Essex Book Festival announces writing competition

The Green Shoots Writing Competition, organised by Essex Book Festival. Submissions open until March 31st 2021. Free entry

The Green Shoots Writing Competition is for writers aged between 18 to 28 who wish to develop their craft whilst helping to protect the environment. Free entry.

Are you a young writer looking to develop your craft? Are you passionate about ecology and sustainability? Then this is your opportunity to shine!

The Essex Book Festival presents the Green Shoots Writing Competition, an eco-themed, short-story contest for young writers to showcase their talent and get the opportunity to meet a literary agent that will help them improve their chances on getting published.

Essex Book Festival will accept English-written prose pieces, of no more than 2.000 words. All pieces must be eco-themed. Submissions will be open until the 31st of March 2021 at 23:59.

For rules and details of how to submit your piece visit the Essex Book Festival blog.


  • 1st Prize: One-to-one session with renowned literary agent Camilla Shestopal, plus a £25 voucher from Red Lion Books.
  • 2 highly-commended prizes: £25 voucher from Red Lion Books.

Your submissions will be thoroughly evaluated by experienced professionals from the editorial and publishing industries. The judges will be:

  • Camilla Shestopal, Literary Agent, and Trustee of Essex Book Festival
  • Dr James Canton, Author and Academic (University of Essex)
  • Peter Donaldson, Trustee of Essex Book Festival, and Owner of Red Lion Books (Winner: Independent Bookshop of the Year 2018 (South East)
  • Marina Cusi, Winner of ‘Best Original Writing’ and Student (University of Essex)

All winners will be offered a one-day Writer’s Hot Desk at Essex Writer’s House in Southend (UK) between June – August 2021.

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