Munster Literature Centre
Ionad Litríochta an Deisceart

Southword Literary Essay Competition

Judge: Patrick Cotter

1st Prize:
€1,000

8 Runners-Up:
€500

All nine essays will be published over the course of 18 months (next three issues of Southword)

There is an entry fee of €20

Competition open: 1st December 2021

Deadline: 28th February 2023

The competition is open to original, unpublished, personal essays between 2500 ‒ 5000 words. We’re looking for personal, confessional essays which border on memoir ‒ gripping essays full of memories and feelings. The best indicator of the kind of thing which interests us is what we have published in past issues; essays by Kim Addonizio, Sandra Beasley, Simon Van Booy, Carlo Geblér, Thomas Lynch, Anthony Walton, Helen Mort and Kim Moore.

Submission Details

Send to: essaycomp@munsterlit.ie
Subject: Essay entry

Attachment 1: the essay for submission (Word or other text document – we cannot accept PDFs). As the competition is judged anonymously, we request that you do not write your name or personal details anywhere on this document.

Attachment 2: cover letter (separate text document attached to the same email, not in the body of the email). The cover letter should include:

  • Your name
  • Essay title
  • Email address
  • Postal address
  • Image of PayPal receipt or the PayPal transaction ID number

Essays will be judged anonymously by editor Patrick Cotter.

The link below will bring you to a payment screen for the €20 fee: