Photo of women reading at a book club for First Chapter article

First Chapter

Now in its 11th year, our annual Women’s Prize × Grazia First Chapter competition, which the Women’s Prize delivers in partnership with Grazia, provides a starting point for first time writers, and seeks the next literary star. Every year, we ask a renowned author to provide the first 150 words of a story, and first time writers are invited to complete it. The author and members of the Grazia team judge the competition, and the winner and two runners-up are announced at our Awards Ceremony in London.

Our judges were Grazia’s Deputy Editor and author Kenya Hunt, assistant editor and author Emma Rowley, and bestselling author Dorothy Koomson, who wrote the opening paragraph for the 2021 competition.

Our 2021 winner is Naomi George, who impressed the judges with how she how set up a promising tale with a twist. You can read her winning story, with Dorothy’s starting paragraph, here. Our runners-up are Savitri Patel and Imogen Tazzyman,w whose stories you can read below. Dorothy will now mentor Naomi for a year as part of her prize, and she will attend the Women’s Prize for Fiction Awards Ceremony on 8 September.

Looking for some creative tips? Scroll on for some writing features, or watch Dorothy Koomson and fellow judge Emma Rowley chatting in an inspiring IG Live here.

Our previous First Chapter Competition authors have been Rosamund Lupton, Kate Mosse, Rachel Joyce, Sarah Waters, Jojo Moyes, Marian Keyes, Maggie O’Farrell, Paula Hawkins, Gail Honeyman and Diana Evans.