Short Story Competition 2020
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Whitsunday Voices would like to invite students to submit entries for the 2020 Whitsunday Voices Youth Literature Festival Short Story Competition.

Students are free to respond to a theme or topic of their choice and there is no limit to the number of entries allowed by each student.

Thanks to our Short Story Competition Partner, Timezone, for their very generous cash prizes, vouchers and assistance.


The categories of the Competition and the respective word requirements are outlined below:   

  • Years 3 and 4: 300 – 400 words                           Cash prizes: 1st Prize - $70.00, 2nd Prize - $30.00
  • Years 5 and 6:300 – 500 words                            Cash prizes: 1st Prize - $80.00, 2nd Prize - $50.00
  • Years 7 and 8: 400 – 600 words                           Cash Prizes: 1st Prize - $100.00, 2nd Prize - $50.00
  • Years 9 and 10: 600 – 800 words                         Cash Prizes: 1st Prize - $200.00, 2nd Prize - $70.00
  • Years 11 and 12: 800 –1200 words                      Cash Prizes: 1st Prize - $250.00, 2nd Prize - $100.00
In addition, winners of the Year 3 and 4, and Year 5 and 6 categories also win a birthday party voucher for Timezone to the value of $250.
For the first time this year, the winning entries (winner, runner-up and highly commended entries) will be published in a book that will be awarded as part of your prize. Further copies will be available to purchase in the Festival Bookshop. 
Savvy Scripts will design the book, which will then be printed by BB Print. Both are local businesses who are very supportive of encouraging students to develop their creative writing skills. The published books have been made possible as a result of a grant made available as part of the Regional Arts Development Program.
The Regional Arts Development Fund is a partnership between the Queensland Government and Mackay Regional Council to support local arts and culture in regional Queensland.

Entries will be judged by a panel comprising representatives from the Australian Literacy Educators Association (ALEA), teacher volunteers and Timezone. The winners will be notified via email approximately three weeks prior to the Whitsunday Voices Festival and will be publicly announced at the Festival Launch on Wednesday 15 July, 2020. Prize winners will be presented with their prizes at this function (if they can attend), or prizes will be mailed to recipients.
The full list of winners and their short stories will also be published on the Whitsunday Voices website.
There is no limit to the number of entries allowed by each student. However, each entry must be:  
  • Word-processed on one side of paper – 1.5 spacing;
  • Original;
  • Stapled and attached to an entry form;
  • Within the set word requirements (please put a word count at the end of the story).
It would also be helpful if any identifying details (such as the entrant’s name and school) do not appear on the story itself and only be included on the entry form.
Click here for the entry form.
Please keep a copy of your submissions as unfortunately entries cannot be returned.
The closing date for the competition is 3pm on Friday 8th May, 2020. All entries must be received by this date to be considered for judging.
Teachers and Librarians, click here for an A4 poster and here for an A3 poster, to promote the competition at your school.
If you have any questions about this competition, please feel free to contact Nicole Norris on 4969 2041 or email her at [email protected]
If you have students in Years 9 to 12 who may wish to take their stories further, after the competition, and potentially be mentored to develop a manuscript, please refer them to #teenpit
Thank you for your assistance in the celebration and promotion of literature!