Please note that works which do not conform to the criteria will not be considered for the prize. Please do not waste your own time and postage by sending in material which is unsuitable. Works not eligible for entry include stories for children, factual writing, plays, biography, works shorter than 3000 words and unpublished work. If you are not sure whether your work is eligible, please email us for advice.
Publishers should post six hard copies of the story for consideration to:
The Caine Prize for African Writing
The Menier Gallery
Menier Chocolate Factory
51 Southwark Street
London SE1 1RU
Entries should be accompanied by a letter from the publisher conveying a short CV or brief biography of the writer, and specifying which African country the writer comes from.
The Prize is awarded to a short story by an African writer published in English, whether in Africa or elsewhere. Indicative length is between 3000 and 10,000 words.
“An African writer” is taken to mean someone who was born in Africa, or who is a national of an African country, or whose parents are African.
There is a cash prize of £10,000 for the winning author and a travel award for each of the short-listed candidates (up to five in all).
For practical reasons, unpublished work and work in other languages is not eligible. Works translated into English from other languages are not excluded, provided they have been published in translation, and should such a work win, a proportion of the prize would be awarded to the translator.
The award is made in July each year, the deadline for submissions being 31 January. Works received after that date will be put forward to the next year's prize. The short-list is selected from work originally published in the five years preceding the submissions deadline and not previously considered for a Caine Prize. The deadline for the next prize is 31 January 2014; works must have been published between 1 February 2009 and the closing date.
In general it is unwise to delay the submission of entries until shortly before the deadline: postal and delivery hiccups can easily result in material arriving too late. It is far better to submit material a few weeks in advance.
NB: There is no application form. Submissions should be made by publishers, in the form of six original published copies of the work for consideration. If published in a magazine or journal we will accept one original copy plus five photocopies, but would prefer six original copies. These should be sent to the address below.
We are happy to take submissions from internet magazines, but must insist that we receive six hard copies of these, as of other submissions. Also it is important that internet entries be carefully edited: past judges have not viewed favourably entries containing typos and other errors.
The judges will consider only one work per writer in any one year, and only short stories are eligible.
Every effort is made to publicise the work of the short-listed authors through the broadcast as well as the printed media.
Winning and short-listed authors will be invited to participate in writers’ workshops in Africa, London and elsewhere as resources permit.
For further information, please contact Lizzy Attree at The Caine Prize for African Writing and Jenny Casswell at Raitt Orr and Associates (details below).
copyright 2009 The Caine Prize