Literary Guidelines

Papatango New Writing Prize Guidelines

The Papatango New Writing Prize is now closed for entries, having received 1036 submissions. We will announce our shortlist and winner in June 2017, and will write to all entrants individually with feedback across July and August 2017.

The winner will receive a four week production at Southwark Playhouse, publication by Nick Hern Books, 10% of the gross box office income and a £6000 commission and full developmental support for their next play.

Entry to the Prize is anonymous.

The competition is open to anyone resident in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland only.

There is no age limit.

The play must have a playing time of at least seventy minutes.

All entries should include page numbers on every page.

Any entries received after the deadline will not be read, and no extension is possible.

Submissions should be submitted by email and in Microsoft Word or PDF formats only, with only a contact telephone number(s) on the front page. Please do not include your name anywhere on the document, nor attach a synopsis or CV.

All entries should be emailed to Any entry made to Southwark Playhouse will be disqualified.

SCRIPTS MUST NOT INCLUDE THE AUTHOR’S NAME (OR ANY PSEUDONYM), ADDRESS OR EMAIL ANYWHERE IN THE DOCUMENT. All scripts must include at least one telephone number only on the front page. (Please make sure that any telephone number you give will still be active in May 2017 when the winner is announced.)

The play must be an original, unperformed and unproduced piece of work. It cannot have received a professional production in any form, anywhere in the world, apart from an absolute maximum of three rehearsed/staged readings or workshops only. Amateur productions do not apply. Any scripts that have been professionally produced or published will be automatically disqualified.

Translations, children’s plays, adaptations, music theatre, television, film or radio scripts are not eligible.

The entrant must exclusively own and control all copyright and all other related rights to the submitted script. It must be available for production and unattached to any other organisation or individual.

The winning play will be under exclusive option to Papatango for a period of eighteen months after the announcement of the awards; this reflects the substantial development the play will be likely to undergo with Papatango, and the royalty that the writer receives from both the production and publication.

The writer agrees to work with Papatango under commission to develop their next play, which will also be under exclusive option to Papatango for 18 months from completion.

We regret that no correspondence can be entered into regarding any part of the judging process. All entries will receive an automated email acknowledgement upon entry, and then an individual response once the reading process is complete, although due to the volume of entries this may take some time to complete. Please be patient and wait to hear from us. The shortlist and winner may be announced before we are able to contact every individual entrant, but we will be writing to everyone with feedback as quickly as is physically possible.