Pulp Idol 2023 is now OPEN for submissions!

Calling all novelists, submit your first chapter for a chance to be published!

WoW’s unique annual novel writing competition, Pulp Idol, is open to unpublished novelists across the Liverpool City Region. Submit the first chapter of your novel here and compete for the chance to have your work published and looked at by the UK’s top literary agents.

The prize is the opportunity to be published! If you make it to the Grand Final in September 2022, your work will be published in our annual Pulp Idol Firsts and distributed to agents and publishers throughout the UK.

With over ten years of great success from previous finalists, Pulp Idol is an inspiring opportunity for writers. Its aim is to support new, original voices and getting them heard. We strive to provide a platform for up-and-coming talent, helping with exposure to new audiences and providing contacts with key publishers and agents.

In the heats and the final, entrants will be given three minutes to read from the opening chapter of their novel and will then answer questions from the judges.

Heats will be taking place the week commencing Monday 5th September 2022, with the winners of each heat going forward to the final in the hope of WoW-ing the judges and being crowned Pulp Idol Winner 2023!

This year’s heats will be taking place online, with the Grand Final taking place on Thursday 29th September 2022.

Please ensure that before entering you have read and understand the competition rules here.

Think you’ve got what it takes to be Pulp Idol 2023 Winner? Apply here!

If you have any questions or queries relating to Pulp Idol 2023, please email Jenny Dalton at jenny@writingonthewall.org.uk

Pulp Idol 2023 Funded by Creative Writing at Liverpool John Moores University and Arts Council England.

Meet Our Grand Final Judges

Kevin Duffy, Co-Founder of the award winning Bluemoose Books 

As a publisher we are always looking to find great new talent and Pulp Idol is a fantastic event that shines a light on new writing and new writers.  

Kevin Duffy was born in Ely, Cambridgeshire but grew up in Woodley just outside Stockport. He lives in Hebden Bridge with Hetha, co-founder of Bluemoose Books, his two sons and their dog, Eric.  

Philippa Holloway, Author of The Half Life of Snails and Finalist in Pulp Idol 2019  

Pulp Idol is the perfect experience for honing your craft – by developing your work carefully, reading to an audience, and building your confidence, you become ever more able to finish your novel, gain a publishing deal and see your book on the shelves.  

Philippa Holloway is an author and academic, teaching Creative Writing at Staffordshire University. Her short/non-fiction is published in the US, Australia, Africa, Europe and the UK. She has won prizes in literary awards including the Fish Publishing Prize, The Scythe Prize, and the Writers & Artists Working Class Writer’s Prize. Her specialisms include prose fiction, creative process and nuclear psychogeography, and she has been commissioned for contributions to various interdisciplinary projects. She is the co-curator of 100 Words of Solitude, a global writing project responding to the pandemic, and co-editor of the collection 100 Words of Solitude: Global Voices in Lockdown (2020) 

Twitter: @thejackdawspen 

Instagram: @thejackdawspen 

Clare Coombes, Founder of The Liverpool Literary Agency and Author of Definitions (2015) and We Are of Dust (2018)  

Taking part in Pulp Idol gave me the confidence, skills and experience to become an author and now a literary agent. It’s a fantastic competition to give underrepresented writers from all backgrounds an insight and way into the publishing industry.

Clare Coombes set up the first Liverpool-based literary agency in 2020 to help address inequality and underrepresentation in the publishing industry. With more than 15 years’ experience of writing and editing professionally, including the publication of two novels, she has developed an in-depth knowledge of what commissioning editors and publishers expect to see from a submitted manuscript. With a background in PR and marketing, alongside teaching on creative writing programmes, Clare also has extensive experience in pitching and promoting writers.  

Heat Judges Include:

Ashleigh Nugent  

Cheryl Martin  

Penney Feeney  

John Donoghue  

James Rice  

Matt Cook  

Yvonne Battle-Felton  

More judges to be announced!