Calling all writers and artists! Here is a list of competitions for writing and illustrating open to children aged 12 and under. The list will be updated as often as we can. (Note: most of these competitions will be open to Australian residents only.)
Some tips when it comes to entering competitions:
- Writing comps are a good way to hone your writing skills and to work to a deadline.
- If you don’t win, it doesn’t mean your work is bad—don’t lose heart, just keep at it!
- Many writing/art competitions have free entry for kids. If there IS an entry fee, check with your parent/guardian about whether it’s a reputable competition. (Some competitions ask you to pay large amounts of money to enter, or say it is free to enter but then want you to buy a book with all the ‘winners’ writing published. It’s usually a good idea to avoid those sorts of competitions.)
- Read all the entry conditions. And read them again! You don’t want to be disqualified for going over the word limit or missing the closing date.
- We list competitions here but we are not usually affiliated with those competitions and do not necessarily endorse them. You will need to check with a parent/guardian before entering.
KSP Poetry Awards (Entries close 2pm AWST, 29 September 2022)
Open to Australian students aged 10-17. Write a poem up to 50 lines long.
ENTRY: Free in the Youth category.
PRIZES: First prize in Youth category, $100. Second prize $50. Mundaring National Young Writers encouragement award will be given for under 14s with a $25 prize. Select entrants will be invited to read their story at KSP’s of Year Awards Ceremony in December.
Lambing Flat Annual Writing Competition (Entries close 14 October 2022)
Enter your short story or poem in this writing competition. No set theme but word limits for different age categories apply. Check the competition’s website for details.
ENTRY: FREE in the student category.
PRIZES: Money prizes for first and second place in each age category. See competition website for details.
Superhero Foods Healthy Poem Competition (Entries close 2 November 2022)
Write a poem on the theme of healthy eating. Your poem must be no longer than 20 lines.
PRIZES: Vouchers to spend at The Literature Centre, Fremantle. First prize: $150 voucher; second place $100 voucher; Third place $50 voucher.
Kidsafe Victoria’s Farm Safety Creative Competition (Entries close 4 November 2022)
Open to all Victorian preschoolers and primary school students (regional and metropolitan and families). Students can enter as a class, in pairs/teams, or individually in their choice of entry type. To enter: create an illustrated story or comic strip to promote farm safety.
PRIZES: A range of prizes, including vouchers, stationery packs and book packs.
Korean Spirit and Culture Promotion Project National Essay Contest (Entries close 6 November 2022)
This is a competition run by an international organisation. This session of the competition is open to Australian students in Grades 5 to 12. Prizes will be awarded in two age categories. The entrants are required to read excerpts on the competition website and then write an essay based on one of three prompts offered. Visit the website for all details.
PRIZES: First prize is $500; second prize $200; third prize $100, and the winning essay will be published on the project website.
Story Lab Young Writers Short Story Competition (Entries close 20 November 2022)
Competition open to Years 4-7 to residents of the City of Fremantle (Western Australia) and also to students who attend school in the City of Fremantle. Write a 500-word short story, there is no set theme. Only one entry per person.
PRIZES: Years 4 & 5 category winner receives $150; Year 6 & 7 category winner receives $200; 3 commendations will receive $50 each.
TO ENTER: email globetownproject[at]gmail.com or drop your entry off to Paper Bird Books in Fremantle. You must include the following with your entry: Your name, address, date of birth, school and year level, parent/guardian name, mobile and email.
EngineerGirl International Writing Contest (Entries close 1 February 2023)
Write a piece that shows how women and/or non-white engineers have contributed to or can enhance engineering’s great achievements. Submissions will be judged by a slate of volunteers that include professionals from various engineering fields. In addition to checking that submissions meet all of the basic rules, they will be looking for:
- Presentation of engineering (~35%)
- Celebration of diversity (~50%)
- Quality of writing (~15%)
PRIZES: First-place winners will be awarded $500; Second-place entries will be awarded $250; Third-place entries will be awarded $100. Winning entries, along with honorable mention entries, will be published on the EngineerGirl website.