Pulp Idol is back for 2017! Submissions are now open, so it’s time to finish your first chapter and get it ready for judging.
Pulp Idol is a unique writing competition for novelists: it gets you published. With great success from previous finalists, it is an inspiring opportunity for writers. Pulp Idol focuses on supporting new original voices, getting them heard, and bridging the gap to the London publishing industry. We provide a platform for up-and-coming writers, helping with exposure to new audiences and providing contacts with key publishers and agents.

Previous entrants including James Rice, Deborah Morgan, John Donoghue, and Clare Coombes, have used Pulp Idol as a launch pad for their careers and are all now published novelists.

"I really do feel that, to a great extent, I owe this to Pulp Idol. My agent (Carolyn Whitaker from London Independent Books) contacted me after seeing the anthology of the finalists' first chapters. It was she who managed to get me in front of a highly respected editor, Ravi Mirchandani, leading to the subsequent book deal."  2010 finalist, John Donoghue, author of The Death's Head Chess Club.

Read about our past successes here

If you want to be in with a chance of getting your first chapter published and getting it read in front of a major publisher or agent, then you need to enter this year’s Pulp Idol. Closing date for applications is midnight on Sunday 16th April 2017. All entries will take part in the heats. Details of your heat will be allocated once all submissions are received, but please be aware that the heats will be held on Saturday 22nd April 2017. We will also be holding an online heat with guest judges that will be announced very soon. 

Laura Williams, literary agent from PFD Literary Agency, returns as one of our judges for the Pulp Idol Festival. 

‘I’d of course love to take part again. Very much looking forward to it already!’ 

You can submit your first chapter here:
Online submissions
Do you live outside of Liverpool/unable to attend the heats? You can submit your chapter by video. It should be no longer than 5 minutes and must include:
a.    An introduction of who you are and where you are from
b.    A reading of the first three minutes of your first chapter
c.    Answer briefly the following three questions:-
  • What genre is your novel?
  • Briefly describe what your novel is about, how much you have written.
  • What inspired the idea?
For details on submitting your chapter via YouTube, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Please ensure you have read the competition rules by clicking here
The final will be held on Saturday 20th May 2017. The winner of Pulp Idol will have their work read by an agent/publisher, and all finalists will have their first chapter published in our book of ‘Firsts’, available in hard copy in local bookshops and as an eBook available on all major online outlets. A copy will be sent out to agents and publishers across the country. By entering the competition, you are agreeing to take part in appropiate publicity linking to the heats, the final and the publication of the book. 

WoWFest 2017
Pulp Idol is part of our annual month long festival in May, which this year is all about 'Revolution'.  Is it time to rage against the machine? Should we stick it to the 'man'? This year's line-up is already looking great with Joanna Harris, China Miéville, Ian MacMillan, Tony Husband, Kate Evans, John Rees, Geoff Travis, and Henry Normal announced. For full details of all this year's events being held throughout May, visit our website.

Flash Fiction 2017

"Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen…
Cause the times they are a-changing” – Bob Dylan
The time has come for revolution, and we want you to write about it.
New technologies are flinging us into space-age realities. Trump and Brexit are shifting the world as we know it. We can no longer rely on the media and news to keep us well-informed. However, new cultural movements can happen quicker and more effectively than before; we’re all plugged in and reachable; we’re all passionate and want to change things about where we are, where we belong and how we interact. The world is primed for revolution; whether it’s in music, art, technology, labour, economics, politics, religion, sexuality, gender or government, change is in the air. Can you feel it? More importantly, can you write it?
Writers have been at the heart of many of the world’s most important revolutions; the bards of 1916 Ireland, poets of revolutionary France, Russian authors speaking out from behind the Iron curtain, slam poets speaking out against racism and police brutality in America and even close to home with writers weighing in on Brexit.
“Revolution” is the theme for this year’s Flash Fiction competition. You can write in any genre and break any rules you want but keep it sharp; you have 500 words maximum to tell us your tale.
Flash Fiction Flash – small is the new BIG!
Never heard of it? – you soon will!
To ‘borrow’ from the poet John Keats, flash fiction promises ‘infinite riches in a small room’.
As part of its annual festival Writing on the Wall is holding a Flash Fiction competition with the Theme of ‘Revolution’ (500 words maximum). Entries are invited from age 16 upwards and be written in any genre as long as they relate to the main theme. Your entry must not have won any other competitions. You can enter here