A Note on Our New Categories

This year, the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia has decided to focus on shorter forms for its Nova Writes Competition. While we will no longer be accepting work in the long form categories, we encourage writers working on book-length works of fiction, creative non-fiction, or children’s literature to consider submitting an excerpt of their work in one of the other categories.

For those writers who are keen to get feedback on a completed full-length manuscript, check out the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia’s Manuscript Review Program

A Note on the Competition

If in a given year there are an insufficient number of submissions in any one category, the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia may decide not to offer a prize for that category, although feedback will still be offered on all entries. 

H.R. (Bill) Percy Short Creative Non-Fiction Prize

PRIZE: $250 for the winning entry and an invitation to read at The Celebration of Emerging Writers on May 30th, 2019 in Halifax.

SUBMISSIONS: Must be a creative non-fiction essay of no more than 3,000 words (entrants may also choose to submit excerpts from longer works). Creative non-fiction is a form of non-fiction that uses inventive or literary techniques to produce work that is factually true and artistically elegant. Eligible works of creative non-fiction are the following written in a personal, identifiable voice: history, narrative journalism, memoir, personal essays, and travel writing. 

Rita Joe Poetry Prize

PRIZE: $250 for the winning entry and an invitation to read at The Celebration of Emerging Writers on May 30th, 2019 in Halifax. 

SUBMISSIONS: No more than six poems (with a maximum of 1,500 words) in any style. For judging purposes, each Poetry Prize entry must be given a collection title. It is not a requirement that the poems have a thread that binds them, but many of our readers and judges will be looking for that thread as a basis of evaluation. Note: If your poems rely on particular spacing, please submit as a PDF to ensure that the text does not shift when opened on another computer. Please do not include images of any kind in your document. 

Budge Wilson Short Fiction Prize

PRIZE:  $250 for the winning entry and an invitation to read at The Celebration of Emerging Writers on May 30th, 2019 in Halifax.

SUBMISSIONS: Must be a short work of fiction of no more than 3,000 words (entrants may also choose to submit excerpts from longer works) and may be in any genre including, but not limited to, historical fiction, literary fiction, mystery, romance, and speculative fiction.

Joyce Barkhouse Writing for Children & Young Adult Prize

The entries will be judged based on the criteria for their respective age ranges, with overall excellence being the determining factor in selecting a shortlist and winner. Entrants in this category should pay close attention to age appropriateness, as a miscategorization on the part of the writer will count against the entry. Please note that picture books are not accepted.

PRIZE:  $250 for the winning entry and an invitation to read at The Celebration of Emerging Writers on May 30th, 2019 in Halifax.

Writing for Children (*this is the prize for Nova Writes 2019 Competition)

SUBMISSIONS: Must be fiction or creative non-fiction of no more than 3,000 words (entrants may also choose to submit excerpts from longer works). Submissions may be from chapter books (ages 6-9) or middle grade novels (ages 8-12). Please state whether your piece is from a chapter book or middle grade novel at the beginning of your manuscript. Targeting a manuscript to a particular age range is very important when writing for children, so readers and judges will be evaluating the pieces based on suitability and conventions of each particular age range. Do not include illustrations, but feel free to indicate where illustrations might appear.

Chapter Book (ages 6-9, independent reader)

A chapter book is a short novel intended for intermediate readers. The story is told primarily through prose, though it does contain illustrations. The books are usually divided into short chapters designed to hold the interest of shorter attention spans. Chapter books are of moderate length and complexity.

Example: Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan and the Ivy and Bean series by Annie Barrows 

Middle Grade (ages 8-12)

Middle grade novels are longer and more complex than chapter books, but shorter than YA novels, with less-mature themes (PG rating). Romance, if present, is puppy love. There are no depictions of extreme/graphic violence. If there is cursing, it’s generally mild or simply implied. Middle grade novels tend to have main characters who are the age of, or slightly older than, the target reader. The plot tends to be more outwardly focused, consistent with the reader's greater independence.

Example: Matilda by Roald Dahl and the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan

 OR  

Young Adult Fiction (*this will be the category for the competition in 2020)

SUBMISSIONS: A short story of no more than 3,000 words (entrants may also choose to submit excerpts from longer works) for readers aged 12+ (young adults). Young Adult Fiction submissions may be in any genre including, but not limited to, historical fiction, literary fiction, mystery, and speculative fiction. The summary should contain no biographical or other personally identifiable information. The summary should be included as the first page of your manuscript document.

Le prix Félix Thibodeau de la forme courte

Prix : 250$ pour le.la gagnant.e, qui aura aussi l’occasion de présenter son texte à la Celebration of Emerging Writers à Halifax

Ce prix récompensera l’auteur.e d’un texte littéraire (poésie ou prose--contes, nouvelles, poèmes, fables...en français d’un maximum de 3 000 mots.

 

NOVA WRITES OPENS FOR SUBMISSIONS on NOVEMBER 2, 2018

THE DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS IS JANUARY 4, 2019

 

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