the serial drama Hollyoaks, mentoring support and a bursary worth £3000.

No writing experience is necessary. For these awards, we want to discover new writers from Northern England who would like to work in television. We especially welcome submissions from people of colour and those from LGBTQ+, disabled and lower socio-economic backgrounds, who are particularly under-represented in this area of the TV industry.

This award will be judged by: Lime Pictures, Channel 4 and New Writing North.

C4/NWN Script Development Programme

Writers shortlisted for the Channel 4 Writing for Television Awards will be invited for interview. Shortlisted writers who do not win an award will be invited to participate in the specially created C4/NWN Script Development Programme. Writers will be expected to demonstrate that they have a script that has the potential to benefit from participation in this programme.

Shortlisted writers will be offered:

  • A £500 bursary.
  • Five sessions in an online writing group. The group will be led by an experienced writer and focus on developing writing skills and working towards a longer piece of work.
  • A feedback session with a producer or television writer.
  • Access to the Northern Talent Network.

Channel 4 Writing for Television Awards – Rollem Productions

There is one award available. The winner will be offered the unique chance to work closely with Rollem Productions through a long-term placement, a bursary worth £3000 and mentoring support. The winner will also be given access to the C4/NWN Northern Talent Network.

No writing experience is necessary. For these awards, we want to discover new writers from Northern England who would like to work in television. We especially welcome submissions from people of colour and those from LGBTQ+, disabled and lower socio-economic backgrounds, who are particularly under-represented in this area of the TV industry.

This award will be judged by: Rollem Productions, Channel 4 and New Writing North.

C4/NWN Script Development Programme

Writers shortlisted for the Channel 4 Writing for Television Awards will be invited for interview. Shortlisted writers who do not win an award will be invited to participate in the specially created C4/NWN Script Development Programme. Writers will be expected to demonstrate that they have a script that has the potential to benefit from participation in this programme.

Shortlisted writers will be offered:

  • A £500 bursary.
  • Five sessions in an online writing group. The group will be led by an experienced writer and focus on developing writing skills and working towards a longer piece of work.
  • A feedback session with a producer or television writer.
  • Access to the Northern Talent Network.

Channel 4 Writing for Television Awards – Bonafide Films

There is one award available. The winner will be offered the unique chance to work closely with Bonafide Films, receive a bursary of £3000 and mentoring support.

No writing experience is necessary. For this award, we want to discover new writers from Northern England who would like to work in television. We especially welcome submissions from people of colour and those from LGBTQ+, disabled and lower socio-economic backgrounds, who are particularly under-represented in this area of the TV industry.

This award will be judged by: Bonafide Films, Channel 4 and New Writing North.

C4/NWN Script Development Programme

Writers shortlisted for the Channel 4 Writing for Television Awards will be invited for interview. Shortlisted writers who do not win an award will be invited to participate in the specially created C4/NWN Script Development Programme. Writers will be expected to demonstrate that they have a script that has the potential to benefit from participation in this programme.

Shortlisted writers will be offered:

  • A £500 bursary.
  • Five sessions in an online writing group. The group will be led by an experienced writer and focus on developing writing skills and working towards a longer piece of work.
  • A feedback session with a producer or television writer.
  • Access to the Northern Talent Network.