WRITERS have until the end of this month to get their entries in for the Bridport Prize.

All entries received between now and May 17 will be entered into a draw to receive a bundle of Bridport Prize anthologies.

The Bridport Prize was founded by Bridport Arts Centre in 1973 and right from the start the competition attracted entries from all parts of the UK and from overseas.

Now with the four categories for short stories, first novel, flash fiction and poetry there is more than £16,000 on offer in prize money.

A new category for flash fiction with a prize of £1,000 was launched in 2010.

In 2014 the Peggy Chapman-Andrews first novel award, named after the prize’s founder, was launched.

The first prize is £1,000 plus a up to a year’s mentoring from The Literary Consultancy through their Chapter & Verse scheme.

Thanks to the sponsorship of The Book Shop of Bridport, £100 is awarded to the highest placed Dorset writer each year.

Poetry judge is Patience Agba who studied English Language and Literature at Oxford University, and is a former Poet Laureate of Canterbury. Her writing and performance has been featured on radio and TV worldwide. In 2015 she was a recipient of The Cholmondeley Award and shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Prize for New Work in Poetry.

She said: " I’m looking for poems that yield on more than one level, that continue to echo long after they’re read.”

The short story judge is Tessa Hadley who has written six novels including The London Train and The Past, and two collections of short stories. She publishes stories regularly in the New Yorker, reviews for the London Review of Books and the Guardian, and is a Professor at Bath Spa University.

She said: "I'll be looking for that crucial something - in the detail, in the language, in the thought - which makes me feel that the story has its own truth, that it bypasses cliche and stereotype."

Tim Stevenson is the flash fiction judge. He was the winner of the 2013 National Flash-Fiction Day 100-Word competition and has been published in various anthologies.

He said: "I hope to see the mundane become significant, the obvious become surprising, a place where anything can happen as a wink, a smile, or a single word ripples through the fabric of the story."

The first novel judge is Kerry Young. She is the author of two novels ‘Pao’ and ‘Gloria’. ‘Pao’ was shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award, the Commonwealth Book Prize and the East Midlands Book Award.

She said: "I want a story that intrigues me with interesting themes and authentic characters I want to care about."