Welcome to the CWA Margery Allingham Short Story Competition
Our mission is to find the best unpublished short story – one that fits into legendary crime writer Margery’s definition of what makes a great story:
“The Mystery remains box-shaped, at once a prison and a refuge. Its four walls are, roughly, a Crime, a Mystery, an Enquiry and a Conclusion with an Element of Satisfaction in it.”
Competition was extremely fierce this year with a high number of entries. Congratulations to the writers whose cream of crime writing rose to the top – and commiserations to the many other writers who produced excellent stories but didn’t quite make the longlist – many stories were in close contention.
The shortlist will be announced here at the beginning of May and the winner will be announced at CrimeFest on Friday 10 May during the CWA Daggers reception.
|A Man of Presumption (Cf Me)||Olive-Ann Tynan|
|A Perfect Murderer||Ray Bazowski|
|Dark Memory||Penny Campbell|
|Decluttering||Rosie De Vekey|
|Slipher’s Rail||Sherry Rankin|
|Talk to Me||Lidia Teasca|
|The Catch||Ewan Gault|
|The Last Bullet of Amadeo Higgins||Lucas Porzebny|
|Trick of the Eye||Louise Harnby|
|Wing Man and the Medicine Skin||Carole Allen|
The international competition is open to all – both published and unpublished authors from all over the world – and is for short stories of up to 3,500 words. All that we ask is that the story has not been previously published anywhere, or shortlisted for this competition.
How to Write a Winning Story
We asked a former winner of the CWA/Margery Allingham Short Story competition for 6 great tips and here they are:
- Read the great short stories (not just crime fiction) and ask yourself what makes them great
- Don’t kid yourself that writing a short story is much easier than writing a novel
- Think about the effect you want the story to have on the reader
- The opening needs to arrest attention
- The end must leave the reader with a sense of satisfaction
- In between the beginning and the end – don’t waste a word
The winner receives a generous cash prize of £500 plus two weekend passes to CrimeFest 2020 and a selection of Margery Allingham-related books.
The winner is announced at CrimeFest 2019 in Bristol and shortlisted writers can buy tickets just to the ceremony if they prefer, when the CWA Dagger longlists are also announced. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.