October 2016 Contest Roundup

SIC Contest RoundupIf there is a Twitter pitch season this seems to be it! There are lots of opportunities coming up in the next few months, especially Twitter pitch days. (If you aren’t up on how to take part in Twitter pitch contests check out How to #Pitmad.) There are even some opportunities for illustrators. Hurrah!

With all these pitch days coming up, don’t forget that you can post your pitches in our Sub It Club Submission Support Group for feedback so you can get them polished up and ready to shine when it’s time to pitch!

As always, contests are listed by closing dates. Read rules thoroughly. Most contests are for completed manuscripts. If your manuscript is not ready, don’t despair. There are always more contests!


9/30: #PitchCB – Open to Contemporary Fiction. Pitch your manuscript to Curtis Brown and Conville & Walsh agents via Twitter using the #PitchCB hashtag. Pitch only once in the 24 hour period.

9/30: New Voices Award – “Open to writers of color who are residents of the United States and who have not previously had a children’s picture book published.” Enter your 1500 word or less fiction, nonfiction, or poetry manuscript for children ages 5-12. Winner receives a publication contract and $1000. Honor Award winner receives $500.


10/5: #DVPitOpen to Children’s and Teen Fiction and Nonfiction about and especially by marginalized voices. Pitch your manuscript via Twitter using the #DVPit hashtag between 8am – 8pm EST.

10/6: #DVPitOpen to Adult Fiction and Nonfiction about and especially by marginalized voices. Pitch your manuscript via Twitter using the #DVPit hashtag between 8am – 8pm EST.

10/10: Dear Lucky Agent ContestOpen to adult upmarket, literary, or book club fiction. Submit the first 150-250 words of your completed manuscript. Chosen winner to receive a critique of the first 10 double-spaced pages of your work by agent Annie Hwang of  Folio Literary Agency, one-year subscription to WritersMarket.com and choice of the Guide to Literary Agents 2017 or the Children’s Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market 2017.

10/14: Nightmare on Query Street – Entry opens at 4pm EST to the first 250 entries or 6pm. Open to all categories except picture books and erotica. Enter your query, first 250 words, and answer the question: What is your main character’s most stressful relationship? Who really makes them sweat? In 100 words or less. 26 entries will be chosen to move onto a mentor and then an agent round.

10/20: #PitDark – Open to manuscripts containing an element of horror or darker writing. MG, YA, NA, Adult; fiction and nonfiction. Pitch your manuscript via Twitter using the #PitDark hashtag between 8am and 8pm EST. No more than one pitch per hour. 40+ agents and editors confirmed to participate so far.

10/22: Pitch to Publication – Not open to picture books or chapter books. Submit your query and first 5 pages of your completed manuscript via online form. Freelance editors will choose writers to help polish their work for the agent round in December.

10/27: #PBPitch Open to picture books. Writer/illustrators are welcome to add an accompanying illustration to their pitch. Use the #PBPitch hashtag to pitch to agents via Twitter from 8am to 8pm EST. Pitch up to 3 manuscripts 2x each maximum. Pitch each once before 2pm and once after (3 manuscripts x 2 pitches each.) See FAQ’s for more details.

10/28: #PitchCB – Open to Historical Fiction. Pitch your manuscript to Curtis Brown and Conville & Walsh agents via Twitter using the #PitchCB hashtag. Pitch only once in the 24 hour period.

10/31: Tu Books New Visions AwardOpen to Middle Grade and Young Adult manuscripts by writers of color. “Manuscripts should address the needs of children and teens of color by providing stories with which they can identify and relate, and which promote a greater understanding of one another.” Submit a cover letter, synopsis, plus the first 10,000 words. Graphic novels, include the equivalent of 24-30 scripted pages.Please note: “Manuscripts may not be submitted to other publishers, mentorship contests, writing contests, or to TU BOOKS general submissions while under consideration for this award.” Winner receives $1,000 and a standard publication contract. Honor Award winner to receive $500.


11/1: My Real-Life Story Essay Contest – Enter your essay of 2,500 – 3,500 words. Every woman has a moment in life that changes everything. What’s that moment for you? We’d love to find out. Winner to receive $5,000, possible publication in Glamour magazine, and the opportunity to speak with a top New York literary agent. Do be sure to read the contest rules, especially #7.

11/15: Iconic Holiday Hen Contest – Open to Illustrators. Submit your Iconic Holiday Hen illustration to Hen & Ink Literary Studio. Winning illustration will be used as the Hen & Ink Holiday Mascot. Illustrator will be invited to submit a portfolio or project to Hen & Ink Literary Studio for consideration.

11/2016: #AdPit – Pitch your adult manuscript via Twitter using the #Adpit hashtag. Details to be announced.

11/2016: #KidPit – Pitch your children’s manuscript via twitter using the #KidPit hashtag. Details to be announced.


12/1: #Pitmad – Open to all genres. Pitch your completed manuscript via Twitter using the #Pitmad hashtag betweet 8am and 8pm EDT. Three pitches per project.

12/1: Tomie dePaola Award Open to illustrators who are SCBWI members. Enter an image of your autobiographical character in a scene. Convey emotion. “The viewer should be able to read the emotion of the character immediately and clearly. No words or captions are allowed in the image.” Winner will receive a trip to the SCBWI New York Winter conference, with tuition, travel and hotel included. The winning piece will also be displayed during the New York VIP Party and Portfolio Showcase.

12/12: Pitchmas – Send your 35 word pitch via email. Top 50 pitches will be put on the Pitchmas blog on 12/15 for agents and editors to comment on. Participating agents and editors to be announced in November.

12/16: #PitchMAS – Twitter pitch party. Pitch your work via Twitter using the #PitchMAS hashtag between 6am and 6pm EST. No more than two pitches per hour.

12/2016: #SFFPitExact date to be announced. Open to works of fantasy or science fiction. All age categories (PB, MG, YA, NA, and adult). Pitch your completed manuscript via Twitter using the #SFFPit hashtag between 8am and 6pm EST. Pitch up to 10 times in total.


1/15: Little Brown Emerging Artist Award Open to illustrators. Contest mission is “to encourage the development of high-quality children’s picture books that resonate with readers of diverse backgrounds and experiences, that in some manner draw from the rich cultural experiences of this country—whether they manifest in character, theme, setting, plot, or are derived simply from the artist’s own experience of identity. Diversity includes literal or metaphorical inclusion of characters of underrepresented ethnicity, religious background, gender identity, class, mental or physical disability, or any other nondominant populations.” See official contest rules. Winner to receive $2500 inAmerican Express® gift cards, round-trip travel to New York City, aday at LBYR’s offices including lunch with an editor, an art director, and the Artist Mentor, an in-person portfolio review by the Artist Mentor and the LBYR publishing staff, and a tour of the office, and the opportunity for the winning submission to be reviewed by LBYR’s editorial team.

1/18: #Pit2PubThe last one was open to all categories and age groups. Pitch your manuscript on Twitter using the #Pit2Pub hashtag. More info to come.

4/1: Scholastic Graphix ContestOpen to Graphic Novels for kids. U.S. Residents only. Up to 5 winners will receive an offer to publish their work with Scholastic and a $15,000 advance.

Know of a great, no fee contest that I missed? Please link us up in the comments!

7 thoughts on “October 2016 Contest Roundup

Add yours

  1. Hello, Thank you so much for providing this list. This is a great resource! I am a bit confused about the first line for Pitch To Publication. It states that it is NOT open to picture TO chapter books. What does that mean? Are chapter books allowed or not? Is it supposed to say AND chapter books? I went on the website and it doesn’t specify. Thank you, Patricia



    1. It means I was too tired to catch that typo. Ha! I will go fix it. Thanks.
      Yes, not open to picture books or chapter books. I saw that info buried somewhere on the site. I couldn’t find any other specifics on what is allowed.


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