We're thrilled to launch our latest search for new female talent. Grazia – in partnership with the Women’s Prize for Fiction – is giving you the chance to kick-start your writing career with our First Chapter competition, now in its 12th year.
Helping us is Tayari Jones, the author of four novels, including An American Marriage, which won the 2019 Women’s Prize for Fiction and was an Oprah’s Book Club selection. Tayari has written the opening paragraph of a story – and your challenge is to finish the first chapter. The sky is the limit for your inspiration, just keep to 800-1,000 words. The winner will join us at the Women’s Prize for Fiction awards party in London, have their story published in Grazia and be mentored by Tayari.
Last year’s winner, Naomi George, said, ‘First Chapter has been an incredible experience. Thanks to winning and being mentored by Dorothy Koomson, I have the confidence to pursue a full-length project. I can’t thank Grazia, The Women’s Prize for Fiction and Dorothy enough! A competition like this is very special.’
The story so far...
Tayari Jones has started the story – now it’s up to you to finish the opening chapter.
I’d lost my job at the start of the pandemic and there really wasn’t much to fill my afternoons, so you can’t blame me for day-drinking. Returning home for a nap, I found a tall woman sprawled inelegantly on the front stairs, surrounded by candy wrappers.
She didn’t recognise me. To be fair, I had changed a lot in the last 12 years; it’s called growing up. Still, having planned the encounter, she should have been prepared.
As I opened the gate, she smiled and asked if I knew a girl called Teresa.
‘It’s me,’ I sighed. ‘Mother, it’s me.’
How to enter
Continuing Tayari’s story, write your first chapter (800-1,000 words), and send it to us with a short biography (200 words max), plus your address, email, phone number, occupation and date of birth. Don’t forget to read our terms and conditions, then submit your entry online via the form below by 12 April.
What you'll win
The winner will have their chapter published in Grazia, get a year’s mentoring from Tayari Jones, a five-day residential Arvon course or tutored retreat and a goodie bag. They will be invited to the Women’s Prize for Fiction ceremony on 15 June in London. Two runners-up will have their chapters published on graziadaily. co.uk, get three Arvon at Home masterclasses and all will receive the six Women’s Prize for Fiction 2021 shortlisted books.
Meet the judges
The New York Times best-selling author of An American Marriage
Grazia's deputy editor and author ofYou Can Trust Me
Grazia’s acting senior editor
Enter the competition here...
Terms and conditions:
These Competition terms and conditions should be read together with, and are in addition to, H Bauer Publishing Limited’s standard terms and conditions at the “General Terms" (click here to read). Together these specific competition terms and conditions and the General Terms shall be referred to as the “Terms”. Where there is a conflict between these terms and the General Terms, these terms shall prevail. Anyone who enters the Competition (an “Entrant”) will be deemed to have read and accepted these Specific Rules and the Competition Terms and Conditions and will be bound by them.
1. COMPETITION NAME
“First Chapter” running from the Start Date to the End Date as set out below (the “Competition”).
H Bauer Publishing, Media House, Peterborough Business Park, Lynch Wood, Peterborough, PE2 6EA 02147090.
The competition shall also be promoted online at www.graziadaily.co.uk (the “Website”).
4. COMPETITION START DATE AND END DATE
Start Date: Tuesday 8 March at 6:00am
End Date: Tuesday 12 April at 6:00pm
(the “Entry Period”).
Any entries not received by this time will be invalid and shall not be included in the Competition. For the avoidance of doubt, any entries received before the Start Date or after the End Date (as stated above) will be invalid.
Winner Announcement. We will contact the winner and the runners-up by phone and email. However if the winner cannot be contacted within five (5) days from the date of the initial attempt to contact them, then another winner will be chosen in accordance with these Terms.
The name and the hometown of the winner and the runners-up will be announced in mid-June on the Website and in the Grazia magazine.
5. COMPETITION MECHANIC AND HOW TO WIN
All Entrants must finish author Tayari Jones’s opening chapter, using between 800-1000 words (the “Creative Work”). Any Creative Work that is less than 800 words or more than 1000 words will not be considered and will not be included in the Competition.
The Creative Work must be sent along with a short biography of yourself (200 words maximum) plus your name, address, phone number, occupation and date of birth (the “Accompanying Information”).
The winner will be chosen by a judging panel made up of author Tayari Jones, Grazia deputy editor Emma Rowley and Grazia acting senior editor Maria Lally. The judges will be selecting a winner on the basis of whose entry is the most original, thought-provoking, well-written and entertaining.
6. ENTRY PLATFORMS AND COSTS
There is no charge for entering the Competition, and Creative Work entries (with Accompanying Information as set out above) must be entered via the online entry form at www.graziadaily.co.uk/firstchapter.
7. ENTRY RESTRICTIONS
• Open to UK residents aged 18 years or over on date of entry.
• Open to women (in line with the Women’s Prize for Fiction entry requirements).
• Our employees (and their family members) or employees of any company involved in the Competition must not enter.
• All Creative Work entries must be between 800 words and 1000 words and be original works.
• We reserve the right to disqualify any entrant or winner who does not comply with any of the eligibility criteria and/or is in breach of these Terms. We reserve the right to repeat the competition mechanic or any stage of it in order to choose a winner that fulfils all of the eligibility criteria and is in compliance with these Terms.
8. THE PRIZE
There will be one winner of the Competition, and two runners-up. The winner and runners-up will be selected by a panel of judges (author Tayari Jones, Grazia deputy editor Emma Rowley, Grazia acting senior editor Maria Lally). The judges will select a winner on the basis of the following criteria:
One winner shall win the following prize (the “Prize”):
Two runners-up will win the following runner-up prize (the “Runner-Up Prize”):
Prizes are non-transferable, non-refundable and no cash alternative will be offered.
Unless expressly stated, the cost of any spending money, food, drink or any other sustenance is not included. Any additions or upgrades to flights / train tickets, accommodation or otherwise are not included in the Prize and will be the sole responsibility of a prize winner to secure and pay for.
Unless expressly stated, the cost of travel to and from the relevant airports / train stations are not included in the Prize, no airport transfers are included.
Travel insurance is not included as part of the Prize and is the responsibility of the prize winner to secure and to pay for.
Unless expressly stated otherwise, travel to and from the event/venue, any accommodation or the cost of any spending money, food, drink or any other sustenance is not included in the prize and a prize winner shall be responsible for bearing the cost of any such additional expenses incurred in taking up the prize.
It is the responsibility of the winner to adhere to any applicable health and safety guidelines issued by the venue, and to inform the Promoter of any special requirements or adjustments which need to be made for the prize winner to attend the Ceremony.
9. OTHER CONDITIONS
9.1. DATA PROTECTION.
Names, email addresses, telephone numbers, occupations and dates of birth will be collected and used to process entries. Your details may remain stored after the End Date but will not be used for marketing. Please see http://www.bauerdatapromise.co.uk/ for more details.
9.2. INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND CONSENTS.
By entering this Competition, you are consenting to our use of your entry both to publicise this Competition, our magazine or any other magazine which we own or control. The Women’s Prize for Fiction may also print or publish your entry in any medium they own or control. This means that we and the Women’s Prize for Fiction may use all names, images, descriptions, photographs video footage, and other information, which you’ve submitted on entry, in any media, without paying you and without any time restriction. You also agree that we may film, record or photograph you in connection with the competition and /or the Prize (if you win!). We will own these films, recordings or photographs and we may use them publicly, including on the internet, for our radio broadcasts and/or for any promotional purposes on radio, in magazine or otherwise. You will also have waived any moral rights or right to payment that you may have had. In entering this competition you grant H Bauer Publishing Limited and the Women’s Prize for Fiction a non-exclusive royalty free licence in all intellectual property rights in your entry and agree that we may publish and promote this worldwide in perpetuity without any fee being due to you.
a. Entries that don’t comply with these Terms won’t be accepted and you may be disqualified if we think you’ve breached them.
b. One entry per person.
c. If there is a dispute about the operation of the Competition or the suitability of any winning entry chosen, our decision is final and no discussion will be entered into on this subject.
d. You are responsible for all costs of entry.
e. We accept no liability for network, technical or signal errors, issues or failures experienced by entrants when entering the Competition or at any stage during the mechanic of the Competition.
f. As far as it is lawful to do so we exclude our liability for any losses suffered in connection with the Competition or any element of the Prize.
g. We may cancel, amend end or suspend the Competition where we are required to do so in circumstances outside our control. We reserve the right to amend these Terms at any stage during the Competition if such amendment is necessary to facilitate the administration of the Competition.
9.4. CONTACT DETAILS
H Bauer Publishing Limited is the Promoter of this Competition.
Any concerns? Please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.