The Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2020 / How To Apply (Prizes: £17,500 + more)

Writers are invited to submit an original short story of 2,000 words – 5,000 words., to the  Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2020.  Every year, this prize is awarded to the best unpublished fictional short story written by a writer from a commonwealth country. Translated stories will be considered for this award. Deadline for application: 1st Novmber, 2019.

If your story is ready, you can submit it right away. The application portal is open. But if you don’t have any story or you don’t know what to write about, don’t worry, there’s still time. In the meantime, you can read a lot of  award winning stories. Another alternative is to listen to great short story podcast. You can see our  list of 10 inspirational story podcasts might give you all the ideas you need to write that award-winning story.

Who is Eligible to Apply for The Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2020?

  • Entrants must be natives of a commonwealth country.
  • No entry fee is required.
  • Entries must be submitted via the online entry form by the 1st of November, 2019
  • Only writers aged  18 years and above
  • Writers who are prepared to send unpublished stories. Please note that your entries  must remain unpublished until 1 May 2020

Who are the judges?

The prestigious judging panel for the 2020 prize are: Nii Ayikwei Parkes (Chair), Mohale Mashigo (Africa), William Phuan (Asia), Heather O’Neill (Canada and Europe), Elizabeth Walcott-Hackshaw (Caribbean), and Nic Low (Pacific).

How To Apply


entries from Commonwealth citizens who write in Bengali, Chinese, Kiswahili, Malay, Portuguese, Samoan and Tamil and who do not have an English translation of their story. Such writers may submit their stories in the original language. English translations of short stories written in other languages will be considered as long as the entry is submitted by the author and the translator is from a commonwealth country.


  • No simultaneous submissions please.
  • Remove all identifying information from the story. The organizer’s will know it’s your story because the author’s details will be on the entry form. In otherwords, put your details in the entry form, but remove them from the uploaded document. Just put the story title. All entries are judged anonymously.
  • Don’t forget to edit the title of the document before you upload your story. Your name must not appear anywhere on the document, not even in the title. Use your chosen story title when you want to save your doc. Don’t use “commonwealth” or “short story” or anything generic.
  • Read and follow the writing rules.
  • All submissions must reach the organizers before the November, 1st 2019 deadline.


  • The overall winner will receive a cash prize of £5,000.
  • Regional winners will be awarded £2,500 each.
  • All winning entries will be published in the Granta.

To increase your chances of winning, read past winners stories on Granta.

Click to read, 2019 Caine Prize Shortlist Announced / Read the Shortlisted Stories

Good luck.

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