New Writers Awards 2016: Making a Recording of Your Poetry

For the New Writers Awards 2016, we're accepting audio and video recordings of poetry for your writing sample in the Poetry category.

 Your recording should:

  • Be no longer than 5 minutes in total. 
  • Be of you, performing your work, with no extra material or additional performers. Please give the title of the poem or extract and then perform the poem. Please do this for each poem, without introductions. 
  • Not include your name or contact details. This includes channel names, stage names, twitter handles, video watermarks or links to your website, etc.
  • If you are performing an extract from a longer performance piece or show, please provide a synopsis (no more than 500 words) as part of your application.


Tips for making a recording

Your recording should display your writing and performance skills; it does not have to be complicated or expensive to produce. Make sure the panel can focus on your performance and hear your voice and/or see you clearly.

Setting: Keep it simple. Try to find somewhere without a lot of background noise or use a plain background.

Camera and editing: Place the camera or device in one place and perform as you would to an audience. Avoid any camera shots or editing techniques that distract from your performance. Please use your judgement when including props, costumes, etc. and include only what is necessary to represent your work.


Securing your recording online

Many competitions and online slams use likes, hits, shares and comments as part of the judging process. However, all applications to the New Writers Awards are confidential and you should not share your recording on social media. Our panel cannot consider any online engagement with your work when making their decision.

Please use the privacy settings of your chosen platform to protect your recording.

Many platforms allow you to share a recording securely as part of their free, basic membership. We have collected some examples below.


Video on Vimeo

Vimeo provides instructions to securely share a video. We recommend the following settings:

  • Who can see the video? Only people with a password.
  • Video embedding? Nowhere.
  • Who can comment on the video? No one.
  • Include the link and password in your application.


Video on Youtube

YouTube provides instructions for uploading unlisted videos. We recommend the following settings:

  • Upload as an unlisted video.
  • Disable embedding, likes and comments.
  • Include the link in your application.

On YouTube, you cannot protect your video with a password, and anyone with the link can re-share it in a number of ways, such as forwarding the link by email or adding it to a playlist.


Audio tracks on Soundcloud

Soundcloud provides instructions. We recommend the following settings:

  • Upload the track.
  • Make the track private.
  • Include the secret link in your application.
  • Let us know if you reset the secret link between submitting your application and hearing the result of your application.


If you have any further questions or cannot make a recording or transcript for any reason, please email