May 1
~
May 31

Canary Wharf Short Story Competition

Free

Looking for an excuse to start writing more? Well there’s never been a better time! Canary Wharf, in league with publishing house short édition, has kicked off its inaugural writing competition. The call is for contributions to the story stations around Canary Wharf, which dispense short stories for locals and passers-by. You can scope out the competition for inspiration ahead of time. Just try not to be put off by the calibre of the past entries.

Catagories for the Canary Wharf Short Story Competition

There are two categories—one for under 16s and one for adults. Once you’ve figured out what age bracket you fit into, you’ll need to write a one, three or five-minute story. This year’s theme, predictably enough, is “Life in Lockdown”. Entering is as easy as signing up and submitting your story. From romance to sci-fi, all genres of fiction are up for consideration—though erotic and pornographic works aren’t valid entries.

Word limits and character counts

Brevity is the name of the game in this competition. Fortunately, there are character limits to keep you in check:

  • One minute: up to 2600 characters including spaces
  • Three minutes: 2,600–4,800 characters including spaces
  • Five Minutes: 4,800–7,500 characters including spaces

Apparently the judges will accept five-minute stories up to 8,000 words, but you’re probably best off sticking with 7,500 to be safe. By our count that’s actually pretty generous—so you don’t need to be Mark Twain to cram all your ideas in. If you do happen to be Mark Twain though, feel free to come in below the word count.

Prizes

The big prizes come in the form of Canary Wharf gift cards. That’s £150.00 for under 16s and £250 for adults. That could go toward art, entertainment, food or drinks. Wait long enough and you could even treat yourself to a night out when the Winter Lights return.

10 entrants from each category will also be featured in the Short Story Station library. You can find the full terms and conditions here.

Be sure to submit your entry by May 31

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, many events have been canceled. Always check official sites before heading to an event.

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