a black typewriter on a blue ground with text "2023 writing awards" and the logos for Wyndham City Council and Arts Assist

Entries for the Wyndham Writing Awards 2023 have closed. Judging is now underway.

Open to Victorian adult residents aged 18+. Entries open 1 May - 30 June 2023.

The Wyndham Writing Awards returns in 2023 to inspire, encourage and recognise emerging Victorian adult writers and literary creators aged 18+. This year, the total prize pool is $3600, and our judge is Vikki Petraitis - True Crime Author. Shortlisted entries will be published in the Wyndham Writing Awards Anthology 2023.

Prizes awarded for unpublished work in 3 different categories: 

  • Short Story: Between 1,500 and 3,000 words
  • Poetry: 60 lines maximum
  • Flash Fiction: Between 100 and 600 words

Each category has a cash prize for an overall winner and a second cash prize for a Wyndham Local Encouragement Award. Proudly funded and supported by Arts Assist.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why can’t I put my name on my entry? 

Entries in the Wyndham Writing Awards are blind judged, meaning that none of the judges can see your details and your work will be judged without bias. The presence of identifying information such as your name, initials, email, and phone number interferes with the judging process.  

Please check that your entry title, file name, and headers/footers are clear of identifying information before submission to avoid disqualification.


Can I enter more than once?

As per the terms and conditions, you can submit one entry per category. You cannot submit more than one entry for the same category.

For example, you may submit one poem, one short story, and one flash fiction entry or any combination of the categories. You cannot submit two (or more) poems, short stories, or flash fiction entries.


Is the title of my entry included in the wordcount? 

No, the title of your entry is not included in the wordcount.  

There will be no leeway for entries which are the incorrect length – please double check the body of your entry matches your category size. 


What counts as previously published?

If the piece you are entering has been published for public viewing it is ineligible for this competition.

Public publication includes, but is not limited to: anthologies, ebooks, zines, blogs, websites, and social media.


What happens after my piece is submitted? 

  • Entries will be blind reviewed by a panel of library staff members. These reviewers do not see any of your identifying information, only your entry. 
  • Each entry will be reviewed by three panel members, scored against category-specific metrics, including: character, setting, pacing, meter, rhyme etc. 
  • After the competition has closed and ALL entries have been scored, the entries with the highest average scores will be longlisted and sent to our external judge. 


Will I receive feedback on my entry? 

Unfortunately, with the volume of entries and time constraints involved we are unable to offer individual feedback on your piece.  


When will I hear about my entry? 

The longlist will be finalised by Wednesday 16 August. Please check your inbox for news at that time. We will publish the date for the awards ceremony on this webpage once the details are finalised.  


Terms and Conditions

Wyndham Writing Awards 2023 Terms and Conditions


1. Who Can Enter?

1.1. This competition is run by Wyndham City Council in the state of Victoria, Australia only.

1.2. By entering this competition, you agree to accept these terms and conditions of entry.  If your entry does not comply with these conditions, it will not be valid and will not be accepted.

1.3. Entry is restricted to Victorian residents aged 18 years or over as at 30 June 2023.  Council staff, Councillors, Arts Assist employees and volunteers, the competition judge (Vikki Petraitis) and their immediate families are not eligible to enter.

1.4. Entrants who have published a single-authored book or full-length chapter book with commercial distribution are not eligible to enter.  Entrants who are self-published and/or have had their work published in anthologies, magazines or journals are eligible to enter.

1.5. To be eligible for an Arts Assist Local Encouragement Award, the entrant must be a Wyndham resident.


2. How to Enter?

2.1. To enter the competition, entrants must submit an original story or poem using the Submittable website between 12:00am on 1 May 2023 and 11:59pm on 30 June 2023.  Entries received outside of this period will not be accepted.

2.2. Entrants acknowledge and agree that:

(a) they must create a Submittable account in order to submit their entry, which must be retained for the duration of the competition;

(b) creating a Submittable account requires entrants to provide personal information to a third-party provider and agree to their terms of use.  Council accepts no liability in respect of Submittable’s collection, use or disclosure of entrants’ personal information; and

(c) they may request that their Submittable account be deleted at any time, however if such a request is made prior to 24 November 2023, their entry will also be deleted and as such, be invalid.

2.3. Only one entry per person per category will be accepted. 

2.4  Entrants acknowledge and agree that where they have submitted multiple entries(e.g., one Short Story and one Poetry entry), they will only be eligible for a maximum of one prize in the entire competition.

2.5. Entries which have won an award on or before 1 May 2023, or which have been or are to be published by 1 October 2023 are ineligible for entry.

2.6. Entries must:

(a) be the entrant’s own original work;

(b) not have been created using any artificial-intelligence or chatbots, such as ChatGPT;

(c) not contain any inflammatory or defamatory material;

(d) not infringe a third party’s intellectual property rights;

(e) not include the entrant’s name or any details which may identify the entrant;

(f) be submitted in English; and

(g) meet the word limit requirements below:


Word limit

Short story

Between 1,500 and 3,000 words


60 lines maximum

Flash story

Between 100 and 600 words

2.7. Where an entry has been translated from another language before submission, the entrant must obtain the translator’s consent to enter the competition and must acknowledge the translator in their entry form.  Evidence of such consent must be provided to Council upon request.


3. Judging and Prizes

3.1. Judging will commence on 1 July 2023.  Entries will be longlisted by Council staff, with longlisted entrants to be contacted by Council between 9 and 16 August 2023.  Longlisted entrants must provide proof of their identity, age and residence within 5 business days of being contacted.  Failure to provide such proof within this period and/or to the satisfaction of Council will result in the entrant’s disqualification from the competition.

3.2. Longlisted entries will be further judged by external judge, Vikki Petraitis, who will shortlist entries.  All shortlisted entrants will be contacted by 12 September 2023.

3.3. A total of six competition winners will be chosen from the shortlisted entrants – one from each category below.  Each winner will receive the cash prize in the amount listed below (total prize pool valued at $3,600). 


Overall winner

Arts Assist Local Encouragement Award

Short story






Flash story



3.4. Winners agree to provide their bank account details to Council for the purpose of transferring the cash prize to them via electronic funds transfer.  Council accepts no responsibility for lost prizes.

3.5. If a winner has not provided their bank account details by 7 December 2023, the winner will be deemed to have surrendered the prize and Council may opt to conduct further judging to award the unclaimed prize.


4. Announcement of Winners

4.1. Winners will be announced at the Wyndham Writing Awards Event.  Event details, including the date and location will be published on Council’s website and an email invitation sent to shortlisted entrants by 29 September 2023.  Entrants acknowledge that the Awards Event may be held online if cannot be held in person.

4.2. Winners and shortlisted entrants’ names will subsequently be published on Council’s website and social media pages.  Winners and shortlisted entrants consent to the publication of their names on Council’s website and social media pages.


5. Publication of Entries

5.1. Entrants acknowledge that they retain copyright in their entry.

5.2. The entrant grants Council an exclusive, perpetual, sublicensable and royalty-free licence to:

(a) perform, record, broadcast and/or live-stream readings of all or part of their entry as part of the Wyndham Writing Awards Event; and

(b) publish, cause to be published or otherwise use the entrant’s story or poem and entrant’s name in any format whatsoever in:

     (i) a book to be published containing shortlisted and winning entries from the 2023 Wyndham Writing Awards competition; and

    (ii) any Council promotional material, including Council’s websites and social media pages for the purpose of promoting the Wyndham Writing Awards competition.

5.3. Entrants acknowledge and agree that Council may provide a copy of their entry and contact details to Arts Assist, and that Arts Assist may use or publish their entry in any format and forum whatsoever to promote their sponsorship of the 2023 Wyndham Writing Awards competition and/or for general marketing purposes.


6. General

6.1. The entrant indemnifies and holds harmless Council, its councillors and employees against all costs, claims and liability arising in connection with a breach or purported breach of these terms and conditions.

6.2. Entrants acknowledge that their personal details will be retained by Council and used in a mailing list for future communications about the Wyndham Writing Awards.  Entrants further acknowledge that they may opt out of such communications at any time.

6.3. Council accepts no responsibility for late, lost, incomplete, corrupt or invalid entries.

6.4. Council reserves the right not to award a prize in any category.

6.5. Prizes are not transferable or exchangeable.

6.6. Council reserves the right to modify these terms and conditions at any time.

6.7. If for any reason, the competition cannot be run as planned, Council reserves the right to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the competition.

6.8. Council’s decisions are final and no correspondence will be entered into.


7. Privacy

Your personal information is being collected by Council to administer your entry into the Wyndham Writing Awards and will be used by Council staff to communicate with you regarding the competition.  Entries need to be made using a third-party website - Submittable.  Any personal information you submit through Submittable’s website will processed and stored in accordance with Submittable’s Privacy Policy.  By entering the competition, you consent to the collection, use and disclosure of your personal information as stated in the competition terms and conditions.  Further information on how Council handles your personal information is available in Council’s Privacy Policy.

Writing Group

A woman handwriting in front of a window

Come along to our free writing group for adult writers of all levels of experience. Get your creative juices flowing with exercises designed to inspire and develop your writing skills in a fun and friendly environment.

Point Cook Library, 4th Tuesday of the month, 1.30pm – 2.30pm


Wyndham Writing Awards 2019

Wyndham Writing Awards Anthology 2019

The Wyndham Writing Awards 2019 short story, graphic short, poetry and flash fiction winners and shortlists were announced on 7 November 2019, and are now listed below. 

Around 260 entries were received, with an impressive display of the talent from across Victoria and locally in Wyndham. To narrow the entries down to a shortlist for each category was very difficult and judges Adam Ford and Jess Parker had a hard task to pick the winners.

Print copies are available to borrow from branches.

You can also download a free digital copy here!

Short Stories

  • Chicken Soup by Ully Merkel
  • Graffiti by Mary Jones
  • Remaining by Elle Parkinson
  • Swan Song by Esthee Schonken [Local Encouragement Award]
  • The Female Gaze by Anna Kate Blair [Winner]

Graphic Short Stories

  • Babysitter by Tegan New [Local Encouragement Award]
  • Birds in the Trees by Prativa Tamang [Winner]
  • Encounter with Gorgons by Steve Carter
  • Midnight Snack by Candice MacAllister
  • Moving to Footscray by Sam Elkin


  • A Little House Waits by Jaroslaw Kotiw
  • City Parking by Graeme Foley
  • She Will Never Forget by Sameer M. Khan [Local Encouragement Award]
  • Strength by C A Clark  [Winner]
  • You Grew Out of the Wood by Jakob Ryce

Flash fiction

  • Breathe by Daniela Esposito [Local Encouragement Award]
  • Escape by Belinda Oliver [Winner]
  • Five Jacks by Kim Robyn Smith
  • Parsley Green by Shira Deutsch
  • Waiting to Surface by Maree Purcell

Wyndham Writing Awards 2021

Writing awards

The shortlisted and winning Wyndham Writing Awards 2021 short story, poetry and flash fiction entries are listed below. 

Just over 400 entries were received, with an impressive display of the talent from across Victoria and locally in Wyndham. To narrow the entries down to a shortlist for each category was very difficult and our judge Lee Kofman had a hard task deciding the winners. Congratulations once again to our winners and shortlisted entrants.

Borrow a copy of the anthology

Download the ebook

A limited number of print copies are available for purchase. Please email writingawards@wyndham.vic.gov.au for more information.

Short Stories


Lindsay T. Hocking

Arts Assist Local Encouragement Award

Home by 7
Elizabeth Gonzalez

Shortlisted Entries

A Point in Time
M. Elisabeth Bridson

Small Town Ghosts
Melanie Kanicky

Henry’s Interview
Karen Wasson



Common Burn
Paul Whitby

Arts Assist Local Encouragement Award

In Defence of the Wicked Queen
L.A Blake

Shortlisted Entries

Planning the Rosebush Raid
Nathan Curnow

Dianne Jacono

Agapanthine War
Jarrad Sidus

Flash fiction


Still Life
E M Greville

Arts Assist Local Encouragement Award

Platform 1
Jessica Grixti Stanley

Shortlisted Entries

The Last Grave
Henry Gasko

What of the Frog?
Corinne MacKenzie

Rainie Zenith

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