Contests & Awards

© Kathryn Ault Noble

Submitting your work to contests and awards is a great way to get your work noticed. Here's a list of submission opportunities for children's writing and illustrating. We normally only list contests that do not require an entry fee. 

Also, check out these other compilations of contests:
Before entering a contest, pay attention to warning signs: Contests & Awards (Writer's Beware)

Ongoing Contests & Awards

Twitter Pitch contests & 1st Five Pages Workshop by Adventures in YA Publishing

Most Popular Twitter Pitch Parties

James Cross Giblin Scholarship for Highlights Foundations courses

Four on 400 (every month, deadline 5th day of each month)

  • What: Comment on the contest announcement on the 4th of each month for a chance to submit your first 400 words of an MG or YA ms
  • Prize: Winner's entry will be posted on blog & critiqued by four members of The Winged Pen

What I Gained from Contests (Besides my Agent)


Dec. 6 #Pitmad
  • What: Twitter pitch party from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EDT
  • Prize: Snag requests from agents
Nov. 15-Dec.15  SCBWI Spark Award
  • What: enter your non-traditionally published book
  • Who: SCBWI members
  • Prize: a seal, plaque, display at SCBWI conference of choice, publicity, and free conference tuition
  • What: enter your 50-1000 word PB manuscript for bilingual publisher (entries can be in English, Spanish, or bilingual)
  • Prize: $5,000 plus publication contract


  • What:  submit three illustrations and a binding design for HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE
  • Who: any illustrator over 18
  • Prize: a commission, worth £5,000, to complete a total of nine illustrations and a binding design for the book, which will be published by The Folio Society in 2019. Five shorlisted entries will each receive £500 cash.
  • What: apply for a mentorship with an established picture book author or illustrator
  • Who: un-agented and not traditionally published in any format
  • Prize: 3-month mentorship (Feb-April 2019) 


Feb. 21 #PBPitch
  • What: Pitch your picture book idea on Twitter
  • Prize: agent/editor interest in your story
  • What: apply for a grant to support your writing or art 
  • Who: applicants with at least one child under age 18
  • Award: 20 $5,000 grants given in each application cycle

MARCH 2019

  • What: apply for your WIP in one of seven categories: PB, CB, MG, YA, nonfiction, multicultural, translation
  • Who: SCBWI members
  • Prize: Showcase of your work to editors
  • What: Submitted in conjunction with the WIP grant
  • Who: SCBWI members who are 50 years or older who have not been traditionally published in the field
  • Prize: $500 and free tuition to any SCBWI conference
  • What: apply for one of two $1,000 grants for illustrators
  • Who: SCBWI members, published or unpublished illustrators
  • Prize: $1,000 grant to use in any way to complete your project

APRIL 2019

  • What: submit a picture book manuscript (hard copied and mailed)
  • Who: unpublished picture book authors or ones who haven't sold a picture book in three years
  • Prize: $1000

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