Writing competitions (Australia / New Zealand)

Below is a list of non-fiction, essay, memoir and life writing contests based in Australia and New Zealand — although some may be open to writers elsewhere.

We aim to avoid listing competitions which make unreasonable demands on entrants, such as copyright claims on all entries. Please check terms and conditions before entering, in case some slip through.

For a list of UK, Ireland, and European competitions, click here, and for US / Canada, click here. Some competitions in both listings will be open to writers worldwide. 



30th September
The New England Thunderbolt Prize for Crime Non-fiction
AU$500. For an article up to 2,500 words.



16th December
Hawkeye Publishing Manuscript Developmental Prize 
Non-fiction of up to 80,000. A$45 entry fee. 

31st December
The Writers College Free Writing Competition
On ‘the best writing tip I ever received’. 600 words. NZ$200.



Broad Media Writing Competition (December 2022)
The Horne Prize (November 2022)
The Spark Prize (January 2023)
The Calibre Essay Prize (January 2023)
Northern Beaches Writers Competition (March 2023)
Chief of Navy’s Essay Competition (March 2023)
Griffith Review Emerging Voices Awards (March 2023)
Charles Brasch Young Writers’ Essay Competition (March 2023)
Wakefield Press Essay Prize (April 2023)
Ada Cambridge Biographical Prose Prize (April 2023)
Furphy Story Prize (April 2023)
Questions Writing Prize (May 2023)
IPSANZ’s The John McLaren Emmerson QC Essay Prize (May 2023)
The Australian/Vogel’s Literary Award 2023 (May 2023)
The Australian Orchid Foundation Essay Prize (June 2023)
Landfall Essay Competition (July 2023)
AAWP / Westerly Magazine Life Writing Prize (July 2023)
AAWP / Express Media Sudden Writing Prize (July 2023)
Mindshare Awards (August 2023)
Growlife Medical Essay Competition (August 2023)
Catalyse Nonfiction Prize (August 2023)
Bass Coast Prize for Non-Fiction (September 2023)

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