Deadline: March 28, 2022

Applications are open for the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) Young Writers Award 2022. Now in its eighth year, the BBC Young Writers’ Award with Cambridge University invites all young people in the UK aged between 14-18 years to submit stories of up to 1,000 words.

There will be five writers shortlisted for the BBC Young Writers’ Award with Cambridge University. The five shortlisted stories are narrated by an actor and recorded for an exclusive broadcast on BBC. The stories are also published in an exclusive anthology dedicated to the Award.


  • The five shortlisted writers are invited to take part in a creative writing workshop with a leading writer and a tour of BBC Broadcasting House, central London, followed by the Award ceremony which is broadcast live from the Radio 4’s flagship arts program, Front Row.
  • The five shortlisted writers will have the opportunity at the awards ceremony to meet leading writers, publishers, agents and broadcasters. Travel, accommodation, refreshments and special assistance as required are provided for each of the five shortlisted writers and an accompanying adult. Each shortlisted writer can invite a further three guests who are aged 14 and over to the Award ceremony (at their own cost). All writers will need to be accompanied by a parent/guardian or BBC chaperone.
  • There will be one winning writer of the BBC Young Writers’ Award with Cambridge University. The winning writer will in addition have a special one-to-one mentoring session with an author.


  • Open to UK residents, including residents of the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands;
  • Be aged 14 to 18 years-old on the submission deadline;
  • Proof of identity and eligibility may be requested. Entries must be submitted by the writer, with an adult’s permission (i.e. parent, guardian or teacher) if the writer is under 16 years of age. Writers can only enter individually and not as part of a writing team;
  • The story must not be more than one thousand (1,000) words. There is no lower word limit but the entry needs to be a story.

Judging Criteria

Entries are judged on the following guidelines:

  • Quality of writing
  • Originality, imagination and creativity
  • Sentence structure and language
  • Writer’s ability to tell a story, capture the reader and hold their attention.


  • Write and format your short story as per the following instructions:
    • One entry per writer
    • Written in English (with a Gaelic/Welsh version if appropriate – see Entry Terms and Conditions, clause 9)
    • A maximum of 1,000 words
    • Original fiction on any topic
    • Typed on a computer
    • Any font, 12pt, black
    • Double spaced
    • No page numbers
    • Include a front page which details the Title of Story and the Word Count
    • Do not include your name anywhere on the story (unless you are submitting a typeset file and it is unavoidable).
  • Save the short story as an Adobe PDF, with the Title of Story in the file name. (N.B. if the short story has already been published you can submit a typeset PDF file, but remove the writer’s name or title). If your story has been typed into Microsoft Word you can save as a PDF by clicking File -> Save As, and then selecting .PDF from the dropdown menu underneath the file name field.

Click here to complete the entry form

For more information, visit BBC Young Writers’ Award.

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