Planet Plymouth Writing Competition

The University of Plymouth English and Creative Writing department is at the cutting edge of literary engagements with the future of our planet. We are part of the University that coined the term microplastics. Our research shapes how people today see the relationship between the human, animal, and technological worlds. In the department of English and Creative Writing, we write fiction, poetry, and non-fiction that explores how humans co-exist with the natural environment—or not. From Mandy Bloomfield’s pioneering work on eco-poetry, to Ben Smith’s haunting novel Doggerland, to Miriam Darlington’s regular column in The Times, our writers grapple with key questions of our time about the relationship between us and our environment.

We want you to join us

In 2020, the University of Plymouth English and Creative Writing department will be rewarding the best young writers in the UK who are passionate about the environment through our Planet Plymouth writing competition. This year the theme is PlasticHumanAnimal. We are interested in poetry, short stories, and non-fictional essays exploring the relationship between human beings, the things we have created, and animals. We encourage creativity and leftfield approaches.

<p>Environmental Issue: Underwater image of Plastic in the Ocean. The location here is Phi Phi Islands, Krabi, Thailand.<br></p>
<p>Plastic marine litter<br></p>
Student Life magazine issue 1 plastic
Plastic littering the coast


£150 for best poem.

£150 for best short story Inspired by the theme of people/animals/plastics.

£150 for the best non-fictional essay.

Choose a work of literature in English and answer this question: How does it explore the cost of human interactions with the natural world?

Winning entries will be published on our BA (Hons) English and Creative Writing webpage. 

How to enter

To enter you must be a secondary school or college student, aged 18 or under, in the UK. You can submit a maximum of two entries. Poems should be no more than 100 lines, short stories should be under 1,000 words, and essays may be 1,500 words or under. We cannot accept work that has been published elsewhere. To enter, fill out an application form and submit it together with your entry as an Microsoft Word document, clearly labelled with your name and your work’s title, to by 17.00 on 2 December 2019. Title your email ‘PlasticHumanAnimal’.

Results will be announced in early February. Prizes will be paid in Amazon vouchers.