The Royal Society of Literature is delighted to announce the nineteenth V.S. Pritchett Memorial Prize. This prize for the best unpublished short story of the year was founded by the RSL at the beginning of the new millennium to commemorate the centenary of an author widely regarded as the finest English short-story writer of the 20th century, and to preserve a tradition encompassing Pritchett’s warmth of feeling and mastery of narrative.

The author of the winning entry will be awarded a prize of £1,000 and have their story published in Prospect online and in the RSL Review. There will be an opportunity to appear at an RSL event with established short story writers in autumn 2017.

Submission Deadlines

The closing date for entries to the V.S. Pritchett Memorial Prize is 14 June 2017.

Entry Process

  1. Please check the competition deadline and eligibility guidelines carefully (click 'more' below). Submit your entry below.
  2. We encourage entrants to submit their entries via this portal. To submit by post, please follow the directions on our website.

If you have technical difficulties completing the online entry form, please email
If you are unable to complete the online entry form for other reasons, please contact Martha Stenhouse, Membership, Awards & Office Co- ordinator, or 020 7845 4679.
Ends on June 14, 2017£5.00
V.S. Pritchett (VSP), whom the New Yorker called ‘our language’s presiding man of letters’, is an inspirational figure to aspirant short story writers. His own output was prolific – throughout his long life he wrote in every literary form save poetry – and it is for his subtle, lucid, sensitive short stories that he is best remembered and admired.

In his memory, a prize of £1,000 will be awarded to the author of the best unpublished short story of the year. The winning entry will be published in Prospect online and in the RSL Review. In addition to this, there will be an opportunity to appear at an RSL event with established short story writers in autumn 2017.

The judges for this year's prize will be announced shortly.


The closing date for entries is 14 June 2017.


  1. Entrants must be resident in the UK and likely to be available for a prizegiving event in autumn 2017.
  2. Stories entered for the competition must not have been published previously, or broadcast in any other medium.
  3. There is no restriction on submitting the same entry to other prizes.
  4. Entries must be in English.
  5. Any story submitted should be between 2,000 and 4,000 words in length.
  6. Multiple entries to this competition are permitted, but must be submitted individually.
  7. Entrants should not put their name, address or any identifying mark, other than the title of the work, on their manuscripts.
The V.S. Pritchett Memorial Prize is administered by the Royal Society of Literature in association with Prospect and is sponsored by Christopher and Jennie Bland as well as the ALCS. For more details, see our website.