Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2024 | Win up to £5,000

Commonwealth Short Story Prize

The Commonwealth Short Story Prize is an annual literary award for unpublished short fiction in English from Commonwealth countries. The Commonwealth Writers, an initiative of the Commonwealth Foundation, administers the prize. It was established in 2011 to promote and celebrate the diversity of storytelling within the Commonwealth, which comprises countries formerly part of the British Empire. The prize includes 5 Commonwealth regions of Africa, Asia, Canada and Europe, the Pacific and the Caribbean. Are you from these regions? Participate in the Commonwealth Foundation short story prize and get a chance to win up to £5,000.

This international competition is free of charge and welcomes entries from individuals aged 18 and above from any of the Commonwealth regions. It seeks to recognize excellence in unpublished short fiction of 2,000 to 5,000 words. An international panel of judges will select around twenty stories for a shortlist. From this list, five regional winners will be selected. One of them will be chosen as the grand winner and awarded a prize of £5,000. The remaining regional winners will each receive £2,500 as recognition for their achievement. All five regional winning stories will be presented in Granta.

The Commonwealth Short Story Prize in 2024 is an excellent opportunity for writers, regardless of their level of experience, to showcase their stories to a global audience. The prize brings together writers from diverse Commonwealth nations, promoting cultural understanding and connection through storytelling. It emphasizes the importance of storytelling as a means of expression and exchange. This competition goes beyond rewarding the best story, it serves as a platform for writers to share their unique perspectives and start meaningful conversations worldwide.

Since the beginning of this international short story writing contest, the award has served as a driving force to discover and highlight a range of regional writers who had the potential to become sources of inspiration within their respective communities. Ever since then, the Commonwealth Short Story Prize has gained momentum with remarkable growth from 2,000 entries in 2012 to over 6,000 submissions today. These entries represent nearly every nation within the Commonwealth and span eleven languages.


Here are more details about the Short Story Writing Competition


Table of Contents

  • Country: Online
  • Financial coverage: Fully Funded
  • Deadline: November 1, 2023
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    Eligibility Criteria :

    Does this international short story competition by the Commonwealth Foundation sound interesting to you? If it does, make sure you read the eligibility criteria that Opportunities Circle has compiled for you below. 

    Eligibility Criteria for Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2024:

    • All entrants must hold citizenship in a Commonwealth nation.
    • Stateless individuals currently residing within a Commonwealth nation are also eligible to participate.
    • In cases where the writer has dual citizenship in two Commonwealth countries, the evaluation will take place in the region where the writer maintains permanent residency.
    • The competition does not require that the writer must currently reside in a Commonwealth country.
    • There are no restrictions on the choice of setting, genre or theme.
    • The story must be adult fiction and not written for children alone.
    • Applicants must be 18 or above by 1 November 2023.
    • Only the author who created the work, whether in the original language or translated form, is allowed to make submissions.
    • Submissions must be made via the online entry form for them to be considered. 
    • Each writer is only allowed to submit a single entry per year. 
    • The story must be an original creation of the entrant.
    • The Commonwealth Foundation reserves the right to accept or reject all entries, with the prize chair as the final authority in determining eligibility.
    • Individuals who have previously received the overall Commonwealth Short Story Prize are not qualified to enter.
    • Moreover, participants who have secured the regional prize on three occasions are also ineligible to submit their work for consideration.
    • Submissions from existing staff members of the Commonwealth Foundation are not permissible.
    • If your entry has been shortlisted or received an accolade in other competitions, it remains eligible for submission as long as it has not been published.
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    Benefits :

    If you meet the eligibility criteria mentioned above, continue reading about the various benefits of this international story-writing competition in 2024. 

    Benefits of the Commonwealth Short Story Prize:

    • Winning or being shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize can significantly enhance a writer’s reputation and credibility within the literary world.
    • The grand winner will receive a prize worth £5,000, while the regional winners will each receive £2,500 as recognition for their achievement. 
    • The winning stories of the five regional winners will be published in the highly-regarded Granta Magazine.
    • Participation in the Commonwealth Short Story Prize community allows writers to connect with other authors, literary agents, publishers, and professionals in the literary field. 
    • The prize attracts a global readership, exposing writers to a diverse international audience and further enhancing their visibility and reach. 
    • The prize motivates emerging writers to improve their craft and continue their literary pursuits, incentivizing ongoing growth and improvement.
    • By promoting literature from Commonwealth countries, the prize contributes to the growth and vitality of literary communities in these regions, promoting creativity and cultural exchange.

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    Application Process:

    • How to Apply for the Commonwealth Short Story Competition?
    • All applicants must apply online through the online entry form. 
    • Fill out all the required fields in the online entry form, including your details, contact information, and the title of your short story.
    • Carefully review the eligibility criteria to ensure you meet all the requirements of this competition. 
    • No application will be accepted after the deadline, so apply before time runs out.
    • The deadline to apply for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize is 1 November 2023

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