The 50-Word Fiction Competition

Can you write a story in just 50 words?

Each month we’ll provide a prompt to get you started, but where the story goes from there is entirely up to you.

The competition includes four categories, Adult Writers, All-age Gaelic Writers, Young Writers 5-11 and Young Writers 12-18. The entries will be judged by a panel and the four winning stories will be published on our website roughly two weeks after the closing date.

A prize will be awarded to a writer in each category:

Whether you're a seasoned writer or you've always fancied picking up a pen, why not give it a go?

Need some inspiration or tips? Read our 50 Word Fiction blogs, check out Sophie Cooke's 5 Things for Writing A Short Story and read last month's winners.

 

January's prompt

To allow for the holidays, we're running an extra long competition this month.

Prompt: Write a story featuring fireworks.

Fireworks in night sky

 
Image credit: via Christels at Pixabay

How to Enter

Entries for our January competition are currently open. Submit your story by Tuesday 29 January 2019 at noon.

  • You can submit one entry to one category per month. Please read the terms and conditions carefully before entering.
  • To submit your story, please complete the form below. You will receive a confirmation message on screen after submitting.
  • We welcome entries in Scots or Scottish Gaelic for both categories and thank The Gaelic Books Council for their support in judging our entries.
  • Please note that we no longer send acknowledgement emails and due to the large number of entries, we are not able to offer individual feedback.
  • If you have any questions about the competition, please send them to: lynsey.may@scottishbooktrust.com
Gaelic Book Council
Literary Gift Company

 

Submit your entry here:

We are taking these details so that we can contact you with the result of your entry. You can find our Privacy Statement here. If you would like to withdraw your consent and have your story or details removed from our database, please emails lynsey.may@scottishbooktrust.com

We only need this information if you are 18 or under
Interested in Scottish Book Trust’s monthly round-up of tips, advice, awards and competitions for writers? Subscribe to our Writing Newsletter
Please note: this box does not limit you to 50 words, so please check your story length before submitting.
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December's Winners

Prompt: Write a story about a winter feast.

apple strudel

All-age category winner Lorraine Thomson

Grace never cared for pigs wrapped in pigs, nor greasy chins and tooth gaps filled with sinew, nor wagging tongues furred with sauce. Curtained by red festive cloth, she preferred to feast beneath the table, devouring gifted books whilst sucking toffees to the roof of her mouth.

All-age Gaelic category winner Marie Christine Macaulay

Blàths is blas. Stòbha air. Fàileadh caineal, cnàmag, spìosraich, dearcagan, rèiseidean agus sultanas. Air a mheasgachadh ann am bobhla le flùr, siùcair, uighean, ìm agus drudhag bhranndaidh. Ag ullachadh airson cèic na Nollaige. A’ faighinn moladh mòr airson an tiona cèic a’ lìnigeadh agus mar dhuais, cothrom am bobhla imlich.

Translated by the author
Warmth and flavour. Stove heated. The smell of cinnamon, nutmeg, spice, currants, raisins and sultanas. Mixed in a bowl with flour, sugar, eggs, butter and a drop of brandy. Preparing the Christmas cake. Getting praise for lining the cake tin and rewarded by getting to lick the bowl.

Young writers Gaelic winner Eilidh MacLeod, aged 9

Aon Oidhche Nollaig chaidh sinn gu Talla Bhatarsaigh airson dinnear Nollaig. Thàinig Bodach na Nollaig, an teaghlach agam, muinntir Bhatarsaigh, na fèidh aig Bodach na Nollaig. Bha fhàileadh blasta cearc-Fhrangach ann. Bha craobh Nollaig mhòr ann, làn tinsel, solais Nollaig. Chuala mi glagan agus seinn. Bha e cho math, bha a h-uile duine a’ dannsa.

Translated by the Gaelic Books Council
One Christmas Eve we went to Vatersay Hall for Christmas dinner. Santa Claus, my family, the people of Vatersay and Santa’s reindeer all came. There was a delicious smell of turkey. There was a big Christmas tree, full of tinsel and Christmas lights. I heard bells and singing. It was so good, everyone was dancing.
 

Young Writers (12-18) category winning story by Annet Rodriguez, age 13

Sugar is lightly dusted on top of the recently made pastries. These were made especially for the competition at the annual winter feast. As mother tries one, her face lights up with hope. Will we win? We must be optimistic, this may be the chance to be free at last.

Young Writers (5-11) category winning story by Cameron McBain, age 9

All 13 witches gathered stealthily around the long oak table.
"It's time to have our winter feast!" said the leader.
"How dare you kill our makers!" shouted a voice.
10 snowmen came in and stabbed all the witches using their carrot noses and stick arms.
"Feast time?" said a snowman..

Read all the previous winning stories here.

Image credit, thekaleidascope on Pixabay.