19th Annual SiWC Writing Contest

The SiWC Writing Contest is held each year, culminating with the awards ceremony during the conference. A list of the SiWC 2010 winners can be found at the Writing Award 2010 Winners page.

The contest features blind judging in four categories:

  • SIWC Storyteller's Award
  • SIWC Non-fiction Award
  • SIWC Poetry Award
  • SIWC Writing For Young People Award

The winning entries are sold as an anthology during the conference.


2011 SiWC Writing Contest Submission Rules & Guidelines

1. The Surrey International Writers' Conference Writing Contest is open to all writers 18 years and older. Young writers can submit to Surrey Public Library's Young Writers' Contest.

2. All submissions must contain original material, and may not have been previously published, accepted for publication, or have been a winner in another contest prior to the September 9th deadline.

3. Four Categories:

SIWC Storyteller's Award: short stories 3,500 – 5,000 words

SIWC Non-fiction Award: maximum length 1,500 words

SIWC Poetry Award: one poem per submission: 40 lines max.

SIWC Writing For Young People Award: short stories, maximum length 1,500 words

4. Standard manuscript format — double-spaced, typed, one side only on white 8-1/2 x 11" paper (letter-sized), each page to include title and page number only. No staples, please. Poetry may be single-spaced.

5. Blind submissions — the author's name must not appear anywhere on the manuscript except cover page.

6. There are TWO options for submission of entries:

    1) Mail deliveries: Surrey International Writers' Conference Writing Contest PO Box 42023, PRO Guildford, Surrey, BC, V3R 1S5

For each entry, include entry fee and a cover page listing the writer's name, address, email address, phone number, entry title, word length, and award competition category attached to manuscript with paper clip. All information is held in strict confidence, and will be destroyed after the contest winners are announced. Manuscripts are not returned. In addition to hard copy, all entrants must be able to submit their work by email if requested. (This enables us to forward short-listed work to the final judges, and to produce the anthology of winning work in time for the conference).

   2) Email entries: Please follow the submission guidelines as noted above and copy your cover page and your submission into the body of your email. Send your email to contest@siwc.ca Attachments will be deleted, unread. The contest coordinator will print and format your submission (including a cover page) as per above instructions for consideration by the judges. Send your cheque or money order to SiWC Writing Contest, PO Box 42023, PRO Guildford, Surrey, BC, V3R 1S5. Emailed entries will not be considered until the entry fee is received.

7. Entry fees: $15 per submission. You may enter as many pieces as you like in one or more categories, but each entry must be accompanied by the $15 fee. You may combine fees in one cheque or money order. Cheques/money orders must be included with all entries, and be payable to SiWC. Fees must be postmarked by the deadline of September 9, 2011.

8. No entries will be returned. If you want the receipt of your entry acknowledged, please enclose a stamped,self-addressed postcard.

9. Final judges to be announced.

10. DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION: All entries must be postmarked by 4 p.m., Friday, September 9, 2011. No late entries will be considered.

11. Only work which conforms to all the guidelines can be considered. Due to the volume of entries, we are unable to contact writers whose entries are incomplete. Check that yours meets every requirement before submitting.

12. The judges and conference/contest organizers cannot comment on individual entries.

13. Short-listed writers will be notified in early October.

14. Winners will be informed by October 15, 2011. Prizes will be awarded at the Awards Ceremony on the first evening of the Conference, Friday, October 21, 2011. Winners will be listed on the conference website www.siwc.ca in the week after the conference.

15. Prizes:

Storyteller's Award: 1st Place $1,000 and anthology; Honourable Mention(s) $150 each.
Nonfiction Award: 1st Place $1,000 and anthology; Honourable Mention(s) $150 each.      
Poetry Award: 1st Place $1,000 and anthology; Honourable Mention(s) $150 each.          
Writing for Young People Award: 1st Place $1,000 and anthology; Honourable Mention(s) $150 each.

In some cases, prizes may not be awarded exactly as noted, according to the discretion of the judges. All winning entries will be published in the Writing Contest anthology which will be available at the conference Friday evening, immediately following the announcement of the winners.

16. Submission implies the author is granting first right of publication to the SiWC, as winners will be published in our annual anthology. Rights then revert to the author. Entering the contest also grants the SIWC the right to publish the entrant's name in the contest anthology and the SIWC website, should the entrant be short-listed for, or win, a SIWC writing contest prize.

Please see the SIWC website (siwc.ca) for the SIWC's full privacy policy. Direct any queries about the contest to kc dyer: contest@siwc.ca.