NZSA Awards | Grants | Fellowships  administered by NZSA

When submitting to any of the following awards or fellowships, please format your manuscripts along these guidelines.

Manuscripts should be:

  • Printed on one side of an A4 sheet.
  • Either 1.5 or double spaced with either double space between paragraphs, or indented paragraphs.
  • A wide margin (3cm) at the sides and top (5-6cm).
  • In a legible typeface such as Times New Roman.
  • Pages should be numbered.
  • The title should be included in a footer/header on each page.

Michael Gifkins Prize for an Unpublished Novel

The Michael Gifkins Prize for an Unpublished Novel is an exciting award for writers holding New Zealand citizenship or who are permanent residents of New Zealand. The prize, which celebrates the life and work of the writer and agent Michael Gifkins, is open to published and unpublished authors who are invited to enter manuscripts of adult fiction. The manuscript must be unpublished and not on submission to another publisher.

The winner will receive a contract for world rights with Text Publishing and an advance to the value of NZ$10,000, made possible by a gift from The Gifkins Family and Text Publishing.



Open for applications July to October.

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NZSA Peter and Dianne Beatson Fellowship


Annual fellowship offering a stipend of $10,000, funded by Peter and Dianne Beatson.

Open for applications June to August in any given year

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CLNZ|NZSA Research Grants



Open for applications May to June in any given year

Four research grants valued at $5,000 each, funded by Copyright Licensing New Zealand Ltd.

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CLNZ|NZSA Writers Award

Copyright Licensing New Zealand

Open for applications June to July in any given year

One annual Writers Award for non-fiction of $25,000, funded by Copyright Licensing New Zealand Ltd.

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NZSA Lilian Ida Smith Award

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Offered quadrennially for writers over the age of 35 years and valued at $3,000.

This award will next open for applications in 2025

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NZSA Laura Solomon Cuba Press Prize

The NZSA Laura Solomon Cuba Press Prize is an exciting new prize, which celebrates the life and work of the writer Laura Solomon. This prize will be judged within the criteria set by Laura Solomon, for new writing with a ‘unique and original vision’. Both published and unpublished writers are invited to enter completed manuscripts written across genres ie fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, drama or children’s writing. The winner receives $2k and a publishing contract with The Cuba Press, supported by NZSA from Laura Solomon’s bequest.

Open for applications from November to March

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The NZSA Shaw Writers Award

The NZSA Shaw Writer’s Award is a new award established in 2024 by novelist Tina Shaw to encourage the development of great novels by mid-career fiction writers who are working on a new project. All applicants must be New Zealand citizens or permanent residents.

The NZSA Shaw Writer’s Award will provide a cash award of $5,000 to be used for the completion and/or publication of their stated project.

Fiction aimed at adult and younger readers (middle grade and YA) will be eligible in any genre. Fiction works in verse are eligible but poetry is not. Writers must have published at least three standalone novels to be considered for this award. Traditionally published, hybrid or indie published novels will be considered.

Open for application from May 17 to 14 July.

  1. Terms and Conditions for the NZSA Shaw Writer’s Award
  2. Application form

Also see link below for details of  NZSA’s annual mentorship and assessment programmes:

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Past Awards and Prizes administered by NZSA

NZSA Janet Frame Memorial Award for Literature

janet frameThe final Janet Frame Memorial Award for Literature was given out in 2016.

This was a biennial award for mid-career fiction writers valued at $3,000.

In August 2007 The Janet Frame Literary Trust generously gave the Society a gift to enable New Zealand Society of Authors Te Puni Kaituhi o Aotearoa (PEN NZ Inc) to give a biennial award in Janet Frame’s name to be given to an author of literary or imaginative fiction, or poetry. The gift enabled five awards over 10 years and this is the last in the series.

This came about because Janet Frame, who died in 2004, directed that her ongoing royalty income be used to support New Zealand writers of poetry and imaginative fiction.

Janet Frame herself had benefited from the boost given by similar often timely financial assistance and professional recognition throughout her long career. Janet Frame was a member of the Society and the recipient of many awards, prizes, grants, fellowships and scholarships, none more well-timed than the New Zealand Society of Authors’ (then the NZ PEN Centre) Hubert Church award in 1951 for her first book, The Lagoon and other stories.  The publicity for this honour convinced her doctors not to carry out a planned lobotomy, which would in all likelihood have ended her literary aspirations.

Recipients of the NZSA Janet Frame Memorial Award for Literature were 2008: Emma Neale. 2010: Tim Jones. 2012: Diane Brown. 2014: Elizabeth Smither. 2016: Laurence Fearnley.

Hachette Mentorship

This was presented by Hachette Australia and New Zealand in partnership with the New Zealand Society of Authors Te Puni Kaituhi o Aotearoa (PEN NZ Inc.)

The Hachette Mentoring Program gives one writer an opportunity to work on a new draft of their completed manuscript under the mentorship of Hachette Publishing Australia.


Ashton Wylie Charitable Trust Book and Manuscript Awards

The Trust’s Mind Body Spirit Literary Awards were established in 2004. They have been unique in the country for their encouragement of writing in the mind body spirit genre.

The Awards have been offered annually, in two categories. During 2018 and 2019 the application process for these awards was administered by the New Zealand Society of Authors Te Puni Kaituhi o Aotearoa (PEN NZ Inc).

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