Newcastle Herald Short Story Competition 2017-18

THE accompanying shots from the Newcastle Herald’s award-winning team of photographers are worth more than 1000 words apiece.

But that’s the maximum number of words you will require to have a shot at winning the Herald’s sixth annual short story competition. 

It’s time to let your inner author off the leash and allow your imagination to run wild. Stories can be of any genre but must be your own work. The plot must draw inspiration in some way from one of these four images.

Herald photographers Simone De Peak, Marina Neil, Jonathan Carroll and Max Mason-Hubers captured the evocative pictures. 

Stories submitted for the competition must be between 900 and 1000 words.

Judges include Newcastle Writers Festival director Rosemarie Milsom, Herald deputy editor Matt Carr, Hunter Writers Centre director Karen Crofts and president Megan Buxton, and Fairfax Media’s Newcastle-Hunter group managing editor Chad Watson.

The Hunter Writers Centre is a not-for-profit organisation devoted to engaging, employing and educating aspiring and established writers from the region. The centre helps develop authors through workshops and writing groups and seminars (

The Newcastle Writers Festival, also a not-for-profit, is a popular event celebrating local and visiting literary talent. The sixth annual festival will be held from April 6 to 8 next year around the Civic precinct (

It’s time to let your inner author off the leash and allow your imagination to run wild. Stories can be of any genre but the plot must draw inspiration in some way from one of the four photographs you see here.

Short-listed stories in the Newcastle Herald competition will run in the paper from December 26 to January 26. The stories will also be published and collated at

An overall winner and two highly commended entrants will be announced on Saturday, January 27. The winner will receive a library of 50 new books, a double weekend pass to the 2018 Newcastle Writers Festival, as well as a tablet device courtesy of Domayne Kotara.

Highly commended entrants will receive 10 new books plus a weekend pass to the writers festival.

All three will also receive a 12-week subscription to the Newcastle Herald print and digital replica edition.

The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

The Newcastle Herald Short Story Competition is open to Hunter residents aged 18 and over. Entries are limited to one per person. By submitting an entry, the author warrants the story is original and has not been published elsewhere and that they own the copyright.

Stories must be sent to They must be emailed as an attachment, with a coversheet listing author’s name, address, email address and phone contacts.

Submissions close at noon on Friday, December 15.


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