2023 Short Story Competition

Welcome to the 2023 Shooter Short Story Competition, the eighth year of our contest that spotlights rising literary talent, with cash prizes and publication both in the pages of Shooter and online. There’s a prize pot of £500 and discounted entry for multiple stories – so get writing and send us your most compelling work!

Regular submissions to the magazine are confined to a particular theme, but the competition offers a chance to write about whatever compels you, in any style, to a maximum of 5,000 words. We’re looking for imaginative, absorbing and beautifully written stories that bring characters to life and elicit an emotional response from the reader. In short: well written tales that appeal to both the head and the heart.

In return for the entry fee, all entrants will receive an e-copy of Shooter’s autumn 2023 issue, which will feature the winning story.

  • The winner of the 2023 Shooter Short Story Competition will receive £400, publication in the autumn issue and on the website, plus promotion on Shooter’s social media.
  • The runner-up will receive £100, publication on Shooter’s website, and promotion on social media.
  • All entrants will receive an e-copy of Shooter’s autumn 2023 issue.
  • Stories may be any theme or genre, and any length up to 5,000 words.
  • The competition is open to entries through September 24th, 2023.
  • All proceeds from the entry fee of £7 (or £10 for two stories) go toward prizes, contributor payments and Shooter’s production costs, supporting our mission to promote the best new writing and encourage the principle of paying writers for their work.

To enter, please email your story (in doc/pages/rtf format) to contest.shooterlitmag@gmail.com by the deadline of September 24th, 2023. Include your name, title of story and word count in the body of the email, with no identifying information on the story itself. Multiple entries may be submitted via a single email. The winning writers will be notified in October and a public announcement will be made soon thereafter.

Entry fees can be paid via the following links (card payments are accepted in addition to PayPal):

Single story entry:
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Discounted entry for two stories:
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Shooter also holds an annual poetry competition; the winning entry will be published in the spring issue from 2024 (formerly, it appeared in the winter issue). Further details for the 2024 Poetry Competition will be posted on the website when the competition opens toward the end of 2023.

Please email shooterlitmag@gmail.com with any questions. We look forward to reading your work – good luck!