Over 50 Award – FAQ

How do I submit my work?

Please send your work by email to debut@jennybrownassociates.com and include the following:

  • the first 5,000 words of your debut novel
  • a one-page full synopsis
  • one page of information about yourself, including your date of birth and what inspired this work.

Please send this to us in a Microsoft Word document, clearly labelled with Author/Title. All submissions should be 1.5 or double spaced. No hard copies and no large files/image, please.

When is the deadline?

We must have received your submission by 23:59 on 31 May 2023. Late submissions will not be considered.

I’ve written a short story. Can I enter that?

Submissions should be for novels that are no less than 60,000 words.

Can I send you a hard copy?

We are unable to consider hard copy submissions. Please submit your work as a Word document.

When will I know if I have been successful?

We will be in touch by 15 June 2023 if we wish to see the rest of your manuscript. The shortlist of up to six will be announced on 27 July 2023.

When will the winner be announced?

The winner announced at the Edinburgh International Book Festival on 26 August 2023.

What is the prize?

The prize will consist of £1,000 and a week’s residential placement at Moniack Mhor Creative Writing Centre for the winner and mentoring sessions with experienced writers editors, and agents as appropriate for the runners up on the shortlist.

Do I need to have finished my novel by the time I enter?

You do not have to have entirely finished your work to be considered, but do have it ready by 15 June 2023 in case it is called in.

My entry has not been acknowledged. What should I do?

If you haven’t heard from us within 48 hours of your submission, please send an email to  debut@jennybrownassociates.com explaining your situation.

Can I submit if I am nearly 50 years old?

The competition is open to anyone who is aged 50 on 31 May 2023 (ie if you were born on or before 31.5.73).

Can I submit a children’s story?

This competition is for novelists writing for adults.

What about a fantasy or science fiction novel?

As we do not generally represent the following categories, we will not be considering science fiction, horror or fantasy.

Can I submit my non-fiction work?

This competition is open to fiction writers only. We may consider non-fiction/memoir in future years, but currently the Award is for fiction.

I’ve already got an agent but I’d like to move agencies. Can I still apply?

Sorry, this debut novel award is only open to unrepresented writers resident in the UK aged 50 and above.

Can I enter if I have self-published one of my novels?

This competition is for debut novelists and therefore not open to authors who have already self-published their work.

I put my novel on Amazon but no-one has bought it. Can I apply?

Entries must not have been published in any format (physical, eBook, audio) prior to entry. The exception to this is that if you have published short stories, non-fiction, poetry or children’s books as an unrepresented author it does not make you ineligible. If you have self-published one or more novels you are ineligible. If you are unclear, please contact info@jennybrownassociates.com for clarification.

Can I enter more than once?

Writers may only enter this Award once, with one novel.

I’ve collaborated with another author – am I still eligible?

No. The competition is open to individual authors only.

I’ve noticed a mistake/have a new draft. Can I re-submit?

Entries may not be altered after submission.

I’ve just noticed I didn’t send the information requested with my entry, can I add it now?

No, I’m afraid not. Please read the entry requirements carefully when you submit first time.

Can I submit a novel I have submitted for another prize if I was not successful, or longlisted or shortlisted?

Yes, you may submit your novel, and include information if you have been shortlisted or longlisted for other Awards. But please inform us immediately if you have submitted this work for another prize and been successful or have accepted representation elsewhere.

Who will judge the competition?

The winner of the competition will be chosen by an experienced panel.

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