Submissions Open for 2022 Short Prose Competition for Emerging Writers

The Writers' Union of Canada invites submissions to its 29th annual Short Prose Competition for Emerging Writers. Unpublished works of fiction and nonfiction up to 2,500 words in English are eligible, and writers may submit multiple entries. A $2,500 prize will be awarded to the winner, and the entries of the winner and eleven finalists will be submitted to three Canadian magazines for consideration. The deadline for entries is February 18, 2022.

The Competition aims to discover, encourage, and promote new writers of short prose. "Over its twenty-nine-year history, the Short Prose Competition has always delivered an eclectic array of entries," says Executive Director John Degen. "It is quite exciting to discover promising new writers each year." Past finalists and winners have included such future luminaries as Shauna Singh Baldwin, Lewis DeSoto, Kathryn Kuitenbrouwer, Alexander MacLeod, and Amy Stuart.

The Union is proud to announce an esteemed group of jurors for the Competition:

  • Tanya Boteju is a teacher and writer living on unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations (Vancouver, British Columbia). Her novel, Kings, Queens, and In-Betweens was named a Top Ten Indie Next Pick by the American Booksellers Association, as well as selected for the American Librarian Association 2020 Rainbow List. Her work appears in the anthology Out Now and her latest young adult novel, Bruised, has been selected as a Gold Standard book by the Junior Library Guild. In both teaching and writing, she is committed to complex, diverse representation.
  • Wayne Grady has written more than a dozen books of nonfiction, has published three novels, and is one of Canada's top literary translators. His novel Emancipation Day won the 2013 Amazon.ca First Novel Award and, along with his translation of Louis Hamelin's October 1970, was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. His most recent novel, The Good Father, was published in 2021, and his book about the Covid pandemic, When the Lights of Health Go Down, will appear in 2022. He has taught creative nonfiction at the MFA level, as well as at Banff and Sage Hill. He lives in Kingston, Ontario, and in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, with his wife, novelist Merilyn Simonds.
  • Thea Lim is the author of An Ocean of Minutes, which was a shortlisted finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. Her writing has been published in Granta, The Nation, The Paris ReviewBest Canadian StoriesThe GuardianThe Globe and MailGuernica, and others. She’s always honoured to be entrusted with the words of other writers, whether as an editor at Gulf Coast, as a book critic, as a story consultant for film and television, or as creative writing faculty member.

The Competition is open to Canadian citizens and residents who have had no more than one book published and are not currently under contract for a second book. Authors not published in book format are also eligible. The entry fee is $29 per submission, and submissions are accepted online until 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time on February 18, 2022. The winner and finalists will be announced in late spring 2022.

For complete rules and regulations, and to submit, visit writersunion.ca/short-prose-competition.

The Writers' Union of Canada (TWUC) is the national organization of professionally published writers. TWUC was founded in 1973 to work with governments, publishers, booksellers, and readers to improve the conditions of Canadian writers. Now over 2,300 members strong, TWUC advocates on behalf of writers' collective interests, and delivers value to members through advocacy, community, and information. TWUC believes in a thriving, diverse Canadian culture that values and supports writers.

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For additional information:
Siobhan O’Connor, Associate Director

The Writers' Union of Canada
soconnor@writersunion.ca