You could win a valuable consultation with literary agent Julia Churchill or a critique from children's author Amy Sparkes in our inaugural Chapter Book Prize.
As a companion to the massively popular Picture Book Prize, Writing Magazine, author Amy Sparkes and literary agent Julia Churchill decided to make room for another category difficult for authors to break into - chapter books.
Chapter books can often be overlooked, with many writers choosing to write either picture books or middle-grade. But chapter books are tremendous fun to write and a brilliant way to encourage newly-established, young readers. Here are some facts about chapter books:
• Chapter books are aimed at 7-9 year olds and are usually between 5,000 and 15,000 words long.
• Chapters tend to be quite short, often around 500 words for the younger end of the age range, and 750-1000 words for the higher end. This is important so that young readers don’t get tired and unmotivated.
• Black and white line drawings illustrate chapter books, breaking up text and helping to bring the story alive to readers.
• Chapter books lend themselves well to series, so creating a character who could feature in more than one story is a bonus.
• Stories can be about anything and everything: magic, fantasy, friendship, adventure, humour...anything that would appeal to young readers. And that’s quite a wide range.
What are we looking for?
The award is open to all unpublished and unagented writers and is an opportunity for you to submit your chapter book texts. We are not looking for illustrated stories or accompanying sample illustrations – please just send the story text.
Please enter, in a single document:
- Chapter 1 of your story, maximum 1,000 words
- A one-side, double-spaced synopsis of whole book
- Five-line pitch of your book
For Amy Sparkes' advice and tips, see Amy's website
The closing date is 31 October