Against the Grain Poem Competition 2018

Prizes – First prize – £100, Second prize – £50, Third prize – £25

We are looking for a competition winner‘s poem we like enough to submit to the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem. First, second and third prize winners will be invited to read at an ATG event. Winning poems will be published on our website.

Closing date – 30th November 2018

Cost – submit up to two poems for £5 or up to five poems for £10

Judges – Abegail Morley, Karen Dennison and Jessica Mookherjee (ATG editors).

Abegail is author of four poetry collections and two pamphlets. Her debut was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection.  She has judged a number of poetry competitions including the Frogmore Prize, Sentinel Quarterly, Canterbury Poet of the Year, Roundel and Paper Swans pamphlet competition.

Karen’s first collection, Counting Rain, was published by Indigo Dreams in 2012 and her second is forthcoming in 2019. She is designer, editor and publisher of Book of Sand, Blueshift and Free-fall, a series of ekphrastic pamphlets featuring poets and artists.

Jessica is author of two pamphlets, including Joy Ride by Black Light Engine Room. Her first full collection, Flood, is published by Cultured Llama this year and her second will be published in 2019. She was highly commended in the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem.

Enter now


  • Enter 2 poems for £5BuyNowButtonjpg(payment to Karen Dennison)
  • Enter 5 poems for £10BuyNowButtonjpg(payment to Karen Dennison)
  • Once you have paid, email including
    • In the body of your email
      • Your PayPal transaction id
      • Your name and contact details
      • The title(s) of your poem(s)
    • As an attachment – your poem(s) in a single Word, RTF or PDF document with each poem on a new page. Do not include any identifying information in the attachment.


Online/email entries only

Open to anyone aged 18 or over from any country

Poems must be

  • in English
  • no longer than 40 lines (excluding title and line breaks)
  • unpublished

The judges will read all the entries and their decision is final

All entries will be judged anonymously


All entrants will be notified by email (i) that their entries have been received (ii) of the results. The results will be announced in January 2019.