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.


March's prompt

Prompt: Write a story featuring mist or fog. 

a bridge shrouded in mist
Image credit: via Free Photos at Pixabay

How to Enter

Entries for our March competition are currently open. Submit your story by Tuesday 26 March 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:
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

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.
Please tick the box below - this checks a human is submitting the form and prevents spam

February's Winners

Prompt: Write a story featuring a camera.

A small picture of a camera
All-age category winner Fiona

It was the sound the shutter button made when pressed, that I remember. 

Not ‘click’ - more ‘zzzip’.  My childhood camera of the 80’s, taking tilted snaps of classmates and pets. 

You could feel the film auto-winding behind its door, which would ping open if jostled. 

Exposures flooded with rainbows.


All-age Gaelic category winner Anne Macaulay

Thuig cuid dhiubh gura mise bu choireach, agus cha tigeadh iad nam ghaoth ri linn. Gu h-àraid esan. Am Baran. Von Richthofen fhèin. Ach fhuair mi e aig a’ cheann thall. Cliog. Gàire reòite agus anam glacte. Esan a’ tuiteam gu talamh; mise a’ sealg eun eile …

Translated by Gaelic Books Council: 

Some of them understood that I was to blame, and they wouldn’t come near me because of it. Especially him. The Baron. Von Richthofen himself. But I got him in the end. Click. A frozen smile and a trapped soul. He fell to the ground; I went to hunt another bird …


Young Writers (12-18) category winning story by Sophia Ricaurte, age 16

Another Shooting

Screams of fear permeated the stadium. Sam ran onto the street and saw a mass of people on their phones filming the tragedy.
“Somebody, help me!” He cried. Blood ran down his face. Nobody looked up from their phones, too busy showing off their bravery. He died fifteen minutes later.


Young Writers (5-11) category winning story by Murdo MacLeod, age 9

Once there was a 9-year-old boy whose name was Murdo. One Christmas he got a camera with 3 buttons marked “Grw”, “Snk”, & “Rst”. He pressed the Snk button and before he knew, he was tiny, he pressed Grw, and he turned normal, but 2ft taller but then pressed Rst.

Read all the previous winning stories here.

Image credit, thekaleidascope on Pixabay.