Competitions Close 4 April 2021


Make sure you have read the Category requirements (Writing for the Children’s and YA market: Aspiring, Hatchling or Published, Writing for the Adult Genres), and Checklist sections (writing and artworks) before submitting your entry.


Entries not complying with formatting conditions will be penalised. 

Preparing Your Entry
  1. All submissions are to be electronically submitted. 

  2. Manuscript title, targeted publisher, finished manuscript word total (not extract submitted) in the header, and sequential page numbers in the header or footer are on all pages. (Visit FAQs on for sample formatting documents.)

  3. Text must be double-spaced on A4 size page, 12 point Courier or Courier New font, or New Times Roman, left justification with an indent to indicate new paragraphs.  Margins: 2.5 cm on the left, right, top and bottom of the page. 

  4. Picture Books ONLY: Must be set out neatly, easily legible format. Illustration notes are accepted and don't form part of your word count, but must be clearly marked as such.  Picture book texts are subjective with set outs and often use set out as part of emphases etc., this is quite acceptable.

  5. Ensure when you lodge your electronic entry form that your text file is saved in Microsoft Word format or Word compatible ONLY.

Other Information


Shortlists will be announced on 20 June 2021.


Since 2007 everyone has received their score sheets back, to give some feedback and to help improve their entries for the next competition they choose to enter, or submissions to publishing houses. 
These will be returned by 31 August. CYA will announce when the sheets are sent out via our newsletter and social media.


Category Consolidation

As has been done in previous years - If there are not enough entries into a single section, the section will be consolidated with another similar category in this competition. 
This will be done at the organiser's discretion.



Judges decisions are final, and no correspondence will be entered into.
If you shortlist, your entry goes in front of a professional editor. 

Other important info


  • Do not identify yourself on the contest entry.

  • All results will be published on the CYA Conference web site.

  • Each written entry must be original work, unpublished nor accepted elsewhere for publication or broadcast.

  • All writing entries will be destroyed after the competition, and the electronic files deleted.

Special Note from co-ordinators

This competition is designed to help authors get ready for the submission process to publishing companies. So, send in your best effort, checked for spelling errors and edited. Make sure your entry follows the guidelines (just as a publishing house has guidelines), do everything in your power to make that entry arrive in a neat condition - appearances count! 


Download the competition guidelines

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