Short Story Competition

Just in case you write cross-genre, this came through from Sisters in Crime:

Sisters in Crime 20th Scarlet Stiletto Awards short story competition – now open – $6950 in prize money

Sisters in Crime Australia’s short story competition, the Scarlet Stiletto Awards, turns 20 this year and offers an unprecedented $6950 in prize money. The awards comprise Australia’s most lucrative crime writing competition for either gender. Stories must have a crime or mystery theme and a female protagonist.

The Harper Collins 1st Prize has been increased to $1500 with the winner also receiving the coveted trophy, a scarlet stiletto with its steel heel plunging into a perspex mount.

Melbourne’s Athenaeum Library is again offering a prize of $1000 and a runner-up prize of $500 for the best short story that includes the words ‘body in the library’.

New awards include The Folio Society’s 2nd Prize ($500), the Sun Bookshop 3rd Prize ($350) and the Ann Byrne Award for Best Financial Crime ($350). Kerry Greenwood’s Malice Domestic Award has been increased to $750 and the Clan Destine Press Cross-genre Award is now $350.

Cate Kennedy, who got her entrée to literary stardom through winning the first two Scarlet Stilettos back in 1994 and 1995, is again offering the Best New Talent Award ($350).

National Co-convenor Phyllis King said that Sisters in Crime was delighted that the Awards would be turning 20 with a bang (or a scream, as the case may be).

‘The Scarlet Stiletto Awards have dug up a lot of talent, as well as more than our fair share of bodies. To date, 16 Scarlet Stiletto Award winners — including category winners — have gone on to have novels published: Cate Kennedy, Tara Moss, Angela Savage, Josephine Pennicott, Sara Evans, Inga Simpson, Alex Palmer, Liz Filleul, Margaret Bevege, Patricia Bernard, Bronwen Blake, Jo McGahey, Cheryl Jorgensen, Kylie Fox, Simmone Howell and Amanda Wrangles.

Ellie Marney’s debut novel, which won the 2010 trophy, will be published in October, bringing the total to 17. We’re feeling immensely proud of playing a part in nurturing so much criminal talent.’

Last year, the Awards attracted a record 182 entries. King attributed the increased number to the inaugural Athenaeum Library ‘Body in the Library’ Award, named after Agatha Christie’s famous novel.

Five authors have won the Scarlet Stiletto Award twice and subsequently been invited to become judges: Cate Kennedy, Christina Lee, Roxxy Bent, Janis Spehr and Josephine Pennicott. Only Cate Kennedy, however, has a matching pair of stilettos.

Two collections of winning stories have been published by Clan Destine Press: Scarlet Stiletto: The First Cut and Scarlet Stiletto: The Second Cut.

Closing date for the awards is 31 August. Entry fee is $10; maximum length is 5000 words.

The 20th Scarlet Stiletto Awards will be presented at the Rising Sun Hotel, 2 Raglan Street, South Melbourne at 8pm on Friday 22 November.

A full list of awards follows.


Click here to download an entry form.


20th Scarlet Stiletto Awards:

Harper Collins 1st Prize ($1500 plus trophy)

The Folio Society 2nd Prize ($500)

Sun Bookshop 3rd Prize ($300)

Allen & Unwin Young Writer’s Award (for writers 18 or under) ($500)

Athenaeum Library Body in the Library Award ($1000; runner up $500)

The Kerry Greenwood Malice Domestic Award ($750)

The Cate Kennedy Best New Talent Award ($350)

Clan Destine Press Cross-genre Award ($350)

The Ann Byrne Best Financial Crime Award ($350)

The Catherine Leppert Best Environmental Theme Award ($250)

Benn’s Books Best Investigative Story Award ($200)

ScriptWorks Great Film Idea Award ($200)

Pulp Fiction Funniest Crime Award ($150 voucher)

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4 Responses to Short Story Competition

  1. What a shame! I can’t enter this competition being a male. ;) Oh well you lovely women out there I hope you get writing. I’ll suspect one day, I’ll be reading your stories at a bookstore.

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