writing competition

Autumn Authors Writer’s Festival

The Dandenong Ranges Writing Competition

Do you love writing? Do you think you’ve got what it takes to be the most exciting writer of the Autumn Authors coveted writing competition in your category? Fabulous guest authors will be looking for the most creative and interesting offerings. The only limitations are the confines of your imagination!

What do I write

You may want to write a story or you may prefer to write a poem. We love a good yarn … or limerick, or sonnet, or haiku. Let’s see where your imagination can take you. For adults we are looking for a short story. We are looking for pieces of writing which show how you can use language in ways that engage the creativity of your readers. You might want to show your teachers or parents your entry before you submit.

Who can enter

There is a category for everyone. These are:


  • Lower primary
  • Prep – grade 2
  • Entries can be a picture book format, or a poem or short story
  • 300 words or less


  • Upper primary
  • grades 3 – 6
  • Entries can be a story or poem
  • 300 words or less


  • Secondary school
  • grades 7 – 10
  • Entries can be a story or poem
  • 800 words or less

Mountain Ash

  • Grades 10- – 12
  • Entries can be a story or a poem
  • 1000 words or less


  • Entries to be a short story
  • 2000 words or less

Submission of Entries

Entries need to be submitted to the Tourist Information Centre at 1211 Burwood Hwy Upper Ferntree Gully 3156, by 5.00pm Friday, 3 May 2013. Don’t be late – saying the dog ate your homework won’t work!

What will I win?

Besides the glory of being one of the most exciting writers of the Autumn Authors Writers Festival, there are $500 of book vouchers to be won, and the chance for your story to be published or displayed in Belgrave Library or The Mail Newspaper in the children’s categories. All entrants will receive a certificate of participation. The adult prize is $500 for first prize, $250 for second prize and $100 for third prize.

So don’t delay – pick up your pen or paints and get started.


  • The judge for Seedlings and Ferns will be Adam Wallace www.adam-wallace-books.com
  • The judge for Sassafras and Mountain Ash will be Asphyxia who has published the Grimstones at www.thegrimstones.com
  • The judge for the adult competition will be Sophie Cunningham who is currently Chair of the Literature Board of the Australian Council; she has worked in publishing for more than 25 years. She began her working life as an editor at McPhee Gribble Publishers where she had the opportunity to work with Drusilla Modjeska, Dorothy Hewett, Helen Garner, Kerryn Goldsworthy, Kaz Cooke, Kerry Greenwood and Steven Carroll. www.sophiecunningham.com

Adult short story competition

  • Entries must be no longer than 2000 words and should not have been previously published. No more than one story per person should be submitted.
  • Stories for children are not eligible for this competition. Manuscripts must be typed: double-spaced and on A4 paper. Two copies of the story must be submitted.
  • Each entry must be accompanied by an entry form.
  • Faxes, email, or hand written submissions will not be accepted and manuscripts will not be returned.
  • Submit entries to: Dandenong Ranges Tourism at 1211 Burwood Hwy, Upper Ferntree Gully 3156.
  • First prize winner will receive $500, 2nd prize, $250 and 3rd prize is $100.
  • For further information contact Mary Mason on info@dandenongrangesfestival.com.au

Competition Terms and Conditions

Download Entry Form

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