top of page




The Val Wood Prize for Creative Writing 2023: The Hungry Tide 30th Anniversary Special. 

Entries are now being accepted for The Val Wood Prize for Creative Writing 2023: The Tide


This year, we are back with a brand new theme and a brand new judging panel. Having previously been associated with Hull Libraries, the competition is now solely independent and all of its entries will be received by and judged directly by the competition’s namesake, Val Wood. 


This year’s competition celebrates 30 year’s since the release of Val Wood’s award-winning debut, The Hungry Tide. 


We are looking to receive entries that focus on the ebb and flow of the ocean and the rivers that lead to it, as The Tide itself rolls in as the central focus of this year’s competition. 


We’re looking for entries packed with originality and creativity that paint a picture and take the reader on a memorable journey. The story can cover any genre as long as it is not unnecessarily violent or gruesome. The competition, is open to anyone over 16 years of age. 


Entrants are free to write freely as long as the theme is adhered to.  Poetry will NOT be considered for the prize. 


The competition is open to anyone in the world. Your entry must adhere to an overall word-count of 1500. 


The winner of the competition will receive £100 and a signed copy of The Hungry Tide. The winning entry will be published on the website and shared via various social media outlets.


There will be two further prizes and the winners will receive signed copies of the Hungry Tide upon it’s re-release in October. 



Maximum of 1 entry per person to the maximum word count of 1500 per entry. 


Conditions of Entry


All entries must be typed in the form of a story (poetry will not be accepted) with a maximum word-count of 1500.


 Entries must be typed on blank sheets in black font and no background images or patterns. It must be typed in Arial or Times New Roman with 1.5 line spacing. The competition is contact free and eco-friendly and ALL entries must be submitted by email


Entries should be submitted by 5.00pm (BST) 31st August 2023


Your name, address, telephone number and email address must be included with your entry.

Please submit as Word or Pages.


Email entries can be sent to with the subject: Val Wood Prize: The Tide as the subject. 

Previous entrants/winners may enter the competition again using alternative entries.


Entries that have been submitted before will be disqualified from the competition.


Entries must be the original work of the competitor, in English, and must not have been published, broadcast or have won a competition prize. No alterations can be made to a story once it has been submitted.


Entrants can win only one prize. The decision of the judge is final

and no correspondence will be entered into.


The winner of the competition and runners up will be announced Weds 29 November 2023. The winners will be announced online. Copyright remains with the author, but the organisers reserve the right to publish the winning entries online or in print for one year after winning. 

The organisers reserve right to alter details of the competition if necessary.


Entrants who do not abide by the above rules will not be considered.

The Tide.png



Huge congratulations to everyone who entered The Val Wood Prize 2023: The Tide. The standard, as usual was excellent, which made it incredibly hard to choose the eventual winners from the hundreds of stories we received. 

The winner of The Val Wood Prize 2023 is Justin Ho Duo Shun (Philippines) and you can read his prize winning story here. 

Runner up 1 is Kate Foot (U.K) with her story Lonely Seagull. Read it here. 

Runner up 2 is Corrin Westwood (U.K) and you can read her entry here. 

The Val Wood Prize 2022: Storytelling



Here are the winning stories of The Val Wood Prize 2022: Storytelling  you to enjoy. Another year full of fantastic entries and, as usual the standard was so high that it was very difficult to decide on the winners. 

Huge congratulations to all who entered for your remarkable talent and thank you so much for your patience in waiting for the results. if you entered and didn't get shortlisted please don't hesitate to enter The Val Wood Prize 2023: The Tide


The winners of the International Open Prize 2022

1. Saving Lovely Lady: Linda Whitehouse

2. The One: Rishika Srivastava

3. The Brook’s Lullaby: Zary Fekete


The Winners of the Yorkshire Prize 2022

1. Time to Stand & Stare: Anne Woodward

2. The Brothers: Julie Noble

3. What Can You Do?: Louise Wilford


NOW & THEN-2.png

The Val Wood Prize 2021: Now and Then

The Val Wood Prize for Creative Writing 2021: Now & Then

Here are the winning stories for you to enjoy. Yet again, it was a fantastic year for entries and very difficult to judge as the standard was so high. 

Huge congratulations to the winners and if you entered and didn't get shortlisted please don't hesitate to enter again when the competition details are announced in the next couple of months. 



Winner: All this Time by Jess Amy Dixon

Highly Commended: August by Tadhg McCullogh 

Highly Commended: The Last Time by Jonathan Neil Smith. 




Winner: One Simple Word by Peter Collins


Highly Commended: Down by the Grand Hotel by Hannah Fox Fernley


Highly Commended: A Shadow in a Brave Light by Esther Byrne 

NOW & THEN.png

The Val Wood Prize 2020: The Next Chapter

The Val Wood Prize 2020: The Next Chapter is now closed.

It has been a long time coming but I am thrilled to tell you that the winners of The Val Wood Prize 2020 are now announced below. 


We had hundreds of brilliant entries last year but unfortunately the competition results were severely delayed due to the Covid restrictions and lockdowns that interfered with both the coming together of the judging panel and complications regarding a winner's ceremony.


Unfortunately, due to restrictions still being in place, no ceremony will take place for the 2020 prize but rest assured the winning entrants will be contacted by Hull Library and receive their well deserved prizes.


Again, thank you so much to all who entered during such a strange year and I hope you won't be disheartened if you didn't make the shortlist. The 2021 prize will be announced shortly and I do hope you will all enter again. As always, I look forward to reading your entries.

Val Wood. 

Val Wood announces the winners in the recorded message (Left. Click sound on in the bar at the bottom of the video screen). 


Congratulations to all of the winners of The Val Wood Prize 2020. Click on the entries below to read the stories in full. 



The Winners - Yorkshire Prize

FIRST PRIZE - 199 Steps by Glenn Malkin from Hornsea
RUNNER UP Shifting Sands by Belinda Crowther from Cottingham
RUNNER UP Coastal Surprise by Leonie Jordan from Driffield

The Winners - Open Prize

FIRST PRIZE The Boom by Millie Mockford from Bamford, Derbyshire
RUNNER UP Boleyn by Rosalind Adler from London
RUNNER UP The Face in the Blue and White Bowl by Joanne Shone from Flintshire, Wales

bottom of page