Hastings Literary Festival offers writing opportunity

Hastings Literary Festival is offering 12 writers the chance to see their work published just 48 hours after a unique workshop with experienced editors.

David Hare
David Hare

Spokeswoman Alison Steel said: “Inspired by topical writing such as Ali Smith’s seasonal quartet and Olivia Laing’s Crudo, festival organisers are launching a competition to find poetry, short stories and life writing based on current events from April 2021 onwards.

“Up to 12 winners will be invited to an all-day workshop in Hastings on September 23 to work with editors to complete their pieces ready for the printers. Prizes of £100 are available for three winners on the day.

“The resulting anthology Dateline Hastings: 23-09-21 will be launched by leading playwright and Hastings Literary Festival patron Sir David Hare on September 25 at a special event less than two days after the workshop.

“Entries can be a mix of fiction and life writing, expressed through poetry or prose. They should be inspired by local, national or international events happening after April 2021.

“Prose writers should submit up to 1,000 words to the competition and the maximum word count for the final version is 2,000. Poets need to submit 25-40 lines, with a maximum line limit for the final version of 40. All entrants need to submit a 200-word synopsis.

“Entrants who are currently unemployed or on low income are invited to apply for a limited number of bursaries to cover the £10 entry fee, provided by sponsors Magdalen and Lasher. The competition deadline is midnight on July 31.”

Full details of how to enter are available at https://hastingslitfest.org/home/competition/

Winners will be contacted in the week beginning August 16 to allow time to finish their drafts before the September 23 workshop when they will be able to add final polish with the help of experienced editors.

Organiser Wayne Herbert added: “We wanted to provide writers with an opportunity to come together and work on a unique project.”