Hysteria 3The Hysteria Writing Competition is now closed for 2015. Hysteria 2016 will commence on April 1st 2016. If you’d like to be reminded of the dates just fill in your details in the form below.

2015 had three categories:

  • Short stories – up to 2,000 words
  • Flash fiction – up to 250 words
  • Poetry up to 20 lines

We accept entries in any genre except erotica or horror.  We are NOT looking for stories, flash fiction or poetry about Hysterectomy. Instead, we are looking for works that appeal to our website visitors, who are mostly women between the ages of 25ish and 65ish.

All entries are to be made via our online shop where you can upload your entry as a .doc, .docx, rtf or txt format. No other file formats will be accepted and entries made using them will be disqualified.

Please make sure you read the guidelines and the rules before submitting your entry.

Entry Fees

  • Short Story – £5
  • Flash Fiction – £3
  • Poetry – £3

If you would like to be kept informed about dates and what’s happening with the writing competition please register with our mailing list below.


Covance Clinical TrialWe are incredibly fortunate to have been granted sponsorship for the competition by Covance UK Ltd. Therefore our prize money has more than doubled and will now be:

  • £400 – winning short story
  • £200 each – winning flash fiction and poem.

9 runners up in each category will be published in the anthology Hysteria 4, due for publication in November 2015 and will receive a free copy of the anthology when it is published.

Anthologies from past competitions are available online and you can find links to them on our online shop below.

Stay informed

If you would like to be kept informed about the Hysteria Writing Competition, sent dates and information about winners why not add yourself to our mailing list.


Don't miss the deadline!

If you would like to be kept informed about the Hysteria Writing Competition, sent dates and information about winners please add yourself to our mailing list.

Thanks for subscribing to the Hysteria Writing Competition mailing list.

Meet Past Winners

Meet Past Judges

Meet past writers in residence

In 2014 we introduced the idea of a writer in residence for the competition. The purpose was to help by giving entrants hints and tips about how to write for a competition. We’ll be carrying on this year and hope to appoint a writer in residence shortly.

Additional important information

You can find the details of the rules and guidelines for the competition here: hysteria-competition-guidelines/

Please read the competition rules before submitting your entry. You can find the rules here: hysteria-competition-rules/

29 Responses to “Hysteria Writing Competition”
Read them below or add one

  1. This is a well-organised competition in an excellent cause and, unlike some competitions these days, the entry fee is reasonable. I am delighted to be represented in this year’s anthology. I urge you to enter. :-)

  2. Jayne Thickett says :

    This is a great competition. The organisers are professional but friendly and approachable and you’re kept updated throughout the process. The entry fee is big value for money and it’s in aid of a cause often overlooked.
    I’m proud to be included in Hysteria 2012. Give it a go, you may be surprised. I certainly was.

  3. Claire Boggs says :

    Looking forward to reading all your stories, we had some fabulous works last year. Come on ladies, enter now xx

  4. This is a great competition and in support of a good cause. So if you are writing short stories then do have a go and enter this year’s competition. I am really looking forward to the 2012 anthology and delighted that my story about a medieval midwife will be included. Can’t wait to read the other stories.

  5. Christine Djabarouti says :

    Hi Linda, Thank you for your email informing me that a copy of the anthology Hysteria 2012 is on its way to me, I enjoyed taking part in this very worthwhile competition. I intend to enter this years competition too, which I am looking forward to. I would also like to say what a fantastic site you have created. After my recent hysterectomy your site was my close companion through many a sleepless night and has continued to give me support long after. Well done to you and all involved for giving women, at a very uncertain time in their life, a place to come for information, advice and a way of contacting others in the same situation. It helps take away a lot of the fear and uncertainty.

  6. Lois Elaine Heckman says :

    This is a most commendable competition and affords a wonderful opportunity for expressing one’s thoughts and feelings in the amiable atmosphere generated by its friendly organizers. It is well worth the small entry fee for such a charitable, but often neglected, cause.
    I am so pleased to have a poem in this year’s anthology, but sad that poetry will not be included in future editions. Story tellers, do give it a try!

  7. Margaret Clark says :

    This is a reasonably priced competition with a wide theme for a great cause. I thoroughly enjoyed crafting my entry for Hysteria 2012 and was thrilled to be short-listed – can’t wait to read the anthology!

    Give it a go!

  8. moya poole says :

    I really enjoyed writing for this competition and couldn’t believe my luck when my story was chosen as part of the anthology, especially after reading the winning entry! This was an exceptional piece, written in a unique style, and I’m looking forward to reading the other winning entries. I’ll definately be entering future competitions,

  9. Alison Wassell says :

    I am thrilled to be included in the 2012 Hysteria Anthology and, as others have said, the entry fee is very reasonable. And for a very worthwhile cause too. Looking forward to reading all the other poems and stories.

  10. Anne Wilson says :

    I am very happy that my contribution was selected to appear in the 2012 Hysteria 1 anthology and thoroughly enjoyed reading everyone else’s. The collected works encapsulate many of life’s disappointments, losses and challenges for women but are ultimately a well-selected, thought-provoking and entertaining read; one which I shall recommend at every opportunity. Roll on the 2013 comp. so we can do it all over again!

  11. Jane Bean says :

    I was thrilled to find that my story had been shortlisted. I had not previously heard of the Hysterectomy Association, and found out about the competition through an advertisement for the 2012 Charmouth Literary Festival organised by Linda Parkinson-Hardman. A very reasonable entry fee for such a good cause – with the added bonus of seeing my work in print in this excellent anthology.

  12. Karen Casstevens says :

    I love your web site and am interested in the short story competition. I am not familiar with how much your entry fee for the short story competition is, as I am from the US. Is this competition also for US citizens? Where are you located?

    1. Hi Karen, the competition is open to women all over the world as long as they are writing in English. The fee is roughly $5 in US dollars and we are based in the UK :-)

  13. Sheila Llewellyn says :

    Hello – this is a query about the short story competition 2013. I submitted a story today , then noticed a typo in it. I don’t mind paying another £3 to re-submit, but I wondered how you go about cancelling the first entry? Will I have to re-title the second entry to distinguish it from the first? I hope not, it ‘s the only title for the story, really. If I don’t submit the second version until tomorrow, 1st August, is there any way you can cancel the entry submitted today, 31st July? And if so, how do I go about letting someone know that is waht needs to be done? Sorry about this, it’s just been a ‘wish I hadn’t hit ‘send’ until I’d done one more final, final check’ moment!
    Hope you can help, best for now,

    1. Hi Shelia. It’s not a problem at all – just send the updated version directly to me and I’ll substitute the saved file. You can email it to info@hysterectomy-association.org.uk :-)

      1. Sheila Llewellyn says :

        Linda, thanks so much for getting back to me so quickly – I’m sorry to cause you extra work at your end. Will send it for the attention of *your name* at the e-mail address you’ve given. I’ll be able to keep the original title too!
        best wishes

        1. Hi Shelia, it really isn’t a problem at all :-) and thank you too ..!

  14. Samantha Turra says :

    I would like to submit an entry in the Hysteria Writing Competition, but first I would like to know; in regards to The Hysterectomy Association having exclusive worldwide license over the entry; does this mean that we cannot publish it anywhere else, ever?
    Or submit it to other competitions in the future, if we so wish?
    Or if I so happen to want to publish a book of my own ever, I cannot publish it in that either?

    Sorry, I just want to be sure on exactly what I can and cannot do with my piece of writing if I submit it in this competition.
    Thank you,

    1. Linda Parkinson-Hardman says :

      Hi Samantha. The agreement is simply that we have rights to publish winning entries. You can submit elsewhere if that’s allowed by other competition organisations or publish elsewhere too – it’s entirely up to you.

  15. Eunice Lorrimer-Roberts says :

    I am interested in the poetry competition. Can you only enter the competition on-line?

    1. Linda Parkinson-Hardman says :

      Hi Eunice. It depends on what you mean by ‘enter’, if you’re talking about payment we also accept cheques but you must submit your entry form through the online shop. You can then either send us your entry by email or upload it when you do the entry form. This is how we tie entries to people :-)

  16. I was just about to ask exactly the same question as Samantha!
    So really the rules should say non-exclusive worldwide licence, shouldn’t they?

    1. Linda Parkinson-Hardman says :

      You are quite right and it has now been amended accordingly :-)

  17. Hi, i just wanted to ask if the rules are strict about the length of writing. I have a poem however it is about 30 lines instead of 20. Is it possible to still send it in?

  18. Hi I just wanted to ask if the rules are very strict when it comes to the length of your entry? I have a poem that is 30 lines not 20, I was just wondering if they would disqualify you for that?

    1. Linda Parkinson-Hardman says :

      Hi Hannah, yes the rules are enforced so you would be disqualified.

  19. Hi! I’ve entered the short story comp. I paid the entry and I keep getting a message saying: ‘your purchase has now been partially shipped’!!! Can someone please explain what that means? :-)

    1. Linda Parkinson-Hardman says :

      Hi Marina. Partially shipped means we have received your entry but haven’t yet sent it to the judges. When we do that we mark the order as ‘complete’. :-)

  20. Nothing hysterical about the Hysteria Writing Competition – very prompt turnaround and really good transparency about the entries, numbers and the process. Congratulations on hosting such a well organised and well run competition.

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