Short Story Competition 2020 (age 17+)


Maximum 2,000 words on any subject

Judge: Claire Fuller

Claire Fuller is the author of Bitter Orange (2018), Our Endless Numbered Days, which won the Desmond Elliott Prize, and Swimming Lessons, which was shortlisted for the Encore Prize. Her short story 'Tiny and Pointed' (2019) was shortlisted for the Tom-Gallon Trust Award, a prestigious prize organised by The Society of Authors and which has been running since 1943. She lives in Hampshire.


First Prize – Deborah Cook (Faversham resident): Roadkill – click here to listen to a reading of the story by poet and playwright Sadie Davidson

Claire Fuller: 'From the title to the meta ending, Roadkill is a great read. With its strong voice, this clever, darkly comic and poignant story stood out straightaway.'

Deborah Cook spent a thirty-year career as a scriptwriter for radio and television, writing for The Archers, Eastenders, Emmerdale, Casualty, House of Elliott, The Royal, Berkley Square, and adapting Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe for the small screen. Bored rigid by retirement from television, she has now ventured into prose writing, and is currently working on a collection of short stories on the theme of food. She lives in Faversham.

Deborah writes for four or five hours a day, depending on the weather and how much gardening needs to be done. ‘Roadkill’, specially written for the Faversham Literary Festival, is the first piece of writing she has ever entered into any kind of competition. It is told in the first person, which is a very natural and familiar storytelling mode for an ex-scriptwriter. Deborah says of ‘Roadkill’: ‘I was thinking about how casual violence affects people,and whether or not it could ever just be shrugged off, and I suddenly just heard a young girl gasp in shock. After that, the story wrote itself, really.’


Second Prize – Frances Knight (Canterbury resident) The Verge

Claire Fuller:I loved how the author lets the reader work out what's going on here. The close point of view and unusual structure made the characters really come alive.

For many years Frances Knight worked as a jazz musician/composer alongside writing. Her short stories have been shortlisted three times for the prestigious Bridport Prize and she won second prize with Saveas, which is a writer’s organization in Canterbury. Frances likes to write at home, or sitting in cafes. She finds that having deadlines is a real help, so competitions are really useful for her to keep writing. She lives in Canterbury.


Highly Commended – Candace Siobhan Walker (Hay on Wye resident) Aquarium



Entry rules:

  1. You can submit as many stories as you wish. There is a £5 entry fee for each story you submit. All entries must comply with entry requirements and entries not submitted by email and in a Word document will not be considered. Please name the subject of your email with your name and age. All submissions in Word must include your name, address, and age or date of birth. All submissions will be judged anonymously. Names/ages of entrants are for administration purposes only and will be removed from all submitted stories before being sent to the competition judge. Please send your entry to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  2. All entries must be in English, original and must not have been published or have won a competition elsewhere.

  3. Short stories must be a maximum of 2000 words and can be on any theme.

  4. Entry fee for the competition is £5 per short story entry. Entries will be invalid if the entry fee is not paid in full on submission of your story.

  5. The competition is open to all professions and nationalities resident in the UK from 17+ years of age at date of submission.

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

  7. Faversham Literary Festival will retain the copyright to any published collection of winning entries, but authors will retain the copyright to their individual submissions.

  8. Entries will not be accepted after the closing date.

  9. Winners will be notified by 17 February 2020. If you do not hear from us we regret your entry has not been successful.

  10. By entering and supplying your email address you are allowing us to notify you about Faversham Literary Festival. Your information will not be shared with any third parties.


Last modified on %PM, %18 %663 %2020 %14:%Mar