From the Women’s Prize Archives – this competition is now closed.

They say that everyone has a novel in them. And, if you have ever dreamed of getting that novel published, this could be the push you need to make it happen. Our First Chapter competition – in partnership with Grazia Magazine – is giving you the chance to kick start your writing career.

Diana Evans, the Women’s Prize shortlisted author of Ordinary People, has written the opening paragraph of a story – and we’re challenging you to finish the chapter. The story can go in any direction you want – just keep to 800-1000 words, and send it to us by 13 March.

The winner will join us at our awards party in London on 3 June, where their talent will be acknowledged in front of the biggest names in literature.

The story so far…

Diana Evans has started the story – now it’s up to you to finish the opening chapter.

If you steal something from another time, they will never find you. That’s what he’d promised. You disappear. You never were or are not yet. You’re transient, like speed, or like the wind. So easily she had stepped into those magical machines with their white coils and sharp rims, believing in the next world, the next moon and the next theft. But one day she was caught, and everything she discovered thereafter destroyed everything she knew about time. It does not move or tick. It is one place, one moment. It is us who are moving. None of this is real.

How to enter

Continuing Diana’s story, write your first chapter (800-1000 words), and send it to us along with a short biography (200 words max), plus your address, email, phone number, occupation and date of birth. Read our terms and conditions, then send your entry to, or post it to Rhiannon Evans, Grazia, Academic House, 24-28 Oval Road, London NW1 7DT, by 13 March.

What you’ll win

The winner will have their full chapter published in Grazia, plus a meeting with a senior Penguin Random House editor, a year’s mentoring from Diana Evans and a goodie bag. They will also receive their award at the Women’s Prize for Fiction ceremony on 3 June in London. Two finalists will have their chapters published on, and all will receive the six Women’s Prize for Fiction 2020 shortlisted books.

Meet the judges

DIANA EVANS, bestselling author of Ordinary People
ROSAMUND DEAN, Grazia’s deputy editor
RHIANNON EVANS, Grazia’s features & special projects director