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Hachette UK’s The Future Bookshelf is running the Mo Siewcharran Prize for its fifth year to help discover unpublished fiction writers from Black, Asian, mixed heritage and minority ethnic backgrounds.

For 2024, the prize will be hosted by Hodderscape, an imprint of Hodder & Stoughton, and we are looking for fiction writing in the genre of the moment: fantasy.

Key Dates
1st February 2024 – Submissions open
1st May 2024 – Submissions close
19th June 2024 – Longlist announced
11th September 2024 – Shortlist announced
25th September 2024 – Winner announced

Please contact mosiewcharranprize@hachette.co.uk for any queries.

What is the prize?

The initiative, named in memory of Nielsen BookData’s former director of marketing and communications, aims to nurture talent from under-represented backgrounds writing in English. Run as part of Hachette UK’s The Future Bookshelf scheme, the prize was launched in 2019.

For more updates on The Mo Siewcharran Prize 2024, follow us on X (formerly Twitter) @MoPrize


How to enter?

Please email mosiewcharranprize@hachette.co.uk to enter your submission. By entering the competition, you agree to the terms and conditions here. You can find more information on how we will process your personal data in our privacy notice here.

Criteria for entry

Entrants must be unagented and previously unpublished, aged 18 or over, resident in the UK and from a Black, Asian, mixed heritage or Minority Ethnic background. Entry requirements are a synopsis of the plot of the novel of up to 700 words and no more than 10,000 words from the start of the book to be submitted by 1st May 2024. 

Judges will be looking for:
A well-written, page-turning piece of writing

A piece of writing that shows a strong sense of story and atmosphere

A memorable cast of characters and a compelling plot

The novel must sit firmly in the fantasy genre (this can include romantasy, cosy fantasy, dark academia, epic fantasy, low fantasy, contemporary fantasy, portal fantasy etc.) and is open to books aimed at young adults and adults.

Entries must be submitted by midnight on the 1st May 2024.

Full terms and conditions are available here.


The winner will receive £2,500 prize money plus,

• A detailed letter from a Hodderscape editor giving feedback on their entry, and a follow-up online mentoring session.

• Introductory meetings with at least two different literary agents;

• An introductory session with the Hodder & Stoughton rights team;

• A meeting with the Hodder & Stoughton marketing and publicity teams;

• A ticket to London Book Fair 2025

The winner’s entry will also be taken forward to a Hodder & Stoughton’s acquisitions meeting and considered for full publication with a competitive advance against royalties. Hodder & Stoughton does not guarantee that the winner will be offered a publishing contract.

The runner up will receive £1,500 prize money plus,

• A detailed letter from a Hodderscape editor giving feedback on their entry

• A hamper of Hodderscape books

A second runner up will receive £750 prize money plus a hamper of Hodderscape books.

The prize is sponsored by John Seaton, Mo Siewcharran’s husband and co-founder of the prize, and Nielsen BookData.

The Judges

Saara El-Arifi (#1 Sunday Times bestselling author of Faebound)

Sangu Mandanna (author of The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches)

Literary agent at MMB Creative, Edwina de Charnace

Founder and CEO of Fairyloot, Anissa de Gomery

Commissioning Editor at Hodderscape, Natasha Qureshi

And Hachette’s own co-chair of the THRIVE network, Feyi Oyesanya

About Hodderscape

Hodderscape is the magical sector of Hodder & Stoughton, where fantasy, sci-fi and horror lovers can hang out and talk books. We’re a safe space for fans of sexy vampires, enemies-to-lovers romances, LGBTQ+ fiction, Princes of Hell, sarcastic thieves and deadly assassins, and much, much more.

Hodder has a centuries-long tradition of publishing some of fiction’s most mind-bending, spine-tingling, genre-defying books, including literary legends such as Stephen King, and Frank Herbert. The Hodderscape list spans galaxies and timelines, worlds and species, from sci-fi sensations such as Becky Chambers The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet, or the magical world of Stephanie Garber’s Caraval, to Chloe Gong’s deadly 1920s Shanghai retelling of Romeo and Juliet, Kerri Maniscalco’s dark magic trilogy Kingdom of the Wicked and the viral TikTok fantasy romance These Hollow Vows by Lexi Ryan.


What does unpublished mean?

For this prize, unpublished means you have never had any book previously published by a publisher (and are not under contract to have your work published). Self-published writers are eligible to enter the competition, provided that if they are offered a publishing contract they are willing to remove the relevant work from any retailers where it is currently selling.

Am I eligible?

You are eligible for this prize if you are aged 18 or over, a UK resident and from a Black, Asian, mixed heritage or minority ethnic background. You must also be unagented and unpublished at the point of submission. Full terms and conditions are available here.

Please contact mosiewcharranprize@hachette.co.uk for any queries.


Good luck!