Enter Scotland’s international poetry competition

Wigtown’s annual Poetry Competition, run in conjunction with the Saltire Society, Scottish Poetry Library and The Gaelic Books Council, launched this week.  Poets are invited to enter under three categories: Main Prize; Scottish Gaelic Prize; and Scots Prize, with a prize fund totalling more than £2,500.

This year sees the introduction of a new category, the Dumfries & Galloway Fresh Voice Award, which will be awarded to a poet living in or from the region who has never professionally published a full-length collection but shows exceptional promise. Writers may put themselves forward but we also welcome nominations from third parties. Find out more here.

The competition is open for entries until Friday 8 June 2018. You’ll find all the details about rules and fees here, you can download the entry form or enter online here.

Main Prize
Judge: Christine De Luca

Main Prize £1,500
Runner-up £400
Highly Commended £100

Christine De Luca writes in English and Shetlandic. She was appointed Edinburgh’s Makar for 2014-2017. Besides several children’s stories and one novel, she has had seven poetry collections and four bi-lingual volumes published.

Scottish Gaelic Prize
Judge: Aonghas Pàdraig Caimbeul

Prize £250
Highly Commended £100

Aonghas Pàdraig Caimbeul is an award-winning poet, novelist, journalist and actor. His Gaelic novel ‘An Oidhche Mus Do Sheòl Sinn’ was voted into the top 10 of the Best Ever Books from Scotland in the Orange/List Awards in 2007.

Scots Prize
Judge: Jenny Lindsay

Prize £250
Highly Commended £100

Jenny Lindsay is one of Scotland’s best known spoken word poets. She is the author of one full collection and two pamphlet collections of poetry, was the BBC Slam Champion in 2012 and was longlisted for the inaugural Jerwood Compton Poetry Fellowship in 2017.

With 86 days to go until the competition closes on Friday 8 June, there’s plenty of time to put pen to paper, but don’t forget to put the date in your diary.

Good luck!

Wigtown Festival Company principal funders

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Published by Eryl Gasper Dick

I am an artist and writer living in southwest Scotland. I freelance as a Literature Ambassador (for Wigtown Festival Co. who run the Scottish Book Town); as a creative writing teacher; and a content provider, populating people's websites and marketing materials with perfectly honed, clear sentences. When I'm not gadding about supporting writers, lit events, businesses, and students I write fiction, non-fiction, and the odd poem. I avidly believe that creativity is the answer to the problem.

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    1. I’m currently reading Brian A. Garner’s ‘A Dictionary of Modern American Usage’ and Harryette Mullen’s ‘Sleeping with the Dictionary’ so I beg to disagree; you’ve just made the language your own, and put the anachronisms to sleep. We hang on to them in the same way we hang on to the monarchy and dreams of resurrecting the empire.


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