SLQ Young Writers Award

The 2016 Young Writers Award has now closed.

The competition

The Young Writers Award (YWA) is an annual short story competition for Queensland residents aged 15 to 25.

There are two categories:

  • Writers aged 18-25 (short stories up to 2,500 words)
  • Writers aged 15-17 (short stories up to 1,500 words)

For each category, the judging panel selects the winner and one runner up, along with four highly commended entries.


For writers aged 18-25:

  • Winner: $2,000, QWC Youth Membership
  • Runner up: $500, QWC Youth Membership
  • Highly commended: QWC Youth Membership

For writers aged 15-17:

  • Winner: Apple iPad Air 2, $100 iTunes gift voucher, Library Shop book pack, QWC Youth Membership
  • Runner up: Kindle Paperwhite NextGen Wi-Fi + 3G 4GB, $50 Amazon gift voucher, Library Shop book pack, QWC Youth Membership
  • Highly commended: Library Shop book pack, QWC Youth Membership

Past winners

Congratulations to the 2015 winners:
Writers aged 18-25: winner Grace McCarter for Surface and runner up Faith Mudge for January Days
Writers aged 15-17: winner Rosie McCrossin for The Washing of Iniquity and runner up Clara Harin Lee for Cher Pere

View all the previous winners and read past winning stories

More information

Phone: 07 3842 9486

Hints on writing a short story

  • Judges are looking for stories with distinct, diverse and interesting characters — get to know your characters first, and let the plot follow.
  • Develop one idea. Think about the core of your story and write towards it.
  • Relax and don’t try too hard. Use language that comes naturally to you rather than trying to impress with big words. Aim for clear writing rather than trying to be too clever.
  • Most importantly, have confidence in your writing and the story you want to tell.

For more writing tips, visit Queensland Writers Centre or read up on some of the past winning stories.

Young Writers Award is presented by SLQ and supported by:

Qld writers centre logo

Events by type