The Allen & Unwin Crime Fiction Prize


Is there a manuscript in your bottom drawer just waiting to be finished? Have you got a burning idea for the perfect crime … on paper?

We are thrilled to announce the inaugural annual Allen & Unwin Crime Fiction Prize.

The winner will be awarded a publishing contract with an advance against royalties of $AUD 25,000.

The competition will be open to all unpublished full-length manuscripts in the crime or thriller genres written by residents of Australia and New Zealand.

Entries must be a minimum length of 60,000 words and a maximum of 120,000 words.

Both debut writers and already-published writers will be eligible to enter.


How to enter

How to Enter

1. Make sure you are eligible

Conditions of Entry

• Information on how to enter and the prize form part of these Conditions of Entry.
• The Promoter is Allen & Unwin Pty Ltd (A.B.N 79 003 994 278) of 83 Alexander Street, Crows Nest, NSW 2065.
• Entries must be full-length adult novels written in the crime or thriller genre.
• Entries open 31 August 2020.
• Entries must be lodged by 26 February 2021.
• Entrants must be Australian or New Zealand citizens or permanent residents.
• Entries must be a minimum length of 60,000 words and a maximum of 120,000 words.
• The manuscript must be an original work, entirely by the entrant and it must be written in English.
• The manuscript cannot be under consideration by any other publisher or entered into any other award.
• No more than 10% of the manuscript can have been previously published in print form, or in electronic form, on a commercial basis.
• Allen & Unwin will publish the winning entry, and will have exclusive worldwide publishing rights to it, and to any other entry they feel is of sufficient merit.
• The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
• The judges shall have the discretion to divide the prize equally between authors of entries they consider to be of equal merit. If, in their opinion, no entry is worthy of the prize, no winner shall be chosen. No entrant may win the prize in successive years.
• The winner will be told in strict confidence during September 2021, at which time the winner must agree to keep this news absolutely confidential until the announcement of the prize.
• The winning book will be published mid-2022.
• Each entrant is required to agree to the above conditions of entry.
• Breach of any conditions of entry will render an entry invalid.
• The Promoter shall not be liable for any loss or damage whatsoever which is suffered (including but not limited to indirect or consequential loss) or for personal injury which is suffered or sustained, as a result of taking the prize, except for any liability which cannot be excluded by law.
• The Promoter collects entrant’s personal information in order to conduct the promotion. If the information requested is not provided, the entrant may not participate in the promotion. Allen & Unwin respects your privacy and, at this stage, non-essential data will not be collected. Your personal details will only be used for the purpose of this promotion unless you nominate otherwise. An Allen & Unwin Privacy Statement is available online at A request to access, update or correct any information should be directed to the Promoter at the address set out above.

2. Submission process

Entries must be submitted as follows:

• All manuscripts must be submitted with only the title visible on the file. This is because the judging process will be anonymous and previously published writers are eligible to enter this prize.
• The writer’s name and details must be included ONLY on the accompanying entry form.
• If any manuscripts are submitted with the author’s name on them the senders will be asked to reapply with the author’s name removed from the manuscript.

You will need to submit your anonymous manuscript, a one-page synopsis, and completed entry form, preferably all in PDF format, to email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

3. Entry Process

Step 1.  Click here to download the entry form (PDF)

Each entrant is required to complete the entry form, which binds them to the above conditions of entry.

Please scan your completed entry form and attach it to your email.

If you are not able to scan the entry form, please copy and paste the following information into the body of your email:

Email address:
Manuscript title:
Word count:

I, __________________________ agree to the Conditions of Entry.

Step 2. Convert your manuscript and your one-page synopsis to PDF and attach it to your email.

If you are not able to convert your manuscript to PDF, we will accept a Word document.

Step 3. Send the email with all of the attachments to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

An electronic acknowledgment will be sent to each entrant upon receipt of entry.
If it is not possible for an entry to be submitted electronically, hardcopy submissions will be accepted. Send completed entry form and manuscript to: Allen & Unwin Crime Fiction Prize, PO Box 8500 St Leonards, NSW 1590.