Monetize your writing: 4 publishing contests you shouldn’t miss (no fees)


About year ago I published this post where I emphasized three creative, more alternative ways you can earn money as a poet. Well, what I left out are writing contests as they are more of a traditional way of monetizing your writing. Nevertheless, they are a great way for emerging poets/writers to get more recognition and practice working under deadlines with focus on a specific topic.

Below is list of 4 competitions/paying publishing opportunities that I think are worth your attention. Now, I haven’t included contests that require fees, as I don’t see them as much motivating. Also, many of the competitions have specific accent on age, gender, location and ext. so I tried to exclude those which are very restrictive.

Here’s my list:

Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest

This is 16th year that this contest exists. There are no fees required for you to enter – only to make them laugh 🙂 If you like poetry and humor, this is the perfect combination for you. From August 15, 2016 until April 1, 2017 you can submit your published or unpublished work and enter run for one of the prizes:

“a first prize of $1,000 and a second prize of $250. Ten Honorable Mentions will receive $100 each. The top 12 entries will be published online. Length limit: 250 lines. No restrictions on age or country.”

Here’s the link where to submit:

Blue Mountain Arts hosts its twenty-ninth Biannual Poetry Card Contest

Deadline: December 31, 2016
1st prize: $300, 2nd prize: $150, 3rd prize: $50

In addition, the winning poems will be displayed on their website

Here are the rules and guidelines:

“Poems can be rhyming or non-rhyming, although we find that non-rhyming poetry reads better.

We suggest that you write about real emotions and feelings and that you have some special person or occasion in mind as you write.

Poems are judged on the basis of originality and uniqueness.

English-language entries only, please.

Enter as often as you like!

Poetry Contest Rules

All entries must be the original creation of the submitting author. All rights to the entries must be owned by the author and shall remain the property of the author. The author gives permission to Blue Mountain Arts, Inc. to publish and display the entry on the Web (in electronic form only) if the entry is selected as a winner or finalist. Winners will be contacted within 45 days of the deadline date. Contest is open to everyone except employees of Blue Mountain Arts and their families. Void where prohibited.”

Complete the contest form here at

Platypus Press offers an opportunity for publishing contract

Here are the guidelines:

“For poetry, please send at least half of the complete manuscript.

For short story / essay collections, please send at least five stories.

For novels, please send the first three chapters.

We ask that no more than fifty percent of the manuscript be previously published.

Simultaneous submissions are fine, but please let us know if your manuscript is accepted elsewhere.

Authors will receive ongoing royalties whilst the book is in print, but we do not currently offer an advance.

Attach your manuscript as a PDF and include a short third-person bio with your submission (e.g. who you are, any other publications, etc.).

Please note:

For poetry, please don’t send rhyming poetry or translations.

For fiction and essays, we do not accept erotica, horror, religious material or fan fiction.

We are a very small company, but we aim to give you a response within a month. Please query if it has been longer.”

You can submit via email to:

The last but not least is a competition for best short stories. I know that many of us flirt and experiment with different writing genres, so some of you, poets, can find this appealing too.

Short Story Competition 2017

“For published and aspiring writers alike – enter our free annual short story competition and be in with a chance of winning a place on an Arvon residential writing course of your choice (worth £1,000), as well as seeing your story published on

To enter, all you have to do is submit a short story (for adults) of no more than 2,000 words. And that’s it. Unlike previous years, there’s no theme for you to base your story on; all you have to do is make sure you’re registered with the website, the subject line of your email reads ‘W&A Short Story Competition 2017‘ and you send it to

The closing date for entries is midnight on Monday 13th February, 2017. The winner of the competition – along with two runners-up – will be announced on the blog pages of this site in March 2017.

Arvon run three historic writing houses in the UK, where published writers lead week-long residential courses. Covering a diverse range of genres, from poetry and fiction to screenwriting and comedy, Arvon courses have provided inspiration to thousands of people at all stages of their writing lives. Find out more and book a course online at

Full details, terms and conditions for this contest you can find here.

So there you go, think of these competitions and give it a try – at least it will stir up your writing and keep your creative juices flowing.

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26 thoughts on “Monetize your writing: 4 publishing contests you shouldn’t miss (no fees)

  1. Thank you for the offerings! I am a whiner of the biggest sort — I whine about never getting published, yet I don’t often submit anything. Yikes! But I do admit I’m getting better, and will take your suggestions with more than a grain of salt (more like a bucketful!)

    Liked by 1 person

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