2019 Calibre Essay Prize Terms & Conditions

Who can enter?

1.      Entries are welcome from writers anywhere in the world.

2.      There is no age limit.

3.      ABR staff, board members, and editorial advisers are not eligible to enter. ABR contributors and volunteers may enter.

What does it cost to enter an essay?

4.     Each entry must be accompanied by an entry fee of AU$25, or AU$15 for current ABR subscribers. To qualify for the lower entry fee, entrants must hold a current one-year subscription to our print edition or ABR Online or be a full-time student.

5.      If you don’t already subscribe to ABR Online, you can purchase a one-year subscription and enter a single essay for a total of AU$65. You can then enter subsequent essays at the discounted rate of $15 each.

6.      If you don’t already subscribe to ABR’s print edition you can purchase a one-year subscription and enter a single essay for the following rates: $100 (Australia), $150 (New Zealand/Asia), or $170 (ROW). You can then enter subsequent essays at the discounted rate of $15 each.

How to enter

7.       Online entry is required.

8.       Entries are only permitted in Word documents. The text should be presented with 1.5 spacing and in 12 pt font size. The pages should be numbered.

9.      The author’s name must not appear in the document or in the name of the digital file because judging is conducted blind.

10.    The file name should only include the title of the essay.

11.     Entrants will receive automatic confirmation of receipt to the email address used when entering.

Terms and conditions

12.  Entries must be a single non-fiction essay of 2,000 to 5,000 words, written in English (any endnotes should be included in that word count).

13.  Multiple entries are permitted.

14.  Entries must be original works written by an individual author.

15.  Entries must not infringe upon anyone’s copyright.

16.  Essays that are deemed to be works of plagiarism will be disqualified.

17.  To remain eligible, entries must not be on offer to other publications or prizes or anthologies for the duration of the Calibre Essay Prize, which will be announced on 1 April 2019. However, it is our expectation that the authors of non-shortlisted essays will be notified in February or early March 2019 and they are then free to place their essays elsewhere.

18.  Previously published, prize-winning, or broadcast essays will not be accepted. (Previous online appearances constitute prior publication.) Entries will be deemed ineligible if they are under contract to another publisher or broadcaster.

19.  Essays entered but not shortlisted in past Calibre Essay Prizes may be re-entered.

20.  Translations are not eligible.

21.  The closing date for entries is midnight 14 January 2019.

22.  If entrants subsequently withdraw their entries, the entry fee will not be refunded.

23.  The winner and the runner-up will be encouraged to take part in radio interviews to help promote the essay and the magazine.

24.  The prize money also covers publication in ABR Online and the print edition.

25.  Copyright in the essay(s) resides with the entrant.


26.  The winner will receive AU$5,000 in April 2019.

27. The runner-up will receive AU $2,500 in April 2019.


28. Our expectation is that the winning essays will require little editing apart from the application of house style. ABR will edit both essays and show the authors changes for their approval. The essayists will be involved throughout and will be shown successive proofs.

29. The winning essay will be published in the April 2019 issue (print and online). The runner-up will be published in the May 2019 or June-July 2019 issue (print and online).

30.  Authorship of the winning essays will be fully acknowledged in the ABR print and online issues and in all related material.

31. Copyright in the two winning essays resides with the authors. The winner and runner-up grant the Australian Book Review an exclusive licence to publish their winning essays in the relevant ABR issue (print and online edition) for three months from the date of first publication in the issue, and thereafter a non-exclusive licence indefinitely to publish in the relevant online issue.

32. If syndication or anthologisation of the winning essays is mooted, ABR will consult the winning essayists for approval. The essayists will receive 50% of any syndication fees and 100 % of any anthology fees.

The Judging Process

33.  Judging is completely anonymous.

34.  The entrant’s name must not appear in the Word file or in the file name.

35.  The judges are J.M. Coetzee, Anna Funder, and Peter Rose (ABR Editor and CEO).

36.  The judges’ decision is final, and no correspondence will be entered into about the judgements or the judging process.

37.  ABR reserves the right not to award a prize.

To be eligible, entrants must tick the declaration box on the online entry page.


I hereby declare that the essay entered in the Calibre Essay Prize is my own work, has not been previously published or awarded, is not currently on offer to another publication or prize, and will not be so offered until after the announcement of the Prize on 1 April 2019. I have read all the terms and conditions and agree to abide by them.