New Writing Sought

Open Book is seeking new writing and supporting material for their Unbound programme (


Nine awards of £175 each will be made for 1) a piece of previously unpublished fiction of approx 1000 words, 2) three linked writing prompts, 3) three linked discussion questions, 4) a link to two publically available poems (online) which in some way connect to your unpublished fiction, and 5) a suggestion of a broad theme for your writing (as set out below).


Submissions (including new writing, writing prompts, discussion questions, a link to poems and a theme) will be accepted until 5pm on 22 October 2021.


Open Book will include this new writing in our Unbound newsletter, which is used in most of our shared reading groups and has the purpose of connecting our subscribers at a time when we’re not able to meet in person. Each of these issues of Unbound will centre on a broad theme. (Previous themes have included home, bridges, transform and grow, garden and celebration.) Please also suggest a theme for the Unbound issue that would include your writing.

WHEN CONSIDERING WHAT WORK TO SUBMIT, PLEASE NOTE: our readers have described our Unbound programme as a “cave to escape into” and an “oasis”, so we will generally not consider dark or otherwise troubling texts. Applicants may wish to familiarise themselves with previously successful commissions, which are still available on our website..


How to apply


Please send a previously unpublished text of around 1,000 words along with three writing prompts, three discussion questions, a link to two publicly available poems that link thematically to the submission and a suggestion of a theme for the Unbound issue to Please only send one submission. Successful applicants will be notified by email by 5pm on 29 October 2021.


Terms and conditions


  • Successful applicants will be notified by email. Open Book will also announce the applicants chosen through their social media channels and website and as such will require consent to release the names of those chosen.
  • While copyright will be retained by the writer, successful applicants will grant
    Open Book a copyright licence to reproduce the piece including but not limited to use in the Open Book Unbound newsletter, with our online and in person groups, in podcasts produced by Open Book as well as in other Open Book pamphlets or other publications for 24 months from publication. Open
    Book may produce a CD/DVD of any podcast featuring the work for distribution as part of Open Book’s Prison Programme and the writer will
    consent to the use of their work for this purpose.
  • After acceptance, payment will be made on receipt of the work, and an invoice, by Open Book.

Supported by Creative Scotland.