“I learnt to write by writing… I got out into the world, I wrote, and I became a better writer the more I wrote, and I wrote some more, and nobody ever seemed to mind that I was making it up as I went along”

Neil Gaiman

How do you see the world? How would you ‘write’ the world? Through a story, or a poem, or a creative non-fiction essay written in the first person? Through a combination of words and pictures, a graphic novel, say?

Would you conjure up imaginary worlds, with fantastical creatures? Or would you set a narrative within familiar surroundings, like your school or neighbourhood, or the beach?

Whether we love poetry or prose, whether we write from observation, emotion or imagination, or (best of all) a combination of these, whether we make magic through putting words with images, we all are natural storytellers.

That’s why the Scribblers Festival is inviting you―all you poets, storytellers, graphic novelists, comic strip creatives, and essayists―to enter the very first Golden Pen Awards.

key dates

Entries Open: 18 October 2018
Entries Close: 31 March 2019
Shortlist Announced: 15 April 2019
Masterclass for Shortlisted Writers: 11 May 2019 (Scribblers Festival)
Winners Announced: 11 May 2019
(Scribblers Festival)

Theme: Discovery

What do you think when you hear the word, DISCOVERY? Write about it. We want to read your story about DISCOVERY – perhaps you discovered something funny or unusual in your suburb or under your house? Have you ever wondered what it might be like to discover a new country, a new planet or a new language? Have you experienced an internal discovery – a change in the way you think or feel about something?

The Scribblers Festival Golden Pen Awards are open to all Western Australian high school-aged students. There are two age-based categories: 12-14 and 15-17. See the full Terms and Conditions  for more information.


In 3000 words or less, send us your fiction, creative non-fiction, poetry, comic, graphic novel about DISCOVERY by Sunday 31 March 2019.

Shortlisted writers will be selected from each category, with one overall winner from each category awarded the prestigious Golden Pen Award. Shortlisted writers will have the opportunity to learn from international and Australian authors in an exclusive masterclass during the Festival as well as attend our Scribblers Festival YA program – The YA Collective on Saturday 11 May. All shortlisted writers will have their work published on the Scribblers Festival website. The overall winners will be announced during a special public event at Scribblers Festival. They will receive a cash prize of AUD $500 (each). All shortlisted and winning entrants will receive a certificate of achievement and a book voucher from the Festival bookshop to the value of AUD $100.

The awards will be judged by a panel of educators, librarians, publishers and guest authors of the 2019 Scribblers Festival. This is a creative competition and entries are judged on the originality of the theme, the development of the story and the quality (not quantity) of the writing. Please note: due to the high number of entries anticipated for this award, individual feedback cannot be provided.


ntries must be emailed to goldenpen@scribblersfestival.com.au. All emailed entries must be accompanied by a completed entry form and entry forms must be signed by a parent/guardian. Please ensure you have read the
Terms and Conditions carefully before uploading your entry. Entries close on Sunday 31 March 2019.

Entry Form [Individual] | Entry Form [Teacher] | Terms and Conditions

By Post
To submit a physical copy of your story, print and attach your completed entry form, and submit via post to: Scribblers Festival, c/o FORM, PO Box 270 Claremont WA 6010. Please ensure you have read the Terms & Conditions carefully before posting your entry. All submissions must be received by Sunday 31 March 2019. Late entries will not be accepted.

Please note: due to the high number of entries anticipated, stories will not be returned. Please keep a copy of your entry.

Stay tuned to our Blog for writing tips to get your creativity flowing.

Download The Golden Pen poster