An annual award supporting emerging writers to develop their craft.
A £2,000 cash award, allowing them to focus on their work
Tailored personal development opportunities, which can include mentoring from writers and industry professionals
PR, performance and presentation training
The opportunity to showcase work to publishers and agents
A week long retreat offering time, space and the freedom to create new work in idyllic surroundings
There are three categories, Fiction and Non-Narrative Fiction (also known as creative non-fiction), Poetry and Children’s and Young Adult Fiction. You can only apply to one category per year.
Entries are invited in English, Scots and a combination of both. There are also two awards for Gaelic writers, run in association with the Gaelic Books Council. Applications for Gaelic New Writers Awards can be written in English or Gaelic.
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Who can apply?
You can apply if you:
Are aged 18 or over
Are based in Scotland
Are able to demonstrate a strong commitment to developing a career in writing
Haven't yet published a novel, narrative non-fiction book (e.g. biography or memoir), a collection of short stories or poems
Have previously published only non-narrative non-fiction
Have work that's been any of the following: self-published, digitally published, published in a pamphlet, published as part of an anthology or magazine, or published academically (e.g. standard non-fiction, textbook, academic journal).
Are writing a graphic novel or illustrated book (although the panel will only consider your writing, not any associated images)
Have received a Scottish Arts Council New Writers Bursary, New Writers Award, Callan Gordon Award or Next Chapter Award
Are currently in receipt of another award from Scottish Book Trust or Creative Scotland
Are currently a student or planning to be in formal education (full or part-time) during the course of the award. You can apply when your course of study is completed.
Are a writer registered on the Live Literature Author Directory. Illustrators and Storytellers who are registered on the database may apply to work on writing if they fulfil the criteria above. Performance poets who are registered on the directory may not apply for the Poetry category but may apply for other categories
Already have a book publishing deal in place
Want to focus on plays, screenplays or radioplays
Are on staff at Scottish Book Trust
Are on staff at Scottish Poetry Library and want to apply for the poetry category (the other categories are fine)
By submitting your application, you're confirming you meet the criteria to the best of your knowledge. Anyone who doesn't meet the criteria will be deemed ineligible and may be asked to return the award or withdraw their application.
A number of our awardees have been published by publishing houses including HarperCollins, Simon and Schuster, Harvill Secker, Atlantic Books, Vintage Books, Fourth Estate, Tapsalteerie and Sandstone Press. Other writers have won literary awards and prizes including the Manchester Fiction Prize and The Dundee International Book Prize.