Poetry Prize: £10,000*
Entry fee: £17.50
Deadline for Entries: 14th September 2018
Chair of Poetry Judges: Adam O'Riordan
£10,000 prize for the best portfolio of three to five poems (maximum combined length: 120 lines). Open internationally to new and established writers aged 16 or over (no upper age limit).
The 2018 Manchester Writing Competition is now closed to entries. You can find details of the finalists and read their short-listed poems below. Winners will be announced at a gala prize-giving on 1st February; book your free tickets to the event, which will also celebrate ten years of the Manchester Writing Competition, by visiting the Award Ceremony and Anniversary Gala page.
Zillah is a writer and filmmaker. She has won the Wordsworth Trust Prize and Poems on the Buses Competition, and was shortlisted for the Wasafiri New Writing Prize, Alpine Fellowship and Listowel Poetry Awards. She has received a Creative Wales Award and was a Hay Festival Writer at Work. Her poems have been published in Mslexia, Wasafiri, The North and The Next Review, among others. Her films include Small Protests, nominated for a Grierson Award, which won the Current Short Cuts Award. She is writing a first poetry collection and several screenplays. Zillah is based in Wales and works regularly in London.
Born in Cumbria, Katie’s debut pamphlet, Breaking the Surface, was published by Flipped Eye in 2017. She has won the Jane Martin Poetry Prize and the Buzzwords Poetry Competition, and in 2019 will undertake residencies at The Wordsworth Trust, Passa Porta (Brussels) and the MacDowell Colony (New Hampshire, USA). Her poetry has appeared in Poetry Review, The North and Interpreter’s House, among others. Katie's debut novel, My Name is Monster, will be published by Canongate in 2019. She runs creative writing workshops in schools, and is working on a first full collection of poetry.
Libby Hart is an Australian author of three collections of poetry: Fresh News from the Arctic (winner of the Anne Elder Award and shortlisted for the Mary Gilmore Prize), This Floating World (shortlisted for the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards and The Age Book of the Year Awards, and longlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards), and Wild (shortlisted for the New South Wales Premier’s Literary Awards and named one of the Books of the Year for the Australian Book Review, The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald). Libby is based in Melbourne, Australia.
Maggie Millner is a poet and teacher from rural upstate New York, USA. She is the recipient of fellowships from Poets & Writers, the Squaw Valley Community of Writers, the Stadler Center for Poetry, and elsewhere. Maggie holds degrees in creative writing from New York University and Brown University and teaches in the Writing Program at Rutgers University. She lives with her cat in Brooklyn, New York.
Molly Underwood graduated with a degree in English from Queens’, Cambridge in 2014, and has spent most of her time travelling and working abroad since then, in Spain, Ireland and Vietnam. Last year she returned to the U.K. to complete a Master’s degree in Social and Cultural Theory. She is currently living and writing in London.
Read the 2018 short-listed poems:
Gillian Clarke was born in Cardiff and lives in Ceredigion. Her work has been on the GCSE and A Level exam syllabus for the past thirty years, and she performs her poetry regularly for Poetry Live. She was awarded the Queen’s Gold medal for Poetry in 2010, the Wilfred Owen Award in 2012. She has written for radio, and translated poetry and prose from Welsh. The Gathering/Yr Helfa, written for the National Theatre of Wales, was performed on Snowdon in September, 2014. Her collection, Ice, was shortlisted for the TS Eliot Prize in 2012. She was National Poet of Wales from 2008 to 2016.
Imtiaz Dharker is a poet, artist and documentary film-maker. Awarded the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry in 2014, she has received the Cholmondley Award and an Honorary Doctorate from SOAS. Her collections include Postcards from god, I speak for the devil, The terrorist at my table, Leaving Fingerprints, Over the Moon and Luck Is the Hook. She has had eleven solo exhibitions of drawings in India, London, New York and Hong Kong, and also scripts and directs video films, many of them for non-government organisations working in the area of shelter, education and health for women and children in India.
Carol Ann Duffy
Carol Ann Duffy lives in Manchester, where she is Professor of Contemporary Poetry and Creative Director of the Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her poetry has received many awards, including the Signal Prize for Children's Verse, the Whitbread, Forward and T. S. Eliot Prizes, and the Lannan and E. M. Forster Prize in America. She was appointed Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom in 2009. She was made a DBE in the 2015 New Year Honours list.
Adam O'Riordan is Academic Director of the Manchester Writing School at Manchester Met and has chaired the Manchester Poetry Prize panel since 2012. In 2008, he became the Wordsworth Trust Centre for British Romanticism’s youngest ever poet-in-residence and his first collection, In the Flesh, won a 2011 Somerset Maugham Award. His debut collection of short stories The Burning Ground was published by Bloomsbury in the UK and W.W. Norton & Company in the USA, and his second collection of poems A Herring Famine published by Chatto, in 2017.
Read the previous winning and short-listed entries: