Scotland’s International Three Language Wigtown Poetry Prize Open for Entries 

Scotland’s annual celebration of poets and poems in the country’s three indigenous languages – The Wigtown Poetry Prize – is open for entries. 

Each year the prize, which is delivered by Wigtown Book Festivals, attracts entries from around the world in English, Scots and Scottish Gaelic.

And this year, for the first time, the winners will be revealed at a special event during the festival rather than in advance.

The £1,500 Wigtown Prize is open to entries in any of the three languages and there are also separate Scots and Gaelic prizes.

There is also the Alastair Reid Pamphlet Prize, named in memory of one of Scotland’s foremost literary talents and which recognises a pamphlet of work rather than individual poems.

And there is the Dumfries and Galloway Fresh Voice Award, for poets living in, or from, the region who have never professionally published a full length collection.

The deadline for entries is 10 June.

The judges for 2022 will be Trinidadian Scottish writer of poetry and non-fiction Vahni (Anthony Ezekiel) CapildeoFRSL, Anne C Frater who grew up in Upper Bayble, Isle of Lewis, in a home and a community where Gaelic was the main language and Brian Holton who translates poetry and prose from modern and classical Chinese into English and Scots

Adrian Turpin, Wigtown Book Festival Artistic Director, said: “The Wigtown Poetry Prize is a truly international celebration of Scotland’s three indigenous languages and showcases some tremendous talent.
“Poetry and poets are often seriously undervalued today. The Wigtown Poetry Prize challenge this and is designed to bring poetry to a wider audience, to support established poets and nurture those who are emerging.
“In past years the prize has attracted some remarkable work, from all round the world, and we hope that this year will continue to build on this tradition.”

The Wigtown Poetry Prize takes place in association with The Gaelic Books Council, Moniack Mhor Creative Writing Centre, The Saltire Society, The Scottish Poetry Library and StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival.


2022 Prize details 

Wigtown Prize: £1,500, runner-up: £200. Judge Vahni Capildeo.

Wigtown Scots Prize: £500, runner-up: £200. Judge Brian Holton.

Wigtown Scottish Gaelic Prize: £500, runner-up: £200. Judge Anne C Frater.

Dumfries & Galloway Fresh Voice Award: Professional support including mentoring from Wigtown Festival Company and a retreat at Moniack Mhor Creative Writing Centre.
Judging Panel from Wigtown Festival Company Board of Trustees.

Alastair Reid Pamphlet Prize: Production of a pamphlet set by Gerry Cambridge

Invitation to Read at StAnza 2023: A winner of one or more categories will be selected at the discretion of StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival, and Wigtown Festival Company.

The Wigtown Poetry Prize is organised by the Wigtown Festival Company. Wigtown Scottish Gaelic and Wigtown Scots prizes can also submit their poems to be considered for the Wigtown Prize free-of-charge.

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