Farnham’s First Five Thousand Writing Competition

Deadline: Monday 15th of January 2024

Farnham Literary Festival presents Farnham’s First Five Thousand writing competition.

Entrants to submit the first 5,000 words of their novel and a 300-word synopsis, your novel does not have to be finished.
There is no set theme or style of writing however your entry should be an unpublished, original story.
There will be 5 shortlisted submissions, and a further 15 long-listed submissions.


First Prize: TBC
Runner Up: TBC
TBC x 3 Awards


  • 18 and over
  • You must be an unpublished author
  • Your work must be your own, original writing
  • Your novel does not have to be finished; we only need the first 5,000 words!


IMPORTANT: All entries are judged anonymously. Please do not include your name or any other personal information on the document.


  • The first 5,000 words (maximum) of your novel
  • The first page of the submission should include a 300-word synopsis
    (the synopsis is in addition to the 5,000 words, not included in the word count)


  • Save as a PDF file or Word Document with the novel title as the file name
  • Please do not include your name in with the file name
  • First page to include the synopsis
  • Numbered pages
  • Include the novel title on every page (in the header)
  • Entries must be typed in 12 pt with black font, double spaced and in Times New Roman font
  • Entries must be in English


There is a £5 fee per submission. There is no limit to the number of submissions per person


Judging panel to be announced!


Longlist announcement – Monday 19th of February 2024
Short List announcement – Monday 26th of February 2024

If you have a query, please contact firstfivethousand@farnhamliteraryfestival.co.uk