2.1 Nova Writes is open to full-time residents of Nova Scotia who have lived in the province since September 1 immediately prior to the submission deadline date. ***Please note that out-of-province college/university students are not considered residents for the purposes of this competition. Residency refers to permanent residency (ie, you file your taxes in Nova Scotia.) 

2.2 Entries must be the original, unpublished work of the writer (publishing includes posting online), and must not have been accepted for publication, submitted elsewhere, or entered into another competition at the time of entry nor during the course of the competition. Once the results have been revealed, you are free to submit your piece elsewhere. If you do decide to submit during the competition, you must contact the WFNS to withdraw your piece. Your entry fee will not be refunded.  

2.3 Writers may not submit an entry to a prize category in which they have published a standalone book or more than three shorter works in recognized anthologies or periodicals. High school or university anthologies do not count against your total. 

2.4 Writers may not submit more than one entry per prize category, but may submit to more than one category. NOTE: Each entry requires its own entry form and registration fee.

2.5 Readers and judges may enter but not in the category they are evaluating.

2.6 Winners of a previous Nova Writes (or the former Atlantic Writing Competition) may enter, but not in the category they won.

2.7 Writers may resubmit a piece that was submitted in a previous year of the Nova Writes (or the Atlantic Writing Competition), providing the piece did not win or make the shortlist.

2.8 To help ensure the impartiality of readers and judges during the assessment process, entrants must choose a pen name to accompany their manuscripts. This pen name cannot be in active use online (ie, a blog). The purpose of the pen name is to maintain anonymity. At no point in the assessment process are readers and judges aware of the identity of entrants. Entries submitted without a pen name will not be considered. Please do not put your real name anywhere on your manuscript. 

2.9 Copyright of manuscript submissions remains with the entrants. WFNS will keep a copy of all complete and eligible submissions for one year following the Nova Writes deadline date before deleting them.

2.10 The Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia reserves the right not to present a prize should entries not meet standards of quality in the opinion of the judges, or if there are not enough entries to ensure a competitive process. The decision on whether or not to proceed with a category is final and at the discretion of the WFNS. 

2.11 Decisions of the judges are final. Volunteer judges cannot be contacted to provide additional feedback or expand on their feedback. 

2.12 First-round readers remain anonymous. Volunteer readers cannot be contacted to provide additional feedback or expand on their feedback. 

2.13 The following are not eligible as entrants for the Nova Writes:

   a.  entrants who do not meet Nova Scotia residency requirements;

   b.  staff of the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia; and 

   c.  children (pre-high school).

2.14  The following are not eligible as submissions for the Nova Writes:

   a. self-published manuscripts;

   b. submissions that do not meet prize category requirements as defined for the appropriate category; and

   c. submissions that exceed the word limit or do not meet the minimum word count as outlined under each category description.

2.15 Entrants and submissions that do not meet all rules and regulations set out in these guidelines are not eligible for the program and adjudication process, including formatting guidelines.

2.16 For the purposes of the Nova Writes program, eligible creative writing submissions are defined as short form and long form creative non-fiction, novel, poetry, short story, writing for children/young adult. Please note that readers and judges have the same prerogative as any reader at a publishing house, which is to stop reading any manuscript whose first few pages are rife with spelling and grammatical errors.




Categories | Eligibility Criteria & Rules | Submission Procedures | Adjudication Process & Timeline