2022 Newcastle Writers Festival Fresh Ink Emerging Writers Prize

Newcastle Writers Festival is inviting emerging writers living in regional NSW to submit to the Fresh Ink Emerging Writers Prize. The prize seeks to elevate marginalised voices and is an acknowledgement of the challenges faced by writers in remote and regional areas.

The Fresh Ink Prize is supported by Create NSW, Newcastle business Fourth Wave Wine via their label Elephant in the Room, as well as Varuna, the National Writers' House. 

The winner will be awarded $5000 to support the development of their writing as well as a week-long residency at Varuna.

The judges of this year’s prize are writers Magdalena Ball, Winnie Dunn, and Andrew Pippos.

Applications open at 9.00am on 27 July 2022 and close at 11.59pm AEST 31 August 2022. A shortlist will be announced on 30 September and the winner will be announced at a special event on 15 October 2022 in Newcastle.

Entries will be assessed on the following criteria:

- Literary merit

- Viability and impact of development plan

Please read the submission guidelines and terms and conditions before applying. It is recommended you prepare your responses in a separate document and cut and paste information into the online form. 

Submission guidelines

To enter you must be an Australian citizen or Australian resident.

1. The prize is open to writers of prose in any genre working across creative nonfiction and fiction for readers of all ages.

2. You must be 18 years of age or over to enter. There is no upper age limit.

3. An ‘emerging writer’ is defined as someone who has not previously published, or has a contract for, a full-length work with a commercial publisher.

4. For the purposes of this prize, regional NSW includes the Central Coast, Hunter region and Illawarra, and is defined as the areas or regions outside of metropolitan Sydney, including western Sydney.

5. The sample of writing submitted for the prize must not have been previously published. It does not need to stand alone i.e. it can be an extract from a longer work.

6. Submissions close on 31 August at 11:59pm AEST. Entries submitted after the closing date will not be considered.

7. Entries must be submitted by uploading your submission to freshinkprize.submittable.com

8. Entries must comprise the following:

a. A bio without identifying details

b. Publishing history without identifying details

c. Professional development plan with concrete details

d. Sample of writing of up to 3000 words as well as a precis, especially if the sample is part of a larger work

9. Only one entry per person will be accepted.

10. All entries will be judged anonymously, so please do not include your name anywhere in the submitted manuscript file or the file name, or as a result your entry will be deemed ineligible.

11. The decision of the judges is final. The judges will not provide individual feedback to entrants.

12. By submitting your entry, you agree to the Prize Terms and Conditions.

Terms and Conditions

1. The Submission Guidelines form part of the Terms and Conditions.

2. Eligibility to enter the Newcastle Writers Festival Emerging Writers Prize is subject to the Submission Guidelines above.

3. By entering the Newcastle Writers Festival Emerging Writers Prize (‘Prize’) you opt into the marketing database of Newcastle Writers Festival (‘NWF’) and agree to receive marketing information from it. You may opt out of its marketing database at any time.

4. You warrant that your entry: a. is your own original work; b. is not defamatory; c. does not infringe any existing copyright or licence or any other third-party rights; d. does not contain any material in breach of official secrets, confidentiality obligations or any other laws; e. does not invade any individual’s rights of privacy; and f. all statements in the work purporting to be facts are true.

5. You warrant that: (a) you have full power to enter the NWF Emerging Writers Prize; (b) you are the sole author and owner of all the copyright in your entry; and (c) the material entered has not been previously licensed for exclusive use in any form in any territory.

6. The copyright in your sample of writing shall remain your intellectual property, and your moral rights as a creator will be recognised and respected.

7. The winner will receive the following prize: AUD$5,000 and a week-long residency at Varuna, which must be completed between November 2022 and April 2023. The winner must use the prize money for professional development opportunities, as outlined in the entrant’s submission. Two updates and a final report are to be submitted by the winner.

8. If the judges believe that there are two works of equal merit, they reserve the right to divide the prize money equally.

9. The judges may decide not to shortlist or award the Prize if they do not believe any of the entries are of a high enough standard.

10. The shortlist will be announced online on 30 September 2022. The shortlist will be promoted via the NWF website and social media channels.

11. The winner will be announced at a special event in Newcastle on 15 October 2022.

12. The winner and shortlisted entrants will be encouraged to take part in events and media activities to promote the Prize.

You understand that: (a) the judges’ decision is final and in their absolute discretion; and (b) these terms form the entire and binding agreement between you and Newcastle Writers Festival.

Newcastle Writers Festival