Creative Manchester Poetry Competition 2021

Creative Manchester, in partnership with the Centre for New Writing and the Geological Society, is running a Micropoetry competition themed around ‘Space’. The judging panel includes esteemed poet and Chancellor of the University, Lemn Sissay


The competition runs from Sunday 21 March 2021 and closes on Monday 21 June 2021 at midnight GMT.


To celebrate the ‘Year of Space’, participants are invited to write a micropoem themed around space and tweet it with the hashtag #micropoem21. Can you express yourself in 280 characters? Maybe you can include the solar system, stars, comets, asteroids or meteorites, the possibilities are endless!


This competition is open to all. You do not need to be associated to The University of Manchester to enter the competition.

How to Enter

To enter the competition all you need to do is tweet your micropoem through Twitter, including the hashtag #micropoem21. 

To make the competition more accessible, email entries will also be accepted. Please email your micropoem to:

Please note that the same competition rules apply for micropoems submitted via email, which should be themed around ‘Space’ and kept strictly to a maximum of 280 characters (including spaces).

All poems must be written in English.

How many

One submission will be accepted per person. In the event that multiple entries are submitted, only the first entry will be judged.


Prizes for the best three poems are:

  • 1st prize £500
  • 2 runner up prizes, each at £250
  • 10 pairs of tickets for Literature Live, autumn 2021 programme

Authors of the top three micropoems will be invited to attend an Awards / Celebration event in September 2021 and to read their poem (should they wish to), along with published poets. 


Micropoems must be themed as stated. Micropoems that do not have the hashtag #micropoem21 and/or are submitted outside the competition period (21 March – 21 June) will not be considered.

Judging panel

The competition will be judged by:

  • John McAuliffe, Professor of Poetry at The University of Manchester and co-director at the Centre for New Writing
  • Maryam Hessavi, Manchester-based Poet and Critic
  • Lemn Sissay, The University of Manchester Chancellor, Poet and Writer
  • Michael McKimm, Poet and Librarian at the Geological Society of London


The winners will be announced by 5pm on Friday 23 July 2021

Terms and conditions