Entries open for the Luke Bitmead Writer's Bursary - top prize is a publishing contract for unpublished author

Writer's Bursary 2010 - Deadline 31st August 2010

Legend Press has announced the opening of entries for the 2010 Luke Bitmead Writer’s Bursary. The award was set up shortly after author Luke’s death in 2006 by his family to support and encourage the work of fledgling novel writers, with the top prize being a publishing contract with Legend Press, as well as a cheque for £2500.

Luke is the author of White Summer (the first novel to be published by Legend Press) and co-author of Heading South.

Submissions are open until 31st August 2010, with the winner announced in the week of 27th October 2010.

Luke was just 34 when he died and was considered by all that had read his work as one of the UK’s most talented up-and-coming writers. His first published novel was the cult comedy White Summer – published by Legend Press in May 2006, just five months before he died. Legend Press, in agreement with Luke’s family, also published the comedy romance novel Heading South which Luke had written with co-author Catherine Richards. The heartfelt dedication in Heading South reads: ‘In memory of Luke, who’s talent, wit, drive and smile will be greatly missed but always remembered by everyone who met him.’

Guidelines and criteria:

Submissions from writers will be accepted between 13th May 2010 and 31st August 2010, with the winner being announced in the week of 27th October 2010.

Only adult fiction is eligble for this bursary, no children's books or non-fiction.

The judging panel will consist of Luke’s mother and sister, Legend Press and best-selling authors Zoe Jenny and Sam Mills.

Entrants must be age 16 or over. There is no upper age restriction for entry but all submissions must be from first-time, non-published authors – particularly those who are talented but whose personal or financial circumstances are making it especially hard for them to focus on writing as a career.

Novels must be already completed before entry. Unfinished manuscripts will not be accepted. Please submit 3-4 sample chapters initially by email to bitmeadbursary@legendpress.co.uk along with a personal statement outlining why you would particularly benefit from the bursary. This will form a key part of the judging process.

You can find out more about Luke and the Memorial Fund at http://www.lukebitmead.com/