mouse children's zone


  • Many poets send their poems to competitions. This can be a good way to find out what other people think of your writing.
  • We add competitions to this list when organisers send us information.
  • To enter the competition, send a stamped addressed envelope to the competition's address, and they will send you an entry form, or ask for an entry form by phone or email.
  • The Poetry Library accepts no liability in connection with the information contained in the list [boring adult stuff!]

The Poetry Business 2017/18 New Poets Prize | Closing Date: 01-Mar-18

A pamphlet competition for writers between the ages of 17 and 24 Prizes: Publication by smith|doorstop books following editorial, mentoring and workshops with Peter & Ann Sansom, a place on an Arvon residential course, publication in the North magazine, a launch reading hosted by the Poetry Business and more. The New Poets Prize is a short collection competition for writers between the ages of 17 and 24 (inclusive). This prize will run alongside the renowned International Book & Pamphlet Competition organized by The Poetry Business, which has now been established for 31 years. Entrants are invited to submit short collections of 12 pages of poems. Four outstanding collections will be selected to receive mentoring, readings, publication in the North magazine. One of the four collections will be published as a pamphlet by smith|doorstop. All four winners will also receive a subscription to the North magazine, and will have a launch reading organised by the Poetry Business and a selection of their poems published in the North magazine. Judged by Kayo Chingonyi
Entry Fee: £8

Contact: Entries can be submitted by post (with a cheque and completed entry form) or online. For full terms and conditions see website

Hippocrates Young Poet Poetry and Medicine Prize | Closing Date: 01-Mar-18

The Hippocrates Young Poets Prize for Poetry and Medicine is an international prize for a single unpublished poem in English on a medical theme. The length of the poem should be not more than 50 lines of text. Entrants should be aged 14 - 18 years old on the closing date for entries - 1st March.The award for the winner is £500 (~ USD 670).
Entry Fee: £2 for each Young Poet's entry

Contact: For rules and full competition details see:

Christopher Tower Poetry Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 02-Mar-18

All UK students, between 16-18, are encouraged to enter the 2016 Christopher Tower poetry competition. This year’s theme is ‘SECRETS’ and the judges are Christopher Reid, John Fuller and Peter McDonald. First prize £3,000; second prize £1,500 and third prize £500, with three runner-up prizes of £250 each.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: Closing date 2 March.  For entry and further information see:

Never Such Innocence - First World War Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 16-Mar-18

Young people aged 9-16 are encouraged to submit poems in all languages or artwork in any medium which has been inspired by the events of the First World War. Entries are divided into three age categories, years 5-6, years 7-9 and years 10-11. All poems must have a title and must not exceed 40 lines in length. All submissions must include an entry form which can be found on the Never Such Innocence website. Each child receives a personalised Certificate of Commendation for entering, there are prizes up for grabs for pupils and their schools (up to £400) and winners will be invited to a special awards ceremony on Thursday 24 May 2018.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: See Never Such Innocence website for full details. To email entry send to . Postal entries should be sent to: Never Such Innocence, 11 Slingsby Place, London, WC2E 9AB. If you have any enquiries please email 

Earlyworks Press Poetry Competition 2018 | Closing Date: 30-Apr-18

£100 first prize, £25 runner up £5 for commendations and/or any we show on the website.Quality book publication for best entries Rules and Conditions The competition is open to anyone over 16.The best entries will be published in a paperback anthology. The authors will receive one complimentary copy of the anthology. 10-20 authors are normally included, depending on length and quality of work. All winners will be offered further copies of the anthology at a reduced price if they request them. Winners will be notified before the end of August 2018. Poems must be the work of the entrant and not simultaneously entered for other competitions. The judges’ decision is final. No discussion will be entered into. Entries are not returnable and cannot be acknowledged without SAE marked for that purpose. Copyright remains with the author although Earlyworks Press reserves the right to publish winning entries on the website. Submission of work will be taken as acceptance of rules and conditions.
Entry Fee: £3.50 per poem, £15 for up to six entries

Contact: Contact details for paper and e-entries on the website here

Lord Whisky Animal Sanctuary Poetry Competition | Closing Date: 31-May-18

Invitation to send poems for a competition in aid of the long-established Lord Whisky Animal Sanctuary, Kent (reg. charity 283483 ). Poems should be on an animal-related theme – pets, rescue animals, wildlife habitat, endangered species, insects, birds etc. Prize: 30% of all entry fees, a second prize of 10%, two further prizes of 5%, one reserved for a previously unpublished poet. 50% of all entry fees received will be used for the care of animals at the sanctuary. Judge: award-winning poet Derek Sellen. Length: 40 lines or less. Eligibility: unpublished poems written in English by writers over 16 from any country.
Entry Fee: £5 per poem by donation to Lord Whisky Animal Sanctuary. Donate at:

Contact: full details are available at

Betjeman Poetry Prize | Closing Date: 31-Jul-18

For children and young people aged 10-13 living anywhere in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland. Write a poem on the theme of 'place'. 2018 judges Scottish Makar Jackie Kay and poet Zaffar Kunial The top fifty poems are printed in the BPP 2018 anthology Finalists read their poems on National Poetry Day in front of an audience at St Pancras Station, London The winning poet receives £500, and £500 for their school All finalists are invited on a Betjeman Poetry Camp in Spring 2019 ( Every teacher who enters their class joins a prize draw to win a poet visit.
Entry Fee: £0

Contact: For full details see

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