Our next publication will be "Willesden Herald: New Short Stories 10". We plan to publish the book in time for Christmas 2017. The submissions window will open on 1 May 2017. To learn more about the books, the history of the competition, links and more, please visit New Short Stories. Please join our mailing list for updates. Thanks.

Ends on August 31, 2017£7.50


This competition is open to all aged 18 or over, regardless of nationality or country of residence.

Entries must be:

  • In English
  • Double-spaced
  • In a normal font (12 point preferred)

Entries must not contain any quotes for which copyright might have to be obtained, e.g. song lyrics.

Entries must be entirely your own individual work and never previously published or broadcast. 

Manuscripts must show no name, address or identifying marks other than the title of the story. 

Any comment or enquiry to the readers or judges about an entry before the results are out will disqualify.

The word limit this year is 7,500. There is no minimum.

There is no set theme.

You can submit as many entries as you wish.

Please let us know if your story is accepted for publication elsewhere before our results are announced. 

If your story has won a prize or was short-listed in another public competition, it's excluded. 

Previous prizewinners in this competition are excluded. We regret that winners of first or runners-up prizes in previous Willesden Herald short story competitions, i.e. the top three only from each year, are excluded. This is to give new writers a better chance.

Also excluded: Organisers and sponsors, of course, and relatives of this year's readers and judges.

We will not enter into any correspondence about entries or results.

Unfortunately we cannot help with any payment problems you might experience due to geographical location, computer system incompatibilities or other issues.

Entry is by completing the online entry form and uploading your manuscript in Microsoft Word (".doc" or ".docx") or RTF (".rtf") format to our account in the Submittable.com system.

Judging and Dates

All judging is anonymous. Using the Submittable "blind" setting we don't see who has sent in the stories till after the judging.

We will reduce the entries to a shortlist of ten, from which the overall winner and runner-up will be chosen anonymously by this year's judge, Lane Ashfeldt.

The results will be announced online and by email to the writers concerned, and in our newsletter at the time.

Opening date for submissions: 1 May 2017

Closing date: 31 August 2017

Results due by 31 October 2017. 

Prizes 2017

The prize fund of £1225 will be divided among the 10 finalists as follows:

  • 1st Prize: The one-off Willesden Herald mug inscribed “Willesden Short Story Prize 2017” + £300
  • 2nd: £200
  • 3rd: £100
  • £75 to each of the remaining seven short-listed


  • All ten shortlisted stories will be published in "Willesden Herald: New Short Stories 10".
  • Two copies go to each of the ten shortlisted contributors.
Entry fee
£7.50 per story


Worldwide copyright on each entry remains with its author. By entering you grant permission, ONLY if your story is short-listed, to include it in "Willesden Herald: New Short Stories 10" print and ebook editions. 

Note: Author compensation for inclusion in "Willesden Herald: New Short Stories 10" is limited to two complimentary copies of the anthology plus a share of the prize fund, as described above.

By submitting an entry you agree to accept all the above rules and terms in full.

"And finally," as They Say on the News

The aim of this competition is to encourage the creation of excellent new short stories. Organisation, reading and judging are done on a voluntary or nominal basis, all for the love of the short story.

Please read some of our previous collections to get an idea of what we like and why we do this. You can find them here: http://www.newshortstories.com/category/books. Thanks.