New Novels Competition 2014

Following the success of our inaugural New Novels Competition in 2012, and the publication of the three winning novels in 2012 and 2013, RETHINK PRESS is looking for two new, brilliant novels for publication in 2014.

If your novel is completed and unpublished before the deadline of 31st January 2014, and you would like to have it published on Amazon in paperback and Kindle, read on…

Please read these Rules and Guidelines carefully before entering the Rethink Press New Novels 2014 Competition.

Your entry is taken as full acceptance of everything included herein.


Two winning novels will be published by Rethink Press  

The winning novels will be published on and in paperback and kindle editions before the end of 2014.

The 10 shortlisted entries will receive written feedback from the judging panel and will be offered a phone call with Lucy McCarraher.


Entries will be judged anonymously – the judging panel will not be given names or other information about the writers whose entries they are reading.

Amanda Addison is particularly interested in writing about art and textiles since completing her degree in illustration at Chelsea School of Art and an MA in Writing the Visual. Amanda’s novel, Laura’s Handmade Life, was published by LittleBrown and has been translated and published in German and Italian; in 2009 her short story, Blue Beauty was published in Alternative Renditions by Bridgehouse Publishing; in 2008 her novella Lost for Words was runner-up in the Cinnamon Press Novella Award and published by Chipmunka. Amanda is a tutor at City College, Norwich, where she created and teaches the first UK Access to Higher Education Creative Writing course. More on

‘I am an avid reader across all genres. For me, what makes an outstanding book is the one which stays with you well after reading. Ann Patchett’s Bel Canto and W G Sebald’s Austerlitz are books which still haunt me, and also show a wonderful relationship between place and character.’

James Ferron Anderson was born in Northern Ireland. One of his first short stories, The Bog Menagerie, won the Bryan MacMahon Short Story Award. He won the Escalator Award in England with I Still Miss Someone. He is a Writers’ Centre Free Reads winner. Something to Do, another short story, was broadcast on Short Story Radio. The River and The Sea won the Rethink New Novels Award in 2012. He is currently working on Terminal City, a crime story set in Vancouver in 1959.

 I’ll be looking for work that shows me character through action and dialogue. I don’t have to like these people but I have to find them believable. I’m hoping it will be well edited, removing the superfluous. And I want to feel surprised at the end, while at the same time satisfied it could have developed in no other way.’

 Sam Ruddock is a Programme Manager at Writers’ Centre Norwich, a book blogger at and a reader and general bibliophile. He hosts a popular book quiz at the Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library and delivers the Norfolk wide Summer Reads programme as part of his work with Writers’ Centre Norwich. Sam believes passionately in the power of stories to transform our understanding of the world and enhance our compassion for others. He lives in Norwich with his wife and two cats, and spends too much time sitting on his couch watching sport. 

‘I don’t believe there is an answer to the question “what makes a good novel?”, but I generally feel that it is what is not expected, rather than following any specific rules or guides.’

Rowan Whiteside is rarely seen without a book in hand. She currently works as Marketing Assistant at Writers’ Centre Norwich and as a bookseller at Waterstones, where she was formerly the manager of the fiction department. Rowan studied English and American Literature at UEA, where she snuck onto as many creative writing classes as possible and read a lot of books from the Classics section. She is proud to live in Norwich, City of Literature.

‘My favourite novels have little in common – they are not stylistically similar, or even from a single genre – but they are all well written, with involving characters and an absorbing storyline. I want to read the sort of book which makes me not want to do anything but read.’

Lucy McCarraher has written three novels, four self-help books (most recently How To Write Fiction Without The Fuss, which will give you an idea of what she looks for in a novel), scripts for television and numerous articles and reviews for newspapers, magazines and journals. She is the Managing Editor of Rethink Press and Commissioning Editor of Bookshaker. She has worked as a tv script-editor, concept developer, researcher, producer and presenter; as a magazine editor and publisher, book editor, writers’ agent, ghost writer and theatre reviewer; as a consultant, trainer and writing coach.

‘I’m looking forward to finding a couple of really great fiction writers whose work hasn’t yet made it out to the public. As a publisher, I’m also hoping these novels will capture the imagination of the reading market they’re aimed at.’

Deadline For Entries

Final entries must be submitted no later than 31st January 2014.

Winners will be announced by 1st May 2014 (though this date is dependent upon the number of entries received, which may impact the reading and judging time required to come to the right decision.).

Competition Rules

  • Submitting an entry indicates acceptance of all rules, guidelines, terms and conditions.
  • Completed novels for which an entry is submitted must be no longer than 120,000 words, and written in English.
  • Any genre of novel aimed at a readership aged 13-years and above may be submitted. Novels for children of 12-years and younger will not be accepted.
  • Submissions for incomplete novels will not be accepted. In other words, if you haven’t finished your novel, please do not enter this year’s competition.
  • The competition is open to anyone living in any country (except employees of Rethink Press Limited and their immediate families), provided that the fee is received in either British Pounds or US Dollars.
  • Entry novels should not have been published by another publisher. If they are accepted for publication during the course of the competition, you are required to let us know; the entry will then no longer be eligible to win a prize. Self-published novels may be submitted – please make this clear on the cover page of your entry.
  • Prize winners will be notified by phone and/or email and named on our website, on Twitter, on Facebook, our blogs, and in press releases – we reserve the right to market the winners to the public and the media. Please ensure you supply a valid email address and phone number with your entry.
  • Please submit AS AN EMAIL ATTACHMENT, IN A SINGLE ‘WORD’ DOCUMENT all of the following:
    1. A Cover Page with your name, postal address, email address and phone number; the title, genre and wordcount of the completed novel; also the date of your entry fee payment, whether by PayPal or Bank Transfer, and the relevant reference number.
    2. A One-page Submission Letter (as if to a publisher or agent). For details on how to write a submission letter, please read this blog post.
    3. A Synopsis of your novel of no more than 1,000 words. For details of how the synopsis should be written, please read this blog post.
    4. The First 5,000 words (maximum) of the novel. Do NOT submit the complete manuscript (although you may be asked to do so if your entry is short-listed).
  • No paper submissions can be accepted.
  • All entries (and completed novels) must be written in English. Other languages will not be accepted.
  • You may submit entries for as many different completed novels as you like, so long as each is accompanied by the correct entry fee.
  • Entries (and complete novels) must be entirely the original work of the entrant, and the entrant must fully own all the necessary rights for the work to enter this competition. Entrants take full responsibility for copyright issues.
  • The judges’ decision is final; no individual correspondence or disputes will be entered into.
  • Deadlines and any other dates may be postponed by us without notice for any legitimate reason, and we reserve the right to adjust these rules without notice.
  • Entrants are responsible for completing the submission process effectively. We cannot take responsibility for entries lost in cyberspace. If you encounter problems, or do not receive an email from us confirming receipt, please email

ENTRY FEE: There is an entry fee to help cover our administration, judging and prizes. The entry fee per novel submitted is UK £15.00 (if paid in UK pounds online); US $25.00 (if paid in US dollars). Methods of payment are listed at the bottom of this page. Fees are NOT refundable – please read the rules carefully before entering.

HOW TO FORMAT YOUR ENTRIES: Entries must be typed in a single font – 12-point Times New Roman, or Arial. Line spacing should be 1.5 or double, with a good inch of margin all round. File formats: Microsoft Word .doc, .docx, .rtf, .txt. Do not include any illustrations or photos; winning novels will be published without illustrations.

To Enter

Please ensure that you have read all the rules and guidelines above before entering! Submitting your entry indicates full acceptance of these rules; no refunds will be given. The entry fees (all details below) can be paid by either of the methods listed below.


Please pay UK £15 (approx US $25) per novel entered, via either:

PAYPAL (payments by credit card, or via your own bank account) – please make payment to :



We can accept deposits directly into our bank from other banks in the UK

Account number: 22069968
Sort code: 30-99-97
Reference: NOVEL COMP

Non UK banks should be able to transfer funds using one or both of the BIC and IBAN numbers below:

BIC:  LOYDGB21247       IBAN:  GB58LOYD30999722069968

2. EMAIL YOUR ENTRY to , with the title of your novel in the subject line.


  • A Cover Page with your name, address, email address, phone number; title, genre and word count of the completed novel; also the date of your entry fee payment, whether by PayPal or Bank Transfer, and the relevant reference number.
  • A One-page Submission Letter. For details on how to write this, please read this blog post.
  • A Synopsis of your novel of no more than 1,000 words. For details of how to write this, please read this blog post.
  • The First 5,000 words (maximum) of the novel. Do NOT submit the complete manuscript (although you may be asked to do so if your entry is short-listed).

4. WE WILL CONFIRM receipt by return email.

4. You will be notified if you have been shortlisted and may be asked to send the complete manuscript of your novel.

We look forward to receiving your entry – good luck!

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